Nello Bertoletti

A proposal for «De vulgari eloquentia»

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Dante; "De vulgari eloquentia"; Italian vernaculars

The paper examines the textual problem concerning a word said to be used by the inhabitants of Brescia, Verona and Vicenza in Dante's "De vulgari eloquentia". Since neither the transmitted text "mara"/ "ma(r)ra" nor the conjecture "magara" (that is the current "vulgata") can be retained, the proposal argued here is that "mara" (or "ma(r)ra", with abbreviation) is an archetypal corruption of an originary "maia" 'eat!' or "maia(r)" 'to eat'. This form, paleographically very close to the manuscripts' reading, matches the linguistic area considered and suites the mainly parodistic and mimetic purpose of Dante's review of Italian vernaculars.

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