Craig Kallendorf

in Renaissance and Reformation

ISBN: 9780195399301
Published online May 2010 | | DOI:

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  • Modern History (1700 to 1945)
  • Medieval and Renaissance Philosophy



Petrarch (Francesco Petrarca, b. 1304–d. 1374) occupies a unique position in Renaissance studies. While modern scholarship has shown that others laid the foundation for him, Petrarch was the first to insist forcefully and polemically that the culture of his day needed reorientation toward the past. In a peculiarly modern act of self-presentation, he put himself forward as the one to effect this reorientation, something for which he received credit, in his day and in ours. The scope of his intellectual activity was enormous, ranging from the scholarly study of classical antiquity to the production of many creative works, the ones in Latin known principally in the early 21st century to specialists but one of which, the Canzoniere, set the standard for lyric poetry for generations to follow.

Article.  7739 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945) ; Medieval and Renaissance Philosophy

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