«Fuss’ io pur lui!»: Michelangelo’s poetry in the light of Dante. Not just a case of resistance to Petrarchism

Moroncini, Ambra (2019) «Fuss’ io pur lui!»: Michelangelo’s poetry in the light of Dante. Not just a case of resistance to Petrarchism. In: Moroncini, Ambra, Schecter, Darrow and Vighi, Fabio (eds.) Resistance in Italian culture from Dante to the 21st century. Franco Cesati Editore, pp. 49-64. ISBN 9788876677632

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This chapter looks first and foremost at Dante’s influence in Michelangelo’s poetry in order to highlight the moral affinity Michelangelo shares with the poet he describes as «no one of like worth or greater was ever born» [«simil uom né maggior non nacque mai»]. Indeed, despite Michelangelo’s familiarity with ideas and key words by Petrarch, he did not write poetry for publication, although traces of an alleged project for a canzoniere collection of poems do remain. Moreover, the evidence of this project indicates that Michelangelo favoured the madrigal over the sonnet. In terms of metre, therefore, his choice may appear somewhat ‘heterodox’, given the Petrarchan vein of 16th century Italian lyric poetry. Moroncini examines selected poems by Michelangelo, as well as a number of iconographic details from his frescoes and drawings, to argue that, much deeper than Petrarch’s inspiration, Dante’s presence in Michelangelo’s poetry is noticeable on both moral and spiritual levels, so much so that the extent of Michelangelo’s admiration for Dante could be summarised in just one verse: «Fuss’io pur lui!» [«Oh that I were he!»].

Item Type: Book Section
Schools and Departments: School of English > Sussex Centre for Language Studies
Research Centres and Groups: Centre for Literature and Philosophy
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PC Romance languages > PC1001 Italian
Depositing User: Ambra Moroncini
Date Deposited: 07 May 2019 13:30
Last Modified: 01 Feb 2021 13:55
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/83534
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