Leo XI: One of the Shortest-Reigning Popes
He might have only reigned for a mere 27 days, but Pope Leo XI (r. April 1st to 27th, 1605) was still honoured with a grand marble funerary monument in St Peter's Basilica.
The work of the sculptor Alessandro Algardi (1595-1654), the funerary monument depicts Pope Leo XI with personifications of Magnanimity and Liberality by, respectively, Ercole Ferrata and Giuseppe Perone.
The roses carved on the plinth, and the inscription SIC FLORVI (Thus he Flourished), refer to the brevity of his reign.
Above the niche, a pair of angels support Pope Leo XI's coat of arms, as they attempt to fix it to the cornice.
Leo XI was a member of the famous Medici family and the grandnephew of his namesake Pope Leo X (r. 1513-21).
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My name is David Lown and I am an art historian from Cambridge, England. Since 2001 I have lived in Italy, where I run private and
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