Nobel Prize in Literature
The Nobel Prize in Literature is a Swedish literature prize, awarded annually, since 1901, to an author from any country who has, in the words of the will of Swedish industrialist Alfred Nobel, produced "in the field of literature the most outstanding work in an ideal direction". Though individual works are sometimes cited as being noteworthy, the award is based on an author's body of work as a whole; the Swedish Academy decides. The academy announces the name of the laureate in early October, it is one of the five Nobel Prizes established by the will of Alfred Nobel in 1895. On some occasions the award has been postponed to the following year, it was not awarded in 2018, but two names will be awarded in 2019. Although the Nobel Prize in Literature has become the world's most prestigious literature prize, the Swedish Academy has attracted significant criticism for its handling of the award. Many authors who have won the prize have fallen into obscurity, while others rejected by the jury remain studied and read.
The prize has "become seen as a political one – a peace prize in literary disguise", whose judges are prejudiced against authors with different political tastes to them. Tim Parks has expressed skepticism that it is possible for "Swedish professors... compar a poet from Indonesia translated into English with a novelist from Cameroon available only in French, another who writes in Afrikaans but is published in German and Dutch...". As of 2016, 16 of the 113 recipients have been of Scandinavian origin; the Academy has been alleged to be biased towards European, in particular Swedish, authors. Nobel's "vague" wording for the criteria for the prize has led to recurrent controversy. In the original Swedish, the word idealisk translates as "ideal"; the Nobel Committee's interpretation has varied over the years. In recent years, this means a kind of idealism championing human rights on a broad scale. Alfred Nobel stipulated in his last will and testament that his money be used to create a series of prizes for those who confer the "greatest benefit on mankind" in physics, peace, physiology or medicine, literature.
Though Nobel wrote several wills during his lifetime, the last was written a little over a year before he died, signed at the Swedish-Norwegian Club in Paris on 27 November 1895. Nobel bequeathed 94% of his total assets, 31 million Swedish kronor, to establish and endow the five Nobel Prizes. Due to the level of scepticism surrounding the will, it was not until 26 April 1897 that the Storting approved it; the executors of his will were Ragnar Sohlman and Rudolf Lilljequist, who formed the Nobel Foundation to take care of Nobel's fortune and organize the prizes. The members of the Norwegian Nobel Committee that were to award the Peace Prize were appointed shortly after the will was approved; the prize-awarding organisations followed: the Karolinska Institutet on 7 June, the Swedish Academy on 9 June, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences on 11 June. The Nobel Foundation reached an agreement on guidelines for how the Nobel Prize should be awarded. In 1900, the Nobel Foundation's newly created statutes were promulgated by King Oscar II.
According to Nobel's will, the Royal Swedish Academy was to award the Prize in Literature. Each year, the Swedish Academy sends out requests for nominations of candidates for the Nobel Prize in Literature. Members of the Academy, members of literature academies and societies, professors of literature and language, former Nobel literature laureates, the presidents of writers' organizations are all allowed to nominate a candidate, it is not permitted to nominate oneself. Thousands of requests are sent out each year, as of 2011 about 220 proposals are returned; these proposals must be received by the Academy by 1 February, after which they are examined by the Nobel Committee. By April, the Academy narrows the field to around twenty candidates. By May, a short list of five names is approved by the Committee; the subsequent four months are spent in reading and reviewing the works of the five candidates. In October, members of the Academy vote and the candidate who receives more than half of the votes is named the Nobel laureate in Literature.
No one can get the prize without being on the list at least twice, thus many of the same authors reappear and are reviewed over the years. The academy is master of thirteen languages, but when a candidate is shortlisted from an unknown language, they call on translators and oath-sworn experts to provide samples of that writer. Other elements of the process are similar to that of other Nobel Prizes; the judges are composed of an 18 member committee who are elected for life and up until 2018, not technically permitted to leave. On 2 May 2018, King Carl XVI Gustaf amended the rules of the academy and made it possible for members to resign; the new rules state that a member, inactive in the work of the academy for more than two years can be asked to resign. The award is announced in October. Sometimes, the award has been announced the year after the nominal year, the latest being the 2018 award. In the midst of controversy surrounding claims of sexual assault, conflict of interest, resignations by officials, on 4 May 2018, the Swedish Academy announced that the 2018 laureate would be announced in 2019 along with the 2019 laureate.
A Literature Nobel Prize laureate earns a gold medal, a diploma bearing a citation, a sum of money. The amount of money awarded depends on the income of the Nobel Foundation tha
Regional Italian, sometimes called dialects of Italian, is any regional variety of the Italian language. Such regional varieties and standard Italian exist along a sociolect continuum, are not to be confused with the actual languages of Italy that predate the national tongue or any regional dialect thereof; the various forms of Regional Italian have phonological and lexical features which originate from the underlying substrate of the original language. The various Tuscan and Central Italian dialects are, to some extent, the closest ones to Standard Italian in terms of linguistic features, since the latter is based on a somewhat polished form of Florentine; the difference between Regional Italian and the actual languages of Italy imprecisely referred to as dialects, is exemplified by the following: in Venetian, the language spoken in Veneto, "we are arriving" would be translated into sémo drio rivàr, quite distinct from the Standard Italian stiamo arrivando. In the regional Italian of Veneto, the same expression would be stémo rivando or siamo dietro ad arrivare.
The same relationship holds throughout the rest of Italy: the local dialect of standard Italian is influenced by the underlying regional language, which can be different from Italian with regard to phonology, morphology and vocabulary. Anyone who knows Standard Italian well can understand Regional Italian, while not managing to grasp the regional languages. Many contemporary Italian regions had different substrata before the conquest of Italy and the islands by the ancient Romans: Northern Italy had a Celtic, a Ligurian and a Venetic substratum. Central Italy had an Etruscan substratum, Southern Italy had an Italic and Greek substratum, Sardinia had a Nuragic and Punic substratum; these languages in their respective territories contributed in creolising Latin, the official language of the Roman Empire. Though the Sicilian School, using the Sicilian language, had been prominent earlier, by the 14th century the Tuscan dialect of Florence had gained prestige once Dante Alighieri, Francesco Petrarca and Giovanni Boccaccio all wrote major works in it: the Divina Commedia, the Canzoniere and the Decameron.
It was up to Pietro Bembo, a Venetian, to identify Florentine as the language for the peninsula in the Prose della volgar lingua in which he set up Petrarch as the perfect model. Italian, was a literary language and so was a written rather than spoken language, except in Tuscany and Corsica; the creation of a unified Italian language was the main goal of Alessandro Manzoni, who advocated building a national language derived from Florence's vernacular with some inputs from Lombard and Venetian. Italian was an unwieldy means for expressing thought. Having lived in Paris for a long time, Manzoni had noticed that French, on the contrary, was a lively language, spoken by ordinary people in the city's streets; the only Italian city where common people spoke something similar to literary Italian was Florence, so he thought that Italians should choose Florentine as the basis for the national language. The Italian Peninsula's history of fragmentation and colonization by foreign powers between the fall of the Western Roman Empire and its unification in 1861 played a considerable role in further jeopardizing the linguistic situation.
When the unification process took place, the newly founded country used Italian as a literary language. Many Romance and non-Romance regional languages were spoken throughout the Italian Peninsula and the islands, each with their own local dialects. Following Italian unification Massimo Taparelli, marquis d'Azeglio, one of Cavour's ministers, is said to have stated that while Italy had been created, there still was to create Italians. Italian as a spoken language was born in two "linguistic labs" consisting of the metropolitan areas in Milan and Rome, which functioned as magnets for internal migration. Immigrants were only left with the national language as a lingua franca to communicate with both the locals and other immigrants. After unification, Italian started to be taught at primary schools and its use by ordinary people increased along with mass literacy; the regional dialects of Italian, as a product of standard Italian clashing with the regional languages, were born. The various regional languages would be retained by the population as their normal means of expression until the 1950s, when breakthroughs in literacy and the advent of TV broadcasting made Italian become more and more widespread in its regional varieties.
The solution to the so-called language question, which concerned Manzoni, came to the nation as a whole in the second half of the 20th century by television, as its widespread adoption as a popular household appliance in Italy was the main factor in helping all Italians learn the common national language regardless of class or education level. At the same time, many southerners moved to the north to find jobs; the powerful trade unions campaigned against the use of dialects to maintain unity among the workers. The use of Standard Italian helped the southerners, whose "dialects" were not mutually intelligible with those of northerners, assimilate; the large number of mixed marriages in large industrial cities such as Milan and Turin, resulted in a generation that could speak only Standard Italian and only understand their parents' "dialects". Within North American Italian diaspora communities, Italian dialects that have nearly died o
Italy over the ages has had a vast influence on Western philosophy, beginning with the Greeks and Romans, going onto Renaissance humanism, the Age of Enlightenment and modern philosophy. Philosophy was brought to Italy by Pythagoras, founder of the Italian school of philosophy in Crotone. Major Italian philosophers of the Greek period include Xenophanes, Zeno and lastly Gorgias, responsible for bringing philosophy to Athens. There were several formidable Roman philosophers, such as Cicero, Seneca, Musonius Rufus, Epictetus, Marcus Aurelius, Clement of Alexandria, Sextus Empiricus, Alexander of Aphrodisias, Ammonius Saccas, Porphyry, Themistius, Augustine of Hippo, Philoponus of Alexandria, Damascius and Simplicius of Cilicia. Roman philosophy was influenced by that of Greece. Italian Medieval philosophy was Christian, included several important philosophers and theologians such as St Thomas Aquinas. Aquinas was the student of Albert the Great, a brilliant Dominican experimentalist, much like the Franciscan, Roger Bacon of Oxford in the 13th century.
Aquinas reintroduced Aristotelian philosophy to Christianity. He believed that there was no contradiction between secular reason, he believed that Aristotle had achieved the pinnacle in the human striving for truth and thus adopted Aristotle's philosophy as a framework in constructing his theological and philosophical outlook. He was a professor at the prestigious University of Paris; the Renaissance was an Italian movement, a great period of the arts and philosophy. Among the distinctive elements of Renaissance philosophy are the revival of classical civilization and learning; as with all periods, there is a wide drift of reasons for categorization and boundaries. In particular, the Renaissance, more than periods, is thought to begin in Italy with the Italian Renaissance and roll through Europe. Renaissance Humanism was a European intellectual movement, a crucial component of the Renaissance, beginning in Florence in the latter half of the 14th century, affected most of Italy; the humanist movement developed from the rediscovery by European scholars of Latin literary and Greek literary texts.
A humanist was a scholar or teacher of Latin literature. By the mid-15th century humanism described a curriculum – the studia humanitatis – consisting of grammar, moral philosophy and history as studied via Latin and Greek literary authors. Humanism offered the necessary intellectual and philological tools for the first critical analysis of texts. An early triumph of textual criticism by Lorenzo Valla revealed the Donation of Constantine to be an early medieval forgery produced in the Curia; this textual criticism created sharper controversy when Erasmus followed Valla in criticizing the accuracy of the Vulgate translation of the New Testament, promoting readings from the original Greek manuscripts of the New Testament. Italian Renaissance humanists believed that the liberal arts should be practiced by all levels of "richness", they approved of self, human worth and individual dignity. They hold the belief that everything in life has a determinate nature, but man's privilege is to be able to choose his own path.
Pico della Mirandola wrote the following concerning the creation of the universe and man's place in it: But when the work was finished, the Craftsman kept wishing that there were someone to ponder the plan of so great a work, to love its beauty, to wonder at its vastness. Therefore, when everything was done... He took thought concerning the creation of man... He therefore took man as a creature of indeterminate nature and, assigning him a place in the middle of the world, addressed him thus: "Neither a fixed abode nor a form, thine alone nor any function peculiar to thyself have we given thee, Adam, to the end that according to thy longing and according to thy judgement thou mayest have and possess what abode, what form and what functions thou thyself shalt desire; the nature of all other beings is constrained within the bounds of law. Thou shalt have the power to degenerate into the lower forms of life. Thou shalt have the power, out of thy soul's judgement, to be born into the higher forms, which are divine."
Italy was affected by a movement called Neoplatonism, a movement which had a general revival of interest in Classical antiquity. Interest in Platonism was strong in Florence under the Medici. During the sessions at Florence of the Council of Ferrara-Florence in 1438–1445, during the failed attempts to heal the schism of the Orthodox and Catholic churches, Cosimo de' Medici and his intellectual circle had made acquaintance with the Neoplatonic philosopher George Gemistos Plethon, whose discourses upon Plato and the Alexandrian mystics so fascinated the learned society of Florence that they named him the second Plato. In 1459 John Argyropoulos was lecturing on Greek language and literature at Florence, Marsilio Ficino became his pupil; when Cosimo decided to refound Plato's Academy at Florence, his choice to h
Guido Gustavo Gozzano was an Italian poet and writer. He was born in Turin, the son of Fausto Gozzano, an engineer, of Diodata Mautino, the daughter of Senator Mautino and supporter of Giuseppe Mazzini and Massimo D'Azeglio, he spent his life in Turin and in Agliè, where his family owned several buildings and a large estate: Villa Il Meleto. Of delicate health, he completed primary school with mediocre results, attended Liceo classico Cavour. Graf exercised great influence over Gozzano, his Leopardi-inspired pessimism was mitigated by a spiritualistic form of socialism, a combination which young Turinese intellectuals favoured. Graf helped Gozzano depart from D'Annunzio's canon, which imbued his early work, by "going back to the sources" and devoting himself to a thorough study of the poetry of Dante Alighieri and Francesco Petrarca, which helped refine his poetic sensibility. In May 1907 Gozzano's weak health worsened due to severe pleurisy, which forced the poet to spend the remainder of his solitary life on the Italian Riviera and in mountain towns.
1907 was the year when his affair with young poet Amalia Guglielminetti began as an exchange of letters—the two had met while attending the Società di Cultura. Their love letters, exchanged in 1907-1909 but first published in 1951 as Lettere, reveal a profoundly tender love, which Gozzano at times tried to shirk away from, preferring a safer "literary comradeship". In the same year Gozzano's first collection of poems, La via del rifugio, appeared under the imprint of the Turin publisher Streglio. In 1909 Gozzano gave up law studies altogether and devoted himself to poetry. Two years he published his opus magnum, the book I colloqui, with the Milanese publisher Treves; the poems therein are in three sections, titled Il giovenile errore, Alle soglie, Il reduce. "I colloqui" met much success with critics and readers, prompted several offers of collaboration with important magazines and newspapers, among which were La Stampa, La Lettura, La Donna. The latter provided Gozzano with a fertile forum to publish both poetry.
Gozzano's worsening health prompted the decision to travel to India and Ceylon, looking for a climate more suited to his breathing impairment. His cruise-ship left Genoa on February 16, 1912, returning in May 1913 after visits to Colombo and Bombay, he did not get better, but the travel, together with extensive reading, provided the inspiration for the texts that were to be collected and posthumously published under the title Verso la cuna del mondo. The last years of Gozzano's life yielded little literary production. In March 1914, he published in "La Stampa" some fragments of the long poem Le Farfalle known as Epistole entomologiche, which he would never complete; the collection of six fairy tales he had written for the children's magazine Corriere dei Piccoli, titled I tre talismani, was published at this time. An avid theatre and movie fan, Gozzano adapted some of his short stories for production. Between 1914 and 1915 he composed a few unremarkable poems about World War I, which met little success with his audience.
In 1916, shortly before his death, Gozzano began writing the script for a film about Francis of Assisi, never filmed. The poet was laid to rest in Agliè, he was an atheist. La via del rifugio I colloqui Tutte le poesie. Fiabe Verso la cuna del mondo. Lettere dall'India L'altare del passato L'ultima traccia Primavere romantiche La moneta seminata e altri scritti con un saggio di varianti e una scelta di documenti Verso la Cuna del mondo - Lettere dall'India Requiems & Nightmares Lettere d'amore di Guido Gozzano e Amalia Guglielminetti Lettere a Carlo Vallini con altri inediti W. Vaccari, La vita e i pallidi amori di Guido Gozzano, Omnia editrice, 1958. Flaminio Di Biagi, Sotto l'arco di Tito: le "Farfalle" di Guido Gozzano, Trento, La Finestra editrice 1999. Marina Rota, Amalia, se Voi foste uomo... Golem Ed. Turin, 2016 Patrick Worsnip, Sleeping with Gozzano, PN Review, Issue 229, Manchester May–June 2016, pp. 41–45 Part of the content of this article comes from the equivalent Italian-language Wikipedia article.
Some biographical and bibliographical details come from the Fabbri edition of Gozzano's poems. Enciclopædia Britannica article about Gozzano “Guido Gozzano, conversations with poetry” An online exhibition on Gozzano from the Italian Ministry for Cultural Heritage and Activities. Works by or about Guido Gozzano at Internet Archive Works by
Orlando Furioso is an Italian epic poem by Ludovico Ariosto which has exerted a wide influence on culture. The earliest version appeared in 1516, although the poem was not published in its complete form until 1532. Orlando Furioso is a continuation of Matteo Maria Boiardo's unfinished romance Orlando Innamorato. In its historical setting and characters, it shares some features with the Old French Chanson de Roland of the eleventh century, which tells of the death of Roland; the story is a chivalric romance which stemmed from a tradition beginning in the late Middle Ages and continuing in popularity in the 16th century and well into the 17th. Orlando is the Christian knight known in French as Roland; the story takes place against the background of the war between Charlemagne's Christian paladins and the Saracen army that has invaded Europe and is attempting to overthrow the Christian empire. The poem is the romantic ideal of chivalry, it mixes realism and fantasy and tragedy. The stage is a trip to the Moon.
The large cast of characters features Christians and Saracens and sorcerers, fantastic creatures including a gigantic sea monster called the orc and a flying horse called the hippogriff. Many themes are interwoven in its complicated episodic structure, but the most important are the paladin Orlando's unrequited love for the pagan princess Angelica, which drives him mad; the poem is divided into forty-six cantos, each containing a variable number of eight-line stanzas in ottava rima. Ottava rima had been used in previous Italian romantic epics, including Luigi Pulci's Morgante and Boiardo's Orlando Innamorato. Ariosto's work is 38,736 lines long in total, making it one of the longest poems in European literature. Ariosto began working on the poem around 1506, when he was 32; the first edition of the poem, in 40 cantos, was published in Ferrara in April 1516 and dedicated to the poet's patron Ippolito d'Este. A second edition appeared in 1521 with minor revisions. Ariosto continued to write more material for the poem and in the 1520s he produced five more cantos, marking a further development of his poetry, which he decided not to include in the final edition.
They were published after his death by his illegitimate son Virginio under the title Cinque canti and are regarded by some modern critics. The third and final version of Orlando Furioso, containing 46 cantos, appeared in 1532. Ariosto had sought stylistic advice from the humanist Pietro Bembo to give his verse the last degree of polish and this is the version known to posterity; the first English translation by John Harington was published in 1591 at the behest of Queen Elizabeth I, who banned Harington from court until the translation was complete. Ariosto's poem is a sequel to Matteo Maria Boiardo's Orlando Innamorato. One of Boiardo's main achievements was his fusion of the Matter of France with the Matter of Britain; the name Orlando is a translation of Roland from the 12th-century Song of Roland. The latter contained the magical elements and love interest that were lacking in the more austere and warlike poems about Carolingian heroes. Ariosto continued to mix these elements in his poem as well as adding material derived from Classical sources.
However, Ariosto has an ironic tone present in Boiardo, who treated the ideals of chivalry much more seriously. In Orlando Furioso, instead of chivalric ideals, no longer alive in the 16th century, a humanistic conception of man and life is vividly celebrated under the appearance of a fantastical world; the action of Orlando Furioso takes place against the background of the war between the Christian emperor Charlemagne and the Saracen king of Africa, who has invaded Europe to avenge the death of his father Traiano. Agramante and his allies – who include Marsilio, the King of Spain, the boastful warrior Rodomonte – besiege Charlemagne in Paris. Meanwhile, Charlemagne's most famous paladin, has been tempted to forget his duty to protect the emperor because of his love for the pagan princess Angelica. At the beginning of the poem, Angelica escapes from the castle of the Bavarian Duke Namo, Orlando sets off in pursuit; the two meet with various adventures until Angelica saves a wounded Saracen knight, falls in love, elopes with him to Cathay.
When Orlando learns the truth, he goes mad with despair and rampages through Europe and Africa destroying everything in his path. The English knight Astolfo journeys to Ethiopia on the hippogriff to find a cure for Orlando's madness, he flies up in Elijah's flaming chariot to the Moon, where everything lost on Earth is to be found, including Orlando's wits. He makes Orlando sniff them, thus restoring him to sanity. Orlando joins with Brandimart and Oliver to fight Agramante and Gradasso on the island of Lampedusa. There Orlando kills King Agramante. Another important plotline involves the love between the female Christian warrior Bradamante and the Saracen Ruggiero, they too have to endure many vicissitudes. Ruggiero is taken captive by the sorceress Alcina and has to be freed from her magic island
Giosuè Alessandro Giuseppe Carducci was an Italian poet, literary critic and teacher. He was influential and was regarded as the official national poet of modern Italy. In 1906 he became the first Italian to receive the Nobel Prize in Literature "not only in consideration of his deep learning and critical research, but above all as a tribute to the creative energy, freshness of style, lyrical force which characterize his poetic masterpieces", he was born in Valdicastello, a small town in the Province of Lucca in the northwest corner of the region of Tuscany. His father, a doctor, was an advocate of the unification of Italy and was involved with the Carbonari; because of his politics, the family was forced to move several times during Carducci's childhood settling for a few years in Florence. From the time he was in college, he was fascinated with the restrained style of Greek and Roman Antiquity, his mature work reflects a restrained classical style using the classical meters of such Latin poets as Horace and Virgil.
He translated Book 9 of Homer's Iliad into Italian. He began teaching school; the following year, he published his first collection of Rime. These were difficult years for Carducci: his father died, his brother committed suicide. In 1859, he married Elvira Menicucci, they had four children, he taught Greek at a high school in Pistoia, was appointed Italian professor at the university in Bologna. Here, one of his students was Giovanni Pascoli, who became a poet himself and succeeded him at the university. Carducci was a fierce critic of literature and society, he was an atheist, whose political views were vehemently hostile to Christianity and the Catholic Church in particular. I know peace with the Vatican or any priests, they are the unaltering enemies of Italy. He said in his years; this anti-clerical revolutionary vehemence is prominently showcased in one famous poem, the deliberately blasphemous and provocative "Inno a Satana" The poem was composed in 1863 as a dinner party toast, published in 1865 republished in 1869 by Bologna's radical newspaper, Il Popolo, as a provocation timed to coincide with the First Vatican Council, a time when revolutionary fervor directed against the papacy was running high as republicans pressed both politically and militarily for an end of the Vatican's domination over the papal states.
In 1890 he met poet Annie Vivanti, with whom he started a love affair. Carlo Emilio Gadda reported that Carducci used to travel with a suitcase in which he kept a huge pair of Annie Vivanti's panties... every once in a while, he opened the suitcase, took out the panties, sniffed them and got intoxicated from them. In 2004, the uncensored letters between her and Carducci were published. While "Inno a Satana" had quite a revolutionary impact, Carducci's finest poetry came in years, his collections Rime Nuove and Odi Barbare contain his greatest works. He was the first Italian to receive the Nobel Prize in Literature, in 1906, he was elected a Senator of Italy. In politics he remained a strong Liberal throughout his life, although he vacillated between a preference for republicanism and constitutional monarchy. Although his reputation rests on his poetry, he produced a large body of prose works. Indeed, his prose writings, including literary criticism, biographies and essays, fill some 20 volumes.
Carducci was an excellent translator and translated some of Goethe and Heine into Italian. The Museum of the Risorgimento, Bologna is housed in the Casa Carducci, the house where he died at the age of 71, contains an exhibits on the author, it is not always easy to follow the development of Carducci's poetry through the collections he edited. The poet in fact organized his compositions several times and in different ways and gave a definitive arrangement only in the edition of his Opere published for Zanichelli between 1889 and 1909; the following is a list of poetic works published in one volume rearranged into the 20 volumes of his Opere. Rime, San Miniato, 1857. Levia Gravia, 1868. Poesie, Barbera, 1871. Primavere elleniche, 1872. Nuove poesie, 1873. Odi barbare, 1877. Juvenilia, 1880. Levia Gravia, 1881. Giambi ed Epodi, 1882. Nuove odi barbare, 1882. Rime nuove, 1887. Terze odi barbare, 1889. Delle Odi barbare. Libri II ordinati e corretti, 1893. Rime e ritmi, 1899. Poesie. MDCCCL-MCM, 1901. Below are the poetic volumes in the Opere.
The volumes, however, do not correspond to the chronological order with which the poet had published his first collections, but refer more than anything else to the distinctions of genres and therefore we find poems of the same period in different collections. The collections follow this order: Juvenilia, in six books, 1850-1860 Levia Gravia, in two books, 1861-1871 Inno a Satana, 1863 Giambi ed Epodi, in two books, 1867-1879 Intermezzo, 1874-1887 Rime Nuove, in nine books, 1861-1887 Odi barbare, in two books, 1873-1889 Rime e Ritmi, 1889-1898 Della Canzone di Legnano, Part I, 1879 The first collection of lyrical poems, which Carducci collected and divided in six books under the title Juvenilia, is undoubtedly inspired by the classical tradition of the Amici pedanti group, constituted at that time for the purpose of fighting the romanticism of the Florentines. In the verses of the collection we can see his imitation of the ancient classics, of the stilnovo style, of Dante and Petrarch and, among the moderns, Vi
Ugo Foscolo, born Niccolò Foscolo, was an Italian writer and poet. He is remembered for his 1807 long poem Dei Sepolcri. Foscolo was born on Zakynthos in the Ionian Islands, his father Andrea Foscolo was an impoverished Venetian nobleman, his mother Diamantina Spathis was Greek. In 1788, on the death of his father, who worked as a physician in Spalato, today Croatia, the family moved to Venice, Foscolo completed the studies he began at the Dalmatian grammar school at the University of Padua. Amongst his Paduan teachers was the Abbé Melchiore Cesarotti, whose version of Ossian was popular in Italy, who influenced Foscolo's literary tastes, his literary ambition revealed itself in the appearance in 1797 of his tragedy Tieste—a production that enjoyed a certain degree of success. Foscolo, for unexplained reasons, had changed his Christian name Niccolò to that of Ugo, now began to take an active part in the stormy political discussions which the fall of the republic of Venice had triggered off, he was a prominent member of the national committees, addressed an ode to Napoleon, expecting Napoleon to overthrow the Venetian oligarchy and create a free republic.
The Treaty of Campo Formio, by which Napoleon handed Venice over to the Austrians, gave a rude shock to Foscolo, but did not quite destroy his hopes. The state of mind produced by that shock is reflected in his novel The Last Letters of Jacopo Ortis, described by the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica as a more politicized version of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's The Sorrows of Young Werther, "for the hero of Foscolo embodies the mental sufferings and suicide of an undeceived Italian patriot just as the hero of Goethe places before us the too delicate sensitiveness embittering and at last cutting short the life of a private German scholar." The story of Foscolo, like that of Goethe, had a groundwork of melancholy fact. Jacopo Ortis had been a real person. Foscolo, like many of his contemporaries, had thought much about suicide. Cato the Younger and the many classical examples of self-destruction described in Plutarch's Lives appealed to the imaginations of young Italian patriots as they had done in France to those of the heroes and heroines of the Gironde.
In the case of Foscolo, as in that of Goethe, the effect produced on the writer's mind by the composition of the work seems to have been beneficial. He had seen the ideal of a great national future rudely shattered. After the fall of Venice Foscolo moved to Milan, where he formed a friendship with the older poet Giuseppe Parini, whom he remembered with admiration and gratitude. In Milan, he published a choice of 12 Sonnets, where he blends the passionate sentiments shown in Ortis with classical control of language and rhythm. Still hoping that his country would be freed by Napoleon, he served as a volunteer in the French army, took part in the battle of the Trebbia and the siege of Genoa, was wounded and made prisoner; when released he returned to Milan, there gave the last touches to his Ortis, published a translation of and commentary upon Callimachus, commenced a version of the Iliad and began his translation of Laurence Sterne's Sentimental Journey. He took part in a failed memorandum intended to present a new model of unified Italian government to Napoleon.
Before leaving France in 1806, Foscolo met Alessandro Manzoni once again, only seven years younger, in Paris. Manzoni was still living here in the house of his mother Giulia Beccaria; some studies have compared the poetic production of Foscolo and Manzoni in the period from 1801 till 1803, with close analogies like in Alla amica risanata e Qual su le cinzie cime. In 1807, Foscolo wrote his Dei Sepolcri, which may be described as a sublime effort to seek refuge in the past from the misery of the present and the darkness of the future; the mighty dead are summoned from their tombs, as ages before they had been in the masterpieces of Greek oratory, to fight again the battles of their country. The inaugural lecture On the origin and duty of literature, delivered by Foscolo in January 1809 when appointed to the chair of Italian eloquence at Pavia, was conceived in the same spirit. In this lecture Foscolo urged his young countrymen to study literature, not in obedience to academic traditions, but in their relation to individual and national life and growth.
The sensation produced by this lecture had no slight share in provoking the decree of Napoleon by which the chair of national eloquence was abolished in all the Italian universities. Soon afterwards, Foscolo's tragedy of Ajax was presented, with little success, at Milan, because of its supposed allusions to Napoleon, he was forced to move from Milan to Tuscany; the chief fruits of his stay in Florence are the tragedy of Ricciarda, the Ode to the Graces, left unfinished, the completion of his version of the Sentimental Journey. His version of Sterne is an important feature in his personal history; when serving with the French he had been at the Boulogne-sur-Mer camp, had traversed much of the ground gone over by Yorick in Laurence Sterne's novel of the same name. He returned to Milan until the entry of the Austrians.