A goitrous model for Bartolomeo Vivarini (1432–1499)

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debate


Introduction: Bartolomeo Vivarini (Venezia 1432c.–Venezia 1499c.) was an Italian painter during the Renaissance. The artist was widely influenced by Andrea Mantegna, whose opera was characterized by personages with anatomical details meticulously described. Materials and methods: Some of the most valued paintings of Bartolomeo Vivarini were analyzed. Purpose of the present article is to describe these artworks focusing on female personages represented with thyroid swelling. Results: A recurring female model in Vivarini’s artworks is portrayed with a goitrous neck. This might display a real prevalence of thyroid diseases among young women in the Renaissance age (e.g. postpartum thyroiditis). Conclusions: Representation of goiter in the artworks of Vivarini and Mantegna reflects the increased anatomic accuracy and knowledge developed in art since Renaissance and Baroque.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Endocrinological Investigation
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2020


  • Art
  • History
  • Thyroid swelling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology

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