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Graphic Novel in Italia n. Very few intellectuals, let alone philosophers, produced vernacular writings in this period,3 and the irst vernacular works of philoso- phy, unsurprisingly, were devoted to themes that were of particular interest to Renaissance readers, namely rhetoric, politics, ethics, and economics.
Such translations relected a strictly humanistic interest in Greek authors while providing a direct link to the two most important philosophical currents in Western culture alongside Christian thought. Interest in the Stagirite began to revive between the end of the twelth and the start of the thirteenth centuries, and just as he came to be known as the Philosopher, his philosophy came to be known as the Philosophy. On humanism as a period of unrest in the production of vernacular writings, see Mirko Tavoni, Storia della lingua italiana.
Il Quattrocento Bologna: il Mulino, , Witt, ed. Christopher S. Celenza and Kenneth Gouwens Leiden: Brill, , 11— With over three hundred printed and manuscript works, the statistics are indeed impressive. Yet, even so, the vulgarization of Aristotle in the Italian Renaissance has never received the attention it deserves from the experts. It is only recently, thanks in particular to the tireless eforts of David Lines and Luca Bianchi, that light has begun to be shed on this area.
Second, historians have always overplayed the distinc- tion between philosophers who were serious and committed professionals and those who were mere popularizers with scant doctrinal knowledge. It was also at this time that the Bible began to be widely vulgarized; see Gigliola Fragnito, La Bibbia al rogo. La censura ecclesiastica e i volgarizzamenti della Scrittura — Bologna: Il Mulino, , For an exhaustive overview on studies on vernacular Aristotelianism, see David A. Lines and E. Reini Pisa: ETS, , 1— A fourth, eminently practical reason has been the lack of inventories of vernacular philosophical works from this period, a lack that the Warwick-based project led by David Lines and Simon Gilson has done much to redress, thereby making it possible at least to ill in some of the gaps in the research.
In both cases, opening up access to knowledge was seen as the most direct means of individual emancipation from authority and cultural renewal. It is not my intention here to examine Protestant ideas concerning the adoption of the vernacular10 but rather to inquire into a common concept of vulgarizing certain aspects of knowledge that some intellectuals in Italy shared with reformist movements during a religious crisis that deeply afected six- teenth-century Italian culture.
Rather we must ask the mother in the home, the children on the street, the common man in the marketplace. We must be guided by their language, by the way they speak, and do our translating accordingly.
Each of these themes will be treated in a separate paragraph. He concludes that programmatic statements contained in prefaces and dedicatory letters are not reliable indicators, as such statements must be read in the context of the editorial considerations that went into the making of the texts. It seems itting, here, to comment on my own treatment of the texts.
For citations from works published between the iteenth and sixteenth centuries I follow the numbering used by the authors themselves. My general rule has been to preserve original spelling and punctuation except where the best editions happen to be in modernized form; in the former, I have introduced minor changes as the sentence requires. When transcribing Italian vernacular, I have expanded all contractions, while dropping diphthongs and omitting diacritical marks.
When quoting I very occasionally add punctuation to make clearer what I take to be the sense of diicult passages. For citations from secondary sources, I have used the latest editions in their original languages. A vulgarizer may set out to write the easiest and most accessible book possible and fail in any number of ways. Filologia e ascesi, ed. Roberto Gigliucci Rome: Bulzoni, and in Ludovico Castelvetro: letterati e grammatici nella crisi religiosa del Cinquecento, ed.
As we shall see later in the paragraph, Castelvetro wrote not for the common people but for poets and literary critics who had at least some grounding in Greek and Latin literature. Aristotle and the People 65 of result. It is a signiicant ob- servation because it shows how intellectuals sometimes fell short of their stated intentions despite their democratizing zeal: it was most likely not infrequent for the intended public of Latin or vernacular texts with complex commentaries to be much wider than the public they actually reached.
Lettori, stampatori, correttori tra Quattro e Cinquecento Rome: Bulzoni, , — Politics and ethics […] having laboured […] to reduce to the form of paraphrase all eight books of the Politics […] adding particular commentary to each book, as well as various annotations and pertinent questions to help in the overall understanding of the text, which it has been greatly pleasing to bring to this point, as it has allowed me to see clearly how great a beneit the civil discourses written by Aristotle are to men, who are operating manuals of government, for setting them up, ordering them, and maintaining them.
And I thought that it should be done irst by transposing his science into a more common and accessible language, which Greek and Latin are not, and then ironing out the many diiculties he artiiciously illed his writings with. And as everything seemed unworthy to me, I inally decided that I could present to him no joy of greater worth than an institution for his entire life, such as could be drawn from the depths of Aristotle and Plato: so that he would ind himself guided from the cradle through all the stages of his life according to the moral code, inally reaching the utmost happiness that is appropriate to man as man.
Nor was I discouraged from my purpose by the thought that it might be a superluous task, since he has you as his mother to instruct him very satisfactorily: no small beneit, it seemed to me, would he derive, as your knowledge demonstrates, from his becoming acquainted with these great philosophers. Logic […] for the sole desire of beneitting the many that I know who have excellent minds, well suited to doing philosophy, and not knowing any other language than their mother tongue, Italian, so as not to waste what is let to them of their good years in foreign languages, so wrapped in ignorance are they, that I decided some years ago to treat matters of philosophy, not only in an orderly and accessible manner, but also in our pure Italian language.
Psychology […] all men of letters that are good by nature, because they seek to communicate the gits that God granted them, will comfort each person in such a way that a person will seek the condition and the strength to become virtuous; and if they see a woodsman, they will inspire him at least to turn to mathematics, if not other things […] and so they will encourage an apothecary to take up medicine: and ultimately each person to try to learn the things they think will be useful and honourable in some way. And so far it may be said not to have been understood by those who have set themselves to examining it, so diverse and obscure have their utterances been, but it has been made so clear that its secrets could not be more fully revealed […] moved to pity thinking of the beneit that the scholars of humanities could draw therefrom, I have gathered it together and undertaken to publish it.
Benedetto Varchi, Opere, Vol.
Physics, astronomy, and meteorology It seemed to many ancient philosophers that to publish the sciences and make them clear to everyone was to throw away roses and pearls, and so they concealed what they knew with hieroglyphs, mysteries, fables, symbols, and enigmas, almost more than nature herself. And in so doing they showed themselves to be jealous of power and ungrateful, and unlike the giver of these and other graces. Even so there are some albeit very few who seek to defend them, saying that in this way the sciences maintained their reputation and dignity, because they were accessible only to ine minds and to the wealthy and important people.
Nor do they refrain from attacking those who have sought to defeat ignorance in the world and spread the sciences in all the languages. Firstly, you must know that in all the works I have written until now, my primary intention has been to write as clearly as possible: seeking in every study to present the subjects to other intellects in a manner so plain, so accessible and free of diiculty, that not only ine intellects but also average ones can learn them.
At least two levels of public may be discerned. See Gigliola Fragnito, Proibito capire. Translations of idioti, volgari, semplici, ignoranti, etc. On the use of these expressions in the Italian language, see Marina Roggero, Insegnar lettere. In other words, knowing how to read did not necessarily mean that a person would actually read or acquire new knowledge.
Having the means to attend a university or hire a top- notch private tutor was therefore not the only factor discriminating between literates and illiterates. Elizabeth L. Paolo Trovato and Pietro Trifone have shown that literacy rate statistics for Renaissance Italy are unreliable because reading and linguistic skills generally varied not only among the diferent social classes but also within the same social class. Il nuovo spazio del volgare tra Quattro e Cinquecento Rome: Bulzoni, , — Fragnito, Proibito capire, Addressed in common, taught by some and deciphered by others, deeply integrated into the life of the community, the printed word laid its mark on the urban culture of the popular masses.
And it thus created a public, and therefore a market, beyond those who were literate and even those who read books. In fact, between and , for the majority of the popular urban classes, the relation to the printed material is not a relation to books […]. Steven L. Kaplan Berlin: Mouton, , Aristotle and the People 81 standing between the common people and the educated classes.
An initial, if partial, answer may be found in the passages cited above. Antonio Scaino and Felice Figliucci, for instance, dedicate their works to men involved in politics who govern the city.
Panilo Persico is even more explicit in addressing his writings to princes and those who govern the republic and the court. Far from being uneducated, these social groups frequently had knowledge of classical languages, or at least some degree of erudition, but still it was easier for them to read in the vernacular rather than a language that was no longer spoken.
Yet the fact that they were written in the vernacular instead of Latin, as would have been the case only thirty or forty years before, shows how profound a shit the studia humanitatis were going through, and how the new humanism conceived in the academies See Fragnito, Proibito capire, For many vernacular writers, however, the educated upper classes were not the only intended recipients. Giovan Battista Gelli was animated by a need to teach philosophy also to woodcutters and apothecaries,56 while Claudio Tolomei viewed the knowledge of mechanics as an important acquisition for sculptors, painters, carpenters, and architects too.
Works targeting speciic recipient groups were usually concerned Aristotle and the People 83 with ethical-political matters ethics, politics, rhetoric , or applied sciences mechanics and meteorology ,60 and sometimes difered from Latin works in that they contained a practical knowledge that their public would apply. In their roles as nannies and wet-nurses, women with access to cul- ture were perfectly placed to become themselves vehicles in the education of children, who were in this manner exposed from their earliest years to works which were probably read to them in infancy, and which they would later go on to memorize.
Fragnito, Proibito capire, — I shall say the same about Philosophy, which contemplates nature; and even more so of ethics. And of architecture, is it not best that the engineers and masters of workshops should be able to learn from our teachings? And of agriculture, does it not seem necessary for you that the men of the people should proit from them? And of arithmetic, should it not be your intention that even the classes or indistinct masses. See Pietro Bembo, Prose della volgar lingua, ed. John M.
Najemy Oxford: Oxford University Press, , Se di Arithmetica, non dee esser vostra intention, che anche gli huomini non letterati vi debbano poter leggere? Again, a preliminary study of the public is necessary to gain some insight into the nature of the audience, because someone who writes is writing for someone, for instance artisans, women, or merchants.
It is moreover clear that this arrangement in intensive monocultures does more than further simplifying landscapes by reducing their ecosystem services. Please provide a valid price range. Best Offer. The front blank endpaper is loose but holding fine. Nice and attractive. Female Gender and Sexuality in the DS: Femininity is all but erased from the macrotext, and in the ragionamenti women appear only as exemplary figures, whether serving as warnings against sinful behavior or as paragons of virtue and saintly excellence.
Muzio, Battaglie, r—v. On this passage, see Vittorio Coletti, Parole dal Pulpito. Chiesa e movimenti religiosi tra latino e volgare Casale Monferrato: Marietti, , Produzione e commercio Rome: Istituto poligraico e Zecca dello Stato, , 99— Gelli, It is in fact highly improbable that over three hundred works should have had an entirely ictional, hence not real, public whose sole purpose was to justify the use of the vernacular.
Not only would such a conceit reduce vernacular works to a mere literary exercise, it would also efectively constitute a deliberate red herring on a collective scale, as if all vulgarizers, or at least most of them, had made a pact to address their works to a public that did not exist. Conservative intellectuals on all sides, who opposed the vul- garization of knowledge, were reacting against an endeavour that was clearly proving successful, otherwise they would not have opposed vulgarizations so violently.
One would have to build arguments on what was not said rather than what was said purely on the assumption that there can be no correspondence between audience and public in the various types of vulgarization. As we have seen, vulgarization techniques and linguistic register are not always reliable indicators, because if these vulgarizations aim to educate, and not be mere literary exercises, the primary purpose is the improvement of knowledge, which means imparting information and language that a person did not have before, and are therefore diicult to understand.
Giovanni Pili da Fano, Opera utilissima vulgare contra le pernitiosissime heresie lutherane per li simplici Bologna: Phello, , 1v. Lorenzo Davidico, Anotomia delli vitii Florence, , See Massimo Firpo, Nel labirinto del mondo. And if they were capable of grasping the truth of the Bible, theology, and Revelation, one might argue that they were also capable of understanding the rational truths ofered by philosophy, albeit partially and with some degree of efort.
No doubt, the level of penetration of the Holy Scriptures was higher than that of the philo- sophical texts, because there were more social chances to have contact with biblical message; nonetheless, the public was the same.