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Virgil Society - Syrithe Pugh - Virgil in Renaissance Pastoral

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Virgil Society - Dr Syrithe Pugh (Aberdeen) ‘A Different Tityrus: Versions of Virgil in the Beginnings of Renaissance Pastoral’

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The ‘three crowns of Florence’, Dante, Petrarch and Boccaccio, were all responsible for the revival of the Virgilian eclogue in the fourteenth century, opening the gates to a flood of pastoral poetry, Latin and vernacular, in the ensuing centuries. Of the three, Petrarch’s Bucolicum carmen is the best known today, but Boccaccio’s Buccolicum carmen embodies a strikingly different response to Virgil, which exerted just as profound an influence on later poets. We shall look at the intertextual conversation with Virgil and his fellow Florentines which Boccaccio conducts in this work, and the distinctive idea it promotes of the bucolic genre, particularly in relation to politics, patronage, and the poetic career.

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