A classic of Italian literature! The chief merit of this work lies in its scope: it directly assays the personal value system of the Florentine bourgeois class, which did so much to foster the development of art, literature, and science. It displays a variety of high styleshigh rhetoric, systematic moral exposition, novelistic portrayal of characterin the typical Renaissance framework of the dialogue. The treatise, in its entirety, shows a Florentine paterfamilias and two uncles instructing some submissive nephews in the ethics of private life. Money and reputation are its primary themes. Book III, the most dramatic, far-ranging, and down-to-earth of the four books, does not present a single bourgeois outlook but, as a dialogue, expresses conflicting points of view, enabling students to relive social and moral conflicts that troubled early capitalist society.
Leon Battista Alberti was one of the most important humanist scholars of the Italian Renaissance. Active in mid-fifteenth-century Florence, he was an architect, theorist, and author of texts on perspective and painting. Leon Battista Alberti: On Painting is a cardinal work that revolutionized Western art. In this volume Rocco Sinisgalli presents a new English translation and critical examination of Alberti's seminal text. Dr Sinisgalli reverses the received understanding of the relationship between the Italian and Latin versions of Alberti's treatise by demonstrating that Alberti wrote it first in Italian and then translated it into a polished Latin over the course of several decades. This volume is richly illustrated to help demonstrate how Alberti understood optics and art.