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Janet Wolff

power. For example, Philip Ball points out that the highly valued blue, lapis lazuli (also known as ultramarine, because it came from ‘beyond the sea’), was more common in Italy than in northern Europe during the Renaissance, because it arrived from Afghanistan and elsewhere through Italian ports. Michael Baxandall’s classic social history of Italian painting gives a marvellous insight into how the value and price of the precious mineral played out in the fifteenth century, in the detail of a 1485 contract for Domenico Ghirlandaio’s Adoration of the Magi (in the

in Austerity baby