Document Type


Date of Degree

Spring 2011

Degree Name

PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)

Degree In

Religious Studies

First Advisor

Mentzer, Raymond A

First Committee Member

Keen, Ralph

Second Committee Member

Hochstrasser, Julie

Third Committee Member

Kamerick, Kathleen

Fourth Committee Member

Ehrstine, Glenn


The focus of this dissertation is an exploration of the relationship between the Italian Reformation and some sixteenth-century religious paintings. It aims to discover if, when viewed chronologically, they provide a visualization of the course taken by the Italian Reformation. For sometime art historians have been aware that some religious paintings are at odds with the iconography of Catholic orthodoxy, such works are usually treated in isolation from each other. Here they are brought together and analyzed in the context of a widely disseminated religious debate in which artists were participants, if only as members of society, and not necessarily as members of a particular Protestant sect. It focuses on individual works by Fra Bartolomeo della Porta, Jacopo Pontormo, Lorenzo Lotto, Michelangelo, Jacopo Bassano, and Caravaggio. The paintings considered are interpreted in relation to the sermons of Savonarola, the Catechism and One Hundred and Ten Considerations, of Juan de Valdès, the Beneficio di Cristo, Italian evangelism, the spirituali, and radical groups such as the Anabaptists.


vi, 217 pages


Includes bibliographical references (pages 206-217).


Copyright 2011 Kathrine Mary Nixon

Included in

Religion Commons