Petrarch and the ‘barbari Britanni’

Piero Boitani

in Petrarch in Britain

Published by British Academy

Published in print November 2007 | ISBN: 9780197264133
Published online February 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191734649 | DOI:

Series: Proceedings of the British Academy 146

Petrarch and the ‘barbari Britanni’

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  • Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)


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This chapter examines Petrarch's thoughts on the people he called ‘barbari Britanni’. It charts the humanist's changing view of those whom he initially termed ‘timidissimi barbarorum’ and whom he criticised since Britain was the home of Aristotelian logic and highlights his admiration for his bookish English contemporary and correspondent Richard de Bury. It also discusses Petrarch's admiration for English military superiority over the French.

Keywords: Petrarch; barbari Britanni; humanist; timidissimi barbarorum; Britain; Aristotelian logic; Richard de Bury; military superiority; English

Chapter.  7846 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)

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