Published online by Cambridge University Press: 22 September 2009
But in Ancient Times; The Thropies erected upon the Place of the Victory; The Funerall Laudatives and Monuments for those that died in the Wars; The Crowns and the Garlands Personal; The Stile of Emperor, which the Great Kings of the World after borrowed; The Triumphes of the Generalls upon their Returne; The great Donatives and Largesses upon the Disbanding of the Armies; were Things able to enflame all Mens Courages. But above all, That of the Triumph, amongst the Romans, was not Pageants or Gauderie, but one of the Wisest and Noblest Institutions, that ever was.Sir Francis Bacon
Dedicating his Istorie Pisane to the Grand Duke Ferdinand de' Medici at the turn of the Seicento, Raffaello Roncioni deplored the fact that the glorious history of Pisa, his “most sweet and most loved fatherland (patria),” had fallen into oblivion. To remedy this sorry state of affairs, he promised the grand duke an epic account of the great deeds (gran fatti) of his most illustrious subject city, which would bring back to memory the power, the riches, the glory, the triumphs, the victories, and the greatness she once had enjoyed. From Roncioni we learn that the Pisans for centuries had fought the Saracens and defended and advanced the cause of Christianity throughout the Mediterranean, from the Balearic Islands in the West to the Holy Land in the East. Like other great cities, she had not remained quiet for long but pursued her conquests with relentless appetite.