Uno sconosciuto manuale di poetica e il classicismo ‘stravolto’ di Girolamo Frigimelica Roberti


  • Francesco Giuntini


An unkown poetics handbook and Girolamo Frigimelica Roberti’s‘twisted’ classicismThe essay analyses an early XVIII century poetics handbook whichis kept at the British Library in three handwritten copies (Add. mss.10731, 10732, 10733). The handbook is a report of a series of lessonsgiven by the Paduan count Girolamo Frigimelica Roberti to GirolamoGiustiniani, a member of a notable Venetian family. Frigimelica ismostly known for the librettos he wrote for the San Giovanni Grisostomotheatre in Venice between 1694 and 1708. In these librettos hetries to systematically deal with different dramatic genres (tragedy,tragicomedy, pastoral drama etc.) following the precepts of classicalpoetics. Such an attempt gained him strong criticism from his contemporaries.Apostolo Zeno deemed his ideas as «twisted and not very reasonable». The handbook, which shows Frigimelica’s deep knowledgeof Aristotle’s Poetics, proves to be a useful tool for the understandingof the seemingly strange aspects of his works.