Census of Petrarch Manuscripts in the United States


The manuscripts are arranged according to city, from Austin to Wellesley, followed by manuscripts of unknown location, manuscripts owned or believed to have been owned by Petrarch and the Linterno manuscripts which are also listed alphabetically according to city. The individual descriptions, which follow the example set by A. Sottili in his catalogues of Petrarch manuscripts in West Germany, are divided into five sections:

1. Physical makeup of the manuscript

Each entry begins with the heading of the library and manuscript number, followed by: material (parchment or paper with Briquet number), number of folios (the flyleaves are indicated by Roman numerals and the manuscript by Arabic numerals), dimensions of the codex and of the written space (within parentheses) in millimeters, number of lines per page, collation is given in Arabic numerals for the gatherings and the number of folios in each gathering is indicated by a suprascript Arabic numeral (irregularities are given in parentheses), catchwords, signatures, pricking, ruling, scribe and script, illumination and minor decoration, and binding.

2. Contents

All the texts of each manuscript are described, including folio numbers (the recto side is indicated by the Arabic numeral alone, the verso side is indicated by the letter v after the arabic numeral; both sides of a single folio are indicated by the letters rv), titles, rubrics, incipits and explicits as well as occasional portions of the internal text. In manuscripts containing only Petrarch material, the texts are presented in the order they appear in the manuscript. If the manuscript contains material by Petrarch and others, the Petrarch texts are presented first and followed by a section entitled "Ms. also contains", in which the other texts are given according to their arrangement in the manuscript. For the transcriptions, modern capitalization and punctuation have been introduced, abbreviations have been expanded silently and words have been separated according to modern usage. Letter forms of c and e with cedilla have been transcribed as z and ae, long j as i, and the letters u and v are distinguished according to modern usage. The spelling in the manuscripts has been kept and unlikely forms are signalled by (sic). Portions of the text which are illegible or missing are indicated by square brackets [.]; square brackets enclosing a letter at the beginning of a text indicate a space left blank which was intended for a decorated initial. A single diagonal line marks the break in lines of poetry; a double diagonal line indicates that the text begins or ends defectively. Immediately after the explicit of each text, the most recent or readily available printed edition of the text is given or an appropriate bibliographical reference is cited. The well-known texts of the Canzoniere (Rerum vulgarium fragmenta) and the Triumphs (Triumphi) are not followed by any bibliography, although the manuscript texts were checked against the editions respectively of Il Canzoniere di Francesco Petrarca, a cura di G. Contini (Torino, 1964) and Rime, Trionfi e poesie latine, a cura di F. Neri, G. Martellotti, E. Bianchi, N. Sapegno (Milano-Napoli, 1951). The contents section is followed by the secundo folio (the beginning words of the second folio).

3. Origin

The origin of each manuscript, its place and date of composition as well as the principal figures involved in it (scribe and first owner), is derived from the colophon if it exists, from internal evidence such as paleographical and textual features, or from external information ranging from marginal notes to references in secondary sources. When only an approximate dating is possible, it is given in sigla form by century (e. g., s. XIV, s. XV, etc.) with further designations of the beginning, first half, middle, second half and end of the century, s. XVin., s. XV1 s. XVmed., s. XV2, s. XVex.

4. Provenance

This section contains information about the known history of the manuscript from earliest ownership to the most recent: notices of coats of arms, notes by or about owners and dealers.

5. Bibliography

The first works to be cited are: Ullman, Petrarch Manuscripts in the United States; De Ricci, Census and Census Supplement; Wilkins, "Manuscripts of the Canzoniere and the Triumphs in American Libraries"; Jasenas, Petrarch in America. These are followed by studies that refer directly to the manuscript.

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