The Newberry Library Colloquium

April 1509: The Pope Invites the Emperor To Go To War
Wednesday, February 5, 2014

4 pm

Towner Fellows’ Lounge

Margaret Meserve, University of Notre Dame

A small broadside in the Newberry collection, apparently unique, reproduces a letter from Pope Julius II to Maximilian I inviting the emperor to join in an attack on the Venetian Republic. The letter sheds light on a bewildering web of alliances and counter-alliances crisscrossing Italy at the height of the Italian Wars. But the format of the letter is interesting too: why was it printed? And why does it look the way it does? This talk will compare the broadside with other printed publications, both legal and propagandistic, that were issued from Rome during Julius’s pontificate, and offer thoughts on what papal publications like these may tell us about the “printing revolution” in early modern Europe.

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