Mellon Fellowship | Italian Renaissance Studies | Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies, Italy

Publish Date: Jul 15, 2015

About Mellon Fellowships

Mellon Fellowships are designed to support and promote Italian Renaissance studies in areas that have been under-represented at I Tatti. Available for periods ranging from three to six months, they are intended for advanced research in any aspect of the Italian Renaissance


Preference will be given to junior scholars who teach or plan to teach in Asia, Arabic speaking nations, Latin America, and the Mediterranean basin. Scholars working in North America, Northern Europe, Italy, France, or Australia are not eligible. Applicants must be conversant in either English or Italian and able to understand both languages. They should have a solid background in Italian Renaissance studies and be in the early stages of their career. Specifically, applicants must be a) advanced PhD candidates (with an approved dissertation topic) or b) hold a  PhD (or an equivalent doctorate, e.g. dottorato di ricerca); the PhD certificates must bear a date after 1 January 2005.

The selection committee pays special attention to the candidate’s curriculum vitae, the strength of the proposed project, and its potential to yield original results. The project must represent advanced research in the Italian Renaissance, broadly defined as the period ranging from the 13th to the 17th centuries. Subjects covered include the architecture, history, literature, material culture, music, philosophy, religion, science, or visual arts of Italy. Scholars can also apply to work on the transmission and circulation of ideas, objects, and people during the Renaissance, into and beyond the Italian peninsula, or the historiography of the Italian Renaissance, including the rebirth of interest in the Renaissance in later periods. It must be possible for applicants to carry out most of their research in Florence with the resources available in the city and at I Tatti. Applicants should discuss how their project relates to their earlier work and note that preference is given to scholars embarking on a new research project rather than polishing a dissertation. 

Short-term Fellowships at I Tatti can be held only once, and priority will be given to applicants with no previous association with the Harvard Center. Scholars can apply to only one type of I Tatti Fellowship at a time. Scholars awarded a Mellon Fellowship can apply for a one-year I Tatti Fellowship only after a year has passed from the end of their sojourn. Renewals or repeats of a Mellon Fellowship are not granted.

The Fellow is responsible to obtain a visa, permesso di soggiorno, and health coverage (and, if appropriate, for accompanying family members). The Fellow must determine if a visa is required and, if necessary, obtain one before travel.


The normal periods of residence are fall (September through November), winter (January through March), and spring (April through June). Applicants should indicate their preference. Fellows are required to spend at least three days a week at the Villa, and to live in Florence or the surrounding area.

Fellows enjoy all the privileges of the Harvard Center, including use of the Biblioteca Berenson seven days a week and lunch with other I Tatti Appointees from Monday through Friday. Short-term Fellows do not receive an office or study, but they will have their own desk or carrel in the Library itself. The stipend is $4,000 per month, plus a one-time supplement (maximum, $1,500) towards relocation expenses. When possible, a one-bedroom apartment will be set aside for the Fellow’s use, rent free, but with charges for utilities. If an apartment is not available, $1000 per month will be offered to help offset rental costs.

Fellows may not take on any other obligations such as teaching positions, even part-time ones, during any part of their Fellowship period.

The Fellowships are funded by a generous grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.


Details about applications will be posted in the Autumn. 

Letters of Recommendation

Applicants must have two scholars who know their work well submit recommendations online. These recommendations can be written in English or Italian. For graduate students, one letter must be written by their dissertation advisor; this must state that the dissertation topic has been formally approved, and indicate the estimated date of completion. When applicants enter the online application system, they will be asked to provide the names of their referees. After the applicant registers the referees and submits a completed application, the referees will receive an email explaining how to access the system and submit their letters electronically. It is the applicants’ responsibility to inform the scholars writing on their behalf of the nature of the project and the deadline.

Further Official Information

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