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Italian Renaissance Learning Resources

In collaboration with the National Gallery of Art


Term generally used in 15th- and 16th-century Italy to describe a private domestic room, especially that of a ruler or other distinguished figure. It was not the bedchamber, which usually had a semi-public character, but a smaller, inner room, to which no-one but the owner had automatic access. Earlier studioli were used as studies or libraries. Later examples were essentially private museums. The contents were customarily the owner’s most precious possessions—books, jewels, objets d’art and other artefacts—which would be shown to favoured guests.