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Why Margarita is not by Marulić?

Dragica Malić ; Ihjj, Zagreb

Puni tekst: hrvatski pdf 246 Kb

str. 185-218

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In recent times the attribution of newly found Croatian codices of the 15th to th century written in the Latin script, and indeed some previously known and published, to Marulić and his oeuvre has once again come to the fore. This par-ticularly refers – in the search for Marulić’s prose mentioned in his will and in Božićević’s biography – to codices with prose components. On the whole this is done, if with very good intentions, from ignorance of and lack of acquaintance with Croatian literary and cultural conditions in the pre-Marulić and Marulić time. However, this, on the one hand, does not contribute to the greatness of Marulić, and on the other hand distorts and underrates the diversity of the literary (mainly anonymous) activity in other Croatian cultural centres. The writer of the current work – having a certain insight into the linguistic features of at least the published codices, which do not tend to support the authorship of Marulić – has taken on the analysis of the miracle play Muka svete Margarite (The Passion of St Margarita), the first piece in the Florentine Collection of the end of the 15th century, uncritically ascribed to Marulić, with a denial of this attribution and a criticism of the fact that it should have been brought up again. Apart from the Florentine version (i. e. copy) of the play, which is incomplete at the beginning, the first half of the text thus being missing, two other more recent versions of the play are included into the analysis: that from Šibenik from the middle of the 16th century, which wants the second half, and the Zadar, probably from the first quarter of the th century, the only complete one. With respect to this version, it is hypothesised that the Angel’s words from his final reply contains the year of the presentation »lit tisuća pet sat« (i. e. »the year 1500«), which is not a certain interpretation. The graphic features of all the three versions are considered. Some of them are characteristic of the oldest Croatian Latin writings of Chakavian origin, and all belong to the central Chakavian (north Dalmatian or central Dalmatian) area, such as for example the appearance of the grapheme b in the vocal value of p, the recording of the consonants s, z, š, ž with the same grapheme ∫/s, the notation of the consonants h and k with the same grapheme, ch, which also serves for the consonant ć, while the consonant k is also registered by the grapheme c (which also has other vocal values), then in one scribal error there is a trace of the notation of the syllabic r with the grapheme r, the sporadic ny, yn for ń and other things. At the graphic level numerous scribal errors are considered; this has revealed not only traces of older Latin (Gothic) but also of Glagolitic specimens, which tells of the multiple copying of an original text much older than the oldest extant copy of that from the Florentine Collection. This is borne out by the many false rhymes and verses that have dubious sense. As for the phonemic traits, changes on which the original octosyllabic structure of the verse is founded (4 + 4 syllables) are particularly considered: vъ(-) > v(-), vъz- > vz-/z-, iz(-) > z(-), characteristic of the northern and central Chakavian regions, and the coexistence in extant copies with more recent characteristics: v(-) > u(-), vz-/z- > uz-and the iz(-) characteristic of the south. By inserting these more recent and more southern traits into the original text the structure of the verse is spoiled, and the verses have to be adjusted by diverse modifications. The preservation of certain older consonantal traits, such as for example the preservation without exception of the initial cluster čl-in the noun človik and its derivations; the sporadic preservation of the consonantal cluster vs-in forms and derivatives of the pronoun vas: the northern Chakavian and central Chakavian consonantal cluster gd-in gdo, nigdore (alongside the more southerly forms of tko, nitkore/ nikore); the regular use of the final -l in the active past participle II, with just two exceptions in the Florentine variant with –o < -l and the verse structure so adjusted; in addition, there are some individual dialectical phonemic changes that have made their way into the written text of the play, for example, the failure to record the preposition v as a result of its being combined with the following word ([v] tomu, [v] moju, [v] misto, [v] vikuvičńoj, [v] tminah and others ); the loss of or failure to record the final –l in the active past participle (bi[l], poda[l], hti[l]),); the changes in the consonantal sequence g-h-k in certain positions (ktiti < htiti, h našim, hodir < godir ?) – all of these confirm us in the belief of a more northerly and older origin for the prototype of the text than might at first sight be concluded from the extant copies, which contain some later and more southerly linguistic (phonemic in particular) traits. The same conclusion is suggested by some mor-phological traits, such as for example the nom. sing. phrase Duh Svet, the voc. sing. sin Marije, the marked preponderance of the old forms for acc. pl. of masc. nouns (equated with nom. plur. – with 2nd palatalisation) such as grisi, grišnici, strasi, and also časi, ļudi, udi and others, and a number of lexemes characteristic of the northern and central Chakavian area. These and some other linguistic features, particularly the lexical, of the Passion of St Margarita are compared with the features of Marulić’s language, a comparison that has not shown any correspondence. Thus it has been shown that in Marulić there is an occasional use of the preposition/prefix z(-) alongside iz(-) but not also z-, vz-(< vъz-), and only occasionally, because of the requirements of the verse, v(-); the parallel use of človik/čovik; just one time vs-in lexical Church Slavonic (vseje), the fairly frequent parallel use of the final –l and –o in the past participle, but o< l even in the adjective mao, and in oblique forms and derivatives of the adjective usilan: usiona, usiono, usionost and so on, but we never find dialectal forms of the kind bi[l], poda[l], pozno, bija , and of the more recent and more southerly characteristics: only tk-in tko, nitko, nitkor(e) and simplified: ko, niko, the use of št in words of conversational lexis, and čt in literary words (in Judita regularly, in other works differently). In contrast to the northern Chakavian and central Chakavian kuko, tuka from the Zadar version, Marulić has koki, koko, toki, toko. On the other hand, of the frequent Marulić additional –j in pronouns and pronominal adverbs such toj, togaj, tomuj, tuj, sej, segaj, takoj, tokoj there is hardly a trace in The Passoin of St Margarita. No more than three examples of the adverb ovakoj, takoj are to be found in the stage directions of the Florentine version, and two more in the verses: tuj, ovoj. The coexistence of older and more recent morphological forms is often a literary language and poetic formal resource, used by Marulić too, but of the forms mentioned, nom. sing. Duh Svet and voc. sing. sin Marije there is nothing in Marulić. Similarly in known Marulić works there are none of many of the words found in St Margarita, just as in it there are none of the typical Marulić words, such as for example poni (then), the dual pronominal forms naju and vaju (instead of gen. plur. and acc. plur. nas, vas and the possessive adjectives naš, vaš): also, in St Margarita there are no typical Marulić old forms of the nouns kami, plami, or čuti se (1. feel, 2. look after oneself), gorańi (‘gornji’), minovati (‘pass’’), derivatives from the foundation mlob-(mloba, mloban, mlobstvo, mlobština, which mean ‘weakness, impotence’ and so on), obitati (obećavati) okol (‘krug’ – sega svita okol – the earthly circle), pakal (‘smola, paklina) smin, sminost (‘smion’, ‘smjelost’), tovariš, tovarištvo (‘prijatelj’, ‘prijateljstvo’), tarpiti (‘trajati’), živodistvo (‘blud, preljub’), and adverbs and prepositions: barž/barže (‘možda’), der/deri (‘čak, još, sve’), diļ/diļa/dil (‘zbog’), jeda (‘da li, zar’), listo (‘samo’) and others. Nevertheless the Passion of St Margarita, however much it has been copied out and removed from the primary text, thus losing its originality, still contains enough elements – linguistic and poetic – that show its literary and aesthetic values in the framework of medieval Croatian literature. It not only relies on existing literary language requisites, it also works out some of its own. We will pick out just one very clear phonological styleme and one morphological styleme. Thus in the Florentine version, along with sporadic remains of the consonantal cluster vs-in forms and derivatives of the pronoun vas, older forms of the adjectives vsemogi, vsemogući, related to God and Jesus (vsemogoga Gospodina, Isukarsta vsemogoga, vsemogući o Isuse) are probably used deliberately, as phonological stylemes. All three variants however contain one morphological styleme in common: along with the regular use of the older form of the acc. plur. noun masc. the more modern form is used for the pagan gods and devils, which means that in the eyes of the author and the copyists of the text, this form was in terms of literary language negatively marked, for example, boge moje adorati, Moje boge već ne štuju, ona naše boge psuje, boge naše nenavidi, ki progańa boge tvoje, gdi ne častiš boge moje, vaše boge verujući, Sama s’ ti ka đavle ubi and so on. An important requisite of Passion of St Margarita for literature and literary aesthetics are the many collocations, fixed phrases and clichés, comparisons, amplifications, expressions inherited and taken from the popular manner of expression, from medieval poetry, religious and didactic literature, liturgical texts and the Bible, adroitly woven into the speech of the characters of the play. And this shows that the anonymous texts of the pre-Marulić time had important literary and aesthetic values even when they were not the products of Marulić’s pen. And this in turn shows that Marulić was not a poetic wonder created from nothing at all, in the vacuum of the Croatian cultural being, but that he developed on generally adopted literary language features and stylistic procedures of medieval Croatian poetry and, inheriting them, built up his own language and poetic idiom. Hence there is no need to ascribe to him works the language of which shows that he did not write them.

Ključne riječi

Miracle play Muka svete Margarite (Passion of St Margarita); issue of Marulić’s authorship; repeated copies; traces of Glagolitic and Gothic intermediate models; northern and older linguistic traits; literary requisites; comparison with Marulić’s linguistic features

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