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In 15th-century Italy, book printing was linked to a system of trade fairs bringing together businesspeople from across Europe, in turn influencing the publishing choices of early Italian printers. A case in point is the newly rediscovered copy of a first printed edition (‘editio princeps’) of Dante’s “Divine Comedy” (Foligno, 1472), which seems linked to the important Annunciation Fair of Foligno.

Join Natale Vacalebre, Benjamin Franklin Fellow in Italian Studies at University of Pennsylvania, for this talk in which he explores the commercial history and dissemination of the Foligno first edition, currently held in Cornell University’s Kroch Library. Its pages preserve the only existing annotations and margin drawings of the complete 14th-century commentary by Neapolitan scholar Guglielmo Maramauro, opening a unique portal into the Renaissance reader’s understanding of Dante and his writing.

This is the second talk in Cornell’s “Visions of Dante” symposium held in conjunction with the Johnson Museum of Art’s “Visions of Dante” exhibition, timed to mark the 700th anniversary of Dante’s death. The Foligno edition is on display as part of the exhibit.

“Visions of Dante: A Central NY Humanities Corridor Symposium” was held on Saturday, October 16, 2021, at the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Cornell University, in conjunction with their exhibition “Visions of Dante.” The symposium was cosponsored by the Central New York Humanities Corridor, a unique regional collaboration between Syracuse University, Cornell University, the University of Rochester, the New York Six Liberal Arts Consortium, and other liberal arts schools and colleges in the central New York region.

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