The monument of Edoardo Pepoli, a fond of music-nobleman dead in 1801, is one of the four most famous tombs made by Palagi for the Comunal cemetery “Certosa” of Bologna. The monument, wanted by the successors and edited by Antonio Bolognini Amorini (Pepoli’s executor), anticipated by more than ten years the tendency of drawing sculptures into the paintings, leaving behind the ideal of illusionistic perspective of that period. Palagi creates a niche with chests diamond-shaped decorations similar to the ones present in the Church of Massenzio. There is a dominant sarcophagus, and on a high step lies a male figure wrapped in a tarp, with an elbow supported to a pillow. The right hand is shown while a snake (which seems to be an Ouroboros) is coiling around the arm up to the elbow. This figure, also due to its golden reflections, recalls the sea divinities: Zeus, beardless and Esculapius, these were known by the artists because of their presence in the Fine Arts Academy. Musical instruments (like flutes, cymbals or cymbals jingled) are symmetrically located by the sides of an entry (they allude to the music loved by Edoardo Pepoli) with pit vipers.
Translation from the italian language thanks to the 2017/18 students Margherita Sforza, Sofia Guida, Rodolfo Rigosi of the Galvani high school in Bologna, supervised by the teacher Annamaria Marconi.