Vittoria Colonna

Dublin Core


Gabriella Costa

Person Metadata

Birth Date

1490 (disputed, some sources say 1492)


Marino, Lazio

Death Date

February 25, 1547



Biographical Text

Vittoria Colonna, the marchioness of Pescara, was the most famous and widely published female writer of sixteenth century Italy. Her Petrarchan lyric poems speak of loving and intimate relationships, first with her late husband and then with Christ. Colonna and Michelangelo were introduced to one another in Rome sometime in 1536 or 1538, likely by Michelangelo’s close friend Thommaso de’ Cavalieri. A friendship flourished between them based on a shared interest in spirituality and reform. Devoted to Colonna, Michelangelo looked to her as a spiritual guide and poetic inspiration. Around 1540, Colonna began assembling a gift manuscript of poetry for Michelangelo. In return, Colonna was a recipient of several of Michelangelo's drawings.


Buonarroti, Michelangelo, and James M. Saslow. The Poetry of Michelangelo: An Annotated Translation. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1991.

Colonna, Vittoria. Sonnets for Michelangelo : A Bilingual Edition. Edited and translated by Abigail Brundin. Chicago, IL, USA: University of Chicago Press, 2005. ProQuest ebrary.

Condivi, Ascanio. The Life of Michelangelo, translated Alice Sedwick Wohl, 103. University Park: The Pennsylvania State University Press, 1976.

Stortoni, Laura Anna. “Vittoria Colonna.” Translated by Laura Anna Stortini and Mary Prentice Lillie. In Women Poets of the Italian Renaissance: Courtly Ladies and Courtesans, 49-75. New York: Italica Press, 1997.

Vasari, Giorgio. “Michelangelo,” In The Lives of the Artists, translated Julia Conaway Bondanella and Peter E. Bondanella, 474. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1998.


Rome in the convent Sant’Anna de’ Funari


“Vittoria Colonna,” Fordham Art History , accessed June 20, 2024,

Output Formats