Rime et prose del sig. Antonio Minturno, nuovamente mandate in luce. All'illustrissimo Sig. Don Girolamo Pignatello. Venezia, Francesco Rampazetto, 1559. [Bound with:] L'amore innamorato [...] [followed by:] Panegirico in laude d'amore [...]

Autore: SEBASTIANI MINTURNO, Antonio (ca. 1497-1574)

Tipografo: Francesco Rampazetto

Dati tipografici: Venezia, 1559

Two parts in one volume, 8vo (148x98 mm). I: [16], 247, [17] pp. Collation: *8 A-Q8 R4. Printer's device on title page. II-III: 157, [3] pp. Collation: a-k8. Leaf k8 is a blank. Printer's device on both title pages. The Panegirico begins at l. h1r (p. [113]). 18th-century stiff vellum, inked title on spine, sprinkled edges. Worm tracks on the first leaves repaired, marginal restauration on the first quire and on the last 35 leaves, marginal staining throughout.


First edition of these three works by Minturno. The Rime, edited by Girolamo Ruscelli (1504-1566), marks a turning point in the history of southern Italian lyric poetry, as with its new experimental ‘Neapolitan' style it abandons the traditional Bembo and Petrarch model and sets a new style. With L'amore innamorato Minturno turns ideally to other models, notably Sannazaro's Arcadia and Boccaccio's Ameto, as he himself declares in his 1564 Arte poetica. The text, which narrates the adventures of Amore, son of Venus, is a prosimeter, that is, it alternates parts in prose with others in verse, and can be described as a kind of novel. The author imagines the tale as the result of the conversation among some nymphs in Sicily, engaged in discussing the topic of love. Along the same lines is also the Panegirico celebrating love.

Antonio Sebastiani was born in Minturno, near Latina, around 1497. In 1511 he moved to Sessa Aurunca to study with Agostino Nifo, whom he then followed to Padua and Pisa, where, by the end of 1520, he became a lecturer in poetics and oratory. At the end of 1521 he moved on to Rome as a lecturer in theology and philosophy. In Rome, thanks perhaps to the intercession of another student of Nifo, Galeazzo Florimonte, he came into contact with Ludovico Beccadelli, Girolamo Seripando, Gasparo Contarini and Filippo Gheri, later secretary to Cardinal Giovanni Morone. In 1524 he took up service as tutor to the Colonna family in Genazzano, and it was around this time that he entered the Order of the Theatines. The following year he returned to Naples to resume his studies; there he used to hang out with Girolamo Carbone, Pomponio Gaurico, Pietro Summonte, Pietro Gravina, and noblewomen such as Maria di Cardona, Giulia Gonzaga and Beatrice d'Appiano d'Aragona. It is very likely that in this period he adopted the name Minturno (from Minturnae, the Latin name of his hometown), which conferred a humanistic gravitas to his person. From October 1527 he was tutor first in the household of Camillo Pignatelli, count of Borrello, and later of Girolamo and Fabrizio Pignatelli, sons of Ettore, viceroy of Sicily. Most of Sebastiani Minturno's literary production is concentrated in the period 1526-1542. The proximity to Francesco Maria Molza, Claudio Tolomei, Luigi Tansillo and to Spanish literary circles enabled him to develop already at the beginning of his literary activity aesthetic-critical notions and theories about his production, which were later poured into the final drafts of De poeta and Arte poetica. In 1542, after fifteen years of service with the Pignatelli family, gratified by an annual pension of two hundred ducats, he returned to Minturno. Already the following year, however, he went to Naples to teach theology but, because of the problems that arose in the attempt to impose the Inquisition in the city, he was forced to move to Sicily, where he remained at least until 1548; on this occasion his entire library was looted and dismembered, to be recovered only later thanks to the collaboration of Andrea Cossa. To this period dates the composition of the Rime and the Amore innamorato, works both conceived within the literary circle orbiting around Maria di Cardona. From 1548 to 1551 he returned to Naples, and from 1554 to 1558 he lived in Calabria. In 1556 he tried to have De poeta printed in Venice (but the edition would actually not be prepared until 1559), and in 1558 he was appointed bishop of Ugento. Through the intercession of Girolamo Seripando he was summoned to the Council of Trent. The composition of the Diocles, Poemata, Orationes, a lost Moseida, and other works and writings testifies to the author's true interests in Latin production and highlights his interest in transferring the codes and models of ancient Greek poetry to the biblical theme. In 1565 he was appointed bishop of Crotone. Between 1564 and 1565 he began the compilation of the Synopsis historiae patriae de episcopis Minturnensibus et Traictensibus later published by De Gennaro in 1570. Minturno's most important works are undoubtedly De poeta, the four parts of the Arte poetica, the Amore innamorato, and the Canzoni sopra i salmi. He died in Crotone in January 1574, while still intent on writing and conceiving new literary works (cf. G. Tallini, Sebastiani Minturno, Antonio, in: “Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani”, vol. 91, 2018, s.v.).


Adams, M-1466; Edit 16, CNCE37287 and CNCE36262.