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Reviewing Dante’s Theology

Volume 2

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Edited By Claire E. Honess and Matthew Treherne

The two volumes of Reviewing Dante’s Theology bring together work by a range of internationally prominent Dante scholars to assess current research on Dante’s theology and to suggest future directions for research.
Volume 2 considers some of the broader social, cultural and intellectual contexts for Dante’s theological engagement. The contributors discuss the relationship between theology and poetry as Dante sees and presents it; Dante’s thought on the nature of the Church; the ways in which liturgical practice helped shape the poet’s work; the links between Dante’s political and theological ideas; the importance of preaching in Dante’s context; the ways in which the notion of virtue connects theological and ethical thought in Dante’s works; and the extent to which Dante’s often surprising, groundbreaking work tests medieval notions of orthodoxy. Each essay offers an overview of its topic and opens up new avenues.

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Albert R. Ascoli Poetry and Theology

Extract

Until the appearance of the invaluable edition by Enzo Cecchini of Magnae Derivationes of Hugutio of Pisa, the early thirteenth-century etymological dictionary to which Dante frequently recurred, was available only in manu- script form and was used by Dante scholars exclusively to clarify the mean- ings of individual words and concepts where Dante either drew directly on the Derivationes or where that encyclopedic work provided an illuminating analogue.1 Future studies, it is to be hoped, will concern themselves more generally with the hows and whys of Dante’s engagement with this text.2 For present purposes, however, I would like to recall, yet again, Dante’s 1 Uguccione da Pisa, Derivationes, ed. by Enzo Cecchini (Florence: SISMEL Edizioni del Galluzzo, 2004). The limited bibliography on Dante and Hugutio includes Paget Toynbee, Dante Studies and Researches (London: Methuen, 1902), pp. 97–114; Antonio Martina, ‘Uguccione nel proemio della Monarchia di Dante’, L’Alighieri (1972) 13: 69–74; Giancarlo Schizzerotto, ‘Uguccione’, in ED, V, pp. 800–02; Albert Ascoli, Dante and the Making of a Modern Author (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008), esp. ch. 2, sec. ii, also ch. 5, nn. 20 and 46. 2 On Dante and medieval encyclopedism, see Cesare Vasoli, ‘Dante e l’immagine enciclopedica del mondo nel Convivio’, in ‘Imago Mundi’: la conoscenza scientifica nel pensiero basso medioevale (Todi: Accademia Tudertina, 1983), pp. 37–73; The ‘Divine Comedy’ and the Encyclopedia of the Arts, ed. by Giuseppe Di Scipio and Aldo Scaglione (Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 1988); L’Enciclopedismo medieval, ed. by Michelangelo Picone (Ravenna:...

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