Bonfire Of The Vanities

By Ian Miguel de los Reyes

Who was involved?

Girolamo Savonarola is a Dominican priest born at September 21, 1452 was the fire starter to the Bonfire of vanities. At 1481-1482 Savonarola was sent to Florence, Italy to preach. During his stay in Florence Savonarola noticed objects that were secular or "questionable" and so proceeded to collect these items and burned them. Soon enough a group of people formed who supported Savonarola helped him with the burnings, these group of people were called the "weepers". Those who agreed with them threw in there own personal items that were considered "questionable", such as Botticelli who even threw several of his masterworks. Meanwhile some were urged, pressured, or forced of their belongings to be thrown into the bonfire.

What is the Bonfire of the Vanities?

The Bonfire of Vanities was the huge burning of countless objects that were viewed as secular or questionable by Girolamo Savonarola. Such items were cosmetics, books, clothes, musical instruments, ornaments and countless others. Not only were common items were throw but also great artworks such secular songs, sculptures and paintings.For example several masterpieces by Botticelli given to Savonarola by Botticelli himself.

In fact there were not only just one bonfire of the vanities, it was done regularly by the franciscan missionary, though it was in a much smaller scale. But Savonarola caused great two bonfire's of the vanities, both in the 1490's. This started to drain away the culture and traditions of florence and maybe Italy. Professions of others may have been wary due to their works being burned. Even Botticelli was driven to despair financially due huis works being given to the burnings not earning money from it.



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The Bonfire of Vanities happened it Florence Italy.

Why did this happen?

While Girolamo Savonarola was stationed in Florence, Italy he took noticed to the secular culture of the area. Savonarola thought these objects were associated with vanity, temptation, and sin. He viewed them as questionable items to the catholic faith and decided the best way to get rid of them were to throw them into a bonfire.