COLONNA, Vittoria

(1492-1547)
One of the most celebrated women of the Italian Renaissance, Vittoria Co-lonna was famous for her poetry, her close friendship with Michelangelo,* and her connection with the Italian reform movement. She was a member of the illustrious Colonna family from Rome. Her father, Fabrizio Colonna, a famous military general, was one of the interlocutors in Niccolo Machiavelli's* Art of War. Her mother, Agnese de Montefeltro, was the sister of Duke Guidobaldo of Urbino, whose court was the setting for Baldesar Castiglione's* The Courtier. When Vittoria was seventeen, she was married to the marquis of Pescara, a marriage intended to ally the Colonna family to Pescara's powerful Neapolitan family. Pescara was also a military man and was away at battle during most of their marriage. Colonna passed the time in extensive traveling and writing; many of her poems focus on the loneliness of separation.
As Colonna's poetry gradually became known, she made the acquaintance of many other authors who paid tribute to her in their works. She was particularly close to Pietro Bembo,* the famous humanist and poet who later became a cardinal with Vittoria's influential help. Bembo encouraged Colonna's writing, and she dedicated a sonnet to him. Through Bembo, Colonna met Castiglione, who asked for her opinion of his manuscript of The Courtier. In her enthusiasm for the work, Colonna began to share it with her friends; fearful that a corrupt edition might be published, Castiglione quickly published the book himself in 1528. She also met Ludovico Ariosto,* who singled out her poetic talents for special praise in Orlando Furioso.
When Colonna was thirty-three, her husband was killed in battle; she lived in various convents for the rest of her life and never remarried. Colonna became interested in matters of church reform and developed many close friendships with some of the leading reformists and religious figures of the day, especially Cardinal Reginald Pole. She also continued to encourage and inspire writers and artists, especially Michelangelo. Colonna served as both muse and critic for Michelangelo during the many years of their close but platonic relationship.
Colonna's own creative output resulted in a book of poems, Rime spirituali, published in 1538. This collection of almost four hundred poems comprises sonnets on both human and spiritual love and a long poem in terza rima about Christ, the Virgin Mary, and Mary Magdalene. Her great friend Michelangelo was at her side when she died in 1547.
Bibliography
R. Bainton, Women ofthe Reformation in Germany and Italy, 1971.
J. Gibaldi, ''Vittoria Colonna: Child, Woman, and Poet,'' in Women Writers of the Renaissance and Reformation, ed. K. M. Wilson, 1987.
Jo Eldridge Carney

Renaissance and Reformation 1500-1620: A Biographical Dictionary. . 2001.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Colonna Vittoria — Colonna Vittoria. Vor dritthalb hundert Jahren bezeichnete dieser Name in Italien nicht allein die erste lebende Dichterin, sondern auch das Muster der Treue, Anmuth und Schönheit. Berühmte Zeitgenossen waren stolz auf die Bekanntschaft mit einer …   Damen Conversations Lexikon

  • Colonna, Vittoria — • Italian poet, born at Marino, 1490; died at Rome, February 25, 1547 Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006 …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Colonna, Vittoria — ▪ Italian poet born 1492, Marino, near Rome [Italy] died Feb. 25, 1547, Rome       Italian poet, less important for her poetry than for her personality and her associations with famous contemporaries, particularly Michelangelo.       Of a noble… …   Universalium

  • Colonna, Vittoria — (ca. 1492 1547)    Italian poet, born into one of the most ancient and powerful noble families of Rome. She married the marquis of Pescara, ruler of a small principality, and lived at Naples while her husband pursued his career as a military… …   Historical Dictionary of Renaissance

  • Vittoria Colonna — Vittoria Colonna, Kreidezeichnung von Michelangelo im British Museum, London Vittoria Colonna (* 1492 in Castello di Marino bei Rom; † 25. Februar 1547 in Rom) war eine berühmte italienische Dichterin. Für viele ihrer gebildeten Zeitgenossen war… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Vittoria Colonna — Vittoria Colonna, por Sebastiano del Piombo. en 1520 (Vittoria con 30 años de edad) …   Wikipedia Español

  • Vittoria Colonna — Vittoria Colonna, dessin de Michel Ange (ca 1550). Pour les articles homonymes, voir Colonna. Vittoria Colonna (Marino …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Colonna family — Colonna redirects here. For other uses, see Colonna (disambiguation). Arms of the Colonna family. The Colonna family is an Italian noble family; it was powerful in medieval and Renaissance Rome, supplying one Pope and many other Church and… …   Wikipedia

  • Vittoria Colonna — (April, 1490 February 25, 1547), marchioness of Pescara, was an Italian noblewoman and poet. BiographyThe daughter of Fabrizio Colonna, grand constable of the kingdom of Naples, and of Agnese da Montefeltro, Vittoria Colonna was born at Marinoa… …   Wikipedia

  • Vittoria Colonna — (Medina de Ríoseco,Испания) Категория отеля: 3 звездочный отель Адрес: San Juan, 2, 478 …   Каталог отелей


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.