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Ambrogio Lorenzetti (1290-1348) Italian, Sienese, Early Renaissance


Allegory of Justice c. late 1347

The concept of the allegory is based on the division of power between the government. The justice is seated with symbolic balance scales.

Information about the origins of he Allegory of Good and Bad Government

In 1337, the Nove (the nine) decided to commission a  fresco cycle commemorating the great achievements of Siena and its trustworthy government. The Nove consisted of a powerful group of Siena citizens who were from the middle classes and upper middle classes. They believed in the unlimited possibilities of industrious merchants, bankers and tradesmen. Some of the Nove were well connected bankers.  Ambrogio Lorenzetti, the greatest painter of the Sienese School, was chosen by the Nove to create a  fresco cycle  for Siena 's town hall, the Sala dei Nove in the Palazzo Pubblico.  The Allegory of Good and Bad Government is the first true masterpiece of secular art and one of the greatest paintings of the 14th Century. It is a painted fresco  that covers three of four walls of the room. People from all over the world are captivated by this image and many make the journey to Sienna, Italy. If you visit, as I have, you will be transfixed by the mystical qualities this painting emanates. Many people claim to have dreams or visions about what the missing pieces of the painting looked like and amazingly their dreams are very similar.



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