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Dante’s Vita Nuova, New Edition

A Translation and an Essay

Translated by Mark Musa. Dante Alighieri

Publication Year: 1973

In this new edition Musa views Dante's intention as one of cruel and comic commentary on the shallowness and self-pity of his protagonist, who only occasionally glimpses the true nature of love.

"... the explication de texte which accompanies [Musa's] translation is instructively novel, always admirable.... This present work offers English readers a lengthy appraisal which should figure in future scholarly discussions." —Choice

Published by: Indiana University Press


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pp. 1-1

Title Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. 2-7


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pp. vii-viii

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pp. ix-xii

The Vita Nuova, one of Dante's earliest works, is a combination of prose and poetry. There are thirty-one poems inserted into the prose text according to the following arrangement: ...

Translator's Note

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pp. xiii-xiv

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The New Life

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pp. 1-86

In my book of memory, in the early part where there is little to be read, there comes a chapter with the rubric: lncipit vita nova.1 It is my intention to copy into this little book the words I find written under that heading—if not all of them, at least the essence of their meaning. ...

An Essay on the Vita Nuova

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I. Patterns

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pp. 89-106

By the end of Chapter II of the Vita nuova, that is, by the end of the first chapter of the narrative proper (for the brief Chapter I is only a preface), all of the motifs significant for the story that is about to unfold step by step, have been introduced. ...

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II. Aspects

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pp. 106-134

All of the characters in the Vita nuova were mentioned in the preceding chapter of this essay, with the important exception of one of the three main characters in this love-story: the god of Love, who appears on stage playing an important role in Chapters III, IX, XXI and XXIV. ...

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III. Growth

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pp. 134-174

The dual nature of the god of Love was, of course, only a reflection of the potentialities of the young lover's heart. And the rest of this essay, in fact, will be devoted to a study of his heart: his inner conflicts and spiritual development as a lover. ...

Notes on the Essay

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pp. 175-210

E-ISBN-13: 9780253011947
Print-ISBN-13: 9780253201621

Page Count: 224
Publication Year: 1973

Edition: New Edition

OCLC Number: 847524435
MUSE Marc Record: Download for Dante’s Vita Nuova, New Edition