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Bonfire of the vanities

A bonfire of the vanities is a burning of objects condemned by authorities as occasions of sin. The phrase refers to the bonfire of 7 February 1497, when supporters of Dominican friar Girolamo Savonarola collected and burned thousands of objects such as cosmetics and books in Florence, Italy on the Shrove Tuesday festival. Francesco Guicciardini's The History of Florence gives a first-hand account of the bonfire of the vanities that took place in Florence in 1497; the focus of this destruction was on objects that might tempt one to sin, including vanity items such as mirrors, fine dresses, playing cards, musical instruments. Other targets included books that were deemed to be immoral, manuscripts of secular songs, artworks, including paintings and sculpture. Although associated with Savonarola, such bonfires had been a common accompaniment to the outdoor sermons of San Bernardino di Siena in the first half of the 15th century. Fra Girolamo Savonarola was a Dominican friar, assigned to work in Florence in 1490 thanks to the request of Lorenzo de' Medici – an irony, considering that within a few years Savonarola became one of the foremost enemies of the Medici house and helped to bring about their downfall in 1494.

Savonarola campaigned against what he considered to be the artistic and social excesses of Renaissance Italy, preaching with great vigor against any sort of luxury. His power and influence grew so that with time he became the effective ruler of Florence, had soldiers for his protection following him around everywhere. Starting in February 1495, during the time in which the festival known as Carnival occurred, Savonarola began to host his regular "bonfire of the vanities", he collected various objects that he considered to be objectionable: irreplaceable manuscripts, ancient sculptures and modern paintings, priceless tapestries, many other valuable works of art, as well as mirrors, musical instruments, books of divination and magic. He destroyed the works of Ovid, Propertius and Boccaccio. So great was his influence that he managed to obtain the cooperation of major contemporary artists such as Sandro Botticelli and Lorenzo di Credi, who reluctantly consigned some of their own works to his bonfires.

Anyone who tried to object found their hands being forced by teams of ardent Savonarola supporters. These supporters called themselves Piagnoni after a public nickname, intended as an insult. Savonarola's influence did not go unnoticed by the higher church officials and his excesses earned him the disdain of Pope Alexander VI, he was excommunicated on 13 May 1497. His charge was heresy and sedition at the command of Pope Alexander VI. Savonarola was hung on a cross and burned to death, his death occurred in the Piazza della Signoria, where he had held his bonfires of the vanities. The papal authorities took a leaf out of Savonarola's book on censorship: the day after his execution they gave word that anyone in possession of the Friar's writings had four days to turn them over to a papal agent to be destroyed. Anyone who failed to do so faced excommunication. Although it is reported that the Florentian artist Sandro Botticelli burned several of his paintings based on classical mythology in the great Florentine bonfire of 1497, the historical record on this is not clear.

According to the art historian Giorgio Vasari, Botticelli was a partisan of Savonarola: "He was so ardent a partisan that he was thereby induced to desert his painting, having no income to live on, fell into great distress." Writing several centuries Orestes Brownson, an apologist for Savonarola, mentions artwork only by Fra Bartolomeo, Lorenzo di Credi, "many other painters," along with "several antique statues." Art historian Rab Hatfield argues that one of Botticelli's paintings, The Mystical Nativity, is based on the sermon Savonarola delivered on Christmas Eve, 1493. The event has been represented or mentioned in varying degrees of detail in a number of works of historical fiction, including George Eliot's Romola, E. R. Eddison's A Fish Dinner in Memison, Irving Stone's The Agony and the Ecstasy, Chelsea Quinn Yarbro's The Palace, Michael Ondaatje's The English Patient – part two 1992, Roger Zelazny and Robert Sheckley's If at Faust You Don't Succeed, Timothy Findley's Pilgrim, Ian Caldwell and Dustin Thomason's Rule of Four, the novel "I, Mona Lisa" by Jeanne Kalogridis, the Showtime series The Borgias, The Sky and the Netflix series Borgia, The Botticelli Affair by Traci L. Slatton.

Other references in popular culture include: As a metaphor, Tom Wolfe used the event and ritual as the title for his 1987 novel The Bonfire of the Vanities and its film adaptation. Margaret Atwood's works allude to the Bonfire, as in her dystopian novels The Handmaid's Tale, Oryx and Crake; the Bonfire is depicted in the video game Assassin's Creed II, in which Savonarola is one of the antagonists. Jordan Tannahill's 2016 play Botticelli in the Fire is a fictional retelling of the events leading up to the bonfire of the vanities. Book burning The Birth of Venus Bonfire Night Martines, L. Fire in the City: Savonarola and the Struggle for the Soul of Renaissance Florence. New York, NY: Oxford University Press. Echoes of Botticelli in Early Modern Sources Explores primary sources related to Botticelli and Savonarola

Charente (river)

The Charente is a 381-kilometre long river in southwestern France. Its source is in the Haute-Vienne département at Chéronnac, a small village near Rochechouart, it flows through the departments of Haute-Vienne, Charente and Charente-Maritime. The river flows into the Atlantic Ocean near Rochefort; the Charente was described by the French king François I as'the most beautiful river in the kingdom', was navigable in its natural state until mills were erected at many locations in the 14th century. Some locks were built but through navigation remained impossible for centuries. Improvements to the navigation were projected under Louis XVI in 1772, but work was interrupted by the Revolution; the project was revived under the Restoration and canalisation completed in 1835. The waterway was abandoned in 1957; the départements took over operation in 1963, recreational vessels have now taken possession of the waterway throughout the 164 km to the town of Angoulême. The historic towns of Cognac, Jarnac and Rochefort make the river a popular destination for boaters in rental boats, with moorings provided at most towns and villages along the route.

The locks are 34 by 6 metres. Tributaries include the rivers Antenne, Boëme, Né, Seugne, Boutonne, Bandiat, Tardoire and Bonnieure; the River Boutonne is navigable over a distance of 31 km to Saint-Jean-d'Angély, but a barrier at the confluence prevents access except under exceptional conditions. Towns and villages include Vergeroux, Soubise and Tonnay-Charente on the tidal river, Saint-Savinien, Saintes, Jarnac, Saint-Simon and Angoulême on the navigable river, while Montignac-Charente and Civray are on the river's upper course. Kaolin deposits of the Charentes Basin The Charente in the Sandre database for hydrology, water quality and other data River Charente and River Boutonne, with maps and details for navigation, by the author of Inland Waterways of France, referenced above Navigation details for 80 French rivers and canals

Leonid Gubanov (poet)

Leonid Georgyevich Gubanov was a Soviet poet, creator of unofficial literary circle SMOG. He began writing poetry since childhood. In 1962 he entered the literary studio at the district library. Several of his poems were published in the newspaper Pionerskaya Pravda, he became interested in futurism and created a neo-futuristic samizdat magazine. He entered the literary studio of the Moscow Palace of Pioneers. Famous poets paid attention to him. In 1964, Yevgeny Yevtushenko helped to print an excerpt from a poem by Leonid Gubanov in the magazine Yunost; this publication was the last publication of Leonid Gubanov in the Soviet press. In early 1965, together with Vladimir Aleinikov, Vladimir Batshev, Yuri Kublanovsky and others, he participated in the creation of the independent literary and artistic association SMOG. On December 5, 1965, he took part in a glasnost meeting on Pushkin Square in Moscow. After some time, he was forcibly incarcerated in a special Soviet "psychiatric hospital". During the era of stagnation, Leonid Gubanov did not take part in official literary life.

He earned his living by unskilled labor. He died on September 8, 1983 at the age of thirty-seven, buried in Moscow at the Khovanskoye Cemetery. In 1994, the first compilation of Leonid Gubanov, The Angel in the Snow, was published by the publishing house IMA-PRESS, he was married to poetess Alyona Basilova. The Angel in the Snow I am Exiled to the Muse on Galleys... Gray Horse And Invited Words to Feast... 45-я параллель