Historical Note on <i>Bizarro</i>

J. H. Alexander, Judy King and Graham Tulloch

in The Siege of Malta and Bizarro

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print June 2008 | ISBN: 9780748624874
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748652280 | DOI:
Historical Note on Bizarro

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  • Literary Studies (Fiction, Novelists, and Prose Writers)


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Just before leaving Naples, Walter Scott resumed his Journal, which had been in abeyance for several weeks, and narrated the story which was to become the primary basis of his last piece of fiction, Bizarro. While Scott clearly based his novella on this oral account, he also incorporated into it another story told to him in Naples. Francesco Moscato, known as Il Bizzarro, was a real historical figure, who attracted his nickname by the ferocious extravagance of his character and behaviour. Scott retained the nickname for his fictional hero, but gave him a new Christian name and surname. At the time of Scott's visit to Naples in 1832, Francis' son, Ferdinand II, was king; born in 1810 and only recently ascended to the throne, he is the ‘present young king’ referred to in Bizarro.

Keywords: Bizarro; Walter Scott; Naples; Francesco Moscato; Ferdinand II; Francis; Christian

Chapter.  2897 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (Fiction, Novelists, and Prose Writers)

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