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Marulić and the laudationes urbium

Neven Jovanović   ORCID icon ; Filozofski fakultet, Zagreb, Hrvatska

Puni tekst: hrvatski, pdf (799 KB) str. 141-163 preuzimanja: 635* citiraj
APA 6th Edition
Jovanović, N. (2011). Marulić i laudationes urbium. Colloquia Maruliana ..., 20 (20), 141-163. Preuzeto s
MLA 8th Edition
Jovanović, Neven. "Marulić i laudationes urbium." Colloquia Maruliana ..., vol. 20, br. 20, 2011, str. 141-163. Citirano 29.03.2020.
Chicago 17th Edition
Jovanović, Neven. "Marulić i laudationes urbium." Colloquia Maruliana ... 20, br. 20 (2011): 141-163.
Jovanović, N. (2011). 'Marulić i laudationes urbium', Colloquia Maruliana ..., 20(20), str. 141-163. Preuzeto s: (Datum pristupa: 29.03.2020.)
Jovanović N. Marulić i laudationes urbium. Colloquia Maruliana ... [Internet]. 2011 [pristupljeno 29.03.2020.];20(20):141-163. Dostupno na:
N. Jovanović, "Marulić i laudationes urbium", Colloquia Maruliana ..., vol.20, br. 20, str. 141-163, 2011. [Online]. Dostupno na: [Citirano: 29.03.2020.]

In epigrammata priscorum commentarius (In epigr., 1504-1510), Marulić’s collection of classical inscriptions with his own commentaries, still awaits publication. However, one fragment has been published several times: the description of Salona and Diocletian’s Palace. Here we interpret this description as a humanist Latin praise of a Dalmatian city. Such praises, written between 1268 and 1608, were recently gathered in a thematic sub-corpus Laudationes urbium Dalmaticarum (we located 64 such texts, 56 of which are published and made digitally searchable; there were 51 authors who praised Trieste, Pula, Zadar, Šibenik, Trogir, Split, Brač, Hvar, Korčula, Ston, Dubrovnik, Kotor, Shkodër, and Istria and Dalmatia as regions). The sub-corpus belongs to a digital collection of neo-Latin texts Croatiae auctores Latini (CroALa; it can be accessed at the address ). We wanted to find out what makes Marulić’s description similar to other texts from Laudationes urbium Dalmaticarum, and in what way his description is different.
Marulić’s text belongs to the period 1460-1525, just like the majority of the humanist praises of Eastern Adriatic cities (29 out of 64 texts were written during these 65 years). However, Marulić chose an unusual genre; our collection is dominated by letters in prose (especially those serving as book prefaces), chorographies – studies of specific locales – and epigrams. The only other author who praised the Eastern Adriatic in an antiquarian and epigraphical treatise was Cyriac of Ancona, in 1435-36, some seventy years before Marulić. A comparison of Marulić’s text with other encomia of Split (especially those by Cyriac and Frane Božićević Natalis) clearly shows that Marulić composed his description with admirable care. He presented the heritage of Roman antiquity in his home town moving concurrently in space (from Salona to the Palace, and from the perimeter to the centre, inside the Mausoleum of Diocletian – which is, in Marulić’s times, the cathedral, believed to have been a temple to Jupiter – and out again), in time (from his sightseeing circuit in Salona with Dmine Papalić to the city’s earliest past, and from Diocletian back to Marulić’s own time) – and on the ethical axis as well: what started with sighs over the lost Dalmatian virtue, ends in a spiritual and moral step towards the infinite. Such a carefully thought-out structure is not to be found in any other text from the Laudationes urbium Dalmaticarum.
Next, we wanted to compare laudatory texts further; how were Latin words used to express key ideas and motives? We analysed the meaning, frequency and distribution of two important words from Marulić’s praise of Split: amoenitas, used for natural beauty (often connected with Dubrovnik, a city without any material remains of antiquity), and uirtus, denoting civic virtue. Amoenitas can also imply solitude, the hermit’s life; the implication is found not only in Marulić, but also in Vinko Pribojević’s praise of the Slavs, Dalmatia, and Hvar. Other authors praise uirtus much more often – and when Marulić expresses admiration for the courageous and loyal Salonitans, he is taking part in a local tradition which can be traced back at least to Perceval from Fermo (who drafted the 1312 Statute of Split). Still, Marulić introduces here a further twist, finding civic virtue only in the past.
A special set of conventions in praising a city requires the use of architectural terms. They are prominent in Marulić’s description, but some of them cannot be found elsewhere in the collection (angulatus, deintegratus, ret(h)iculatus, Sinadicus, cryptoporticus, peristylium, porphyrites, tessella); others definitely point to a common Renaissance humanist way of looking at a city and its buildings (atrium, columna, dirutus, marmor). Several special coincidences indicate the proximity of Marulić’s text to Cyriac’s travelogue and the poetic chorography of Boka kotorska by Ivan Bona Bolica (1538-1551).
There are, however, twenty-three authors that do not use Marulić’s architectural terms at all. Sometimes they make different choices, sometimes they have different things to describe, but most often architectural terms are left out because the praise is directed at citizens – their political institutions, their history, their moral values. We have seen that Marulić too mentions civic virtue, but for him it is a thing of past; his description of Salona and Diocletian’s Palace through its careful antiquarian detail eschews the present day. This strategy could have been dictated by Marulić’s chosen genre, but Marulić avoids »politics« elsewhere too (e. g. when he exchanges verse epistles with Božićević from the island of Šolta in 1509-1511), preferring to formulate all important messages through classical realia and meditations on individual salvation.

Ključne riječi
Renaissance Humanism; Dalmatia; neo-Latin literature; Eastern Adriatic; praises of cities; digital collection; reception of antiquity

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