Occasions of State: Early Modern European Festivals and the Negotiation of Power, 1st Edition (e-Book) book cover

Occasions of State

Early Modern European Festivals and the Negotiation of Power, 1st Edition

Edited by J.R. Mulryne, Krista De Jonge, R.L.M. Morris, Pieter Martens


292 pages | 16 Color Illus. | 40 B/W Illus.

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This sixth volume in the European Festival Studies series stems from a joint conference (Venice, 2013) between the Society for European Festivals Research and the European Science Foundation’s PALATIUM project. Drawing on up-to-date scholarship, a Europe-wide group of early-career and experienced academics provides a unique account of spectacular occasions of state which influenced the political, social and cultural lives of contemporary societies. International pan-European turbulence associated with post-Reformation religious conflict supplies the context within which the book explores how the period’s rulers and élite families competed for power – in a forecast of today’s divided world.

Table of Contents


The power of ceremony

J.R. (Ronnie) Mulryne

Part I: Performing diplomacy: festival and the identity of the state

1. The identity of the state: a new approach to festivals in the early modern Holy Roman Empire

R.L.M. Morris

2.The Bastille banquet, 22 December 1518

Robert J. Knecht

3. Triumphal arches in court festivals under the new Holy Roman Emperor, Habsburg Ferdinand I

Borbála Gulyás

4. Ernest of Bavaria’s joyous entry into Liège, 15 June 1581

Chantal Grell and Robert Halleux

5. Valladolid 1605: a theatre for the peace

Berta Cano-Echevarría and Mark Hutchings

6. The shield of ceremony: civic ritual and royal entries in wartime

Fabian Persson

7. Les Réjouissances de la Paix, 20–23 March 1660: the allegorical transformation of Lyon into a city of peace for the celebration of the Pyrenees Peace Treaty

Nikola Piperkov

Part II: Space and occasional performance

8. Space for dancing: accommodating performer and spectator in Renaissance France

Margaret M. McGowan

9. Ducal display and the contested use of space in late sixteenth-century Venetian coronation festivals

Maartje van Gelder

10. Con grandissima maraviglia: the role of theatrical spaces in the festivals of seventeenth-century Milan

Francesca Barbieri

11. Palazzo eguale alle Reggie più superbe:Schloss Eggenberg in Graz and the imperial wedding of 1673

Paul Schuster

12. In public and in private: a study of festival in seventeenth-century Rome

Joanna Norman


Turning tables: from elite to egalitarian banquets in late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century Paris

Tim White

About the Editors

J.R. Mulryne is Professor Emeritus at the University of Warwick, UK.

Krista De Jonge is Professor of Architectural History at the University of Leuven.

R.L.M. (Richard) Morris is a Supervisor in History at the University of Cambridge.

Pieter Martens is Assistant Professor at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel.

About the Series

European Festival Studies: 1450-1700

This series, in association with the Society for European Festivals Research, builds on the current surge of interest in the circumstances of European Festivals – their political, religious, social, economic and cultural implications as well as the detailed analysis of their performance (including ephemeral architecture, scenography, scripts, music and soundscape, dance, costumes, processions and fireworks) in both indoor and outdoor, urban and court locations. Festivals were interdisciplinary and, on occasion, international in scope. They drew on a rich classical heritage and developed a shared pan-European iconography as well as exploiting regional and site-specific features. They played an important part in local politics and the local economy, as well as international negotiations and the conscious presentation of power, sophistication and national identity. The series, including both essay collections and monographs, seeks to analyse the characteristics of individual festivals as well as to explore generic themes. It draws on a wealth of archival documentary evidence, alongside the resources of galleries and museums, to study the historical, literary, performance and material culture of these extravagant occasions of state.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / Renaissance