Lauro De Bosis

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Lauro De Bosis
Olympic medal record
Art competitions
Silver 1928 Amsterdam Dramatic works

Lauro Adolfo De Bosis (December 9, 1901 – October 3, 1931) was an Italian poet and aviator.

In 1928 he won a silver medal in the art competitions of the Olympic Games for his verse-drama "Icarus". He died in October 1931 when his plane ran out of fuel after dropping anti-Fascist leaflets over Rome. According to the pilots who had fueled the plane, he was an inexperienced pilot and had told people that he was flying from Nice to Barcelona and back and his plane had not been fueled completely. A promising poet, at the time of his death he had been editing a volume of Italian poetry for the Oxford University Press.[1][2] His papers are saved in Houghton Library, Harvard University.

In 1938, actress Ruth Draper made an endowment to maintain a lecture series on Italian culture, history and society, named after De Bosis in Harvard University. In 1973 more funds were supplied by Fiat's Giovanni Agnelli Foundation.[3][4] De Bosis Committee now grants postdoctoral fellowships, invites visiting professors and organizes Colloquia in Italian studies.

Thornton Wilder dedicated his novel Ides of March (1948) to him, suggesting a parallel between de Bosis and Catullus.


  1. ^ Firchow, Peter Edgerly (2002). W.H. Auden: Contexts for Poetry. University of Delaware Press. p. 97. ISBN 978-0874137668. 
  2. ^ Origo, Iris (New edition edition (1 April 2002)). A Need to Testify. Turtle Point Press. p. 86, 109. ISBN 978-1885586513. 
  3. ^ Gilmore, Myron P. (1974-02-28). "ITALIAN LECTURESHIP, letter". The Harvard Crimson. Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  4. ^ "Harvard Fills Post In Italian Studies After Long Vacancy". The Harvard Crimson. 1974-02-04. Retrieved 2014-01-14. 

Further reading[edit]

Diggins, John P. Mussolini and Fascism. The view from America. Princeton: Princeton UP, 1972, 430.

External links[edit]