Sugar Fox
Sugar Fox
Book No.
Short Story 4
Publication Date
Main Character
Donato Miele
Talian Setting
Preceded By
Followed By

Sugar Fox is the short story corresponding with City of Secrets[1]. It follows Donato Miele, the younger brother of Girolamo Miele, the main character from the previous story, An Impossible Task.

Like Girolamo Miele's friend Gabriele, the character of Donato was inspired by the Renaissance sculptor, Donatello.[2]


As a young boy, Donato Miele visits his brother Girolamo in Remora and sees a bronze statue of the Reman Emperor on horseback at the Papal Palace. Donato never forgets the statue and it becomes his dream to represent a horse and its rider as a sculpture.

Years later, Donato becomes a eminent artist who sculpts bronze and marble statues, unaware that Girolamo had admired his brother's work in Giglia. When Donato receives a commission from Padavia to create a bronze equestrian statue of Ernesto da Bruni, he hesistantly accepts, in part to fulfill his childhood desire of creating a statue of a horse.

With the money from the commission, Donato's workshop in Padavia expands into an unusual museum of Donato's rough ideas for the statue. Despite criticism from local art collectors and Donato's own uncertainty, he finds inspiration in memory of Girolamo for the image of the rider.

When the day comes for the statue to be unveiled before the Padavian dignitaries in the main square, Donato sees his brother amongst the guests. As the people cheer and praise Donato and his statue, Donato sees Girolamo looking at the statue and congratulating the Governor of Padavia by praising Donato's abilities as a sculptor.


  • Donato Miele - The younger brother of Girolamo Miele, fifteen years Girolamo's junior. He looks up greatly to Girolamo and hopes that his own artistic talents will eventually be worthy of his brother's pride. He is a sculptor. For many years, he has been working in Bellezza until he receives an important commission from Padavia.
  • Girolamo Miele - A great architect from Giglia, who seems to take little notice of Donato.
  • Gabriele - Girolamo's friend, a great sculptor.
  • Serafina - Donato's wife.
  • Ernesto da Bruni - Known as Volpeglassato, the "Sugar Fox", a mercenary who became folk hero in Padavia. Donato is commissioned to create a statue of the Sugar Fox. The Sugar Fox is based on Erasmo da Narni, a mercenary known as Gattamelata ("Honeyed Cat"), who was honoured with a statue made by Donatello and set in front of the Basilico del Santo in Padua[3].
  • Scaligero Scalone - An amateur art collector in Padavia. He frequently criticizes Donato's designs.

Notes and ReferencesEdit

  2. Author's Note - The Sugar Fox
    In my website story 'An Impossible Task' I have already used Donatello and the great architect Filippo Brunelleschi as inspiration for the Talian sculptor Gabriele and the architect Girolamo Miele. In this story I have used Donatello again, but this time as the inspiration for Donato Miele, Girolamo’s brother.
  3. Author's Note - The Sugar Fox
    The statue of Gattamelata, or "Honeyed Cat", in front of the Basilico del Santo in Padua, was made by Donatello in the middle of the fifteenth century. Gattamelata was a mercenary called Erasmo da Narni, who had died a few years before; he was the first commoner to be honoured by such a monument in such a position in Italy.

The Series
City of Masks · City of Stars · City of Flowers · City of Secrets · City of Ships · City of Swords
Short Stories
A Talian Tale · A Sting in the Tail · An Impossible Task · Sugar Fox · The Fourth Wise Man · Under the Walls