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 MagnalibusMediolani 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.
New York, Bern, Frankfurt/M., Paris, 1987. XIV, 491 pp.
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.