Academic year
2021/2022 Syllabus of previous years
Official course title
Course code
FM0552 (AF:353865 AR:190536)
On campus classes
ECTS credits
Degree level
Master's Degree Programme (DM270)
Educational sector code
4th Term
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The course is inserted in the curriculum of Filologia e letteratura italiana and in the curriculum of Filologie, letterature e storia dell’antichità, Laurea magistrale of Scienze dell’antichità: letterature, storia e archeologia. It aims to provide the students a deep knowledg of the domain of Italian Literature from the Middle Ages to contemporary ages. Being inserted in the Medieval and Byzantin curriculumm, it aims specifically to provide the students with basic elements both of intellectual history of the late Middle Ages and of philological technique in order to critically read and prepare editions of medieval Latin and Vernacular texts in relation to Latin texts.
At the end of the course, the student will earn the following skills: - the ability to critically elaborate the secondary literature dealing with the intellectual and religious history of the late Middle Ages (in particular, the Franciscan history, the question of the Spirituals, the Franciscan chronicle tradition); - the ability to work on case studies through the application of the methods developed in the secondary literature concerning the Franciscan question; - the ability to collaborate with scholars from different fields (in particular, historians of the Middle Ages and the Church), providing an open contribution to the multidisciplinary debate; - the ability to organize working groups on seminar topics.
In this way, the following skills will be developed, consistent with the course of study:
- awareness of the plurality of the methodological approaches to the text (with particular attention to the rhetorical-stylistic methodes):
- use of philological instrumentation;
- digital skills, especially starting from the tools provided by the Web for philological research.
Knowledge also elementary of the Latin language.
Knowledge also elementary of paleography and medieval codicology.
Knowledge also elementary of the Medieval History between the thirteenth and fifteenth centuries.
The course aims to provide an overview of the cultural history of religious movements in medieval Italy between the thirteenth and fifteenth centuries, focusing in particular on the impact of figures, religious orders, secular penitential movements, clerical culture on the vernacular literature in the period under consideration (covering the origins of Italian literature and going as far as the affirmation of Humanism). Particular attention will also be given to the practice of translation, both from Latin to the vernacular, but also from the vernacular to Latin, studying not only the phenomena of vulgarisation of Latin religious works, but also (and above all) focusing on the translations of secular works (such as Marco Polo's Milione) that religious figures have made, contributing to the canonisation of the new vernacular culture within the ecclesiastical world.
The contribution of the Franciscan Order to vernacular literature will be discussed and studied first of all, beginning with its founder, and continuing with the influence of the economic thought of the great theologians (especially Pietro di Giovanni Olivi) on secular culture in the age of Dante, with the writing of Iacopone da Todi, and with the renewal of devotional literature through two very successful texts of the time (Stimulus Amoris and Meditationes). The influences of other religious orders, in particular the Dominican one, will also be studied through case studies. The confraternities will be discussed above all in their ability to build a filter with the city culture. An in-depth study will be dedicated to prophecy, which was renewed under Franciscan influence in the thirteenth century, and then had great importance for poetry in the second half of the fourteenth century.
The seminar will be developed in laboratory form according to the following program:

1) Francis of Assisi and Brother Leo: the Franciscan culture between Latin and vernacular;
2) Lay confraternities and religious culture: the case of Albertano da Brescia;
3) Political culture, economic language and religious movements: Brunetto Latini and the Florence of the young Dante;
4) Religion, politics and society: Guittone d'Arezzo and the Gaudenti friars;
5) Religion, politics and society: Iacopone da Todi and his city;
6) The Dominican Order and vulgar culture:
6.1) The origins: preaching and teaching;
6.2) The affirmation in the age of Dante: Bartholomew of San Concordio;
6.3) From surveillance to rewriting: the translations of Marco Polo's Million;
6.4) The canonization in the mid fourteenth century: Iacopo Passavanti;
7) The Inquisition and vulgar culture: Francesco da Barberino and Cecco d'Ascoli;
8) The devotional revolution of the Franciscans and the influence on vulgar culture: Stimulus amoris and Meditationes Vitae Christi.
9) Prophetic literature;
10) The new religious movements in the second half of the 14th century.
Critical literature will be discussed in class. Copyright copies will be provided by the teacher, also in the moodle space.

Students who are not attending should contact the teacher. The reference texts are as follows:
A. BARTOLI LANGELI, Gli autografi di frate Francesco e di frate Leone, Turnhout, Brepols, 2000.
A. MONTEFUSCO, Banca e poesia nell’età di Dante , Milano, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore - Associazione per lo Sviluppo degli Studi di Banca e Borsa, 2017.
A. MONTEFUSCO, Iacopone nell'Umbria del Due-Trecento. Un'alternativa francescana. , Roma, Istituto Storico dei Cappuccini, 2006.
R. LERNER, Refrigerio dei santi. Gioacchino da Fiore e l'escatologia medievale, Roma, Viella, 1995.
M. CONTE, A. MONTEFUSCO, S. SIMION, «Ad consolationem legentium» Il Marco Polo dei Domenicani , Venezia, Edizioni Ca' Foscari, 2020.
S. BISCHETTI, M. LODONE, C. LORENZI, A. MONTEFUSCO, Toscana bilingue (1260-1430). Per una storia sociale del tradurre medievale, Berlino, De Gruyter, 2020.
The knowledge will be verified through an oral examination. The students will be strongly invited to produce works on their own.
Traditional: frontal lesson.
written and oral
Definitive programme.
Last update of the programme: 13/07/2021