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[Patrizi’s commentary on RVF and index]


Current Location

Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana
Vatican City
Vatican City

Barb. Lat. 3937
sixteenth century
Mode of exegesis
Related to Petrarch's




Physical Description: Format

219x166 mm; I + 287 (numbered 1-288) + I fols.

Physical Description: Textblock

paper; sixteenth-century cursive hand by two hands: fols. 1-268, 269-281 respectively; first line of Petrarch’s poems set on left in purple (1-51) or red ink (52-261), with commentary distributed across the page beneath it; commented single lines or small sections of Petrarch’s poems are underlined within the commentary.

Title Page

Dechiaratione Sopra Li Sonecti | Del Petrarcha | Col Testamento del medesimo. infine. | All’Inclita Celsitudine del Re di Francia | Dedicata, et composta da non obscura | ma molto ben cognosciuta Persona

Internal Description

fol. 1r: title page;
fol. 1v: blank;
fol. 2r-2v: introductory paragraph to [Francesco Patrizi’s] commentary (<inc ex abrupto> poeti, oratorj et philosophi intanto d[—]ti stoici grauissimi di tucti li sapienti affermano [—] uero philosopho; <exp> Jo recitando opinonj daltrj scrivero sempliceme[n]te lo intellecto mio: Remictendomi semp[re] al jnditio [sic] et eme[n]datione di V[ostra] S[ignori]a);
fols. 2v-260v: RVF 1-365 with [Patrizi’s] commentary (last commented sonnet in the order of the ms. is RVF 353; <inc> Sonetto primo. ‘Voi ch[e] ascoltate inRime sparse ilsuono’ Q\u\esto sonecto como uniuersalme[n]te tucti consta di duj quaternarij et di duj ternarij o ueramente consta di uno octonario et di uno senario; <exp> esso pia[n]ge la more [sic] di quella ch[e] e morta, ma pure bene la stagione dinuerno sia manco grata ch[e] quella della estate pureelo [sic] inuita ad piangere seco della mo[r]te di quella quale la uita le fo ta[n]to suave);
fol. 260v: colophon: Finis LAus Deo;
fols. 261r-268v: Petrarch’s will (‘Francisci petrarce Poete Laureati Testame[n]tum’; <inc> epe [sic] de eo mecu[m] cogitans de quo nimis pauci satis cogita[n]t de nouissimis scilicet; <exp> Ego franciscus petrarcha scripsi qui testamentu[m] aliud fecissem si esse[m] diues ut uulgus insanu[m] putat);
fol. 268v: colophon: finis;
fols. 269r-281r: alphabetical index of the first lines of RVF poems (under each letter of the alphabet, poems are listed in order of appearance) (‘Incipit tabula fra[n]ciscj petrarcha’);
fols. 281v-284r: blank;
fol. 284v: words in two-column style transcribed by a third humanistic hand: at the top of the fol.: ‘dominare in medio inimicorum’, ‘ferdinandus franciscus da Daualos de Aquino marchio piscarie’ (left and right columns respectively); at a lower level ‘Dominus uobiscum’, ‘Ioannes de aragona’ (left and right columns respectively);
fols. 285r-288v: blank.

Material Copy


Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana
Vatican City
Vatican City

Barb. Lat. 3937
Copy seen by

Patrizi’s commentary provides an exposition of Petrarch’s poems, focusing in particular on the literal sense with extensive paraphrase. Only occasionally does the commentator also offer rhetorical observations; e.g. for RVF 150, the rhetorical procedure is identified as ‘rationatio’ (i.e. ratiocinatio: fol. 120v). Fol. 76r: a marginal note, located beneath the first line of RVF 91 by the same hand that transcribed the text, observes that this sonnet is unambiguous and needs no explanation.
Though once believed to be anonymous, this ms. is an unknown copy of Patrizi’s commentary to be added to the six known copies of this commentary: The other copies are: London, British Library, Additional 15654; London, National Art Library (V&A Museum), Forster 48.D.28; Rome, Biblioteca Casanatense, ms. 50; Paris, Bibliothèque nationale de France, italien 1024 and italien 1026; Florence, Biblioteca Riccardiana, Ricc. 1141 (Paolino 1999, 155).
Fol. 191 is followed by 191a (fols. 191v-191ar: blank); fols. 278 and 279 are missing.
Fol. 269r: below the title the copyist wrote and erased the initial first line of RVF 1.


Vattasso 1909, 142