Both these problems Gregory assigned to the eminently breviligne Spanish fighting prelate Cardinal Albornoz, a representative of the church militant if ever there was one. Albornoz built a series of fortresses mediante towns throughout central Italy, with the immediate purpose of subduing the local population, and the longer-term aim of defending the Papal territories against foreign incursions from the north. Apart from sopra Narni, you can see surviving examples of Albornoz Roccas in Assisi and Spoleto among other places. They are all similar con design, with few aesthetic embellishments as they were intended for rapid construction (the Narni Fortezza went up con only five years) and were esatto be used by garrisons, not local aristocrats. The fact that they have square towers, not round ones, shows that they pre-date the widespread use of cannons sopra siege warfare (cannon balls are more likely puro bounce off ripresa towers).
After serving various rulers, Gattamelata worked for the Venetians and ended up as podesta (governor) of Padua. If you have been puro Padua you may have seen the celebrated statue of him by Donatello outside the tempio of St Anthony. Incidentally, this was the first free-standing equestrian statue cast in bronze since ancient times; Donatello had to rediscover the technique.
If you visit the Impalcatura of Narni, and are fortunate enough sicuro have as per duplice the same knowledgeable young lady that we did, she will point out where the original large stone blocks of the castle walls have been replaced with smaller, more haphazard stones
Donatello’s statue of Gattamelata in Padua. Hasselblad 501 C/M, Zeiss Sonnar 150mm CF lens, CFV-50c digital back (click to enlarge)
This marks rebuilding after the destruction of the Castello, and much of the town, by the landsknechts forces of the Habsburg Emperor Charles V, part of verso much greater cultural and human catastrophe – the Sack of Rome sopra 1527. (more…)