Fosclo’s Parallel between Dante and Petrarch: A Perfect Harmony of Contrasts
Assunta De Crescenzo
During his stay in England from 1816 to 1827, Ugo Foscolo was particularly aware of the importance of giving a new value and deeper meanings to Italian literature; that is why a fresh approach was needed in his mind, a sort of well combined mixture of a carefully philological analysis of texts and a detailed psychological exegesis based on historical evidence. He was convinced that eliciting an emotional response, together with a historical persuasion, was the best way to properly spread a better knowledge of the classics of Italian literature, avoiding cultural approximations and superficial interpretations. Therefore, through a close examination of the Parallel between Dante and Petrarch, the present essay aims at illustrating Foscolo’s original comparative discourse on the major Italian poets of the Middle Ages.