Though copied far less than the celebrated philosophical debate over poetics between Guido Guinizzelli and the Tuscan poet Bonagiunta da Lucca (Voi ch’avete mutata la mainera and Omo ch’è saggio non corre leggero), the tenzone (ca. 1265) between Guinizzelli and Fra Guittone d’Arezzo — [O] caro padre meo and Figlio mio dilettoso — has been the recent object of study and criticism. This study explores the poetics of a series of debates, or tenzoni, located in the thirteenth-century MS Laurenziano Rediano 9, among which is located the exchange between Guinizzelli and Guittone, demonstrating in particular that throughout the manuscript there exist multiple criteria for organizing tenzoni, and that Guittone’s response to Guinizzelli differs technically and materially both from those tenzoni that surround the exchange from cc. 124v–126r, and from the feigned debates with “la Donna” and “Maestro Bandino” that form part of Guittone’s “profane collection of sonnets” in the section preceding his canzoniere (cc. 105r–115v). The dynamics of the tenzone and its manuscript collocation indicate that its reception, principally via Dante’s reading in Purgatory 26, remained unique among early interpreters of medieval Italian poetry, who did not copy the tenzone.


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pp. 43-72
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