Comparison Between Roman And Roman Civilization

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The fresco was based upon an event in the history of Rome famous at the time, the encounter between Pope Leo the Great and Attila the Hun. Although the fresco has historical inaccuracies within it, the fresco as an allusion to classical civilization was clear. Although the actual event was at Mantua, the picture implied that the event occurred at Rome, perhaps to evoke more strong memories of Roman civilization. The event marked the end of the Hunnic invasion, and represented one of the last moments of pride in ancient Roman civilization (Priore 171). The premise of the entire fresco was based off of an ancient Roman event, following the ever present Renaissance trend of going back to the classics. However, a twist within the painting…show more content…
However, after the death of Pope Julius II, the face of the Pope was painted over to resemble Pope Leo X (Thoenes 52). The expression and focus on the individual man of Pope Leo the Great, and to an extent the other two modern Popes that represent him in the fresco, exhibit the growing importance of the individual in Renaissance society. Behind Pope Leo, there was the face of cardinal Giovanni Medici, who would go on to become Leo X. This means that Leo was in the picture twice, emphasizing the importance of the Medici Pope as an individual, who in the picture represented his namesake Leo the Great (Priore 174). Throughout the Renaissance, the idea of individualism became defined, and in this painting the presence and focus on the Pope as well as the detail in replicating the contemporary Popes face upon the painting displayed the spirit of individualism manifested within the painting. The Pope appears in white, on the white and ‘holy’ side of the painting in contrast the black side dominated by Attila. Raphael’s fresco was often noted for its divisiveness, with the Pope and Attila representing light and dark respectively. Occasionally a point for criticism, the split look of the image was often credited to the contribution of Raphael’s pupils to the painting (Wölfflin 110). In any case, the effect created a contrast between the Pope with his envoy and Attila with his hordes. The Pope and his
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