Cookies Policy

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

I accept this policy

Find out more here

Petrarchan Hermeneutics And The Rediscovery Of Intimacy

Brill’s MyBook program is exclusively available on BrillOnline Books and Journals. Students and scholars affiliated with an institution that has purchased a Brill E-Book on the BrillOnline platform automatically have access to the MyBook option for the title(s) acquired by the Library. Brill MyBook is a print-on-demand paperback copy which is sold at a favorably uniform low price.

Access this chapter

+ Tax (if applicable)

Chapter Summary

In this chapter Petrarch addresses the challenges to understanding, and most acutely to understanding the past, that contemporary philosophers like Hans-Georg Gadamer pose as the hermeneutical problem in the remainder of the chapter. Petrarch's hermeneutics of intimacy belongs to a complex, longstanding and influential tradition that features Cicero but does not begin with him. The understanding reader, according to Petrarch, must attend with his whole concentration. He must give to his reading the same undivided attention that one gives to the correspondence of a sorely missed friend, a correspondence that offers the best and only hope of mitigating the loss that comes with distance. The intimacy that informs the writing of letters must equally inform their reading. The hermeneutic challenge for the Renaissance humanist, then, is to understand a distant past first by acknowledging this distance and then by discovering ways to overcome it.

Keywords: Aristotle; Cicero; Gadamer; Petrarchan Hermeneutics



Can't access your account?
  • Tools

  • Add to Favorites
  • Printable version
  • Email this page
  • Recommend to your library

    You must fill out fields marked with: *

    Librarian details
    Your details
    Why are you recommending this title?
    Select reason:
    Petrarch and the Textual Origins of Interpretation — Recommend this title to your library
  • Export citations
  • Key

  • Full access
  • Open Access
  • Partial/No accessInformation