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«Poesis Artificiosa»

Between Theory and Practice


Edited By Agnieszka Borysowska and Barbara Milewska-Wazbinska

Poesis artificiosa was known in the literary heritage of ancient Greeks and Romans, and in the Far and Middle East. Its tradition was preserved in the Middle Ages and practiced later. Poesis artificiosa gained an unprecedented popularity in the Baroque – a period most inclined towards all manner of special effects. The aim of this book is to present problems related to the Neo-Latin pattern poetry created from the 15th to the 18th century in Central Europe, mainly in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, German Pomerania, and Silesia. In the initial chapters, the authors discuss the practical application of pattern poetry in religious works, in compositions intended for the commemoration of the departed, and in poems featuring panegyric content. The remaining chapters refer to its theoretical aspects.


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The Theory of Poesis Artificiosa in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania (1660–1760). Jakub Niedźwiedź


The Theory of Poesis Artificiosa in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania (1660–1760) Jakub Niedźwiedź Jagiellonian University In this paper I would like to take a closer look at the results that emer- gence of the category of pattern poetry (poesis artificiosa) had for the theo- ry of poetry at the beginning of the eighteenth century and later on. The- se results significantly influenced the changes of understanding the poet- ic art in those days. I will base my study on sources coming from the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth but some conclusions might be useful in studies on the development of pattern poetry in other parts of Europe as well. Pattern poetry became very popular around Europe in the seven- teenth century.1 Therefore, there is nothing odd about the fact that from the beginning of that century we come across characteristics of the genre. Among the earlier Jesuit works we count a textbook by Ioannes Buchler from 1613 (an adaptation of the poetics by Iacobus Pontanus Poetices libri III), where we can find deliberations on leonine verse, echo, reciprocus and proteus poem.2 To the currently well-known poetics of the kind be- long Metametrica (1663) of Juan Caramuel de Lobkovitz3 and Poesis artifi- 1 Dick Higgins estimates that “nearly half of all known pattern poems date from the seventeenth century.” Dick Higgins, Pattern Poetry: Guide to an Unknown Lit- erature (Albany: State Univ. of New York Press, 1987), 11. Pattern poetry is usual- ly mentioned when visual poetry and the visual aspect...

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