– In 1492, Lorenzo The Magnificent died. His heir was his eldest son, 20 year old Piero de’ Medici, a useless turd. The Pope died soon afterwards and was replaced by the corrupt Cardinal Rodrigo Borgia as Pope Alexander VI. Savonarola proclaimed that the “Sword of the Lord” would soon descend upon Florence for its wicked ways. In this case, the sword would soon be carried another another 20 year old ruler – King Charles VIII of France.
In his sermons in early 1491, Savonarola attacked the people and priests who thought of Christianity as a merely ceremonial religion. He also criticised how ignorant the people were of the doctrines of Christianity, ‘thieving priests’ who sold lucrative posts and Church offices to the wealthy, and he claimed the clerics and people were all sodomites and attacked the oppression of the poor, by unjust taxation.
After Lorenzo de Medici’s death in 1492, Botticelli gave up painting, abandoned his humanist studies, and became a hardcore fundamentalist Christian. As did a lot of Florentines. The reason? They all fell under the spell of the original fire and brimstone preacher. He wasn’t rich. He didn’t have an army. He wasn’t of the nobility. He wasn’t sent by the pope. In fact, the Pope hated him. But he managed to do what so many rich men with armies had failed to do for decades. He overturned the government of Florence, kicked out the Medici family, and took control of the city. And… to top it off, he was a precursor of the Reformation. He is famous for the Bonfire Of The Vanities. His name was Girolamo SAVONAROLA.
When Giuliano de Medici gets murdered in the Duomo during the Pazzi Conspiracy of 1478, Booty was probably there. What should a Florentine painter paint after the Pope had your best friend killed during a church service in a cathedral? No more Madonnas and Baby Jesuses. It’s time for Booty to paint his ultimate masterpiece – The Birth Of Venus.