Italian Poetry to 1600
translated by Kline, A. S. (contact-email),
A selection of poems from Early and Renaissance Italy. Including translations of poems by Guido Cavalcanti, Lorenzo de Medici, Poliziano, Michelangelo, Vittoria Colonna, Gaspara Stampa, and Tasso. These works explore humanism, with a notable shift from the medieval scholasticism to classical themes and forms. Guido Cavalcanti, a forerunner of the dolce stil novo (‘sweet new style’), emphasised philosophy and love. Lorenzo de Medici, a statesman-poet, infused his laude (praise songs) with political and regional pride. Angelo Poliziano, a humanist scholar, merged classical and vernacular styles whilst Michelangelo, primarily known for his sculpture, infused his sonnets with intellectual depth and personal introspection. Vittoria Colonna offered a more spiritual and contemplative perspective in her sonnets, often reflecting on widowhood and faith. Gaspara Stampa is celebrated for her Rime, a personal sonnet sequence echoing Petrarch’s form yet distinct in its passionate intensity. Torquato Tasso’s epic Gerusalemme Liberata reflects the culmination of the Renaissance epic tradition, blending Christian values with the classical epic form.
Kline, A. S.
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