Author Archives: Maryann Philip

About Maryann Philip

Maryann Philip (a nom de plume) graduated with honors in “Renaissance Studies” (a self-created interdepartmental major) from Stanford University in 1975, having spent part of her junior year at Stanford’s Florence campus, researching her honors thesis using original Italian texts in the Biblioteca Nazionale. She then went to law school (U. Chicago ’78) and spent the next twenty-five years raising children and practicing law, with occasional time out to sing in small ensembles devoted to Renaissance music. She now lives in California, and has recently retired from law practice to brush up on her Italian and devote herself to her family and favorite period in history: the Italian Renaissance.

Discrimination against Leonardo Da Vinci : The YouTube version

If you are visually oriented, the roots of the controversy around Leonardo da Vinci’s alleged identity as a homosexual pedophile are in this fifteen minute YouTube video:

The basic reason history has labelled da Vinci a homosexual pedophile is covered in the video.  It is anti-gay animus, plain and simple, as there has never been any real evidence that Leonardo was gay, much less that he was a pedophile  I also allude to two secondary reasons: bad biographers (one of whom was undoubtedly a pedophile with ulterior motives for accusing da Vinci) and the fact that he was undoubtedly close to two boys who may have been his adopted sons.

 

A Borgia Daughter Dies

A Borgia Daughter Dies - cover The saga of the Borgias and the lives of Leonardo da Vinci and the young Machiavelli form the accurate historical background of this murder mystery, set in the opulence of Renaissance Rome and Milan.  Machiavelli’s illegitimate daughter and his bewitching ex-mistress will solve three murders with help from da Vinci and Lucrezia Borgia – including the murder of Lucrezia’s real-life half sister.

Buy the Book:

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Da Vinci Detects

Da Vinci Detects

Da Vinci DetectsRenaissance Florence at the zenith of its artistic splendor is the backdrop for this historically sequel to A Borgia Daughter Dies.  Leonardo da Vinci uncovers a serial killer while working for the infamous Niccolò Machiavelli on a secret project for the Florentine Republic. A feared figure from Leonardo’s past also seeks his help, forcing him to re-live the nightmare of his public arrest after he was anonymously accused of homosexuality as a young man. Machiavelli’s mistress Caterina and their daughter Nicola will help Leonardo while trying to protect Caterina’s father, who lives in fear of death threats thrust under his door in the night.

Are these events intertwined? Leonardo will find answers, while he strives towards his greatest artistic and scientific achievements, in company with some of the most famous artists in history.

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Plot Summary: Da Vinci Detects Murder and Sex: A Mystery of Homosexual Persecution in Renaissance Italy Featuring Its Greatest Artists

back image 1.6Thousands of historical murder mystery fans have enjoyed A Borgia Daughter Dies (4 of 5 stars with 150+ reviews on Amazon!), which tells the true history of the Borgia family and of Leonardo da Vinci’s early life, with Leonardo as principal detective.
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Now Leonardo is back, forced by his real-life patron Niccolo Machiavelli to pursue killer(s) and re-live his arrest during the witch hunt for homosexuals conducted by Florence’s diabolical Office of the Night. My lawyer friends may be as shocked as I was by the Night Office, which methodically violated every principle enshrined in the American Constitution and Bill of Rights to protect the integrity of criminal processes. I had great fun finding an entertaining way to tell this sinister and little-known history, and illustrating it with wonderful Renaissance art.

Leonardo, preoccupied with what he was doing in real life, is assisted by my fictional protagonists, Machiavelli’s brilliant bastard daughter Nicola and her equally winsome mother Caterina. Readers will meet all the greatest artists of the era, and arguably of history. Borgia fans will learn about the Borgias’ greatest enemy, who became Pope Julius II, and find out what he did to Cesare and Lucrezia after the death of their father, the Borgia pope.

Here is a link to my first book, A Borgia Daughter Dies, where you can read (150+ average 4 out of 5 stars) reviews, the plot summary, and of course buy the book: http://www.amazon.com/Borgia-Daughter-Dies-history-Machiavelli-ebook/dp/B007WONQV2/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1415900678&sr=1-1&keywords=a+borgia+daughter+dies

And here is a link to the new book, with a more detailed plot summary, Da Vinci Detects:http://www.amazon.com/Vinci-Detects-Persecution-Renaissance-Machiavelli-ebook/dp/B00PFAP1VS/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1415901092&sr=1t For now, it’s only $1.99. The paperback will follow soon.

Those of you who have my personal e-mail, send me a message if you are interested and I’ll give you a gift copy. This actually costs me $1.99, so I ask for a favor in return: do read it, and if you like it, please post a favorable review on Amazon. If you don’t, I will hope you will send me any observations that might be helpful. A wonderful thing about publishing with Amazon is that it is very easy to fix mistakes!

Lucrezia Borgia’s life: second half

Este Castle, Ferrara

Lucrezia Borgia’s home for the second half of her life

Lucrezia Borgia spent the second half her life in Ferrara. After two marriages that ended in bizarre and terrible ways–as you will see if you watch the Showtime series– her last marriage to the Duke of Ferrara, Alfonso I (or Alfonso II if you count how many husbands she had named Alfonso), was relatively tranquil.

In fact, her life had a fairy tale quality. She lived in this  giant brick castle, complete with a moat and dungeons underneath. (There would not normally be ice on the moat. I happened to get to Ferrara during the coldest early spring in the last thirty years. )

Near the castle, Lucrezia attended church in a pink and white striped gothic cathedral, which had  a pink and white striped bell tower that is leaning a bit, after close to a thousand years.  Here they are:http://us.123rf.com/400wm/400/400/jojobob/jojobob1009/jojobob100900028/7826453-the-historic-piazza-trento-e-trieste-in-ferrara-emilia-romagna-italy-these-medieval-buildings-are-lo.jpg

The  cathedral where Lucrezia Borgia attended church for the second half of her life.

The cathedral where Lucrezia Borgia attended church for the second half of her life.

 

 

 

When Lucrezia tired of her castle or her pink striped cathedral, she could visit the castles and hunting Continue reading