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Petrarch: The Canzoniere, or Rerum vulgarium fragmenta Paperback – May 22, 1999
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"Mark Musa, in editing and translating Petrarch's Canzoniere, has performed a wonderful service to the English-speaking reader. Here, in one volume, are included the poet's own selection of the best lyric verse he wrote throughout his life, accompanied by brief but useful notes ... " - Chronicles "As well as skillful and fluent verse renderings of the 366 lyrics that make up this milestone in the development of Western poetic tradition, Musa offers copious and up-to-date annotation to each poem ... along with a substantial, sensitive, and intelligent introduction that is genuinely helpful for the first-time reader and thought provoking for Petrarch scholars and other medievalists." - Choice
Text: English (translation)
Original Language: Italian --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
Sidney, Spencer, and even Shakespeare were familiar with, and heavily influenced by, Petrarch's work. Other English poets like Henry Howard and Sir Thoms Wyatt tried to translate Petrarch's poetry. In order to understand this entire time peroid, one should go back to the roots and read the original. Mark Musa's translation includes the original Italian version as well as an excellent English translation. My professors also use this book because the translations stay as close to the original as possible. Though something is always lost in translation, these poems feel as if they are whole, and should be read as one long story. Musa's critical notes at the end of the book provide excellent insight into Petrarch's style, form and meaning. This is a great version of the Canzoniere and I highly recommend it.
Usually I skip introductions to works that I read but I read the first paragraph of the extensive introduction and was quickly drawn in. This introduction was actualy a helpful prologue to the poetry which descibed Petrach's styles and intentions.
A blurb on the book cover says that Musa's treanslations read so well that you are unaware that they are translations. I certainly agree. I do not read Italian but this edition does conain the originals on the adjacent side.
I was surprised at the modernity and musicality of the poems. Petrarch was not just inflouential in his versification but also in his language. Much of his humanistic language has become second nature to us but he invented it.
I rank this book as not only some of the graetest poetry but as one ofthe great works of Western llterature.
These "little songs" are highly readble and like a said before form a sort of novelistic story that I would highly recommend to not just poetry readers but all readers.