La Bella Donna

The Italian Renaissance ReLived

Come Rediscover History

"Study the past if you would define the future. There is one mind common to all individual men....
....Of the works of this mind history is the record. Man is explicable by nothing less than all his history. All the facts of history pre-exist as laws. Each law in turn is made by circumstances predominant. The creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn, and Egypt, Greece, Rome, Gaul, Britain, America, lie folded already in the first man. Epoch after epoch, camp, kingdom, empire, republic, democracy, are merely the application of this manifold spirit to the manifold world" - Emerson

La Bella Donna

History renewed, revived, rediscovered… relived.

I’m glad you stopped by to visit my little niche on the web. This site showcases my endeavors in researching and recreating the arts, skills, sciences, and philosophies of Renaissance Italy (1430-1600). It also serves as a repository for my findings, travels, ideas, projects, and revelations. What good, really, would all my work be for if I keep the fruits to myself?

Although I have a very real “life”, in my free time I am a member of a living history organization, the Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA). The SCA is an international non-profit organization with members who research, practice, toil, and delight in taking a practice from ancient times and bringing it into the current millennium. We research how people thought, lived, created, and survived during the middle ages and we imitate them as best we can, albeit sometimes using modern conveniences. We plan public events almost every weekend of the year and share our experiences via classes, competitions, exhibitions, and tomfoolery :)

My particular place and time of interest is Italy during the quattrocento (15th C) and cinquecento (16th C). I especially am enamored with the city-states of Firenze and Venezia. So for my “persona” within the SCA I have chosen to learn about and portray a woman born in ‘Florence’ in the late 1400s who lives in ‘Venice’. I have, through research, chosen a name and during our events I dress, speak, think, and even dine as she would have (except during the lovely steamy summers, where I transport further back in time and wear Roman or Greek garb).

I joined the SCA because as a real life scientist and lover of history the idea of embarking on a journey to learn, know, understand, and ultimately have a deeper connection with those who came before me seemed intriguing. It also sounded like fun. My inner nerd was excited about the prospect of applied research; the girly -girl in me thought dressing up in fabulous silk, linen, and jacquard garments was a lovely idea; the tomboy deep down inside thought sword-fighting and archery would be nice to take up; and my curious nature was won over by all the awesome factoids I would be able to learn and share. No wonder we call it living the “dream”.

So, if you’re not the least bit interested just hit your back button and go from whence you came. If you are – stay a while. I’ll have my girl bring out some sweet fragolino wine and fresh, buttery fruit tarts. Come lounge on one my daybeds and let me tell you about one of my exciting adventures in the current middle ages.

Click here to see my historical research.


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