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Marulić in a Preacher's Compendium by Serafino Razzi: A Contribution to the Reception of De institutione

Branko Jozić orcid id ; Marulianum, Split

Puni tekst: hrvatski pdf 329 Kb


str. 189-194

preuzimanja: 641



The Dominican Serafino Razzi is far better known in Croatia as the author of the first printed history of Dubrovnik than as a compiler of lives of saints and Dominican brothers and author of moral and religious works such as the Giardino d'essempi overo fiori delle vite de 'santi, printed in Brescia, in 1607.
The mentioned work appeared as a result of Razzi’s pastoral activity. Namely, ever since Aristotle, the exemplum was considered an instrument of rhetoric argumentation. The reason lies in its suggestiveness, for using exemplum an able rhetor could teach and motivate without using theory or making deductions. Christian preachers were fully aware of the value of suggestive examples. Razzi, himself a preacher in the Florentine church of St Mark, used exemples in his sermons and collected a vast number of them over the years. Spurred by some friends, he eventually dicided to have them printed and made available for college preachers, who with the Giardino d'essempi got new handy examples to employ in their sermons on virtues and vices. The aim of course, was to increase the psychological and moral effect of sermons, as well as the number of works of practical piety.
Drawing on known and unknown sources, Razzi compiled a true florilegium (» The appeal of saintly examples and that of sundry flowers are equally irresistible«). This mosaical work lacks organic structure and rests entirely upon a number of moral and ascetic themes arranged in alphabetical order (adulterio, astinenza, avaritia, bestemia ... ), incorporating unequal numbers of examples. They total 768, falling under 85 titles. Their sources are quoted either at the beginning or at the end of the texts.
What makes this work interesting to us is the fact that 69 examples come from Marulić's De institutione, which puts him shoulder to shoulder with St Jerome, Pope Gregory, Bonaventura, Cassian, Luis de Granada, Bernard or Voragine. Also, stressing in the preface Marulić' s De institutione as well as its Italian translation and taking from it an impressive number of examples (1/11) and almost the whole of the chapter IV, 7-8, Razzi proves that Marulić's authority was particularly great in the time after the Council of Trent.

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