Poets of Divine Love
The Rhetoric of Franciscan Spiritual Poetry
Publication Year: 2004
Published by: Fordham University Press
Title Page, Copyright Page
Adviso to Reader
All primary texts by Francis of Assisi and Iacopone da Todi appear in the original Italian as well as in an English translation.Whenever the translations adopted stray too much from the Italian, I have substituted my own literal translation and indicated so....
Francis of Assisi and Iacopone da Todi stand alone as the only two Franciscan poets in the Italian literary canon.1 Both belong to the beginning period of the Franciscan Order: one at the beginning of the thirteenth century and the dawn of Italian poetry and literature; ...
1. Theater of Nudity
In 1205 Francis of Assisi stands in the piazza of his hometown, takes off his clothes, and walks completely naked before his fellow citizens. He stands naked before the people and naked before God....
2. Mysticism of Sexual Union
Reading thirteenth-Century Franciscan Texts through the lens of the Edenic myth in the Book of Genesis reveals that adoption of nudity as a chief human trait is complemented by matrimonial union as a theological and poetic topos. Franciscan mysticism considers humanity...
3. Harmony of the Cosmos
The Interactive Union of male and female as specular reflection of God’s love for human beings inspires and animates Franciscanism and its theology according to the matrix of the Book of Genesis...
4. Origins of the Canon
THE STRUCTURAL SYMBOLISM of “The Canticle of Brother Sun,” combined with its unembellished rhetoric, epitomizes Francis of Assisi’s desire to return to the uncontaminated first stage of creation.Theologically, a return to the beginning implies the radical...
5. Theology of Ravishment
THE INTRICATE DYNAMICS of erotic and agapic love, which originated in the dualistic perception of Neoplatonic thought, rose in status in thirteenth-century theology. In the latter part of the Middle Ages, new concepts and ideas about love led to a new sensitivity toward forms of love different from those that had...
6. Ecstasy of Agapic Love
AFTER LAUDA 34 Iacopone abandons the battle of two contrasting forms of love.The pacification of carnal and agapic love opens the way for an increased presence of divine love in the collection. From this point on, the poet’s ascetic progression includes a more...
7. Symphony of the Ineffable
WITH THE SUBLIMITY of mystical union between Anima and Christ achieved in Lauda 71, the remaining portion of Iacopone’s canzoniere focuses on the intricate consequences of this rare religious occurrence.The poet’s closeness to God leads to reflections...
Francis of Assisi and Iacopone da Todi are mystics and poets.Their mysticism permeates their lives and works and infuses an indelible imprint on their poetic achievements. Despite their opposing theological perspectives, their mysticism...
Page Count: 320
Publication Year: 2004
OCLC Number: 741343744
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