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Original scientific paper

The Discourses of the Ranjina Miscellany and their Linguistic Expression

Smiljka Malinar ; Filozofski fakultet, Zagreb, Hrvatska

Fulltext: croatian, pdf (288 KB) pages 107-120 downloads: 1.543* cite
APA 6th Edition
Malinar, S. (2011). Diskursi Ranjinina zbornika i njihov jezični izraz. Colloquia Maruliana ..., 20 (20), 107-120. Retrieved from
MLA 8th Edition
Malinar, Smiljka. "Diskursi Ranjinina zbornika i njihov jezični izraz." Colloquia Maruliana ..., vol. 20, no. 20, 2011, pp. 107-120. Accessed 26 May 2020.
Chicago 17th Edition
Malinar, Smiljka. "Diskursi Ranjinina zbornika i njihov jezični izraz." Colloquia Maruliana ... 20, no. 20 (2011): 107-120.
Malinar, S. (2011). 'Diskursi Ranjinina zbornika i njihov jezični izraz', Colloquia Maruliana ..., 20(20), pp. 107-120. Available at: (Accessed 26 May 2020)
Malinar S. Diskursi Ranjinina zbornika i njihov jezični izraz. Colloquia Maruliana ... [Internet]. 2011 [cited 2020 May 26];20(20):107-120. Available from:
S. Malinar, "Diskursi Ranjinina zbornika i njihov jezični izraz", Colloquia Maruliana ..., vol.20, no. 20, pp. 107-120, 2011. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 26 May 2020]

The first to draw attention to the presence in the verses of Šiško Menčetić and Džore Držić of components of motif and theme the origin of which was Provencal poetry was Vatroslav Jagić, although he did not claim that there was a direct influence of the Provencals or deny the input and importance of Petrarch and the Petrarchans. A hundred years later Ivan Slamnig proposed a dual genesis for the Ranjina Miscellany, thinking though that its characteristic note was given by the southern Italian poetry of the time, which, along with the influence of Petrarch, revived the principles of the troubadour lyric. In fact the quattrocento court poets could serve as an example of how with an excessively broad and unselective employment, the concept of Petrarchanism was able to lose its value as a term in criticism and literary history.
The german Romanists gerhard Regn and Klaus W. Hempfer consider Petrarchanism a semiotic system determined by the conception of love established in Petrarch’s Canzoniere. Thus in the love poetry of the 15th and the 16th century, along with Petrarchism, it is possible to identify other models of poetic discourse: the medieval semantics of courtly love, a hedonistic amorous discourse of classical origin and neo-Platonism. Petar Kreković was the first to notice in the Ranjina Miscellany expressions that signified concealed parts of the female body or suggested physical intimacy: »lap«, »to lust a little«, and »amorous strength«. Such expressions signal a hedonistic discourse of love incompatible with the Petrarchan. The erotic highlighting of the description of female beauty and a sensual treatment of love were brought in by the first generation of Italian courtly poets; however, desired and fulfilled sexual relationship was a topos of the Provencal lyric. In the body of work god was often given the role of assistant in the fulfilment of the lover’s sexual desire; such expectations belonged also to Menčetić’s lyrical subject. The amorous discourse of the troubadour lyric came into the Dubrovnik collection as a stylised echo, partially perhaps via mediation, as suggested by the word frava in poem no. 248, which, with its motif of the morning adieu, could be counted among the offshoots of the Provencal alba.
Jagić on the other hand speaks of »several lengthy and fairly tedious but quite unchaste poems« in which sensual love »is narrated with great detail.« One of these is entitled Elegia prima, which suggests that the corresponding Latin literary experience is drawn upon. And this and other examples of erotic poetry in Menčetić’s work recall the original, classical representatives of this kind, but the link seems mediated by further combinations and stratifications. In a syncretist amalgam produced in this way it is possible to discern the gradus amoris, woven in various ways into many examples of medieval love poetry, which acts as a source of inspiration for Italian quattrocento poetry as well. The idea of love as service, which deserves reward, and the connection of amorous relations with judicial practice, the origin of which is the medieval semantics of courtly love, are manifested in appropriate language. The numerous stilnovistic reverberations, from the technicism »stvar nova« (»cosa nova«, »new thing«) to the evocation of the ritual of contemplating the lady’s beauty to which a transcendental origin is ascribed, are often reduced to a mundane dimension, and some characteristic expressions are used in such a way as to glorify sensual love. Stilnovism was reconstructed more authentically by Držić than by other authors. In the poems of the so-called Zlatar group (anonymous love poems, nos. 642–698 in Rešetar’s edition of the Ranjina Miscellany, usually attributed to the mysterious Andrija Zlatar), the love theme also gives rise to intellectual play – which critics ascribe to the influence of Italian courtly poetry – and conditional, alternative, adversative and conclusive conjunctions are much thicker on the ground than in the other sections of the Miscellany.
The specific transformations of Petrarchan patterns in the Miscellany suggestlinks with the cultural habits and expectations as well as forms of sociality of the local collective recipient: introspective compositions are present only limitedly, and the expressive modes of a conversational manifestation of the condition of love, mediated with communicational forms, prevail; a sensual amorous attitude competes with the spiritualised; the metaphysical and symbolic dimension of stilnovistic impulses and their implementation in the Canzoniere is to a considerable extent voided and reduced to an element of the decorative descriptive inventory, most authors being particularly inclined to aestheticising prosopographic treatments, their language containing a number of expressions originating in oral literature, while in the area of versification they are limitedly innovative. An encounter with the Canzoniere and its derivatives unfolded on the ground of formal linguistic and cultural patterns that had already been taken on board. The semantics of the love relationship established by Petrarch was in the Miscellanyin most cases amalgamated with an amorous discourse of a different basic line, in which the troubadour component seems dominant. Such a combination could also be mediated by courtly Petrarchanism, which was connected in several ways with the troubadour heritage.

Ranjina Miscellany; Šiško Menčetić; Džore Držić; Petrarchanism; Provencal poetry; Latin classical and medieval poetry; stilnovism; quattrocento Italian poetry

Hrčak ID: 67299



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