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Virgil and the Myth of Venice : Books and Readers in the Italian Renaissance - Craig Kallendorf

Virgil and the Myth of Venice

Books and Readers in the Italian Renaissance

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This book, which is the first comprehensive study of its subject, shows how one traditionally esteemed author, the Roman poet Virgil, played an unexpectedly significant role in the shaping of Venetian Renaissance culture. The author draws on reception theory, the sociology of literature, and history of the book to argue that Virgil's poetry became a best-seller because it sometimes challenged, but more often confirmed, the specific moral, religious, and social values its Venetian readers brought with them to their texts. The texts that are used are the printed books of the fifteenth and sixteenth century printed books in which readers of the period encountered Virgil, the prefaces and commentaries that guided their responses, and, the marginal notes that record those responses. How the Renaissance Venetians saw themselves when they looked into their literary past tells us a good deal about them, but it also illuminates a number of issues at the centre of humanistic studies today, ranging from how reading takes place to the role of class and gender in fashioning interpretation. The wide range of interests that are touched on should make this book of value to scholars in the disciplines of classics, history, Renaissance studies, and Italian studies, as well as English literature and cultural studies.

Industry Reviews

`adds importantly to the sum, illuminating with new evidence the nature of Venetian intellectual culture, especially in the sixteenth century' American Historical Review `excellent use of recent work on Venetian history and culture' American Historical Review `Kallendorf has written a book of erudition and complexity that is not only an important contribution but enjoyable to read as well.' Sixteenth Century Journal, XXXII/3 `begins with a clear, precise, and learned explanation of the problem.' Sixteenth Century Journal, XXXII/3 `Kallendorf takes the best that postmodern criticism has to offer and jettisons the worst. He is not an author with a text and an agenda, but a careful scholar genuinely interested in uncovering the ways in which Virgil was received by Rennaissance Venetians and in turn how that reception supported or underminded the dominant culture.' Sixteenth Century Journal, XXXII/3 `Kallendorf provides useful traditional bibliographical information ... Kallendorf has read widely in the secondary literature; no important work has been omitted for the many topics covered. The format of the book is helpful: the original Latin or Italian and then an English translation is provided for all significant marginalia or passages; there are footnotes rather than endnotes; and careful proofreading.' Paul F. Grendler, Renaissance Studies, Vol 15, No 1 `The most important contribution of the book is to bring to light new and interesting evidence from individual copies of books about how Renaissance Venetian readers understood and used Virgil. This is carefully done.' Paul F. Grendler, Renaissance Studies, Vol 15, No 1

Prefacep. v
Introductionp. 1
Morality, Schooling, and the Printed Book in Renaissance Venicep. 31
Virgil, Christianity, and the Myth of Venicep. 91
Class, Gender, and the Virgilian Mythp. 140
Afterwordp. 205
Chronology of Latin Editionsp. 213
Chronology of Italian Editionsp. 218
the Indices to Moralized Virgilian Passages in Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana, Aldine 628p. 222
Select Bibliographyp. 225
Index Locorump. 237
General Indexp. 239
Index of Printersp. 247
Index of Annotated Copiesp. 250
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780198152545
ISBN-10: 019815254X
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 260
Published: 1st August 1999
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 15.24  x 1.91
Weight (kg): 0.4