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Pietro Bembo

Venecia, 1470- Roma 1547
Pietro Bembo

He was born in Venice in 1470, into one of the most noble and influential families of the Venetian republic at the time. His father, a man with extensive humanistic training, is a reference for the young Pietro, who expands his education in different stays in Messina and Ferrara. With a decided literary vocation and for study, Pietro lives in some of the most prestigious courts of Renaissance Italy, such as the Dukes of Este in Ferrara or the Montefeltro court in Urbino, in addition to settling in Rome, already in his maturity, as secretary of Pope Leo X, and later in Padua, where he carried out his most ambitious literary project and unanimously considered his masterpiece: the Prose della volgar lingua, published in 1525. In this treatise, Bembo defends the classicism of the vulgar, based on the principle of imitation of the language of the two most illustrious Italian writers: Petrarca and Boccaccio. Previously, Bembo had used these principles in the first edition of Gli Asolani, a work dedicated to Lucrecia Borgia and published by Aldo Manuzio in 1505, in which the author wrote an original treatise on love in the form of a dialogue in vulgar, mixing verse from Petrarchan base with Boccaccian referent prose. Pietro Bembo died in Rome in 1547, where he spent the last years of his life dedicated to ecclesiastical life, after being appointed cardinal, and to literary activity, correcting and preparing the definitive edition of his extensive work.