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94BOOK REVIEWS sisted on the importance of ecphrasis in speeches. He created what was to become the standard portrait of Cicero, Roman patriot and scholar, who through his oratory defended the RepubUc. Deeply devoted to St. Jerome,Vergerio deUvered a series of orations praising die saint as serving the Christian repubUc both as an active man and a contemplative. In his De ingenuis moribus, essentiaUy directed to training boys for pubUc life, he put skiU in oratory at the center of the educational curriculum. McManamon's inteUectuaI biography takesVergerio from his youth in provincial Istria and his years of education in Florence, Bologna, and Padua, through his career as a papal burocrat and counselor of the Emperor. Particularly effective is the chapter onVergerio's role during the Great Schism and the Council of Constance. McManamon reveals through an analysis ofVergerio's speeches the deep reUgiosity and reforming zeal emboldening Vergerio to speak harsh but frank truths about the leadership of the Church. This is an important book. McManamon's thesis wiU change the way scholars approach humanism in the early fifteenth century. For one thing, McManamon's discovery of the oratorical orientation of humanism with its new emphasis on pubUc life helps us to understand why within the first decades of the fifteenthcentury humanism gained control ofupper-class education in Italy. My one criticism of McManamon's work is that he does not make clear that, although Vergerio espoused Ciceronian oration, he was unable styUsticaUy to imitate Cicero . It was probably this inabUity which caused later humanists like Platina to see him as a predecessor ofBruni, Poggio, Barzizza, and others,who were in fact his contemporaries. Ronald G.Witt Duke University Antonio da Cannara:Depotestatepape supra concilium generale contra errores Basiliensium. Einleitung, Kommentar und Edition ausgewählter Abschnitte . By Thomas Prügl. [Veröffentlichungen des Grabmann-Institutes, Neue Folge 4L] (Paderborn: Ferdinand Schöningh. 1996. Pp. xx, 158. DM 28,-.) Cannara's was not one ofthe great minds ofhis generation in which Nicholas of Cusa and Johannes deTorquemada stood out, but he has his own distinction. Unlike these two and many others who wrestied with the problem of how to accommodate and reconcUe the various strains of teaching and doctrine which made up the tradition with which theologians and canonists had worked for generations, Cannara foUowed a different path, and his tract can be seen as an early example of a form of argumentation that was to have a baneful influence over the centuries. Prügl in his introduction and discussion ofthe tract explains and detaUs Cannara's methodology and innovation. He begins with the context of the tract, explains the motives and goal Cannara had in writing, and shows BOOK REVIEWS95 how he set out to achieve these and thus how he differed from earUer writers and his own contemporaries. SpecLficaUy Cannara was writing after the spUt had occurred at the CouncU of Basel and that CouncU had charged Eugenius IV with heresy.As other papalists were doing, Cannara strove to estabUsh the immunity of the pope against that charge.What is new is his response to and his way of dealing with the classical texts which said that the pope could not be judged by anyone unless he deviated from the faith. EarUer writers squirmed around these texts with a variety ofcommentary, e.g., that the pope who became a heretic was ipsofacto selfdeposed and so no longer pope, or that one had to work through a long and detaUed analysis of what the charge of heresy meant (formal vs. material heresy). Cannara wiU have none ofthis; he simply asserts a mutual exclusivity in the two parts of the classical text.The pope could not be judged by anyone because he was above the Church, subject only to God,Who bestowed on him a special grace that precluded him from ever being deviant in faith. By a wave of his magical wand of argumentation Cannara asserted that it was impossible for a pope to be devius a ftde. Thus the pope had absolute immunity and stood above and apart from the Church which depended totaUy on him.What about the long, voluminous earlier tradition that others had struggled...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1534-0708
Print ISSN
0008-8080
Pages
pp. 94-95
Launched on MUSE
2016-10-05
Open Access
No
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