Isabella d’Este (1474–1539), daughter of the Este dukes of Ferrara and wife of Marchese Francesco II Gonzaga of Mantua, co-regent of the Gonzaga state, art collector, musician, diplomat, dynastic mother, traveler, reader, gardener, fashion innovator, and consummate politician, was also, as this volume attests, a prolific letter writer with a highly developed epistolary network. Presented here for the first time in any language is a representative selection from over 16,000 letters sent by Isabella to addressees across a wide social spectrum. Together, they paint a nuanced and colorful portrait of a brilliant and influential female protagonist of early modern European society.
About the Author
Deanna Shemek is Professor of Literature at the University of California, Santa Cruz, where she currently holds the Gary Licker Memorial Chair in Cowell College. She is author of Ladies Errant: Wayward Women and Social Order in Early Modern Italy (1998) and numerous other works on the Italian Renaissance. She co-directs the online project IDEA: Isabella d’Este Archive.