Origines equestrium sive militarium ordinum

Ximenez owned several printed histories of knighthood, including the 1609 On the Origin of Knightly and Military Orders by Aubertus Miraeus, nephew of Antwerp bishop Johannes Miraeus. This history of the most prominent European knighthoods begins with the Knights of Saint John, but for Ximenez, the conclusion of Miraeus's work likely proved more significant. The author culminates his history with the foundation of the Knights of Saint Stephen, placing the Florentine knighthood in a long tradition of crusading orders. Founded in 1561 by Duke Cosimo I de' Medici, the Cavalieri di Santo Stefano received official sanction from Pope Pius IV and acted under the auspices of the church rather than on imperial authority. As head of the Antwerp branch of the order, Ximenez could count himself in rare and elite company, locked in a historical struggle against Muslim powers that traced its roots back to the first crusade.

Sean Nelson, Max Planck Institute, Florence


Ciano, Cesare. I primi medici e il mare. Pisa: Pacini Editore, 1980.