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Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Michelangelo buys Figs, parts 1896 - 1899

1896.  Michelangelo made only a few adjustments to the original design. He multiplied the basic design in its width by a small fraction, which caused the patterns to fall in the proper order, but he left unchanged the proportions for the length of the church.

1897. This slight change could not be detected by eye. Another change he made was to eliminate all of the white and off-white marble in the design, substituting very light gray tints of granite, which is a much harder stone. He pointed out to Indaco that white marble, although strikingly beautiful in a floor when first installed, soon become dark and dingy with ground in dirt.

1898. Indaco knew quite well that the granite and porphyry stones Michelangelo was using in the floor, was superior in every way to the marble he had planned to use, but his budget for the entire project would not have been enough to pay for even the outside edges of the design, much less the entire floor. But Michelangelo had reached that point in his career where it was unnecessary for him to take into consideration either the cost of the materials or the time required.

1899. All the time I was telling the church what had happened between Michelangelo and Indaco she kept casting occasional glances at the floor under her feet. What I was in the process of telling her constituted the entire explanation as to why the floor of the church’s church was in such pristine condition, and also why it had needed almost no restoration over the past many centuries.

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