Studies in Renaissance Grammar

1st Edition

W. Keith Percival

Published February 6, 2004
Reference - 356 Pages
ISBN 9780860789284 - CAT# Y233251
Series: Variorum Collected Studies

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To what extent can one speak of 'the Renaissance' in terms of grammar: did the medieval curricular subject grammatica survive into the Renaissance unchanged or was it transformed by the pedagogical programme of the humanists? The studies collected here focus on this question and trace the development of humanistic approaches to grammar. The first section consists of essays on the general characteristics of grammar in the period and on its connections with rhetoric. The following parts are devoted to three major grammatical writers: Guarino Veronese (1374-1460), Niccolò Perotti (1419/1420-1480), and Antonio de Nebrija (1441/1444?-1522). There is finally a section dealing with other figures, such as the famous Lorenzo Valla (1407-1457). Professor Percival focuses throughout on widely disseminated textbooks, beginning with the earliest attempt at a humanistic rejuvenation of grammar, the brief 'Regulae grammaticales' of Guarino Veronese (c. 1418), followed by Perotti's comprehensive 'Rudimenta grammatices', published in 1473 by Rome's first printers, and finally Nebrija's commercially successful 'Introductiones Latinae' (Salamanca, 1481). Nebrija's textbook proved the longest-lived, but Perotti's was also an international best-seller, going through many editions in several countries.

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