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  • Print publication year: 2019
  • Online publication date: October 2019

Epilogue - The Sixteenth Century

from Part II - Cantare ad Lyram: The Humanist Tradition


Though the practice of solo singing and improvising continued well past the 1530s, sea changes in the politics and poetics of the peninsula after the Sack of Rome make this a reasonable point at which to conclude the book. This section will briefly explain those changes and how they altered the status and nature of poetic performance. I will also pose questions and suggestions about the course of the practice in the sixteenth century in relation to the rise of the madrigal and opera, extraordinary developments that I believe cannot be fully understood without a more comprehensive view of vernacular poetic performance in Renaissance Italy. The epilogue is structured around the consideration of a number of dualities: elite and popular, oral and written, lyric and epic, poet and composer, nature and artifice.

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