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Vita del Cavaliere Gio. Lorenzo Bernino Scultore, Architetto, e Pittore, Scritta Da Filippo Baldinucci Fiorentino. Alla Sacra, e Reale Maestà Di Cristina Regina di Svezia.

Filippo Baldinucci

RA Collection: Book

Record number



Variant Title

Vita di Bernino
Half-title: Vita del cavaliere Bernino


In Firenze,: nella Stamperia di Vincenzio Vangelisti. Con licenza de' Superiori., MDCLXXXII.

Physical Description

[12], 111, [1] p., engr. port., 9 pl. (4 folded); 257 mm. (Quarto.)


[T.p., dedic.] - Tavola Delle Cose Piu Notabile - [Port.] - Vita Del Cavaliere Gio. Lorenzo Bernino - Per non estendersi prolissamente nell'istoria [list of Bernini's works] - Protesta Dell'Autore - Approvazioni; Errori, Correggimento - [Plates]. - (Note that in some copies the Dedication and Table of contents are transposed.)

Responsibility Note

No plate is signed, except the portrait of Bernini, signed as painted by 'Io. Bapt. Gaullus' (i.e. Gaulli, 'Il Baciccio') and engraved by 'Arnold. Van Westerhout'.

The work is dedicated by Baldinucci to Queen Cristina of Sweden.


Royal Institute of British Architects, British Architectural Library ... Early printed books, 1 (1994), no. 175, p.102; Johns Hopkins University, The Fowler Architectural Collection (1961), no. 35, p.27-8.

An English translation, The life of Bernini by Filippo Baldinucci translated ... by Catherine Enggass, was published in 1966 (London: University Park). On Baldinucci see E.L. Goldberg, After Vasari: history, art and patronage in late Medici Florence (1999).

Summary Note

The date of the dedication is '5. Nov. 1681.' The work was commissioned from Baldinucci by Bernini's friend and patron, Queen Christina of Sweden, shortly after Bernini's death.

The nine plates show plans and details of parts of St Peter's, Rome. The frontispiece shows Gaulli's portrait of Bernini.

The original of the portrait of Bernini (painted ca. 1673) exists in two versions - one at Rome and one in the Courtauld Institute, London.


A microfiche version was published in 1988 (Urbana, USA: University of Illinois Library Leopoldo Cicognara Program). An edition by L. Samek Ludovici was published in 1948.


13 September 1787: 'Resolved, That ... Baldinucci's Lives 8 vol. be purchased.' (RA Council Minutes II, 47).

Copy Note

Imperfect: lacks the half-title and the five non-folded plates.

Binding Note

18th-century mottled calf, upper cover gilt-stamped with royal arms and lettered 'R.A.' ; red morocco spine-label lettered, 'Vita di Bernino'.

Name as Subject


Architects, Italian - Sculptors, Italian - Sculpture - Architecture, Italian - Church decoration and ornament - Churches - Italy - Rome - Vatican City - Basilica di San Pietro in Vaticano - History - 17th century - Baroque - Sources
Biography - Plans - Italy - 17th century
Armorial bindings - Great Britain - 18th century


Vincenzio Vangelisti, printer
Baciccio, source artist
Arnold van Westerhout, engraver
Christina Queen of Sweden, dedicatee