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Bonvesin da la Riva- Volgari Scelti

Select Poems- With Translation, Commentary, Notes and a Biographical Profile


Patrick S. Diehl and Ruggero Stefanini

The Italian master of the cuaderna vía is Bonvesin da la Riva (second half of the XIII cent.), a Milanese teacher deeply involved in the religious revival and the social changes of his time. Author also of Latin works (the prose of his De Magnalibus Mediolani and the distichs of his Vita Scholastica have already won the attention of Medievalists), he is especially noteworthy for his Volgari (poems in Old Milanese), whose monorhymed quatrains cover a thematic range of unusual breadth. A description of Hell and Paradise, the impassioned evocation of Christ's suffering and death, a glorious Mariale where amazing «miracles» are narrated (conversion of Maria Egyptiaca included), a life of St. Alexis, dramatic Debates of religious and socio-political content, and, finally, a mini Book of Manners constitute the rich repertoire of this production.
Contents: Ten Vernacular Poems in Old Milanese by Bonvesin da la Riva (XIII cent.). Original texts accompanied by modern English translations, philological and critical introductions, and notes to the texts.