Presentation of the acquisition of correspondence from Baldassare Castiglioni

16 May 2017

Tuesday 16 May 2017 saw the official presentation of the acquisition of the last part of correspondence by Baldassare Castiglioni by the State Archives, which had not yet been reunited with the remaining contents of the family archive.

The event, coordinated by Daniela Ferrari, former director of the Mantua State Archives, and by Luisa Tamassia, the current director, completes a long journey of around a century and allows for research and studies to be carried out which, up to this point, were precluded. The solely archive is made up of around 2000 scrolls, more than 100 maps and drawings and over 250 folders dating from the 13th to the 20th century. The presentation was held at of the State Archive of Mantua, in the beautiful setting of the Sacristy of The Most Holy Trinity. 

Simultaneously, there was the inauguration of the documentary exhibition curated by Luisa Tamassia, which, for the first time, presented some documents from the new acquisition to the public. In many cases, these are letters written by Baldassare Castiglioni to people dear to him, such as his mother, his children or the trusted Girolamo Traboschi, which shows an extremely private portrait of the great Renaissance writer. There are references to the first print of “The Book of the Courtier” and to the presence of Giulio Romano at the Castiglioni residence in Casatico di Marcaria. There is a poignant letter addressed to Castiglioni from his wife, Ippolita Torelli, which shows her pain at the distance between her and her husband, who was always travelling on diplomatic missions. This was likely the last letter written by Ippolita, as she died in the following months during childbirth.

The presentation was attended by the councillor Paola Nobis, Gino Famiglietti, director of the Mibact archives, Daniela Ferrari and Luisa Onesta Tamassia.

A conference later took place at Palazzo Ducale (Sala di Manto, entrance from piazza Castello) on Baldassare Castiglione, coordinated by Gino Famiglietti which saw the participation of illustrious guests such as Salvatore Settis, Francesco Paolo Di Teodoro, Tomaso Montanari, Angelo Stella and Amedeo Quondam.