A history of Florence 1200-1575 by John M. Najemy

By John M. Najemy

I purchased Najemy's background of Florence as guidance for interpreting Dante. The period of time is ideal. attention-grabbing instances. different reviews led me to think this might be an outstanding up to date background of the interval, and the 1st few chapters make sure that; besides the fact that, Najemy isn't an excellent author. As an instructional acquainted with captive audiences, he does not take adequate care to appreciate what a reader must comprehend and does not constantly outline phrases ahead of he makes use of them. a few passages can be footnotes, and should were copied from magazine articles the place readers might be anticipated to understand the historical past.

There are examples the place sentences are unacceptably ambiguous: p. forty: "Both different types of organization seemed in Florence no later than the early 13th century..."
He capability "first seemed ... no later."

His dialogue on p. 39 of sessions mentions Ottokar's procedure from 1926 and Salvemini's from 1899. during this paragraph Najemy engages in a tutorial argument compatible for a magazine paper, yet does not arrange the reader first through pointing out his personal class in actual fact adequate. Nonspecialists would like to listen to merely Najemy's personal rationalization of sophistication constitution, offered essentially. the tutorial haggling can be relegated to footnotes for specialists.

For those that need a splendidly well-written creation to the basic historical past, I hugely suggest Richard W. Church's essay from 1850, "Dante." It used to be a excitement to learn this essay, which does not sound dated. it may be came upon on the web. This was once pointed out within the preface to John Sinclair's Inferno, with the unique Italian and a literal translation.

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The Cavalcanti were not Ghibellines, but Guido’s difficult poetry on the phenomenology of love (especially the canzone “Donna me prega”) is filled with allusions to philosophical and possibly unorthodox notions about the soul that have been variously interpreted as Averroistic or Aristotelian. 25 While they recognized his genius, to the writers of the popolo Cavalcanti’s interest in esoteric doctrines made him suspect. 10), with the evident implication that there was something unhealthy about one who devoted himself so assiduously to love poetry and philosophy.

25 30 The Elite Families The incident started a larger fight that, in Compagni’s words, “increased the hatred” between the parties. Cavalcanti’s role was apparently so prominent that in the summer of 1300 the government exiled him, together with other leading members of both parties. Although his poetry rarely touches on political themes, one sonnet urges a kinsman named Nerone to pursue the vendetta against the Buondelmonti. The combination of his violent and impulsive behavior on the streets, so typical of his class, the lack of any concern (at least in his poetry) for the havoc that such actions rained on the city, and a style of philosophical poetry that raised doubts about his orthodoxy, must all have fed the perception of Cavalcanti and perhaps other poets of his group as intellectuals fundamentally alien to the civic culture of the popolo.

18 The Elite Families In fact, even thirteenth-century vendettas did not occur without some intervention of law and government. The most revealing description from the elite itself of an early vendetta is Velluti’s reconstruction of his family’s feud with the Ghibelline Mannelli family. It began in 1267, the year the Guelf faction regained control of the city and settled old scores against the Ghibellines, when Ghino Velluti, the son of a brother of Velluti’s great-grandfather, was killed by the Mannelli, who were angry over Ghino’s part in securing the cancellation of a decree of banishment against an enemy of theirs.

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