Orlando Furioso

Ariosto, Ludovico

Ludovico Ariosto (lōōdōvē´kō äryôs´tō), 1474–1533, Italian epic and lyric poet. As a youth he was a favorite at the court of Ferrara; later he was in the service of Ippolito I, Cardinal d'Este, and from 1517 until his death served Alfonso, duke of Ferrara. He was never properly rewarded by his patrons. While in the service of the cardinal, he began writing his masterpiece, the Orlando Furioso, published in its final form in 1532. This epic treatment of the Roland story, theoretically a sequel to the unfinished poem of Boiardo, greatly influenced Shakespeare, Milton, and Byron. It was intended to glorify the Este family as Vergil had glorified the Julians. Ariosto also wrote lyric verse of unequal merit, but he was among the first to write comedies in the vernacular (based loosely on Roman models), among them I Suppositi [the pretenders] and Il Negromante [the necromancer].

See the famous 16th-century translation of Orlando Furioso by Sir John Harington, ed. by R. McNulty (1972), as well as the verse translations by B. Reynolds (2 vol., 1975) and by D. R. Slavitt (2010); studies by B. Croce (tr. 1920, repr. 1966), R. Griffin (1974), and A. R. Ascoli (1987).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2018, The Columbia University Press.

Orlando Furioso: Selected full-text books and articles

The Invention of the Renaissance Woman: The Challenge of Female Independence in the Literature and Thought of Italy and England By Pamela Joseph Benson Pennsylvania State University Press, 1992
Librarian's tip: Chap. 4 "The Debate about Woman in the Orlando Furioso" and Chap. 5 "Praise and Limitation of the Independent Woman in the Orlando Furioso"
Becoming Christian: Race, Reformation, and Early Modern English Romance By Dennis Austin Britton Fordham University Press, 2014
Librarian's tip: Chap. 3 "Infidel Texts and Errant Sexuality: Translation, Reading, and Conversion in Harington’s Orlando Furioso"
Meanings of the Medium: Perspectives on the Art of Television By Katherine Usher Henderson; Joseph Anthony Mazzeo Praeger Publishers, 1990
Librarian's tip: Chap. 5 "Ariosto and Bochco: Polyphonic Plotting in Orlando Furioso, Hill Street Blues, and L.A. Law"
Ariosto and the "Fier Pastor": Form and History in Orlando Furioso By Ascoli, Albert Russell Renaissance Quarterly, Vol. 54, No. 2, Summer 2001
Peer-reviewed publications on Questia are publications containing articles which were subject to evaluation for accuracy and substance by professional peers of the article's author(s).
Desire in the Renaissance: Psychoanalysis and Literature By Valeria Finucci; Regina Schwartz Princeton University Press, 1994
Librarian's tip: "The Female Masquerade: Ariosto and the Game of Desire" begins on p. 61
The Theory of the Epic in England, 1650-1800 By H. T. Swedenberg Jr University of California Press, 1944
Librarian's tip: Discussion of Orlando Furioso begins on p. 10
A Short History of Italian Literature By Robert A. Hall Jr Linguistica, 1951
Librarian's tip: Discussion of Orlando Furioso begins on p. 171
Henry Fielding's Theory of the Comic Prose Epic By Ethel Margaret Thornbury University of Wisconsin, 1931
Librarian's tip: Discussion of Orlando Furioso begins on p. 27
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