Angelo Poliziano

Angelo Poliziano (1454-1494) was born in Montepulciano but is considered to be a Florentine as he spent almost thirty years of his life studying and writing in that city.  Poliziano's works are closely linked to the Medici family as a result of the clan's patronage.  Poliziano became a member of the Medici household and a tutor to the family's children.

In 1478 the rival Pazzi family organized an assassination plot to kill Lorenzo and Giuliano de' Medici.  Lorenzo survived but Giuliano was killed.  His death was particularly difficult for Poliziano and the plot resulted in the writer's first printed work, Pactianae coniurationis commentarium, or Commentary on the Pazzi Conspiracy.

Poliziano continued to write prolifically, completing his Fabula di Orfeo in 1480 while absent from Florence.  The Stanze per la giostra, however, were left unfinished as a result of Giuliano's murder.  Poliziano's Miscellaneorum centuria prima attests to his accomplishment as a Latin philologist and classical scholar while the Panepistemon demonstrates his profound knowledge of Aristotelian ethics.


Click on images to enlarge.

Angelo Poliziano, Miscellaneorum centuria prima, printed by Antonio Miscomini, 1489 Angelo Poliziano, Panepistemon, printed by Antonio Miscomini, 1491
Angelo Poliziano, Miscellaneorum centuria prima, printed by Antonio Miscomini, 1489 (UIUC X 875 P759m) Angelo Poliziano, Panepistemon, printed by Antonio Miscomini, 1491 (UIUC X 875 P759pa)
Angelo Poliziano, Pactianae coniurationis commentarium, manuscript copy by an anonymous person probably of the seventeenth century (the original Latin text is on left and an Italian rendering is on the right) (UIUC MS 945 C313ca 33)

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