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Art and Sermons: Dominicans and the Jews in Florence’s Santa Maria Novella

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This paper analyzes perceptions of the Jews by the Dominican friars in latemedieval Florence and focuses on the encounter between the Christian and Jewish worlds as manifested in Santa Maria Novella church in the oral and visual traditions. The intention is to examine the representations of Jews in a particular context, that of an Italian urban society in the late fourteenth century, especially in the context of mendicant activity, by studying both preaching and art in that context.The article shows the similarities and differences between the visual and the verbal in relation to the different media discussed, and analyzes the complexity of the Dominican perception of the Jews.


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