Language and Learning in Renaissance Italy: Selected Articles, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Language and Learning in Renaissance Italy

Selected Articles, 1st Edition

By John Monfasani


353 pages

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Hardback: 9780860784036
pub: 1994-11-03

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Language was the Italian humanists’ stock-in-trade, rhetoric their core discipline. In this volume Professor Monfasani collects together his most important articles on these subjects. One group of these, including two review essays, focuses specifically on the humanist Lorenzo Valla and on his philosophy of language. The third section of the book opens out the coverage of Italian Renaissance cultural history and includes studies of several new texts - among them a description of the decoration of the Sistine Chapel, and a call for press censorship - and of the religious culture of mid-15th-century Rome. Le langage était l’instrumet de base des humanistes italiens, la rhétorique leur discipline de fond. Dans ce volume, le professeur Monfasani rassemble ses articles les plus importants sur le sujet . Un groupe d’entre eux, comprenant deux comptesrendus, se concentre spécifiquement sur l’humaniste Lorenzo Valla et sur sa philosophie du langage. La troisième section du recueil élargit le champ de connaissance de l’histoire culturelle de la Renaissance italienne et inclus des études de plusieurs textes nouveaus - parmi ceux-ci, une description de la décoration intérieure de la chapelle Sixtine et un appel à la censure de la presse -, ainsi que de la culture religieuse romaine au milieu du 15e siècle.

Table of Contents

Contents: Humanism and rhetoric; Three notes on Renaissance rhetoric; Episodes of anti-Quintilianism in the Italian Renaissance: quarrels on the orator as a Vir bonus and rhetoric as the Scientia bene dicendi; Was Lorenzo Valla an ordinary language philosopher?; Lorenzo Valla and Rudolph Agricola; Review of Laurentii Valle Repastinatio Dialectice et Philosophie, ed. G. Zippel; Review of Laurentii Valle De Professione Religiosorum, ed. M. Cortesi; A description of the Sistine Chapel under Pope Sixtus IV; Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite in mid-quattrocento Rome; For the history of Marsilio Ficino’s translation of Plato: the revision mistakenly attributed to Ambrogio Flandino, Simon Grynaeus’ revision of 1532, and the anonymous revision of 1556/1557; The first call for press censorship: Niccolò Perotti, Giovanni Andrea Bussi, Antonio Moreto, and the editing of Pliny’s Natural History; Calfurnio’s identification of pseudepigrapha of Ognibene, Fenestella, and Trebizond, and his attack on Renaissance commentaries; Bernardo Giustiniani and Alfonso de Palencia: their hands and some new humanists texts and translations; The Fraticelli and clerical wealth in quattrocento Rome; Addenda and corrigenda; Indices.

About the Series

Variorum Collected Studies

The first title in the Variorum Collected Studies series was published in 1970. Since then well over 1000 titles have appeared in the series, and it has established a well-earned international reputation for the publication of key research across a whole range of subjects within the fields of history.

The history of the medieval world remains central to the series, with Byzantine studies a particular speciality, but the range of titles extends from Hellenistic philosophy and the history of the Roman empire and early Christianity, through the Renaissance and Reformation, up to the 20th century. Islamic Studies forms another major strand as do the histories of science, technology and medicine.

Each title in the Variorum Collected Studies series brings together for the first time a selection of articles by a leading authority on a particular subject. These studies are reprinted from a vast range of learned journals, Festschrifts and conference proceedings. They make available research that is scattered, even inaccessible in all but the largest and most specialized libraries. With a new introduction and index, and often with new notes and previously unpublished material, they constitute an essential resource. 

For further information about contributing to the series please contact Michael Greenwood at

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / General