The four wall-surfaces that flank the three western doorways are decorated with very beautiful sculpture in relief, once ornamented with colour, the designs for which, according to Burckhardt, must be ascribed to the architect of the whole, though executed by other (but still Sienese, not Pisan) hands.
His family was Sienese in origin, and his father, Colonel Domenico Pecci, had served in the army of Napoleon.
These painters seem to have been influenced by the contemporary masters of the Sienese school.
Among the noblest fruits of Sienese art are the public buildings adorning the city.
Here are Pinturicchio's famous frescoes of scenes from the life of the latter pontiff, and the collection of choir books (supported on sculptured desks) with splendid illuminations by Sienese and other artists.
Maria di Provenzano, a vast baroque building of some elegance, designed by Schifardini (1594) Sant' Agostino, rebuilt by Vanvitelli in 1755, containing a Crucifixion and Saints by Perugino, a Massacre of the Innocents by Matteo di Giovanni, the Coming of the Magi by Sodoma, and a St Anthony by Spagnoletto (?); the beautiful church of the Servites (15th century), which contains another Massacre of the Innocents by Matteo di Giovanni and other good examples of the Sienese school; San Francesco, designed by Agostino and Agnolo about 1326, and now restored, which once possessed many fine paintings by Duccio Buoninsegna, Lorenzetti, Sodoma and Beccafumi, some of which perished in the great fire of 1655; San Domenico, a fine 13th-century building with a single nave and transept, containing Sodoma's splendid fresco the Swoon of St Catherine, the Madonna of Guido da Siena, 1281, and a crucifix by Sano di Pietro.
The Accademia di Belle Arti contains a good collection of pictures of the Sienese school, illustrating its development.
An interesting exhibition of Sienese art, including many objects from neighbouring towns and villages, was held here in 1904.
Another Sienese theatre that of the Rozzi, in Piazza San Pellegrino, designed by A.
Thanks to all these architectural treasures, the narrow Sienese streets with their many windings and steep ascents are full of picturesque charm, and, together with the collections of excellent paintings, foster the local pride of the inhabitants and preserve their taste and feeling for art.
Thereupon, to spite the rival republic, the Sienese took the Ghibelline side, and the German emperors, beginning with Frederick Barbarossa, rewarded their fidelity by the grant of various privileges.
But this treaty, in spite of its apparent stability, led in a few years to a fiercer struggle; for in 1258 the Florentines complained that Siena had infringed its terms by giving refuge to the Ghibellines they had expelled, and on the refusal of the Sienese to yield to these just remonstrances both states made extensive preparations for war.
But the Sienese people, being called to arms by the council of fifteen, made a most determined resistance, routed the imperial troops, captured the standard, and confined the emperor in the Salimbeni palace.
The Sienese government conceived hopes of gaining possession of the city of Arezzo, which was first occupied by Durazzo's men, and then by Enguerrand de Coucy for Louis of Anjou; but while the Sienese were nourishing dreams of conquest the French general unexpectedly sold the city to the Florentines, whose negotiations had been conducted with marvellous ability and despatch (1384)..
The gathering exasperation of the Sienese, and notably of the middle class, against their rulers was brought to a climax by this cruel disappointment.
With him the Sienese concluded an alliance in 1389 and ten years later accepted his suzerainty and resigned the liberties of their state.
(1409); Ladislaus of Naples, therefore, as a supporter of the pope, seized the opportunity to make incursions on Sienese territory, laying it waste and threatening the city.
The Sienese maintained a vigorous resistance till the death of this monarch in 1414 freed them from his attacks.
In 1431 a fresh war with Florence broke out, caused by the latter's attempt upon Lucca, and continued in consequence of the Florentines' alliance with Venice and Pope Eugenius IV., and that of the Sienese with the duke of Milan and Sigismund, king of the Romans.
Although it was disadvantageous to the Sienese and temptations to break it were frequently urged upon them, they faithfully adhered to its terms. During this period of comparative tranquillity Siena was honoured by the visit of Pope Eugenius IV.
In 1453 hostilities against Florence were again resumed, on account of the invasions and ravages of Sienese territory committed by Florentine troops in their conflicts with Alphonso of Naples, who since 1447 had made Tuscany his battleground.
The election of Aeneas Sylvius Piccolomini to the papal chair in 1458 caused the utmost joy to the Sienese; and in compliment to their illustrious fellow-citizen they granted the request of the nobles and readmitted them to a share in the government.
A decree issued by the Neapolitan king (1482) depriving the Sienese of certain territories in favour of Florence entirely alienated their affections from that monarch.
From 1527 to 1545 the city was torn by faction fights and violent revolts against the noveschi, and was the scene of frequent bloodshed, while the quarrelsomeness and bad government of the Sienese gave great dissatisfaction in Tuscany.
Thereupon certain Sienese citizens in Rome, headed by Aeneas Piccolomini (a kinsman of Pius II.), entered into negotiations with the agents of the French king and, having with their help collected men and money, marched on Siena and forced their way in by the new gate (now Porta Romana) on 26th July 1552.
And finally by an agreement with Cosimo de' Medici, duke of Florence, the Spaniards were sent away on the 5th August 1552 and the Sienese took possession of their fortress.
On the 2nd of August of the same year, at Marciano in Val di Chiana, he won a complete victory over the Sienese and French troops under Piero Strozzi, the Florentine exile and marshal of France.
A glorious record of their sufferings is to be found in the Diary of Sozzini, the Sienese historian, and in the Commentaries of Blaise de Monluc, the French representative in Siena.
De' Medici being granted the investiture of the Sienese state by the patent of Philip II.
Nevertheless it retained a separate administration for more than two centuries, until the general reforms of the grand-duke Pietro Leopoldo, the French domination, and finally the restoration swept away all differences between the Sienese and Florentine systems of government.
In the 17th century we find Ludovico Sergardi (Quinto Settano), a Latinist and satirical writer of much talent and culture; but the most original and brilliant figure in Sienese literature is that of Girolamo Gigli (1660-1722), author of the Gazzettino, La Sorellina di Don Pilone, Il Vocabolario cateriniano and the Diario ecclesiastico.
In the domain of history we have first the old Sienese chronicles, which down to the 14th century are so confused that it is almost impossible to disentangle truth from fiction or even to decide the personality of the various authors.
The best Sienese historians belong to the 16th century.
- Lanzi happily designates Sienese painting as "Lieta scuola fra lieto popolo" ("the blithe school of a blithe people").
The Sienese school of painting owes its origin to the influence of Byzantine art; but it improved that art, impressed it with a special stamp and was for long independent of all other influences.
Consequently Sienese art seemed almost stationary amid the general progress and development of the other Italian schools, and preserved its medieval character down to the end of the 15th century, when the influence of the Umbrian and - to a slighter degree - of the Florentine schools began to penetrate into Siena, followed a little later by that of the Lombard.
In the Campo Santo of Pisa; Agostino and Agnolo, who in 1330 carved the fine tomb of Bishop Guido Tarlati in the cathedral of Arezzo; Lando di Pietro (14th century), architect, entrusted by the Sienese commune with the proposed enlargement of the cathedral (1339), and perhaps author of the famous Gothic reliquary containing the head of S Galgano in the Chiesa del Santuccio, which, however, is more usually attributed to Ugolino di Vieri, author of the tabernacle in the cathedral at Orvieto; Giacopo (or Jacopo) della Quercia, whose lovely fountain, the Fonte Gaia, in the Piazza del Campo has been recently restored; Lorenzo di Pietro (Il Vecchietta), a pupil of Della Quercia and an excellent artist in marble and bronze; Francesco d'Antonio, a skilful goldsmith of the 1 6th century; Francesco di Giorgio Martini (1439-1502), painter, sculptor, military engineer and writer on art; Giacomo Cozzarelli (15th century); and Lorenzo Mariano, surnamed 11 Marrina (16th century).
In 1222 Florence waged war successfully on Pisa, Lucca and Pistoia, and during the next few years against the Sienese with varying results; although the emperor supported the latter as Ghibellines, on his departure for Germany in 1235 they were forced to accept peace on onerous terms. During the interregnum (1241-1243) following on the death of Pope Gregory IX.
A Florentine army assisted by Guelphs of other towns was cunningly induced to believe that Siena would surrender at the first summons; but it was met by a Sienese army reinforced by Florentine exiles, including Farinata degli Uberti and other Ghibellines, and by the cavalry of Manfred of Sicily, led by Count Giordano and the count of Arras, with the result that the Florentines were - totally routed at Montaperti on the 4th of September 1260.
After Charles's victory over Conradin in 1268 the Florentines defeated the Sienese (1269) and made frequent raids into Pisan territory.
As soon as order was restored a balia was appointed to reform the government, in which task it was assisted by the Sienese and Perugian ambassadors and by Simone da Battifolle.
To this year, 1376, belongs the admission to Catherine's circle of disciples of Stefano di Corrado Maconi, a Sienese noble distinguished by a character full of charm and purity, and her healing of the bitter feud between his family and the Tolomei.
CHIGI - ALBANI, the name of a Roman princely family of Sienese extraction descended from the counts of Ardenghesca.
OLIVETANS, one of the lesser monastic orders following the Benedictine Rule, founded by St Bernard Tolomei, a Sienese nobleman.
It is surrounded by walls built by the Sienese in 1351, and has some 14th-century churches with paintings of the same period.
The painter named Lorenzo Monaco may have contributed to his art-training, and the influence of the Sienese school is discernible in his work.
In the one field his labours are represented by his Storia Pittorica della Italia, the first portion of which, containing the Florentine, Sienese, Roman and Neapolitan schools, appeared in 1792, the rest in 1796.