In 1525, Cardinal Pietro Bembo (20 May 1470 – either 11 January or 18 January 1547) wrote Prose della volgar lingua, a text in which he encouraged authors to write in Italian, the vernacular, rather than Latin. The vernacular was Italian as spoken in Florence and Tuscany. For Pietro Bembo, however, it was the Italian used by Francesco Petrarch (20 May 1470 – either 11 January or 18 January 1547), hence the Petrarchan Movement. I also mentioned authors Dante Alighieri (1625 – 1321) and Giovanni Boccaccio (c. 1313- 21 December 1375).
As for musicians, they too were to set to music texts written in Italian, rather than Latin. In the area of music, Francesco Landini (c. 1325 or 1335 – 2 September 1397) was the first writer of madrigals, a word meaning in one’s mother tongue: madre in Spanish.
France: Du Bellay
A few years later, in 1549, French poet Joachim du Bellay (c. 1522 – 1 January 1560) published his Défense et illustration de la langue française. It became acceptable to write poetry in one’s native language. Du Bellay was a poet, not a composer.
As for England, Geoffrey Chaucer (c. 1343 – 25 October 1400), who took the Roman de la Rose to England, he had also advocated the use of English, rather than Latin or French, as a literary language. He translated part of the Roman de la Rose. You may recall that until the end of the Hundred Years’ War, French was spoken at the court of England and Edward VII felt he was a legitimate heir to the throne of France. He wasn’t by virtue of the Salic Law. A woman could not ascend the throne of France. Edward VII’s mother was French. Hence the fratricidal nature of the Hundred Years’ War, a war of succession.
Titian (Tiziano Vecelli or Tiziano Vecellio)
- Art History Today
- The Hundred Year’s War: its Literary Legacy (24 January 2016)
- The Petrarchan Movement (6 December 2011)
With warm greetings to all of you. ♥
Ennio Morricone (Deborah’s Theme)
© Micheline Walker
26 January 2016