The Making of a Lyric Sequence: Time and Narrative in Petrarch's <i>Rerum vulgarium fragmenta</i>

Teodolinda Barolini

in Dante and the Origins of Italian Literary Culture

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print November 2006 | ISBN: 9780823227037
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823241019 | DOI:
The Making of a Lyric Sequence: Time and Narrative in Petrarch's Rerum vulgarium fragmenta

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A typically opaque but crucial index of our poet's concern with narratological issues in his division of the collection into two parts traditionally, but erroneously, labeled “in vita di Madonna Laura.” The most overt exploitation of formal structure in the text, Petrarch's division is a creative act without precedent in the lyric collections of his forebears. Our mishandling of the division is thus worth looking at in some detail. The manuscripts testify that the division by authorial fiat at canzone 264 is marked, like the collection's opening sonnet, with a large ornamental initial and there are seven blank pages between it and 263.

Keywords: Petrarch; lyric sequence; narrative; structure; sonnet; fiat

Chapter.  14067 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (Poetry and Poets)

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