Paper $41.00 ISBN: 9780226437422 Published May 2012
Cloth $63.00 ISBN: 9780226437415 Published August 2009
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Petrarch

A Critical Guide to the Complete Works

Edited by Victoria Kirkham and Armando Maggi

Petrarch

Edited by Victoria Kirkham and Armando Maggi

568 pages | 8 halftones | 6 x 9 | © 2009
Paper $41.00 ISBN: 9780226437422 Published May 2012
Cloth $63.00 ISBN: 9780226437415 Published August 2009
E-book $10.00 to $41.00 About E-books ISBN: 9780226437439 Published June 2009
Although Francesco Petrarca (1304–74) is best known today for cementing the sonnet’s place in literary history, he was also a philosopher, historian, orator, and one of the foremost classical scholars of his age. Petrarch: A Critical Guide to the Complete Works is the only comprehensive, single-volume source to which anyone—scholar, student, or general reader—can turn for information on each of Petrarch’s works, its place in the poet’s oeuvre, and a critical exposition of its defining features.
            A sophisticated but accessible handbook that illuminates Petrarch’s love of  classical culture, his devout Christianity, his public celebrity, and his struggle for inner peace, this encyclopedic volume covers both Petrarch’s Italian and Latin writings and the various genres in which he excelled: poem, tract, dialogue, oration, and letter. A biographical introduction and chronology anchor the book, making Petrarch an invaluable resource for specialists in Italian, comparative literature, history, classics, religious studies, the Middle Ages, and the Renaissance.

Contents
List of Illustrations
Acknowledgments
Note on Bibliographical Forms and Abbreviations
 
Chronology of Petrarch’s Life and Works
Victoria Kirkham
 
A Life’s Work
Victoria Kirkham
 
PART I AN ENDURING VERNACULAR LEGACY
1 The Self in the Labyrinth of Time (Rerum vulgarium fragmenta)
Teodolinda Barolini
2 The Poem of Memory (Triumphi)
Fabio Finotti
3 Petrarch’s Damned Poetry and the Poetics of Exclusion (Rime disperse)
Justin Steinberg
 
PART II LITER ARY DEBUT, LATIN HUMANISM, AND ORATIONS
4 The Rebirth of the Romans as Models of Character (De viris illustribus)
Ronald G. Witt
5 Petrarch’s Philological Epic (Africa)
Simone Marchesi
6 The Beginnings of Humanistic Oratory: Petrarch’s Coronation Oration (Collatio laureationis)
Dennis Looney
7 Petrarch the Courtier: Five Public Speeches (Arenga facta Venecijs, Arringa facta Mediolani, Arenga facta in civitate Novarie, Collatio brevis coram Iohanne Francorum rege, Orazione per la seconda ambasceria veneziana)
Victoria Kirkham
8 The Unforgettable Books of Things to Be Remembered (Rerum memorandarum libri)
Paolo Cherchi
 
PART III CONTEMPLATIVE SERENITY
9 Pastoral as Personal Mythology in History (Bucolicum carmen)
Stefano Carrai
10 “You Will Be My Solitude”: Solitude as Prophecy (De vita solitaria)
Armando Maggi
11 A Humanistic Approach to Religious Solitude (De otio religioso)
Susanna Barsella
 
PART IV JOURNEYS INTO THE SOUL
12 The Burning Question: Crisis and Cosmology in the Secret (Secretum)
David Marsh
13 Petrarch’s Personal Psalms (Psalmi penitentiales)
E. Ann Matter
14 The Place of the Itinerarium (Itinerarium ad sepulchrum domini nostril Yhesu Christi)
Theodore J. Cachey Jr.
 
PART V LIFE’S TURBULENCE
15 On the Two Faces of Fortune (De remediis utriusque fortune)
Timothy Kircher
16 The Art of Invective (Invective contra medicum)
Stefano Cracolici
17 The Economy of Invective and a Man in the Middle (De sui ipsius et multorum ignorantia)
William J. Kennedy
 
PART VI PETR ARCH THE EPISTLER
18 A Poetic Journal (Epystole)
Giuseppe Velli
19 The Book without a Name: Petrarch’s Open Secret (Liber sine nomine)
Ronald L. Martinez
20 The Uncollected Poet (Lettere disperse)
Lynn Lara Westwater
21 Petrarch’s Epistolary Epic: Letters on Familiar Matters (Rerum familiarum libri)
Giuseppe F. Mazzotta
22 Letters of Old Age: Love between Men, Griselda, and Farewell to Letters (Rerum senilium libri)
David Wallace
 
PART VII EPILOGUE
23 To Write As Another: The Testamentum (Testamentum)
Armando Maggi
 
Notes
Bibliography
List of Contributors
Index
 
Review Quotes
S. Botterill | Choice
“This book’s depth of detail, breadth of coverage, and consistently high level of critical analysis make it unparalleled in Anglophone Petrarch scholarship and indispensable to anyone seriously interested in this perennially fascinating poet and thinker. A must for collections in Italian studies, medieval and Renaissance culture, and comparative literature.”
JoAnn DellaNeva | Renaissance Quarterly
“This single (and singular) volume—the product of an international conference held to celebrate the 700th anniversary of Petrarch’s birth—bears eloquent testimony to the diversity and complexity (as well as the unity) of his oeuvre. Its contributors, a veritable Who’s Who of Petrarch scholars, together treat virtually every work ever penned by the Trecento poet and humanist. Their twenty-three sensitive, concise, and often fascinating studies are not presented in the chronological order of Petrarch’s works; rather (and more intriguingly), they are divided among seven sections, each of which is devoted to a separate aspect of the Italian’s literary corpus. . . . Petrarch constitutes a well-conceived and well-executed guide to the complete works that will be of use to scholars and students of all levels who work on Medieval and Renaissance literature in Italian, comparative literature, and related fields.”
Maria Esposito Frank, University of Hartford | Sixteenth Century Journal
“A highly meritorious work, a massive scholarly enterprise that covers Petrarch’s entire oeuvre, published . . . in an elegant volume, with illustrations and a memorable frontispiece.”
Valeria Finucci, Duke University

“A provocative reference work for anyone working on the totality of Petrarch’s output. The essays combine fresh scholarship and revisionist arguments in clear, richly documented, and lucid expositions. Without great fanfare and with a keen eye for literary and historical detail, Victoria Kirkham and Armando Maggi have managed to offer original, intelligent, detailed, and inspiring interpretations of Petrarchan lyrical, historiographical and autobiographical narratives.”

P. M. Forni, Johns Hopkins University

“Victoria Kirkham and Armando Maggi have given the English-speaking world a richly-textured intellectual and artistic portrait of Petrarch that will engross both the novice and the seasoned petrarchista. This veritable treasure of a book will stand the test of time.”

Roland Greene, Stanford University

“A book that every medievalist and early modernist will feel obliged to own.  Much like the way Durling's translation created a market for itself thirty years ago, Petrarch: A Critical Guide will deliver to us a new Petrarch, with many of the less familiar works reweighed in significance and even the principal ones freshly understood. Knowing the poet well, I was continually surprised at how much I learned from the essays."

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