Robert Greenberg

Historian, Composer, Pianist, Speaker, Author

Archive for Carlos Gesualdo

Scandalous Overtures — Carlo Gesualdo, Prince Of Venosa: Murderer At Large

Carlo Gesualdo, Prince of Venosa and Count of Conza (1560-1613), was one of the richest men in Italy and among the most original composers of his time.He was also a very, very bad man.He murdered his older brother in order to inherit the family fortune and titles.He murdered his wife Maria and her lover the Duke of Andria when he learned of their affair.(These murders were particularly gruesome; the court report reads like something from Bret Easton Ellis’ American Psycho. Details so salacious are irresistible, so of course I will quote that report at length during my Scandalous Overtures expose!) It is likely that Gesualdo also murdered his infant son by Maria because he doubted the boy’s paternity. It is also likely that Gesualdo had his father-in-law killed (that would be Maria’s father) when he learned of his intention to seek revenge. For now, let us turn to Gesualdo’s very public murders of his wife and her lover.After the deed was done and after the bodies were sufficiently mutilated, he had them hung upside-down outside his palace in Naples for everyone to see.The murders and subsequent court inquest were THE Italian media events of 1590.Eager to cash in on the […]

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