HA3FP-Framing Piety in 15C Italy

Module Provider: History
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2016/7

Module Convenor: Prof Paul Davies

Email: p.davies@reading.ac.uk

Summary module description:
This module investigate investigates how architecture was used to exalt objects of devotion in fifteenth-century Italy. It interprets architecture in the widest sense and includes, the large-scale architecture of pilgrimage churches, the smaller scale architecture of sculptural monuments within churches and also the micro-architecture of metalwork reliquaries.

The module aims to introduce students to the ways in which architecture was used to enhance devotion. It looks at patterns of devotion associated with the holiest objects in fifteenth-century Italian society and aims to investigate how devotional rituals and beliefs affected the production of the framing devices used to exalt these objects. It explores the role of relics, miracle-working images and the Eucharist in fifteenth-century Italian society and asks how this role (or roles) affected the design of buildings, altars, frames, tabernacles and reliquaries.

Assessable learning outcomes:
By the end of the module it is expected that students will be able to

  • demonstrate knowledge of the role of relics, the Eucharist and miracle-working images in fifteenth-century society and rituals associated with them

  • demonstrate an understanding of how art and architecture was used to enhance the holy qualities that these objects were believed to possess

  • demonstrate an understanding of the various methods and approaches used in the subject area
use primary source material, both visual and verbal, effectively

  • investigate in detail a topic or topics covered by the course and evaluate the results in an effective and balanced manner

  • make effective formal presentations to a small group in whioch visual materials are deployed to support an argument

Additional outcomes:
Students will demonstrate skills in organization and initiative, as well as interpersonal and negotiation skills. They will have developed IT skills through using public access databases and other resources available on the WWW. It will enhance their presentational skills by requiring them to present one seminar paper to a group of students and illustrate this seminar effectively with visula material (where appropriate).

Outline content:
The module looks at the role of architecture both large scale - i.e. in the form of churches - and small scale - i.e. in the form of tabernacles, frames and reliquaries to enhance devotion. It considers the role of what is framed, that is to say, of relics, of the Eucharist and of miracle-working images in fifteenth-century Italian society, and looks at how they were used and regarded by their owners - civic and ecclesiastical authorities - and how they were believed to help in protecting society from various ills, including war and natural disasters. It will consider in particular the development of pilgrimage architecture in central and northern Italy as well as the micro-architecture of Eucharistic tabernacles, and of gold and silver reliquaries and monstrances. The module will deal with the work of artists such as Ghiberti, Donatello, Alberti, Michelozzo, Giuliano da Sangallo, Rossellino, Giuliano da Maiano, Pietro Lombardo, Verrocchio and Pollaiuolo.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
Two hours of seminars per week requiring preparatory reading; structured discussion; seminar papers.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Seminars 20
Tutorials 4 2 2
External visits 4
Guided independent study 112 28 28
Total hours by term 140.00 30.00 30.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 20
Project output other than dissertation 60
Oral assessment and presentation 20

Other information on summative assessment:
Coursework: Students present two seminar papers (worth 40% of the coursework
mark) and one 3500 word essay (worth 60% of the coursework mark). The essay will be submitted by the end of the first week of the term following that in which the module is taught.

Formative assessment methods:

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.

  • where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Length of examination:
    No exam

    Requirements for a pass:
    A mark of 40% overall.

    Reassessment arrangements:
    Coursework to be submitted by 1 September if it carries an original mark of less than 40%.

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
    1) Required text books:
    2) Specialist equipment or materials:
    3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
    4) Printing and binding:
    5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
    6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

    Last updated: 21 December 2016

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