Petrarch's Eight Years in Milan

By Ernest Hatch Wilkins | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XVI
1357: From Mid-September to the End of the Year

September

On Tuesday 12 September Petrarch was at Pagazzano. This we know from an entry that he made on 12 September 1358 on the sheet mentioned at the end of the preceding chapter, apparently just below the entry that he had made on that sheet on 12 September 1356. The entry made on 12 September 1358 begins thus:

anno sequenti fuit die martis id festum & eram pagaz. ubi sum & hodie mercurij 12. sept. dum hoc scribo . . .1

Pagazzano, certainly not more than a village in Petrarch's time, is a place on the eastern side of the Adda, about twenty miles east of Milan and about ten miles south of Bergamo. Bernabò Visconti had a castle there; and in 1364, at a time when he was having some other castles demolished, he ordered that this one be spared, for Petrarch's sake. The order he then issued reads thus:

Mafeo de Madiis

Volentes complacere honorabili et rudenti viro domino Francischo petrarche [mandamus] tibi quod desistas a destructione fortilizie de pagazano syto in clarea abdue q[uia domum] nostram quam ibidem habemus concessimus domino Francisco predicto. Datum Mediolani.2

____________________
1
Appel 1, pp. 142 and 186.
2

See G. Riva, "Una villa sconosciuta del Petrarca a Pagazzano," in ASL, XLIX ( 1922), 404-406; Foresti 1, pp. 361-362; and Romanò, pp. xlii and xliii. Foresti's discussion is erroneous, as Romanò rightly points out; but Romanò himself fails to realize that Petrarch's entry of 12

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