Domestic Devotions

Domestic Devotions: The Place of Piety in the Italian Renaissance Home, 1400-1600, is a research project at the University of Cambridge funded by a Synergy Grant from the European Research Council. Domestic Devotions brings together the study of books, buildings, objects, spaces, images and archives in order to understand how religion functioned in the Renaissance household.

All posts by Domestic Devotions

A Visit to the Marche

The prospect of a study visit to the Marche with Renaissance architectural historians from eleven countries seemed irresistible – that is, until the earthquake struck two days before our departure. The omens seemed strange: the quake occurred on the same date as the eruption of Vesuvius in 79CE, and at the same time of day… (read more)


Day 3: Domestic Devotions in the Early Modern World, 1400-1800

Whilst looking for a suitable way to begin the chronicle of day 3 of our Domestic Devotions conference, a remark by Deborah Howard came to mind. During the roundup session, Deborah reminded the audience that our purpose was to mix up periods, geographical areas, faiths, and to pursue a thematic approach. This choice proved successful… (read more)


Day 2: Domestic Devotions in the Early Modern World, 1400-1800

The primary goal of the conference, Domestic Devotions in the Early Modern World, was to bring together friends and colleagues from around the world to discuss issues surrounding the practice of religion in the home in broad comparative perspectives. The event was a great success, and the enthusiasm, participation and collaborative spirit of all the… (read more)


Day 1: Domestic Devotions in the Early Modern World, 1400-1800

It was with great excitement that the team gathered this summer for the start of our three-day conference Domestic Devotions in the Early Modern World. With speakers travelling from around the world to Cambridge, we were relieved to be able to welcome them to the city on a beautiful sunny day. Our call for papers… (read more)


Religious Materiality Workshop

Last week four members of our team were invited to Utrecht to take part in a workshop on religion and material culture. Dr Jo Spaans, the organizer of the event recognised the importance of sharing research internationally on various aspects of religious ‘stuff’. She posed questions about the meaning of religious objects for people who… (read more)


The Domestic Devotion of Siberian Criminals

Born in 1981 in Transnistria, an independent, though unrecognized state between Ukraine and Moldova, Nicolai Lilin moved to Italy in 2004. He now works as a tattooist in Turin and is an acclaimed novelist. His stories of criminals and tattoos have captured the imagination of Italian readers and have been translated into several languages. The… (read more)


Domestic Devotions Takes On Oxford

Last week our project team had the pleasure of travelling to Oxford to present our progress on Domestic Devotions to a joint meeting of the university’s Early Modern Catholicism Network and Early Modern World seminars. In order to give a more comprehensive view of the various components of our project, each of the Post-Doctoral Research… (read more)


Domestic Devotions Day

On a crisp and clear Autumn day in September, our team welcomed eleven speakers and an invited audience of scholars to the beautiful setting of the Upper Hall in Jesus College, for a day of intellectual exploration and exchange. Many of our guests had  journeyed from across Europe, some even crossing the Atlantic, in order… (read more)


Naples: A ‘Place of Piety’

After a two-week research trip to Naples, I have returned with a new appreciation for this amazing city, which is filled to the brim with innumerable souls. It’s Italian, yet its beautiful dialect and some of its architecture serve as reminders of places far from Italy, unchanged witnesses of its glorious past. Nowadays Naples extends… (read more)