Marcantonio Barbaro

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Marcantonio Barbaro depicted by Tintoretto.

Marcantonio Barbaro (1518–1595) was an Italian diplomat of the Republic of Venice.

Family[edit]

He was born in Venice into the aristocratic Barbaro family. His father was Francesco di Daniele Barbaro and his mother Elena Pisani, daughter of the banker Alvise Pisani and Cecilia Giustinian.

Barbaro married Guistina Giustiniani in 1534 and they had four sons,[1] one of which, Francesco, became Patriarch of Aquileia, and another, Alvise, married a daughter of Jacopo Foscarini.[2]

On the death of Francesco Barbaro, Marcantonio and his elder brother Daniele Barbaro jointly inherited a country estate at Maser. There was already a house on the estate, but the brothers replaced it with a new house designed for them by the architect Palladio; this Villa Barbaro is now preserved as part of the World Heritage Site "City of Vicenza and the Palladian Villas of the Veneto". The brothers probably had some input in the design of the building. Daniele was a published author whose interests included architecture.[3] Marcantonio Barbaro was an amateur sculptor, and seems to have focused mainly on the garden of the new house (in particular, a water feature, the nymphaeum).[4]

Towards the end of Palladio's life, Marcantonio commissioned him to design a circular chapel, the Tempietto, to serve the Maser estate, and he personally supervised its construction.[5] However, Marcantonio was not buried at Maser, but rather in the family chapel in San Francesco della Vigna in Venice.[6]

Career and interests[edit]

Marcantonio was educated at the University of Padua.[7] In the 1590s he was to return to the university as its Rector. Galileo was teaching there at the same time.[8]

In 1560, he held the office of Savio di Terraferma.[9] He served as ambassador to France from 1561-64.[10][11] and later served as bailo, i.e. ambassador to the Sublime Porte (Turkish Empire) from 1568–73 and again in 1574.[12][13] Barbaro negotiated a peace treaty in the aftermath of his country's loss of Cyprus in 1571 and the Battle of Lepanto later the same year.

In 1583, he was instructed by the Senate to map the Friulan frontier to avoid border disputes. In 1593 he was finally authorized to begin fortification of the area.[14][15] He was involved in the development of the fortress town of Palmanova.[16] Barbaro was a candidate for Doge of Venice in 1570, 1578, 1585, and 1595.[17]

Barbaro used his position as a senator to influence public architecture in Venice. In 1558 he and his brother Daniele supported Palladio's design for a new façade for the Cathedral of San Pietro di Castello.[18] Palladio’s project for rebuilding the Doge's Palace after a fire was rejected despite Barbaro's support. However, Palladio’s design for the church of the Redentore was approved by the senate.[19][20]

After Palladio’s death, Barbaro transferred his support to Vincenzo Scamozzi. In 1587 he supported Scamozzi's design for a triple-arched Rialto Bridge, though Antonio da Ponte’s design for a single-arched bridge was chosen instead,[21] and was one of three Venetian noblemen appointed to oversee the rebuilding of the bridge.[22]

Marcantonio was an early pioneer of Jewish rights within the Republic of Venice. He played an instrumental role in acceptance of Solomon of Udine, Turkish ambassador to Venice, at the Doge's Palace.[23]

References[edit]

  1. ^ “Renaissance education between religion and politics”, Paul F. Grendler, Aldershot: Ashgate, 2006, pg. 72. [1] ISBN 0-86078-989-6
  2. ^ Venice and the Renaissance, Manfredo Tafuri, trans.Jessica Levine, 1989, MIT Press, ISBN 0-262-70054-9
  3. ^ “Encyclopedia of Italian Renaissance & Mannerist art, Volume 1”, Jane Turner, New York, 2000, pg. 113. [2] ISBN 0-333-76094-8
  4. ^ The Perfect House Rybczynski, Witold 2002
  5. ^ “Encyclopedia of Italian Renaissance & Mannerist art, Volume 1”, Jane Turner, New York, 2000, pg. 114. [3] ISBN 0-333-76094-8
  6. ^ “Encyclopedia of Italian Renaissance & Mannerist art, Volume 1”, Jane Turner, New York, 2000, pg. 114. [4] ISBN 0-333-76094-8
  7. ^ “Renaissance education between religion and politics”, Paul F. Grendler, Aldershot: Ashgate, 2006, pg. 72. [5] ISBN 0-86078-989-6
  8. ^ "The Venetian republic: its rise, its growth, and its fall 421-1797, Volume 2: William Carew Hazlitt, Adam and Charles Black, 1900, pg. 681. [6]
  9. ^ “Renaissance education between religion and politics”, Paul F. Grendler, Aldershot: Ashgate, 2006, pg. 72, [7] ISBN 0-86078-989-6
  10. ^ “Renaissance education between religion and politics”, Paul F. Grendler, Aldershot: Ashgate, 2006, pg. 72. [8] ISBN 0-86078-989-6
  11. ^ Despatches of Michele Suriano and Marc' Antonio Barbaro, Venetian Ambassadors at the Court of France, 1560-1563 Michele Suriano, Sir Austen Henry Layard, Marco Antonio Barbaro, published 1891
  12. ^ Dursteler, Eric (2001). "The bailo in Constantinople: Crisis and Career in Venice’s Early Modern Diplomatic corps". Mediterranean Historical Review 16 (2): 1–30. doi:10.1080/714004583. ISSN 0951-8967. 
  13. ^ “Renaissance education between religion and politics”, Paul F. Grendler, Aldershot: Ashgate, 2006, pg. 72. [9] ISBN 0-86078-989-6
  14. ^ "The Venetian republic: its rise, its growth, and its fall 421-1797, Volume 2: William Carew Hazlitt, Adam and Charles Black, 1900, pg. 701 [10]
  15. ^ “Renaissance education between religion and politics”, Paul F. Grendler, Aldershot: Ashgate, 2006, pg. 72. [11] ISBN 0-86078-989-6
  16. ^ “Renaissance education between religion and politics”, Paul F. Grendler, Aldershot: Ashgate, 2006, pg. 72. [12] ISBN 0-86078-989-6
  17. ^ “Renaissance education between religion and politics”, Paul F. Grendler, Aldershot: Ashgate, 2006, pg. 72. [13] ISBN 0-86078-989-6
  18. ^ “Encyclopedia of Italian Renaissance & Mannerist art, Volume 1”, Jane Turner, New York, 2000, pg. 113. [14] ISBN 0-333-76094-8
  19. ^ “Encyclopedia of Italian Renaissance & Mannerist art, Volume 1”, Jane Turner, New York, 2000, pg. 114. [15] ISBN 0-333-76094-8
  20. ^ Venice between East and West: Marc'Antonio Barbaro and Palladio's Church of the Redentore Deborah Howard, The Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, Vol. 62, No. 3 (Sep., 2003), pp. 306-325 (article consists of 20 pages) Published by: Society of Architectural Historians
  21. ^ “Encyclopedia of Italian Renaissance & Mannerist art, Volume 1”, Jane Turner, New York, 2000, pg. 114. [16] ISBN 0-333-76094-8
  22. ^ Venice and the Renaissance, Manfredo Tafuri, 1989 MIT Press, ISBN 0-262-70054-9
  23. ^ Jewish Encyclopedia

Further reading[edit]

  • La Vie d'un patricien de Venise au seizième siècle, Charles Yriarte, Paris, 1874
  • "Barbaro Marcantonio", Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani, vol. 6, Franco Gaeta, Rome, 1964, 110–112.