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Original scientific paper

Marin Držić Vidra in Tuscany in the Autumn of 1565

Tanja Trška orcid id ; Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Univerity of Zagreb, Zagreb, Croatia

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The article casts light on a recent discovery of the randomly mentioned name of Marin Držić in the correspondence of (by then already former) Ragusan archbishop Lodovico Beccadelli written in December 1565. In a letter addressed on 15 December 1565 to his long-life friend, Ragusan nobleman Ivan Marinov Gondola, Beccadelli refers to Gondola’s previous letter from which he had
learnt about his spacious residence in Prato (where he acted as provost in the service of Cosimo I de’ Medici) Gondola had already been reported by “Sir Marino Vidra” (messer Marino Vidra). From Beccadelli’s letter it becomes evident that Držić was in Tuscany already in 1565, one year prior to his Florentine conspirational letters addressed to Cosimo I, in addition to the fact that he was
personally acquainted with the former Ragusan archbishop. A somewhat narrower time-frame of Držić’s visit to Prato may be gleaned from the other segments of Beccadelli’s correspondence written in 1565, which may lead to a conclusion that the meeting had probably taken place after Beccadelli’s return from Calenzano in mid-July 1565, and most certainly before the end of October that year, because the (unknown) letter of Ivan Gondola to which the prelate refers in his reply was dated with the last day of that month. On the circumstances in which the Ragusan meeting between Držić and Gondola had taken place one cannot speculate, yet the fact that Gondola was one of Držić’s long-time creditors had no negative impact on the relationship between the nobleman and
writer. Through contextualisation of the mention of Mar in Držić in Beccadelli’s letter to Gondola of 15 December 1565, the article examines its threefold implications: confirmation of personal contact, that is, the fact that Beccadelli and Držić were acquainted, testimony of Držić’s stay in Tuscany in 1565, a year pr ior to the conspiracy attempt against Ragusan gover nment, along with written
proof of the use of Držić’s nickname Vidra (Otter) in his lifetime.


Marin Držić; Lodovico Beccadelli; Ivan Gondola Marinov; Dubrovnik; correspondence; Tuscany; 16th century

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