30 Maggio 2017 · 4631 Views

A giraffe in Palazzo Vecchio

Is there something strange in this fresco?

 
A giraffe was frescoed on the ceiling of the room entitled to Lorenzo il Magnifico in Palazzo Vecchio. The animal was a gift the Egyptian sultan offered to Lorenzo in 1487 to obtain his support.
People were astonished for the arrival of a rare animal they had never seen before; in fact a giraffe came to Italy for the first time! Unlucky it died soon and only after 300 years a new sample came again to Italy.
The scene represented below is a new remind to the classical period: Giulio Cesare celebrated one of his victories bringing to Rome a huge variety of animals: a giraffe was among them and it was the first sample ever seen in Europe. For Romans it was very similar to a camel and a leopard so they called it "camelopardis". The poor giraffe was killed by some lions Cesare released to emphasize his power. Lorenzo knew this terrible fact happened in 46 B.C. and he wanted to emulate Cesare to increase his power. A perfect play!

 
 

 

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