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At the Council of Piacenza in 1095, envoys from Alexios spoke to Pope Urban II about the suffering of the Christians of the East and underscored that without help from the West they would continue to suffer under Muslim rule. Urban saw Alexios's request as a dual opportunity to cement Western Europe and reunite the Eastern Orthodox Church with the Roman Catholic Church under his rule.
Frederick I, also called Frederick Barbarossa, was crowned Emperor in 1155. He emphasized the "Romanness" of the empire, partly in an attempt to justify the power of the Emperor independent of the (now strengthened) Pope. An imperial assembly at the fields of Roncaglia in 1158 reclaimed imperial rights in reference to Justinian's Corpus Juris Civilis. Imperial rights had been referred to as regalia since the Investiture Controversy but were enumerated for the first time at Roncaglia. This comprehensive list included public roads, tariffs, coining, collecting punitive fees, and the investiture or seating and unseating of office holders. These rights were now explicitly rooted in Roman Law, a far-reaching constitutional act.
Construction of the tower occurred in three stages over 199 years. On 5 January 1172, Donna Berta di Bernardo, a widow and resident of the house of dell' Opera di Santa Maria, bequeathed sixty soldi to the Opera Campanilis petrarum Sancte Marie. The sum was then used toward the purchase of a few stones which still form the base of the bell tower.
On 9 August 1173, the foundations of the tower were laid. Work on the ground floor of the white marble campanile began on 14 August of the same year during a period of military success and prosperity. This ground floor is a blind arcade articulated by engaged columns with classical Corinthian capitals.
Pope Innocent III, who feared the threat posed by a union of the empire and Sicily, was now supported by Frederick II, who marched to Germany and defeated Otto. After his victory, Frederick did not act upon his promise to keep the two realms separate. Though he had made his son Henry king of Sicily before marching on Germany, he still reserved real political power for himself. This continued after Frederick was crowned Emperor in 1220. Fearing Frederick's concentration of power, the Pope finally excommunicated the Emperor. Another point of contention was the crusade, which Frederick had promised but repeatedly postponed.
On 12 April 1264, the master-builder Giovanni di Simone, the architect of the Camposanto, and 23 workers went to the mountains close to Pisa to cut marble. The cut stones were given to Rainaldo Speziale, worker of St. Francesco.
From the 15th century in central and northern Italy, libraries of humanists and their enlightened patrons provided a nucleus around which an "academy" of scholars congregated in each Italian city of consequence. Malatesta Novello, lord of Cesena, founded the Malatestiana Library.
Florence at the time of Leonardo's youth was the centre of Christian Humanist thought and culture. Leonardo commenced his apprenticeship with Verrocchio in 1466, the year that Verrocchio's master, the great sculptor Donatello, died.
Galileo was born in Pisa (then part of the Duchy of Florence), Italy, on 15 February 1564, the first of six children of Vincenzo Galilei, a lutenist, composer, and music theorist, and Giulia (née Ammannati), who had married in 1562.
Tycho and others had observed the supernova of 1572. Ottavio Brenzoni's letter of 15 January 1605 to Galileo brought the 1572 supernova and the less bright nova of 1601 to Galileo's notice. Galileo observed and discussed Kepler's supernova in 1604. Since these new stars displayed no detectable diurnal parallax, Galileo concluded that they were distant stars, and, therefore, disproved the Aristotelian belief in the immutability of the heavens.
On November 30, 1609 Galileo aimed his telescope at the Moon. While not being the first person to observe the Moon through a telescope (English mathematician Thomas Harriot had done it four months before but only saw a "strange spottednesse"), Galileo was the first to deduce the cause of the uneven waning as light occlusion from lunar mountains and craters. In his study, he also made topographical charts, estimating the heights of the mountains. The Moon was not what was long thought to have been a translucent and perfect sphere, as Aristotle claimed, and hardly the first "planet", an "eternal pearl to magnificently ascend into the heavenly empyrian", as put forth by Dante. Galileo is sometimes credited with the discovery of the lunar libration in latitude in 1632, although Thomas Harriot or William Gilbert might have done it before.
On 7 January 1610, Galileo observed with his telescope what he described at the time as "three fixed stars, totally invisible by their smallness", all close to Jupiter, and lying on a straight line through it.
Cardinal Robert Bellarmine, one of the most respected Catholic theologians of the time, was called on to adjudicate the dispute between Galileo and his opponents. The question of heliocentrism had first been raised with Cardinal Bellarmine, in the case of Paolo Antonio Foscarini, a Carmelite father; Foscarini had published a book, Lettera ... sopra l'opinione ... del Copernico, which attempted to reconcile Copernicus with the biblical passages that seemed to be in contradiction. Bellarmine at first expressed the opinion that Copernicus's book would not be banned, but would at most require some editing so as to present the theory purely as a calculating device for "saving the appearances" (i.e. preserving the observable evidence). Foscarini sent a copy of his book to Bellarmine, who replied in a letter of April 12, 1615.
On February 19, 1616, the Inquisition asked a commission of theologians, known as qualifiers, about the propositions of the heliocentric view of the universe. Historians of the Galileo affair have offered different accounts of why the matter was referred to the qualifiers at this time. Beretta points out that the Inquisition had taken a deposition from Gianozzi Attavanti in November 1615, as part of its investigation into the denunciations of Galileo by Lorini and Caccini.
On February 24 the Qualifiers delivered their unanimous report: the proposition that the Sun is stationary at the centre of the universe is "foolish and absurd in philosophy, and formally heretical since it explicitly contradicts in many places the sense of Holy Scripture"; the proposition that the Earth moves and is not at the centre of the universe "receives the same judgement in philosophy; and ... in regard to theological truth it is at least erroneous in faith."
At a meeting of the cardinals of the Inquisition on the following day, Pope Paul V instructed Bellarmine to deliver this result to Galileo, and to order him to abandon the Copernican opinions; should Galileo resist the decree, stronger action would be taken. On February 26, Galileo was called to Bellarmine's residence and ordered, to abstain completely from teaching or defending this doctrine and opinion or from discussing it... to abandon completely... the opinion that the sun stands still at the center of the world and the earth moves, and henceforth not to hold, teach, or defend it in any way whatever, either orally or in writing. — The Inquisition's injunction against Galileo, 1616.
Galileo was found guilty, and the sentence of the Inquisition, issued on 22 June 1633, was in three essential parts: Galileo was found "vehemently suspect of heresy", namely of having held the opinions that the Sun lies motionless at the center of the universe, that the Earth is not at its centre and moves, and that one may hold and defend an opinion as probable after it has been declared contrary to Holy Scripture. He was required to "abjure, curse, and detest" those opinions. He was sentenced to formal imprisonment at the pleasure of the Inquisition. On the following day this was commuted to house arrest, which he remained under for the rest of his life. His offending Dialogue was banned; and in an action not announced at the trial, publication of any of his works was forbidden, including any he might write in the future.
Galileo continued to receive visitors until 1642, when, after suffering fever and heart palpitations, he died on 8 January 1642, aged 77. The Grand Duke of Tuscany, Ferdinando II, wished to bury him in the main body of the Basilica of Santa Croce, next to the tombs of his father and other ancestors, and to erect a marble mausoleum in his honor.
A destructive earthquake occurred two days before the mainshock at 21:00 local time, centered in the Val di Noto. It had an estimated magnitude of 6.2 and a maximum perceived intensity of VIII–XI on the Mercalli intensity scale. Intensities of VIII or higher have been estimated for Augusta, Avola Vecchia, Floridia, Melilli, Noto Antica, Catania, Francofonte, Lentini, Scicli, Sortino, and Vizzini. Augusta lies well outside the main zone of severe shaking; its extensive damage is probably due to its construction on unconsolidated sediments. From the shape and location of the area of maximum damage, this earthquake is thought to have been caused by movement on the Avola fault. Some buildings collapsed in Catania, Vizzini, and Sortini. There were an estimated 200 deaths in both Augusta and Noto.
Mozart went on tours of Italy as a teenager, accompanied by his father. During the first of these, Leopold and Wolfgang visited Rome (1770), where Pope Clement XIV conferred on Wolfgang the Order of the Golden Spur, a kind of honorary knighthood. Mozart earned his official insignia the next day, consisting of "a golden cross on a red sash, sword, and spurs," indicative of honorary knighthood.
The person singing the lead role in Lucio Silla was a castrato named Venanzio Rauzzini in his late 20s. Mozart was especially fascinated with him, and he wrote him a three-movement motet, 'Exsultate, jubilate,' which women sopranos generally sing these days. To both composer and artist the last movement was a bit of a show-off. Mozart gave himself the challenge of setting only one term for the entire campaign, "Alleluia." Rauzzini would have loved it with its fast-paced and amazingly catchy vocal line. This was first heard on 17 January; at the Theatine Church in Milan in 1773. Exsultate, jubilate, for Mozart, is an important piece and one of the few pieces he wrote before adulthood that has remained among his most popular works.
Benjamin Franklin and John Adams, in a letter dated October 3, 1778, to Ferdinand I of the Two Sicilies, described the American flag as consisting of "13 stripes, alternately red, white, and blue, a small square in the upper angle, next the flag staff, is a blue field, with 13 white stars, denoting a new Constellation."
This earthquake, with an estimated magnitude of 7.0, affected a large area including most of the southern Italian peninsula and shook the whole island of Sicily. Many villages were damaged and as many as 180 almost completely destroyed, with more than 25,000 casualties. A tsunami affected the coastline on both sides of the Straits of Messina, destroying the harbor walls at Messina. The earthquake had already caused widespread death and destruction in Messina. Homes were razed to the ground, the medieval Duomo was badly damaged and most of the historic buildings were reduced to rubble.
This magnitude 6.2 event occurred during the night following the first event and struck the area just to the southwest. Most of the damage and casualties appear to have been caused by a tsunami that was set off by a major collapse of Monte Pací into the sea near Scilla shortly after the earthquake. Many of Scilla's residents, frightened by the tremors of the previous day had moved onto the open beach for the night, where they were overwhelmed by the waves. The tsunami caused severe flooding in the town, reaching as far as 200 m inland, and there were more than 1500 deaths.
This event occurred at about midday 40 km NE of the first mainshock on the 5th. Severe damage extended 15 km along the front of the Serre Mountains, leveling all the villages between Acquaro and Soriano Calabro. The earthquake is thought to have involved the rupturing of the southern segment of the Serre fault that bounds the Mesima Basin.
The final event of the sequence was of similar magnitude to the first and had an epicenter about 20 km east of the fourth, near Girifalco and Borgia in the Catanzaro Basin. The earthquake lasted for about ten seconds, and many villages were destroyed with many hundreds dead in Borgia, Girifalco, Maida, and Cortale. Landslides were common and sand volcanoes were seen, particularly on the banks of the Amato river. This earthquake has not been tied to a particular fault, but a recent re-evaluation of the intensity data indicates that the isoseismal areas are elongated NE–SW, suggesting faulting of similar trend to that observed for the other earthquakes in the sequence.
The French then focused on the Austrians for the remainder of the war, the highlight of which became the protracted struggle for Mantua. The Austrians launched a series of offensives against the French to break the siege, but Napoleon defeated every relief effort, scoring victories at the battles of Castiglione, Bassano, Arcole, and Rivoli.
While one French army approached from the north, the Austrians were busy with another stationed in Genoa, which was besieged by a substantial force. The fierce resistance of this French army, under André Masséna, gave the northern force some time to carry out their operations with little interference.
After spending several days looking for each other, the two armies collided at the Battle of Marengo on 14 June. General Melas had a numerical advantage, fielding about 30,000 Austrian soldiers while Napoleon commanded 24,000 French troops. The Battle of Marengo was fought on 14 June 1800 between French forces under the First Consul Napoleon Bonaparte and Austrian forces near the city of Alessandria, in Piedmont, Italy. Late in the afternoon, a full division under Louis Desaix arrived on the field and reversed the tide of the battle. A series of artillery barrages and cavalry charges decimated the Austrian army, which fled over the Bormida River back to Alessandria, leaving behind 14,000 casualties.