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"Petrarch's career in the Church did not allow him to marry," What career? Elementalwarrior 16:47, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

Wrong Date?[edit]

In, the paragraph "The tomb had been opened previously in 1873 by Professor Giovanni Canestrini, also of Padua University. When the tomb was opened, the skull was discovered in fragments and a DNA test revealed that the skull was not Petrarch's,[2] prompting calls for the return of Petrarch's skull. The researchers are fairly certain that the body in the tomb is Petrarch's due to the fact that the skeleton bears evidence of injuries mentioned by Petrarch in his writings, including a kick from a donkey, when he was forty-two.[3]"

I didn't believe they had DNA testing in 1873? Anow2 (talk) 01:38, 5 December 2007 (UTC)

Name Specifics[edit]

Petrarch or Francesco Petrarca? Isn't the latter the real name of this guy and the former just something that english speaking people have invented for him later? If this is true, then, in my opinion, we should have the main page for Francesco Petrarca and have Petrarch be redirected there. Right now Francesco Petrarca is redirected to Petrarch, which is, again in my opinion, quite backwards. Or perhapse this is a FAQ somewhere? --Tbackstr 07:48, Apr 22, 2004 (UTC)

support. I think it should read: "Francesco Petrarca (also called Petrarch in English)" or something similar. It is not uncommon to call him Petrarca, even in English Dbachmann 08:44, 11 Aug 2004 (UTC)
This is facile argument which is both misplaced and lainly wrong. As this is the English language part of the encyclopedia a reference to Petrarch is fully justified. It can be expected that English speakers will use the terms they are familiar with. If you actually go to the Italian language version you will see it come up with his full italian name.
--This anonyme comment was added by at 17:48, 27 Aug 2004 (--Lord Snoeckx 18:32, 25 May 2006 (UTC))
Support, above (anonyme) statement is incorrect, as every itself-respecting encyclopaedia will use the full correct title (whether English or not), and look by every non-English autor, they all use their official name, not their Anglicised.--Lord Snoeckx 18:32, 25 May 2006 (UTC)
Correct and official are meaningless words in this context. Very few articles in any encyclopedia use the full name exactly as printed on the birth certificate, and which titles are valid and important aren't agreed upon. Why is it Isaac Asimov and not Dr. Isaac Asimov or Исаак Озимов? I certainly wouldn't expect the main article for Sun Tzu to be at 孫子. We put articles in the English Wikipedia where English readers would expect to find them, so we should put this article at Petrarch.--Prosfilaes 19:25, 25 May 2006 (UTC)
I don't agree. Isaac Asimov is the correct transcripted name, the 'Dr.' is just a titulation and doesn't need to be part of the title. And to be quite honest, the English 'Petrarch' sounds very ugly - 'Francesco Petrarca' sounds quite better. And, this is an electronic encyclopaedia, and we can thus easily have automatic redirects to 'Francesco Petrarca', so an English-speaking user can simply type 'Petrarch' and then be automatically redirected to 'Francesco Petrarca', and that actually makes this entire issue moot.--Lord Snoeckx 21:52, 25 May 2006 (UTC)
Why is it the correct transcribed name? And why is Sun Tzu the correct name? Whether or not you think Petrarch sounds ugly is really neither here nor there; it's still the most common English name and thus the right title, just like we have "St." on articles where appropriate and call Confucius Confucius.--Prosfilaes 23:36, 25 May 2006 (UTC)
I'm sorry, but this entire naming issue is pure moot due to redirect possibilities. And 'Petrarch' is only used by English speakers, all other languages use Petrarca (whereas Confucius is used among all other European languages - and even Arabic, Japanese and China). English is btw the only language who has to anglicise (=against neutrality and POV because of ethnocentrism) all famous names, like Aristotle (Artistoteles), Ovid (Ovidius), Homer (Homeros)... (However ethnolangualisation is not unique for English, in most other European languages it is rare or dissaproved. Why is it that English always wants to rule the world and make its own names :-( )
And by the way, only about 75% of English speakers use 'Petrarch', that makes a non-neglectable minority of 25% who use 'Petrarca'--Lord Snoeckx 15:06, 26 May 2006 (UTC)
If this is moot, why do you keep arguing? It is impossible for a language not to nativize a name, since each language has its own set of sounds and syllables. Confucius is Kong Fuzi in Chinese; Confucius is a Latinization. Five seconds looking at Ovid shows that perhaps half of the articles aren't titled Ovidus or Publius Ovidius Naso, instead using a nativized name.--Prosfilaes 16:26, 26 May 2006 (UTC)
Why don't we just stop arguing since this discussion going nowhere, and change the title, after all, what do you have personally against 'Francesco Petrarca', do you really think it will harm Wikipedia? :-) --Lord Snoeckx 09:49, 27 May 2006 (UTC)
Wow, accusations of personal hatred for Petrarch; you've just made it less likely I'd let a change go by unremarked. Since you've run out of arguments, and your facts have been shown to be fallicious, why don't you concede?--Prosfilaes 12:42, 27 May 2006 (UTC)
I will never bow to the name of Petrarch. Nor shall I bow to the names of every anglicised name. Thank you. --Lord Snoeckx 18:39, 28 May 2006 (UTC)
That is such a self-centered viewpoint. It's not about making you bow to anything. It's about choosing the most clear and most common English name for the article.--Prosfilaes 20:54, 28 May 2006 (UTC)

The Poll:

Poll: Petrarch or Petrarca

Simply say you want this article to be called Petrarch or (Francesco) Petrarca

--Francesco Petrarca --Lord Snoeckx 18:39, 28 May 2006 (UTC)

--Francesco Petrarca Reynaert-ad 16:34, 29 May 2006 (UTC)

--'Petrach, the English name. --Prosfilaes 18:22, 29 May 2006 (UTC)

--Francesco Petrarca --Tbackstr 13:37, 30 May 2006 (UTC)

.....well I think that the title Petrarch is the title that we of the English speaking world have come to know this poet. I do not see why a change would be necessary. I do not think this is due to ignorance or anglophilia or bigotry. I honestly think that Petrarch would be quite happy with us for trying to make his name more of a household common word among us English speaking peoples(how the name Petrarch centuries ago was invented, I assure you). This is in no disrespect to him for being Italian, but in every respect to him for being a great poet.

--Whichever an English-speaking user would most naturally search. If we lose sight of the fact that Wikipedia is a service we may find ourselves adopting preposterous attitudes. Francesco Petrarca currentlyredirects the reader to the information.--Wetman 09:22, 15 September 2006 (UTC)

--Francesco Petrarca, it's his name for crying out loud. Where does 'Petrarch' even come from?Cameron Nedland 22:31, 17 December 2006 (UTC)

--Francesco Petrarca There was no man named Petrach.

-- Isn’t it a bit pedantic? Do these guys really go about saying e.g. Cristoforo Colombo instead of Christopher Columbus, Kopernik instead of Copernicus, Horatius instead of Horace, Yeshua (Yehoshua?) instead of Jesus, and so forth? Anyway, Petrarch started it by Latinizing his name (hence Francisci Petrarcae Epistolæ etc.) so he can hardly blame us for Anglicizing it. Campolongo (talk) 20:07, 14 November 2008 (UTC) Campolongo

The name Petrarch comes is the Anglicized version of the French Pétrarque[1]. My thought is that the entry should be entitled Francesco Petrarca: an author search in WorldCat [1] reveals an overwhelming number of entries attributed to Francesco Petrarca (his Italian name, 4,444 as opposed to 181 for the Anglicized name). Having said that, it's important to note that Italy did not exist as a unified country in Petrarca's time, nor did the Italian language exist. Petrarca referred to himself consistently in Latin and Latin he proudly wrote in and spoke in any official capacity. It was not until the 16th century that the Italianized name gained popularity in the Italic peninsula. In his lifetime he was known for his Latin writings (political, literary, and critical). When his fame as Italian poet grew in the early Renaissance, his Anglicized name as well as his French name were widely used in Europe. Petrarchanism, as it came to be known, reached its peak by the end of the 16th century and was later revived by Voltaire in the 18th century. So it's important to note that he is known in English as Petrarch. But the overwhelming number of author-attributed entries in accepted library science convention seems to me watertight rationale for the Wikipedia entry to be entitled Francesco Petrarca. Jeremy Parzen (talk) 21:06, 8 November 2009 (UTC)

The above offers some useful information but is far from a “watertight rationale for the Wikipedia entry.” I looked at the first 110 entries calling him Petrarca and with only a couple of exceptions they were all books published in Italy. We already knew the Italian form of his name was Petrarca, but how does this help us decide the question in an English-language encyclopaedia? I checked the Wikpedia guidelines and found:

Wikipedia: Naming conventions (use English) Use the most commonly used English version of the name of the subject as the title of the article, as you would find it in reliable sources (for example other encyclopedias and reference works). This makes it easy to find, and easy to compare information with other sources. Often this will be the local version, as with Madrid. Sometimes the usual English version will differ somewhat from the local form (Aragon, Venice, Normandy; Franz Josef Strauss, Victor Emmanuel III, Christopher Columbus). Rarely, as with Germany or Mount Everest, it will be completely different.”

Now that does seem watertight. “The most commonly used English version of the name of the subject in reliable sources” is definitely Petrarch.Campolongo (talk) 16:56, 29 November 2009 (UTC)

"Which Saint?", or "I Want To Be in That Number: The Saints Augustine"[edit]

This artcle references St Augustine, but which? > Among Petrarch's Latin works are De Viris Illustribus, the dialogue Secretum, a debate with St. Augustine,

One, Augustine of Hippo, (354-430), was a philosopher and writer. The other, St. Augustine of Canterbury, was a missionary to the English circa 600 A.D. Will the relevant St Augustine please stand up? Jake 04:26, 2 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Well, the most famous of course.. of Hippo.. i'll make the changes. Stbalbach


I see there's significant copying to or from the following article. I don't know which one is older.

Here's an archive to see which is older:*/
It appears the Wikipedia version is the newer version, from April 2003 User:NuclearWinner
Stbalbach 05:45, 7 Dec 2004 (UTC)

How many children?[edit]

I thought Petrarch had two children, not three as it currently stands. Only two are listed. I'm not entirely sure though so I will leave it as is for now...


"Among other accomplishments, he commissioned the first Latin translation of Homer" - perhaps I misread this, but surely that ignores Livius Andronicus? Novium 23:08, 14 April 2006 (UTC)

Petrarca had Leontinus Pilatus translate the Illiad verbatim in Latin, but he never read it completely. He mentions it's an awful translation. It was the first translation after the dark ages. Livius Andronicus translated the odyssee, however. Reynaert-ad 21:09, 21 May 2006 (UTC)

Relation to antiquity[edit]

Is it possible the text can need some elaboration concerning Petrachs relation to the antiquity? I mean, Cicero has been a gigantic influence on him, but it doesn't seem to be noted too much. Secondly, now I'm busy complainin', can there be made a list out of petrarchs works, it's pretty confusing, like it is now, and the major 'seniles' and 'ad familarum' letters aren't even noted. Even though those are his masterpiece Reynaert-ad 21:09, 21 May 2006 (UTC)

The reason Petrarch is called the first humanist is because his life-long passion was to collect manuscripts from monasteries where they had lain crumbling, unread for centuries, and considered lost and to copy and distribute them among his friends. At the end of his life Petrarch had the largest private library of manuscripts in the world, and fellow enthusiasts came from all over to copy them. The humanists were first and foremost obsessed book collectors. They thought (not mistakenly) that by collecting books they were restoring the world of classical antiquity. The books of Cicero, and other Ancient Roman authors were known and revered in the Middle Ages but only incompletely and often in incorrect copies. They were mostly studied as excerpts, in anthologies. Of the many important works that Petrarch discovered were many by Cicero, whom Petrarch idolized. In 1333, when he was a very young man, he unearthed a copy of Cicero's Pro Archia, which contains a celebrated defense of poetry and literature that laid the basis for the studies that came to be called the studia humanitates or humanities. Petrarch liked this and made annotations and drawings in the margins. After Petrarch's death, Coluccio Salutati, the chancellor of Florence, owned Petrarch's copy. It has been called the founding charter of the humanist movement. Petrarch also collated and restored Livy's History of the Roman Republic, a book which could be the founding charter of Civic Humanism. Petrarch also hired a Calabrian monk (Giovanni di Calabria) to teach him Greek so that he could read Homer, though apparently he was not too successful in realizing this ambition.
He was in minor orders and had a mistress and an illegitimate son.
About Petrarch's book On My Own Ignorance and That of Many Others [i.e., the Aristotelians] Etienne Gilson has this to say:
The date of the book is 1367, that is to say, two hundred and seventy years before the Discourse on Method of Descartes, who is supposed to have been the first to have thrown off the yoke of Aristotle. That yoke did not weigh much on Petrarch's mind. When some Aristotelians started a philosophical discussion in his presence, Petrarch would "either remain silent or jest with them or change the subject." Sometimes Petrarch says, "I asked with a smile, how Aristotle could have known that, for it was not proven by the light of reason, nor could it be tested by experiment. And they would fall silent in surprise and anger, as if they regarded me as a blasphemer who asked any proof beyond the authority of Aristotle. So we bid fair to be no longer philosophers, lovers of the truth, but Aristotelians ... reviving the absurd question which permits us to ask no question except whether he said it . . . I believe, indeed that Aristotle was a great man and that he knew much; yet he was but a man and therefore something, nay, many things may have escaped him. I will say more. I am confident beyond a doubt, that he was in error all his life . . . in the most weighty questions." Gilson, The Unity of Philosophical Experience ([1936] 1999), p. 83.Mballen (talk) 05:46, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

Bruni reference[edit]

In the Philosophy section, "civic humanism" is associated with Leonardo Bruni, which sounds as if it were part of Bruni's philosophy. However, civic humanism is a 20th century term, created by scholar Hans Baron to describe the thoughts of Bruni (among others). The concept of civic humanism is also a fairly contested argument. Should this be changed, or attributed to Baron? Eltonovereasy 22:54, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

The translation[edit]

The translation by Alexander Foreman, whoever the hell that is, is absolutely abysmal, and quite likely to put quite a lot of people off our dear Petrarch. I'm begging someone to change it. Foreman also put up a butchered Pushkin. Idiot.—The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) .

Fine. Happy? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Szfski (talkcontribs) 20:33, 4 April 2008 (UTC)

Names to conjure with[edit]

"Petrarch, Giovanni Boccaccio and Dante are considered the fathers of the Renaissance. " Claims that someone is "the father of" something, or that a town is "the Venice of the" somewhere are uninformative. When a fully Medieval figure like Dante is added to the batter, the result is puff pastry. --Wetman 19:05, 12 December 2006 (UTC)

List of people known as father or mother of something. These kinds of idiomatic phrases are good in establishing fast-food context in the lead section - hopefully a source is included from someone whose opinion matters, and if it is widely repeated and supportable. -- Stbalbach 14:14, 13 December 2006 (UTC)


I tried to improve the new paragraph about the Epistolae familiares but two points aren't clear (at least to me).

  1. Does the list of recipients apply to the "sine nomine" letters, or to all the letters?
  2. In the sentence "From Epistolae familiares he kept a special set of nineteen controversial letters that had much criticism against the Avignon papacy called Sine nomine" what does "he kept" mean? Does it mean that the sine nomine letters are included in the Epistolae familiares (kept in), or excluded from them (kept out)?

Once that's clear, the sentence can be rearranged. At present it says that the papacy is called "sine nomine", but no doubt we want it to say that the letters are called "sine nomine". Andrew Dalby 14:39, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

Excellent questions. Thanks for cleaning this up. I have reworded this now so that it should be clear on the relationship of Liber Sine nomine to Epistolae familiares.

  1. To ONLY the "sine nomine" letters. I wrote the article Epistolae familiares and also Letter to Posterity.
  2. Petrarch kept OUT of Epistolae familiares (because of the controversal nature of these special letters).

So happens I just wrote a new article of "Book Without A Name" (a.k.a. Liber Sine nomine). Yesterday I made the new article Ildebrandino Conti, whom is the recipient of Letter # 8. Showing you what I am doing here should help answer your questions. I plan on making new articles on others that received these letters (now maked in red of course). --Doug talk 21:15, 22 February 2007 (UTC)

Medieval versus Renaissance[edit]

Petrarch is often called a Medieval author and he is often called a Renaissance author. There is no "right" category but he can certainly belong in both. -- Stbalbach 15:40, 31 March 2007 (UTC)

  • "While entombed at a cathedral in Arqua, a drunken friar and accomplice robbed the grave..." The smuggled-in alcohol apparently had a revivifying effect, then. --Wetman 21:40, 7 April 2007 (UTC)

Poet laureate[edit]

"Brought back the poet laureate tradition from antiquity" is an enormous over-simplification. This is what Petrarch thought he was doing; but let us not suggest that he was right. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 18:56, 24 June 2007 (UTC)

He was actually crowned with laurel in a ceremony in Rome. He may not have been the first to receive this honor, but he is associated with the laurels because he coined the name "Laura" for his beloved and muse Lore de Sade (whom he never spoke to in person) and in his poems alluded to the fame (i.e., laurels) that his poetry was going to bring him through the inspiration of his love for her. Note that the illustration on this page shows him wearing his laurel crown.Mballen (talk) 05:55, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

Coldwell's edits[edit]

Doug Coldwell has made several edits today. I do not think higly of them, and have reverted.

  • 19:29 9 July Two pieces of fluff: Petrarch has been called the first tourist, and one of the first to collect coins since antiquity. If anyone else feels like restoring these, fine; but to me, trivia are trivial.
  • 11:17: a lengthy and pointless quote, which documents everything known about Petrarch's children (and perhaps more) except what requires citation: their alleged places of birth.
  • 16:48: edit summary: provided several improvements. These are an empty infobox and some headers.
  • 19:09: "copyedit + provided references per citation requests" In fact supplies nonsense about Petrarch "reviving the poetry cult after a thousand years, and cites the "commissioning" of a translation to a random website. I have replaced it with an account of what actually happened.

In short,Doug, get a copy of Morris Bishop, or some other reliable source, from Interlibrary Loan and read him. Please stop wasting our time. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 22:58, 10 July 2007 (UTC)

I agree with the reversion. Here's another reason why: in the edit at 19:09, Doug added some text and a citation to In that revision, the Wikipedia text read:
"He traveled widely in Europe and served as an ambassador. He was a prolific letter writer, and counted Giovanni Boccaccio among his notable friends. During his travels, he collected crumbling Latin manuscripts and was a prime mover in the recovery of knowledge from writers of Rome and Greece. Among other accomplishments, he commissioned the first Latin translation of Homer,..."
Here's the text at
"Petrarca traveled all over Europe, serving as an ambassador and collecting ancient Latin manuscripts. He commissioned the first Latin translation of Homer..."
Has Wikipedia copied from lagazetta, or the other way around? Honestly, I can't be sure, since Wikipedia's content gets distributed, copied, and plagiarized in many different fora. But given our recent experiences with Doug, I have a pretty strong suspicion that he plagiarized lagazetta. Now, if you take some of the more colorful phrases from this article (try "Homer, he said, was dumb to him, while he was deaf to Homer"), you'll get some troubling results. I'm on the verge of suggesting reversion to a pre-Coldwell version just to be safe, but I haven't looked at the history to see exactly what this would do to the article. --Akhilleus (talk) 23:13, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
I believe "deaf to Homer" is, as indicated, from Petrarch himself. I'll add quotation marks. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 23:16, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
I see you added that! [2] from the 1911 Britannica. Yes, Petrarch did say that, but it would be nice to know exactly where he said it. --Akhilleus (talk) 23:19, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
That's fine; my edits should be held to the same standards as Doug's. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 01:37, 11 July 2007 (UTC)

"...perfecting the sonnet, making it one of the most popular art forms to date"[edit]

What does this mean? One of the most popular art forms up to Petrarch's time? Up to ours? Llajwa 02:05, 1 October 2007 (UTC)

The sonnet has never really faded. It has evolved in time (see Bembo, Marino, the Pre-Raphaelites, Ezra Pound) and space (Marot, Du Bellay in France, Wyatt, the Earl of Surrey and Shakepeare in England. I agree we might use examples and be more specific on that, but that means we should write a long section on Petrarch's metre alone?--Wiz shoot the bull 14:53, 22 January 2008 (UTC)

That's not what bothers me about that sentence, rather, it's this: Petrarch is credited with perfecting the sonnet although ... others perfected it futher. This runs contrary to the definition of the word to "perfect". (talk) 09:21, 13 June 2008 (UTC)

Yes, it's rubbish. I'll chop it. --Folantin (talk) 09:26, 13 June 2008 (UTC)
He invented the sonnet sequence, addressed to one beloved, which was copied by Shakespeare and many others. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Mballen (talkcontribs) 05:58, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

Bad Source?[edit]

Just doing a little research on 'The Dark Ages' and was using Wikipedia for ideas on keyword ideas to help me along in my research. I've noticed that the source that points to Petrarch effectively coining the phrase 'Dark Ages' didn't actually really say much about him being the first to mention 'The Dark Ages'. May I recommend a better source from the same database (JSTOR)?

Title: Petrarch's Conception of the 'Dark Ages' Author: Theodore E. Mommsen Link:

It seems to do a better job at describing his roll in the label 'Dark Ages' from what I can tell, not to mention it also describes where the term could have been derived from in a religious perspective (better background info). Hope this helps. :)

Edit: And I'm referring to source 9 in the article, just for clarification.

--Trikster85 (talk) 06:28, 26 February 2008 (UTC)

I've added it in, as no one else seemed about to. Thank you for the tip. --Wetman (talk) 07:38, 14 April 2008 (UTC)

Redundant redirect[edit]

The link to "Letter to Posterity" redirects back to this same article. Please fix or remove the link. (talk) 21:33, 8 September 2008 (UTC)

Renaissance was NOT about mountain climbing[edit]

In the article, I read

J.H. Plumb writes in his book The Italian Renaissance of Morris Bishop's version of Petrarch's Ascent of Mont Ventoux showing Petrarch's climb in 1336 was epoch making. [11] This was because Petrarch did this climb on his own volition and not because anything was forced upon him. Petrarch's letter of the ascent to his confessor,[12] the monk Dionigi di Borgo San Sepolcro, rings of aesthetic gratification to grandeur and majesty, [13] a modern attitude that is quoted to this day in many books and journals pertaining to mountaineering.[14]

I doubt very much that mountaineering is what makes Petrarch's ascent "epoch making". James Hillman in Re-Visioning Psychology argues that it was actually the descent from Mont Ventoux -- the return to the valley -- that initiated the Renaissance. The descent, after the encounter with Augustine, was a turning away from spirit and a turning towards soul, a turning from transcendence to immanence. See Ascent_of_Mont_Ventoux#Modern_reception. It was not aspiration that led to the Renaissance: It was an ability to accept and explore the darker side of human nature, the pathos, the shortcomings. Putting Hillman's analysis in simple terms, the Renaissance was about the valley, not about the mountain. Source: Hillman, James (1977). Re-Visioning Psychology. Harper & Row. p. 197. ISBN 0-06-090563-8. 

-- NonZionist (talk) 03:50, 10 September 2008 (UTC)

Images question[edit]

I recently uploaded a number of engravings by Hollar that claim to depict Petrarch's Laura, which may have been either from life of Laura de Noves, or from imagination. In any case I thought it might be useful here or elsewhere, if it's applicable. Would also appreciate help categorizing it on Commons. Thanks! Dcoetzee 19:30, 20 March 2009 (UTC)

Weasle and POV[edit]

"Petrarch is credited with developing the sonnet to a level of perfection that would be unsurpassed to this day and spreading its use to other European languages." - from the lead.

I have trouble working out what this means, it could mean 1) He developed a form of sonnet which has a level of perfection and is unsurpassed to this day. 2) He wrote sonnets in the form he developed which are perfect and unsurpassed etc. In either case what does it mean to have developed a poetic form to perfection, who said it was perfect? how could it be surpassed, what does it mean to have surpassed perfection? In short, this sentence, apart from the bit about spreading the form to other languages, means almost nothing. In addition to which there is no citation so we can't even tell if it is a reliable person's aesthetic judgement. Grcaldwell (talk) 16:03, 14 May 2009 (UTC)

That jumped out at me as well. The line should change. Someone who has more background might want to include something like "...his sonnets have received high praise from critics through many centuries and imitated by many including..." or something similar and include citations. (John User:Jwy talk) 00:44, 29 May 2009 (UTC)

Dead link[edit]

Removed the following dead link (here so it can be readded if the site comes back to life) - The Petrarchan Grotto Grcaldwell (talk) 21:52, 18 May 2009 (UTC)

Strange Sentence[edit]

Can someone please rewrite/better this sentence? "Based on Petrarch's works, and to a lesser extent those of Dante Alighieri and Giovanni Boccaccio, Pietro Bembo in the 16th century created the model for the modern Italian language, later endorsed by the Accademia della Crusca." I've read it several times and can't make it out! Thanks, --Ebrownless (talk) 07:12, 5 May 2010 (UTC)

Vandalism much?[edit]

I've only recently started taking an interest with this article, and I noticed how often it has been vandalised in the past few weeks. While I haven't checked the whole history, I'd like to know: has it always been like that? If so, then maybe this article would need some kind of permanent semi-protection, meaning only members registered for at least 4 days could make modifications. Thanks for updating me on the matter.
• H☼ωdΘesI†fl∉∈ {KLAT} • 01:06, 3 October 2010 (UTC)

Nah, I don't think it has been vandalised any more than normal over the past few weeks. This is a popular article (it got almost 45,000 hits in September [3]) so you have to expect a bit of trouble. Fortunately quite a few users have this page on their watchlists too [4] so any vandalism quickly gets zapped. IMO there isn't a big enough problem at the moment to need semi-protection. --Folantin (talk) 09:33, 3 October 2010 (UTC)
Okay, if you say so. Thanks for responding!
• H☼ωdΘesI†fl∉∈ {KLAT} • 22:12, 3 October 2010 (UTC)

Mount Ventoux[edit]

Petrarch doesn't say that he was the first to ascend the mountain since Philip of Macedonia. He says that he was inspired to climb it after reading about Philip's ascent of Mount Hemo in Thessaly. The "aged peasant", aside from warning him of the dangers (minor really), tells Petrarch that no one has ascended the mountain since he himself did so in his youth 50 years before. (I don't have time to make the changes right now, but if they don't get made I'll do them later.) E. abu Filumena (talk) 20:24, 15 January 2011 (UTC)

De Viris Illustribus (Petrarch)[edit]

Apparently there are references to Petrarch's De Viris Illustribus, other than his Secretum that are in his works of Rhymes, De otio religiosorum, and Triumphs. Does anybody have an idea where these may be? Apparently these references were over a forty year period of these Petrarch writings.--Doug Coldwell talk 20:08, 1 October 2011 (UTC)

Petrarchan sonnet[edit]

It seems so obvious, but why isn't there a quick link to the Petrarchan sonnet? It's a significant innovation. I'm no Petrarch scholar, but I would argue that it belongs in the intro or at the very least in the section about his writing. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Meditations in an Emergency (talkcontribs) 14:53, 26 October 2011 (UTC)

A link can easily be found in the "Petrarch" navigation template at the very end; another, in the "Dante" section. I don't think it necessary to add more mentions in the main article, given its actual shape, but if you strongly feel about the matter, then go ahead: nobody's gonna stop you! Cheers.
• H☼ωdΘesI†fl∉∈ {TALK} • 17:48, 29 October 2011 (UTC)


Petrarch is considered one the fathers of the Italian culture and one of the three most prominent figures of the Italian language (along with Dante Alighieri and Boccaccio): the term “Italian” is relevant to the subject's notability. Arezzo was a city-state, a “Commune”, and not a country and in similar way the term “nationality” didn’t exist at the time. It was used only since the birth of the so-called “Nation-states” such as France, Italy, Germany … I disagree with these changes In Petrarch's article I added also a reference that states he was Italian: I'm surprised you removed the term Italian from Petrarch. It does not make sense for a poet that is considered the father of the Italian language. --Walter J. Rotelmayer (talk) 23:14, 12 September 2013 (UTC)

The online Encyclopedia Britannica is your source? Are you perhaps making a little joke? OK, I laughed. Now why not look at some proper sources? I can't be bothered to look them out for you, but why not start here:
(it's right on page 291). As already discussed at Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style/Biographies#Petrarch's nationality, nationality may not have been an important concept in Trecento Italy, but citizenship most certainly was. It is perfectly farcical that you wish to attribute to Petrarch a nationality that did not come into being until 550 years after his death. It is almost as comical as your repeated attempts to deny that Marco Polo was Venetian. Justlettersandnumbers (talk) 23:49, 12 September 2013 (UTC)
It's clear you don't know Petrarch. Petrarch wrote in Italian. He contributed to the creation of the Italian culture. The term "Italian" points out the reason why he is famous. He was an Italian Renaissance poet. We are talking about something that is so clear:,,, ... And stop insulting me with your arrogance. Enough is enough. Show me only your opinions without the sense of superiority that you have because your opinion has the same value of mine. okay? --Walter J. Rotelmayer (talk) 00:08, 13 September 2013 (UTC)
I agree with WJR that your tone, Justletters, is unecessarily arrogant on certainly not civil, as required by WP:CIVIL. However, regarding the content matter, I just don't understand how you can call someone "Italian" when there was no Italy at the time of his life. Qwyrxian (talk) 00:39, 13 September 2013 (UTC)
Because the Italian culture was born before Italy. I say this not because I'm Italian but because I study sociology, history and Italian literature. Let's take a look again of what the WP:OPENPARAGRAPH says: Ethnicity or sexuality should not generally be emphasized in the opening unless it is relevant to the subject's notability. . This is the case of Petrarch. He is the father of the Italian culture (language included) during the Italian renaissance along with Dante Alighieri and Boccaccio. Moreover he wrote his works in Italian. Describing him as "Italian" is relevant. We do the same with Dante Alighieri and Boccaccio. --Walter J. Rotelmayer (talk) 01:08, 13 September 2013 (UTC)
Right (maybe, I don't know enough about the details), but the lead doesn't list "culture", it lists nationality, as was explained per WP:OPENPARAGRAPH. The lead already notes, for instance, that his work was a major point in establishing the Italian language. Qwyrxian (talk) 01:13, 13 September 2013 (UTC)
So, why does the WP:OPENPARAGRAPH example consider Petrarch Italian? Why Petrarch isn't considered Italian while Dante Alighieri and Boccacio are? --Walter J. Rotelmayer (talk) 01:19, 13 September 2013 (UTC)

My 2 cents on a dead issue: It's normal to call Petrarch "Italian" and to consider that an important aspect of his work. In the same way there was a cultural area of "Germany" and there were many "German" writers before there was a united country called "Germany". Zaslav (talk) 04:22, 17 July 2014 (UTC)


Was Petrarch adopted? I do not understand German, but the following citation implies he was adopted.

SCHOTT, Clausdieter (1936- ). Die „Adoption“ bei Petrarca und in der Petrarca-Rezeption. in> Festschrift für Hans-Wolfgang Strätz zum 70. Geburtstag / hrsg. von Harald Derschka [ISBN: 978-3866464001], S. 445-58.

I have several URLs upon which the citation was formed---on behalf of the Adoption Bibliography Center. (talk) 10:31, 16 November 2013 (UTC)Lester Sellinger

This is why I retired from Wikipedia[edit]

After several years of regular and conscientious contribution to Wikipedia, I retired ten months ago, exhausted and completely burned out. I come back occasionally (entirely by habit) looking for information; and very occasionally I make a random anonymous edit, mainly to remind myself that I have the right to do it (like everybody else on earth) and to flout the specious argument that if I'm really retired I must un-retire before I can edit again. Phooey.

The other day I came across something (in the real world, not here) that mentioned Petrarch, so I came here to read about him. What I found instead was a powerful reminder of why I retired from this madhouse and why Wikipedia will NEVER be the serious source of reliable information it aspires to become.

I hadn't read more than two paragraphs about Petrarch when I came to a screeching halt, a halt that is now permanent. Whatever I learn about him I will not learn here.

What leapt up in my face like an angry cobra was the fact that—except for its title—the article about Petrarch never called him Petrarch, choosing instead to call him Petrarca. It was so peculiar that I came here to find out why, and now I know why.

One or two editors whose native language is not English have decided to use this article as a weapon against the English language and what they perceive as its arrogant disrespect for the conventions of other languages—insisting in many cases on using words, names, etc, in strange and idiosyncratic ways, with no regard to how the same kinds of words are used in French, Dutch, German, Italian, Arabic or any other language. Petrarch is called Petrarca in other languages, so English must be FORCED to do the same.

I trust that those editors eventually will discover that taking on a 1500-year-old language, with around half a billion native speakers, and trying to force it to change the way it has developed throughout those long centuries, is a lost cause. A million-strong army backed by every country in the United Nations wouldn't succeed in such an insane quest; one or two petulant European academics with nothing more meaningful in their lives can't do it either. English is as it is—love it (as I do) or hate it (as they do), but the "consensus" of a tiny gang of angry WP editors is not going to change it.

All those editors CAN do is:

  1. seriously mislead people who know English even less well than those editors know it—but who, unlike those editors, are trying to learn it—into believing that Petrarch actually IS called Petrarca in English, and discovering the truth only after they have failed an exam in an English course because they misspelled the subject's name;
  2. turn away native English speakers, like me, who might come here to learn about Petrarch but be put off by an article that is so ignorant it can't even get his name right; and
  3. make themselves look very petty and very silly.

The first two of those results are the ones that prove this "encyclopedia" can never be what it wants to be (the third result is meaningful only to the individual editors).

Any source of information that by its very nature is vulnerable to such publishing of inaccurate information, by a "consensus" of a very small number of narrow-minded, iron-willed, recalcitrant editors, will NEVER earn the universal trust a true encyclopedia must have. When enough Wikipedia users have been burned by articles like this one, which give out false information because a few editors are using the articles for their own neurotic purposes, they will stop coming here for information.

If this were the ONLY such article in Wikipedia, it could be written off as a passing spasm, a necessary growth pang, but it's not. It's endemic.

Wikipedia is full of articles like this, disseminating not reliable facts but petty personal agendas; and its fundamental structure guarantees that such unreliable articles will persist for as long as this ambitious but failing experiment lasts.

Before long, Wikipedia will become only a place for fans to read about their idols and squabble with fans of other idols over what the articles say. Seekers of serious, reliable, objective and unbiased information—like me—will find it somewhere else online; and eventually some OTHER movement will arise, take up the cause Wikipedia has failed in and give us what WP has failed to give us: a true online encyclopedia. (talk) 03:28, 4 July 2014 (UTC)

You are absolutely right. There is no justification for using a foreign version of the name in an English article when the person is (almost, of course) universally known in English as Petrarch. The article simply looks ridiculous. It should be corrected ASAP. Zaslav (talk) 02:25, 16 July 2014 (UTC)
Worse: The global edit of "Petrarch" to "Petrarca" resulted in some false titles of references. I checked several references written in English and found every one to have "Petrarch", not "Petrarca". That's plenty of evidence that the right name in English is Petrarch. Zaslav (talk) 03:02, 16 July 2014 (UTC)