In his encyclopedic dictionary, BattistaMondin proposes to explain the meaning of the more important philosophical and theological concepts occurring in the works of St. Thomas Aquinas. In fact, his explanations often become short treatises so that the book is almost the equivalent of a summary, in alphabetical order, of the main themes of Aquinas's philosophy and theology. Mondin provides the historical background of the doctrinal content expressed by certain terms. The book has a total of five (...) hundred thirty-eight entries, most of which concern doctrinal terms. Some entries are about important philosophers quoted by Aquinas, for example, Aristotle, Averroes, Avicenna, Avicebron, Boethius, Dionysius, and Maimonides; others are entries such as Aeterni Patris, Augustinianism, analogia fidei, axiology; and modern terms such as contraception, ecology, ecumenism, euthanasia, reincarnation, sport. The texts are written by a specialist who has a very good knowledge of the theological and philosophical works of Aquinas. The wording of the articles is precise, succinct, and clear, and the explanations provided are generally reliable and complete. To those who read Italian, Mondin's book will be a valuable instrument: it will help them to find rapidly the essential points of Aquinas's views on a great number of theological and philosophical subjects. One can only marvel at the degree of completeness attained by the author.--Leo Elders, Kerkrade, Netherlands. (shrink)
This paper aims at presenting the work of Dutch architecture Hans van der Laan through a comparison with the Renaissance architect Leon Battista Alberti by stating the similarity of the role assigned to proportion in architectural design by both architects. In particular, the study will show how both Van der Laan and Alberti understood proportion and the perceptive and aesthetic values of proportioned forms as the result of an intellectual appreciation.
El presente artículo expone brevemente las circunstancias del "redescubrimiento" de la obra de Luciano en la Italia renacentista y el movimiento renovador en las letras que esto trajo consigo en el caso específico del Momus de Leon Battista Alberti. Para tal objetivo, me concentraré en el rol de Manuel Crisoloras; en los aspectos de género literario que Luciano plantea, sobre todo, en el Prometheus es in verbis, y finalmente, en cómo estos son retomados en el Momus, donde Alberti se (...) presenta como innovador de las letras latinas, pero al mismo tiempo como indirecto continuador del quehacer luciánico. (shrink)
The origins of demography as a scientific discipline are usually seen as intimately connected to the organisational and economic needs of the early modern state. This paper, by contrast, presents an early demographic enterprise that falls outside this framework. The calculations performed by the Italian Jesuit Giovanni Battista Riccioli in an appendix to his Geographia et hydrographia reformata are the first systematic attempt presently known to arrive at an estimate of the entire world population. Yet they appear to have (...) no political purpose and rather belong to a learned, bookish tradition of demographical thinking that may be termed “humanist”. The article starts from a summary of Riccioli’s life, of the book wherein his demographic exercise is contained and of this exercise itself. Thereafter, Riccioli’s motives, sources, methodology and results are discussed. By way of conclusion, some preliminary reflections on the place of Riccioli and the humanist tradition in the early modern history of demography as a whole are offered. Two appendices present a translation of the Coniectura and tabulate its literary sources in order to provide some possible starting points for a study of the aforementioned tradition. (shrink)
This article sheds new light on the Theogenius and the Profugiorum ab erumna libri III, two Italian dialogues in which Leon Battista Alberti was influenced by Seneca’s On the Tranquillity of the Mind and Petrarch’s De remediis utriusque fortunae, but developed an innovative reflection on the care of the self as medicine of the mind. The novelty hinged not on his pessimistic diagnosis of the human condition, which linked the disquiet caused by the inconstancy of fortune with the natural (...) instability of the mind, but rather on his ironic conception of therapy, which challenged the Stoic belief in the possibility of finding a definitive cure for hardship. To what extent and in what sense Alberti’s therapy exhibits an ironic stance is clarified by the analysis of two Intercenales, the Latin work which aimed to relieve the mind’s maladies through laughter. While Erumna made the case that the way of life championed by the Stoics as well as the choice of living the life of another man cannot alleviate human misery, Patientia mocked the efficacy of Stoic remedies such as patience and time. People can only hope to come to terms with the mind’s maladies and should bear their burdens cheerfully rather than despair of them: this is one of the most intriguing aspects of Alberti’s medicine of the mind. (shrink)
SUMMARYThis essay considers a book that Giovan Battista Manso intended as a public gift to Philip IV of Spain. The book is Manso's Erocallia, published in Venice in 1628 with a dedication written by the author and addressed to the Spanish king. While the book ostensibly contains twelve dialogues on love and beauty, these subjects are treated as universal principles encompassing encyclopaedic spectra of knowledge. I wish to argue that the two prefatory letters, alongside the structure or ‘arrangement’ of (...) the book, contribute to its value as a gift text in accordance with Early Modern codes of patronage exchange. The letters included a dedicatory letter from the author to the king, and an additional letter to Manso from the poet Marino. They respectively praise Philip IV's providence and Manso's foundation of the Accademia degli Oziosi, while alluding to Manso's dependence on the king's good government without which the academy would not have been able to prosper. The use of Ramist methods in the arrangement of Erocallia further added to its value as an instantly recognisable demonstration of the encyclopaedic scope of the book's content, and thus a means of showing the king the fruits of his providence in Naples. (shrink)
Lejos de la interpretación de Leon Battista Alberti como prototipo del "hombre universal", GARIN ha reconocido el carácter contradictorio del pensamiento albertiano. En efecto, en la extensa y polifacética obra del humanista genovés coexisten dos visiones antagónicas del hombre y el mundo. A una le corresponde la confianza en la razón, a la otra la constatación del carácter absurdo de la existencia. Este Alberti "sombrío" se expresa en las páginas de Momus y las Intercenales. En ellas, la apelación a (...) una existencia simulada es abordada a través de una risa desacralizadora del ideal humano que alumbró el temprano Renacimiento italiano. Far from the interpretation of Leon Battista Alberti as a prototype of the "universal man", GARIN has analyzed the contradictory nature of Alberti's thought. In fact, in the extensive and versatile work of the Genoese humanist two opposite visions of man and the world coexist: one believes in the power of reason, the other acknowledges the absurdity of life. It is in Momus and the Intercenales that this "somber Alberti" is present. In these texts the appeal to a simulated life is addressed through a form of laughter that demystifies the human ideal of the early Italian Renaissance. (shrink)
This chapter presents the text of a lecture on the role of Leon Battista Alberti on the redirection of Renaissance humanism given at the British Academy's 2009 Italian Lecture. This text explains that Alberti, as successor of Renaissance humanism founder Petrarch, sought to redirect the movement. It compares Petrarch's and Alberti's notions of humanism and traces Alberti's inflection of the movement in directions that would never have been thought of by his predecessor.
Although the desirability for Italian princes and those who emulated their social practices to construct rooms specifically dedicated to the performance of music was specified by Paolo Cortesi in his treatise De cardinalatu at the beginning of the sixteenth century, the identification of these dedicated spaces and in particular of the repertories performed within them is fraught with difficulty. Beginning with Isabella d'Este's various studioli, this chapter considers what can be reconstructed about the provision of such rooms within the ducal (...) palace in Mantua. In so doing, it draws upon inventories, archival documents and the iconography of a number of decorative schemes, finishing with the work of the architect Giovan Battista Bertani, to suggest what can be determined about the shape and internal disposition of the rooms themselves. (shrink)
Giovanni Battista Riccioli tem sido uma figura controversa do séc. XVII. especialmente no que se refere à sua posiçào sobre a polémica em torno do heliocentrismo. A sua opinião sobre figuras como Copérnico, Kepler e Galileu. e sobre o decreto dos cardeais que condenou a hipótese heliocêntrica tem sido vista até hoje com suspeita e cepticismo. O mesmo se pode dizer acerca do seu contributo para a ciência moderna. Este artigo procura iluminar a complexidade do trabalho científico e das (...) posições teóricas de Riccioli no contexto cultural de uma mudança paradigmática que tem um grande número de semelhanças com as transformações culturais que se estão a verificar na transição para o século XXI. /// Giovanni Battista Riccioli has been a controversial author of the XVIIth century, especially as to his stand on the polemic over heliocentrism. His mind both on figures such as Copernic, Kepler and Galileo, and on the cardino text of condemnation of the heliocentric hypothesis has been viewd until now withe suspicion and scepticism. The same may be said as to his scientific achievements. This essay aims at sheding some light on the complexity of Riccioli's work and views in the cultural context of a paradigmatic change that has quite a number of similarities with the changes that are taking place at the dawn of the XXIth century. (shrink)