Boncompagno da Signa

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Boncompagno da Signa (also Boncompagnus or Boncompagni; c. 1165/1175 – after 1240) was an Italian scholar, grammarian, historian, and philosopher.

Born in Signa, near Florence, between 1165 and 1175, he was a professor of rhetoric (ars dictaminis) at the University of Bologna and then the University of Padua.

In the early thirteenth century, he was one of the first Western European authors to write in the vernacular, in his case Italian. He spent his career travelling between Ancona, Venice, and Bologna and died at Florence. He wrote a history of the Siege of Ancona, his only work of that kind, and works on chess. His love of elaborate practical jokes is described by Helen Waddell in The Wandering Scholars (1927).


  • Tractatus virtutum
  • Rhetorica novissima
  • Palma
  • Quinque tabulae salutationum
  • Rota veneris
  • Bonus Socius e Civis Bononiae (disputed authorship)
  • Liber de Obsidione Ancone


  • Boncompagno da Signa. 1975. Rota veneris, facs. ed. Scholars' Facsimiles and Reprints: ISBN 978-0-8201-1137-7.
  • Cortijo Ocaña, Antonio. Boncompagno da Signa. El ‘Tratado del amor carnal’ o ‘Rueda de Venus’. Motivos literarios en la tradición sentimental y celestinesca (ss. XIII-XVI). Pamplona: Eunsa, 2002.
  • Cortijo Ocaña, Antonio. Boncompagno da Signa. La rueda del amor. Los males de la vejez y la senectud. La amistad. Madrid: Gredos (Bliblioteca Clásica Gredos), 2005.

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