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COLLECTION Identifier: BER-15

Eve Borsook papers regarding the Florentine flood


The papers include correspondence and documentation related to the rescue of the Florentine cultural heritage damaged by the 1966 flood.


  • 1966-2006

Language of Materials




Conditions Governing Use

Copying: Papers may be copied in accordance with the Biblioteca Berenson's usual procedures. Copyright: The Biblioteca Berenson does not hold copyright on all the materials in this collection. Requests for permission to publish material from the collection should be directed to the archivist. Researchers who obtain permission to publish from the archivist are responsible for identifying and contacting the persons or organizations that hold copyright.


1.0 linear feet

The bulk of the papers regards Eve Borsook’s activity for the Committee to Rescue Italian Art (CRIA), from just after the November 4th, 1966 flood, i.e. between November 1966 and the first three months of 1967. These papers are divided into correspondence (letters to and from EB) and documentation on activities concerned with the rescue of Florentine cultural heritage damaged by the flood, especially in the field of mural conservation. The collection also includes some papers collected by EB in 2006, regarding Florentine celebrations for the fortieth anniversary of the flood, and two lectures written by her for the same anniversary: the first lecture was given at Syracuse University in Florence (November 8th, 2006), the second, initially composed for a Symposium at New York University La Pietra, in Florence, was instead delivered at Villa I Tatti (Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies), on November 22nd, 2006.


EB was born in Toronto, Canada, on October 3rd, 1929. She began graduate study at New York University’s Institute of Fine Arts in the years 1949 to 1952. She received a Master's degree with a thesis on Carlo Saraceni, finished in 1954. Then she studied in London (Courtald Institute, with Johannes Wilde) and in Italy, continuing with studies on late medieval and Renaissance painting, which she started with Richard Offner and Craig Smyth, in New York. In 1960 she published The Mural Painters of Tuscany. Beginning in 1953 EB collaborated with a team of mural conservators in Florence headed by Leonetto Tintori. Out of this experience came not only The Mural Painters, but also a book on the Peruzzi Chapel, S. Croce, Florence (1965: she co-authored with Leonetto Tintori) and Tecnica e Stile (1986; co-editor Fiorella Gioffredi Superbi). Meanwhile, in 1980, a second edition of The Mural Painters came out in 1980, and, in 1981, Sassetti and Ghirlandaio at Santa Trinita (co-authored with Johannes Offerhaus). Messages in Mosaics, the Royal Programmes of Norman Sicily was published in 1990, with a second edition in 1998. Perhaps the best known among EB’s books is The Companion Guide to Florence, published for the first time in 1966 and reprinted many times since 2000.


The papers have been organized into two series: I Eve Borsook Papers 1966-1967: II Eve Borsook Papers 2006. Series I, Eve Borsook Papers 1966-1967, is divided into two sub-series: EB Correspondence, and EB Documentation. EB Correspondence is subdivised into two groups: letters to EB and letters from EB. EB Documentation is subdivided into tree groups: EB Documentation Papers, Clippings and Photographs, and Publications. Series II, Eve Borsook Papers 2006 is divided into two subseries: EB Lectures, and EB documentation.

Acquisition Information

The papers were donated to Villa I Tatti by Eve Borsook in 2007.

Eve Borsook papers regarding the Florentine flood, 1966-2006: A Finding Aid
Biblioteca Berenson
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Biblioteca Berenson, I Tatti - The Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies Repository

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