Balsamo Locatelli

Lodovico Locatelli, Teatro d’Arcani, 1644, Frontispiece

A recurring term in the Italian manuscripts in Arundel Castle is Balsamo Locatelli. In the recipes, numerous variants for the production of the apparently very popular healing ointment are listed. Continue reading “Balsamo Locatelli”


MD 339, Elettuario cordialissimo della Contessa Arundell, Arundel Castle Archive, with the kind permission of the Duke of Norfolk

I have compiled some excerpts from the Italian manuscripts. Continue reading “Excerpts”

Italian Recipes

MD 339, Onguente o cerolo straord. dett. Gratia Dei Dama d’Arundell, Arundel Castle Archive. With the kind permission of the Duke of Norfolk

Lady Arundel’s passion for medicine left exceptional archival traces. Continue reading “Italian Recipes”

Labor et Diligentia

Philips Galle after Marten van Cleve I, The Human Labours, 1574, Engraving, 205 x 243 mm, London, British Museum

Lady Arundel’s privileged position as nobility, in contrast to her position as a woman with limited freedom of action, makes it difficult to classify her practice between the humanistic tradition of natural philosophy and an early modern notion of science. Continue reading “Labor et Diligentia”

Hold your Horses

William Marshall after Abraham Bosse, Allegory of Complexion: ‘In Beauty I have share of Rose and Lilly / But I lack Breeding, and my wit is silly’, 1630-40, Etching, 186 x 124 mm, London: British Museum

The chemical instructions in Natura Exenterata are followed by the two rather short Experiments in Baits for Fishes and Experiments in Dying Divers Colors. Continue reading “Hold your Horses”

Persons of Quality

Hans Holbein, Frances de Vere, Countess of Surrey, 1522-23, Chalk on Paper, 315 x 213 mm, Windsor, Royal Collection

Lady Arundel’s recipe collection begins with a list of the practitioners, or “Persons of Quality,” who recommended remedies to Lady Arundel, including Walter Raleigh, Kenelm Digby and Theodor de Mayerne. Continue reading “Persons of Quality”

Wotton Woes

Unknown Artist, Portrait of Henry Wotton, 1657, Engraving, 230 x 148 mm, London, British Museum

In the Foscarini Affair Wotton seems to have seen another opportunity to put the hurt on the Catholic noblewoman under his watch as English ambassador in Venice. Continue reading “Wotton Woes”

An Amazon in Venice

Detail of Lucas Vorsterman after Peter Paul Rubens, The Battle of the Amazons, 1623, Copperplate Print, 857 × 1202 mm, London, British Museum

Her appearance before the Venetian Senate was not the first time that Lady Arundel had to take action defend her interests in Venice and London. Continue reading “An Amazon in Venice”

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