Giacomo Leopardi

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Giacomo Leopardi Leopardi firma.gif

Giacomo Leopardi (born June 29, 1798 in Recanati , † June 14, 1837 in Naples ) was an Italian poet , essayist and philologist . In addition to Alessandro Manzoni , he played a decisive role in the renewal of the Italian literary language in the 19th century.

Clichés and reality

The critic Benedetto Croce coined the word Leopardis vita strozzata , his "strangled life". In fact, Leopardi's short life of almost 39 years, in which there was never a permanent job, instead constant financial difficulties, a lot of longing, but not a single fulfilled relationship and only a few reliable friends, seems like a cliché of misfortune, that of Leopardi's exterior (small, hunchbacked, sickly) and his closed nature is still supported. On the other hand there is the tremendous erudition, which is combined to an unusual degree with wit and cleverness, which is why Friedrich Nietzsche described Leopardi as “the modern ideal of a philologist” and he was one of only four “masters of prose” in the 19th century Century recognizes. And the cliché is also countered by Leopardi's poetic and essayistic work, on the basis of which one must at least describe his inner life as anything but “strangled”, rather extremely rich and fruitful.

The basic mood of Leopardi's work is melancholy , but there is so much life and feeling in every poem, so much wit and spirit in each of his operettas morali that Leopardi's melancholy appears anything but gray and gloomy; His much-cited pessimism appears today, from a distance of 200 years, to be more of a wise skepticism towards the nineteenth-century mania for progress , gullible positivism and nationalism . Francesco De Sanctis wrote about him:

“Leopardi is a skeptic and makes us believe. He does not believe in a better future for the fatherland and generates courage and love for great deeds. He has such a bad opinion of mankind, and his kind soul worships and sings about it. "

In short, as practical as the usual separation of life and work is, with Leopardi it easily leads to the wrong image. The following outline of Leopardi's life therefore always mentions the works created in the respective period between the biographical events; This makes the presentation a bit more confusing, but allows an idea of ​​the immense poetic, literary and scientific achievement of the genius who died young.


Childhood and youth in Recanati (1798–1816)

Leopardi's birthplace, Casa Leopardi , now a museum
The library of the Casa Leopardi
Leopardi's sister Paolina in old age

Giacomo Leopardi was born on June 29, 1798 as the eldest of five children of Count Monaldo Leopardi and Countess Adelaide. Antici was born in Recanati . His brother Carlo was born in 1799 and his sister Paolina in 1800; both siblings were to become the young Giacomo's closest confidants. He grew up in a depressed and reactionary atmosphere: his father was formed and yielding, but arch-conservative, his mother hard and bigoted, and Recanati was one of the most backward province cities of the Papal States . It is symptomatic, for example, that the father was to publish an ultra-conservative newspaper called La voce della ragione (“The Voice of Reason”) from 1832–1835 until the paper was suppressed as too radical by the Curia . When Giacomo was five years old, the Leopardi House went bankrupt; Although the mother managed to save the finances, while the father only devoted himself to his private library and raising children, the family was hopelessly divided.

From 1807 to 1812 Giacomo and his siblings were educated by three private spiritual teachers. This instruction, which was both strictly Catholic and very demanding, soon resulted in an independent study of ancient literature on the one hand and first poetic attempts on the other; the literary production of the years 1809/10 alone fills an entire volume and includes sonnets , songs and epigrams . In 1811/12 there are also short epics and a tragedy Pompeo in Egitto (" Pompeius in Egypt ").

As early as 1812, Giacomo could literally learn nothing from his teachers and buried himself in his father's library, where he quickly acquired all the philological and historical knowledge of his time. In retrospect, he later described this phase of his life as years of “insane eagerness to learn full of desperation”. In addition to his already known languages Latin , French and Spanish he learned 16 years old self-taught Greek , Hebrew and English , wrote a Storia dell'Astronomia ( "History of Astronomy") and finally received permission to read books on the Index librorum prohibitorum . First translations and philological works were created. While at the beginning he apparently still translated and commented on what was just found in his father's library, a significant scientific achievement followed in 1814, a translation of the Plotinus- Biography of Porphyry with text annotations and continuous commentary, followed by the philologist Georg Friedrich Creuzer should fall back on his Plotinus Edition.

In 1815 Leopardi translated the war of frogs, which was then still attributed to Homer (for the first time, he was supposed to transmit this Epyllion two more times), the following year the first song of the Odyssey and the second book of the Aeneid and various pieces from Hesiod , Simonides and others. a. ancient authors. At the same time, he also wrote philological essays on Homer and Horace , Leopardi ' forged ' old Italian translations and Latin hymns to the gods as a finger exercise, and wrote a Saggio sopra gli errori popolari degli antichi ("Inquiry into the popular errors of the ancients") and the essay Lettera ai compilatori della Biblioteca Italiana ("Letter to the editors of the Italian Library"), in which he defended literary classicism against romanticism .

First publications and literary escapes (1817–1822)

Michele Tripisciano : plaster bust of Giacomo Leopardi in the Museum Tripisciano in the Palazzo Moncada in Caltanissetta

The last of these works and translations finally brought Leopardi into contact with the literary public: The Aeneid translation, published in 1817 in the magazine Lo spettatore italiano e straniero by the Milanese publisher Antonio Fortunato Stella (1757–1833), was by Pietro Giordani , Angelo Mai and Vincenzo Monti praised. A few more philological works appear in Stella, v. a. in the Spettatore . One of Leopardi's most important friendships arose with Giordani, Giordani visited him in Recanati, and the two of them exchanged intense letters. In 1817 Leopardi also began regularly to write down the ideas and aphorisms from which his Zibaldone (for example: "hodgepodge") should emerge from 1827 .

When Leopardi's married cousin Gertrude Cassi Lazzari visited his family in Recanati in December 1817, Leopardi fell violently in love, but not met with approval, and wrote the first Canto (“Gesang”, No. X of the later Canti e frammenti ), Il primo amore ("The first love"). In the following year, the great Canti All'Italia ("To Italy", No. I) and Sopra il monumento di Dante ("To Dante's Monument", No. II) were created, which appeared in Rome in 1819 and with their patriotic, for the unity of Italy Appealing statements caused a sensation, especially since Leopardi showed a lot of courage in front of the authorities. The Discorso di un italiano intorno alla poesia romantica (“Speech of an Italian on Romantic Poetry”, 1818), which again turned in favor of literary classicism against Romanticism, pointed in the same direction . With this work Leopardi declared himself on the one hand a Republican and a Democrat, on the other hand he renounced the conservative attitude of his family completely.

In 1819 Leopardi fell into a deep physical and psychological crisis. His health deteriorated rapidly, so that he had to interrupt his studies for several months; in particular, his eyesight deteriorated significantly. At the same time, he increasingly suffered from the crampedness of his parents' home and the conservative small town of Recanati. Nevertheless, he did not succeed in leaving the place: an attempt to escape, which he finally dared in July after many previous attempts to escape, was noticed by his father and thwarted.

Leopardi's handwriting of the Canto L'infinito

Perhaps as a sign of an inner escape, the famous 'idyllic' Canti L'infinito (“The Infinite”, XII) and Alla luna (“To the Moon”, XIV) were created in the same year ; The great 'patriotic' Canto Ad Angelo Mai (III) followed in 1820, celebrating the custodian of the Vatican Library for his rediscovery of the palimpsest fragments by Cicero's De re publica ("On the State"), as well as smaller poems (XIII, XV) and first satirical prose pieces, precursors of the later operetta morali . This poetic production continued, with longer depressive interruptions, in 1821: In October and November he wrote a poem for the wedding of his sister Paolina (IV) and another Canto (V), at the end of the year the Canti Bruto minore (“Brutus der Younger ”, VI) and La vita solitaria (“ The lonely life ”, XVI); the latter gives a half wistful, half idealized impression of Leopardi's existence, in which the intimate reference to nature replaces the missing human ties. In 1822 three more Canti followed (VII, IX, VIII).

Breaking out of Recanati and traveling (1822–1830)

In November 1822 the poet was able to leave Recanati for the first time with the consent of his family. At the invitation of his uncle, Marchese Carlo Antici, he traveled to Rome and stayed there until his return to Recanati in April 1823. However, Leopardi's impression of the city and of the Roman intellectuals and writers was disappointing overall. V. a. the acquaintance with Angelo Mai , the curator of the Vatican Library, as well as the great philologist and historian Barthold Georg Niebuhr , who praised Leopardi's scientific genius in the highest tones. There was also intensive contact with the theologian, archaeologist and diplomat Christian Karl Josias von Bunsen . Despite the personal commitment of all three scholars, Leopardi did not succeed in getting a job with the Vatican , for which he applied as almost the only possible job for a scholar in the Papal States: the distrust of the young poet, who took on such patriotic tones, and even less did not emulate his legitimist father was too big, and his well-known friendship with the anti-clerical Pietro Giordani (1774–1848) was resented.

Monument Tassos in the Church of Sant'Onofrio al Gianicolo, Rome

At the end of April 1823 Leopardi returned to Recanati, not without visiting Torquato Tasso's grave in the church of Sant'Onofrio al Gianicolo in February, which impressed him deeply because of its poverty (cf. the “Conversation between Tasso and his house spirit” in the operetta morali ). In the same year, more Canti (XVIII and probably XL / XLI) as well as a Discorso sopra lo stato presente dei costumi degli italiani (“Speech about the current state of the customs of the Italians”), which highlighted the decline of the Italian nation as well as the political , emerged in Recanati State of restorative Italy examined and criticized. In the following year Leopardi wrote the majority of his operetta morali ("moral works"), which he called after Plutarch's Moralia , but whose content is better described as "dialogues and essays". In August 1824 Nobili in Bologna published the first edition of the Canti titled Canzoni , which contained the numbers I – IX and XVIII of the later count.

Friends of Leopardi's collected money and enabled him to leave Recanati again in 1825. In July he traveled to Milan at the invitation of the publisher Stella , where he personally met the writers Antonio Cesari and Vincenzo Monti . In September he traveled on to Bologna , where he stayed until August 1826 and became friends with Count Carlo Pepoli , to whom he dedicated Canto XIX. Leopardi fell in love with Countess Teresa Carniani Malvezzi, but his passion was not heard. His commentary on Francesco Petrarcha's canzoniere appeared in June , and a second edition of his own poems in July. On the return trip to Recanati, he spent a short stay in Ravenna .

While the poet was again in Recanati from November 1826 to May 1827, Stella published an anthology of Italian prose compiled by Leopardi ( Crestomazia italiana ) as well as the first edition of the operetta morali (published in June), which of course did not meet with great response. In May Leopardi traveled again to Bologna, this time where he met the historian Antonio Ranieri, who had been banished from Naples .

In June Leopardi visited Florence for the first time , where he communicated with the intellectuals around the magazine Antologia , v. a. with the publisher Giovan Pietro Vieusseux , the historian and politician Gino Capponi and the learned journalist Niccolò Tommaseo (the latter, however, was always hostile to Leopardi). Leopardi also met Alessandro Manzoni and Stendhal in Florence ; the three great writers did not, of course, come closer to one another. In November Leopardi drove on from Florence to Pisa , where he spent the following months very relaxed and cheerful. During his stay there, he wrote the poems Scherzo (Canti XXXVI) in early 1828 and Il risorgimento (“The Resurrection”, XX) and A Silvia (“To Silvia”, XXI) in the spring ; In addition, a Crestomazia italiana poetica (“Chrestomathy of Italian Poetry”) compiled by Leopardi was published by Stella in Milan , which, like the prose anthology published in 1827, brought in a little money for Leopardi, who was still practically penniless.

In June 1828 Leopardi returned to Florence, where he met the state philosopher and politician Vincenzo Gioberti . Thanks to the mediation of Baron von Bunsen, who had admired him in Rome in 1822, Leopardi was also appointed to the Dante Chair at the University of Bonn ; Leopardi turned down this first public job offer because he did not want to leave Italy. In this year the poem Imitazione ("Imitation", XXXV), a free adaptation of verses by Antoine-Vincent Arnault, was written . In November he had to return to Recanati, because after completing the two anthologies his contract with Stella expired and he was again financially dependent on his family. There were also health problems.

In Recanati, Leopardi spent the beginning of 1829 “sedici mesi di notte orribile”. In August and September he was able to write three serene Canti: Le ricordanze (“The memories”, XXII), La quiete dopo la tempesta (“The calm after the thunderstorm”, XXIV) and Il sabato del villaggio (“The Saturday in the village ”, XXV). In the same year he wrote Il passero solitario (“The lonely blackbird”, XI), a poem in which Leopardi compares his life with that of the lonely bird singing his song, and in early 1830 he was able to write the Canto notturno di un , which he began in October pastore errante dell'Asia (“Night Song of a Shepherd Wandering Asia”, XXIII). These successes should not hide the fact that Leopardi's physical condition continued to deteriorate.

In Florence (1830-1833)

Antonio Ranieri
Fanny Targioni Tozzetti

In May 1830 Leopardi's long-awaited return to Florence was made possible after his friends there, especially the historian Pietro Colletta , who had been banished from Naples , had taken on a loan for a year's living. In Florence Leopardi worked on an extended edition of his poems and met the Swiss Graecist Ludwig von Sinner , who praised Leopardi's philological writings and stood up for him. He also met Antonio Ranieri , known to him from Bologna . The two became close friends and rented an apartment together in December.

Initially invigorating, but then disastrous, Leopardi fell in love with the fun-loving Florentine Fanny Targioni Tozzetti, who never returned his love, but apparently did not clearly reject it either, but played with the poet's feelings. Under this impression, the poems Consalvo (XVII), Il pensiero dominante (“The dominant thought”, XXVI), Amore e morte (“Love and Death”, XXVII) and A se stesso (“To yourself ", XXVIII). A final liberation from the unfortunate affair only attests to the Canto Aspasia (XXIX), which was written in Naples in 1833 or 1834 , whose sometimes almost malicious tone shows how difficult it was for Leopardi to resolve Fanny, so that he needed a radical break.

In April 1831 Piatti in Florence published the long-prepared, expanded edition of the poems, which now included the numbers I – X, XII – XVI and XVIII – XXV of today's count and for the first time had the final title Canti . Leopardi dedicated the issue to his Florentine friends, and he was now able to repay their loans. From July of the same year (according to other sources not until July 1833) Leopardi received a low monthly pension from his family: For the first time in his life he became financially independent in the long term, but only to a modest extent. In the same year, the Publico Consiglio of Recanati elected Leopardi as a deputy for the National Assembly in Bologna , which had been proclaimed by a civic survey. Before he left, however, Austrian troops crushed the uprising, making the election practically void.

From the end of September 1831 to March 1832 Leopardi traveled to Rome with Ranieri, but there were hardly any new contacts or employment opportunities. In December of this year Leopardi abruptly completed the recordings in his Zibaldone and began to rework a selection of important passages from it on the Pensieri ("Thoughts", published posthumously ). In the spring of 1833 his eye disease worsened to such an extent that he has only been able to read with great difficulty.

In Naples (1833-1837)

In September 1833 Leopardi left Florence with his friend Ranieri and traveled via Rome to Naples, where both lived together in the most modest of circumstances; Leopardi benefited greatly from the climate that was more conducive to his health, but described the country as "semi-barbaric and semi-African" because of the social and cultural conditions. Various plans to move to Paris , Prussia or Palermo , where Leopardi hoped to get a professorship or a similar position, remained mere considerations.

The two volumes of the last edition of Leopardi's works published during his lifetime (Naples 1835)

In 1833 he began with the Paralipomeni della Batracomiomachia (" Paralipomena to the frog mouse war "), a satirical continuation of the pseudohomeric epic he loved so much , which caricatured the political movements of the present. In 1834 the expanded second edition of the operetta morali was published by Piatti in Florence, and Leopardi was introduced to August von Platen . At the end of the year or the beginning of the next year he was able to write the long ironic poem Palinodia al Marchese Gino Capponi (“ Palinodie to Count Gino Capponi”, XXXII) as well as the A se stesso (“To yourself”, XXVIII), which was probably already begun in Florence. complete, in 1835 the Canti Sopra un basso rilievo antico sepolcrale… (“On an ancient grave relief… ”, XXX) and Sopra il ritratto di una bella donna… (“On the portrait of a beautiful woman…”, XXXI). Together with these poems, an expanded edition of his poems was published at Starita in Naples in the summer; it includes the poems I – XXXII and XXXV – XXXVI of today's numbering and forms the second edition under the title Canti .

In 1836, however, another wave of misfortune struck the poet; it should be the last. Leopardi had arranged a six-volume complete edition of his Canti , the operetta morali and other works with the publisher Starita . The Bourbon censors, however, confiscated the first printed volumes (Volume 1: Canti , Volume 2: first part of the operetta morali ) and prohibited the printing of all other volumes. In spring, a cholera epidemic broke out in Naples , which is why Leopardi and Ranieri moved to the Villa Ferrigni near Torre del Greco at the foot of Mount Vesuvius . There Leopardi wrote the two great Canti La ginestra ("The Gorse ", XXIV) and Il tramonto della luna ("The Setting of the Moon", XXXIII), which gave a last grandiose overview of his human and world view. The satire I nuovi credenti was also written there , and Leopardi was able to complete the Paralipomeni .

Leopardi on the death bed

In February 1837 his growing weakness forced him to return to Naples; in May the condition worsened with attacks of shortness of breath, followed by dropsy and pulmonary edema . Leopardi died in Naples on June 14 at the age of 38. Because of the cholera epidemic, his body was almost thrown into a mass grave; it was only through the efforts of friend Ranieri that this was barely prevented. Leopardi was buried in the porch of the church of San Vitale a Fuorigrotta. The Paralipomeni was published posthumously in 1842 by Baudry in Paris, a first complete edition of the Canti and operetta morali edited by Ranieri in 1845 by Le Monnier in Florence. In 1939 the tomb, which was moved to Parco Virgiliano in western Naples, was declared an Italian national monument.

The poetic work

  • Canti e frammenti (from 1817), lyrical poems
  • Pensieri di varia filosofia e di bella letteratura (from 1817), philosophical aphorisms
  • Operetta morali (from 1824), essays and dialogues


Leopardi monument in Parco Vergiliano a Piedigrotta, Naples

Important Italian issues

  • Tutte le opere di Giacomo Leopardi . A cura di Francesco Flora. Mondadori, Milan 1937–1940, 2nd edition 1968. - Critical edition
  • Canti . Introduzione, comment and note from Fernando Bandini. Garzanti, Milan 1975, 10th edition 1989. ISBN 88-11-58102-8 - most detailed commentary
  • Canti . Commento di Niccolò Gallo e Cesare Gàrboli, Turin 1972
  • Paralipomeni della Batracomiomachia. A cura di Eugenio Boldrini. Loescher, Turin 1970, 2nd edition 1987.
  • Operetta morali . A cura di Giorgio Ficara. Mondadori, Milan 1988, 4th edition 1993. ISBN 88-04-30819-2
  • Operetta morali . A cura di Cesare Galimberti, Naples 1998
  • Pensieri . A cura di Cesare Galimberti. Adelphi, Milan 1982, 2nd edition 1984.
  • Rhetores . A cura di Tommasi Moreschini, Chiara Ombretta. Fabrizio Serra Editore, Pisa / Roma, 2009 (Studi sulla tardoantichità, 3), ISBN 978-88-6227-168-4 . Review by: Carla Castelli, in: Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2010.10.39 . - Critical edition of the Commentarii de vita et scriptis rhetorum quorundam qui secundo post Christum saeculo, vel primo declinante vixerunt , called Rhetores for short (speakers covered are Dio Chrysostomus , Aelius Aristides , Hermogenes and Fronto )
  • Tutti gli scritti inediti, rari e editi 1809–1810 . A cura di Maria Corti. Bompiani, Milan 1972, reprint 1993. ISBN 88-452-1990-9
  • La vita e le lettere . Scelta, introduzione biografica e note di Nico Naldini. Prefazione di Fernando Bandini. Garzanti, Milan 1983, 2nd edition 1990. ISBN 88-11-58285-7

Newer German translations

  • Thoughts, Pensieri. Translated from the Italian by Richard Peters, Marion von Schröder Verlag, Hamburg 1951
  • Chants. Dialogues and other teaching pieces. Zibaldone. From the Ital. by Hanno Helbling and Alice Vollenweider . Selection of the texts from the Zibaldone by Karlheinz Stierle. Winkler, Munich 1978, new edition. in one volume 1998. ISBN 3-538-05400-2
  • Canti e Frammenti. Chants and Fragments. Italian / German, transl. by Helmut Endrulat, ed. by Helmut Endrulat and Gero Alfred Schwalb. Reclam, Stuttgart 1990 (UB 8654). ISBN 3-15-008654-X
  • Canti. Chants. Ital./Dt., Retouched by Michael Engelhard . Berlin 1990. Reprint Aufbau-Verlag, Berlin 1999. ISBN 3-7466-6039-4
  • The frog mouse war and its consequences. Italian / German, transl. by Helmut Endrulat, illustrated by Joachim John, ed. by Helmut Endrulat and Gero Alfred Schwalb. Akademie-Verlag, Berlin 1992. ISBN 3-05-002070-9
  • The thought book. Selection, trans. and afterword by Hanno Helbling. Winkler, Munich 1985. Reprinted by dtv, Munich 1992 (dtv). ISBN 3-423-02306-6
  • Speech by an Italian about romantic poetry. Discorso di un italiano intorno alla poesia romantica. Italian / German, transl. by Franca Janowski. Narr, Tübingen 1991 (Italian library). ISBN 3-8233-4052-2
  • Colorfully painted in a cage - youth works by Giacomo Leopardi Italian / German, trans. by Helmut Endrulat, illustrated by Joachim John, ed. by Gero Alfred Schwalb and Hans-Peter Klaus. edition schapeti, Langenhagen 1997
  • The Massacre of Illusions (selection from the Zibaldone ). Selected and commented by Mario Andrea Rigoni, trans. by Sigrid Vagt . Eichborn Verlag, Frankfurt a. M. 2002 ( The Other Library No. 207)
  • Opuscula moralia or On Learning to Laugh at Our Sufferings (Operetta morali) . Selected and translated by Burkhart Kroeber , based on the first translation by Paul Heyse . Construction Verlag, Berlin 2017 (Die Other Library No. 389), ISBN 978-3-8477-0389-1

Selected literature on Leopardi

  • Marc Föcking , Volker Steinkamp (ed.): Giacomo Leopardi. Poetry and science in the early 19th century (= Romance studies. 12). Lit, Münster 2004, ISBN 3-8258-6555-X .
  • Hugo Friedrich : Epochs of Italian Poetry. Klostermann, Frankfurt am Main 1964.
  • K. Alfons Knaut: Leopardi's Poetics and Poetry of Indefinito. In: Romance Yearbook . 28, 1977, pp. 150-174.
  • Nico Naldini : Introduzione biografica. In: Giacomo Leopardi: La vita e le lettere (= I grandi libri Garzanti. 285, ZDB -ID 2244499-3 ). Scelta, introduzione biografia e note di Nico Naldini. Garzanti, Milan 1983, (2nd edition, ibid 1989, ISBN 88-11-58285-7 ).
  • Iris Origo : Leopardi. A biography. Milford, London 1935.
  • Iris Origo: Leopardi. A Study in Solitude. Hamilton, London 1953, (Books & Co / Helen Marx Books, Chappaqua NY 1999, ISBN 1-885983-44-1 ).
  • Hans Ludwig Scheel : Leopardi and the ancient world. The years of preparation (1809–1818) and their significance for the complete works (= Munich Romance works. 14). Hueber, Munich 1959, (at the same time: Kiel, University, habilitation paper, 1955).
  • Sebastiano Timpanaro : La Filologia di Giacomo Leopardi (= Quaderni di letteratura e d'arte. 15, ZDB -ID 1456349-6 ). Le Monnier, Florence, 1955, (3a edizione riveduta con addenda. (= Biblioteca universale Laterza. 470). Laterza, Rome et al. 1997, ISBN 88-420-5212-4 ).
  • Karl Vossler : Leopardi. Musarion, Munich 1923, (2nd edition. Winter, Heidelberg 1930).
  • Winfried Wehle : Leopardi's Infinities. On the pathogenesis of a "poesia non poesia" (= writings and lectures of the Petrarca Institute Cologne. NF booklet 2). Narr, Tübingen 2000, ISBN 3-8233-5491-4 ( digital version (PDF; 425 kB) ).
  • Winfried Wehle: L'infinito - dal colle di concetti al mare delle immagini. In: Sebastian Neumeister, Raffaele Sirri (Ed.): Leopardi. Poeta e pensatore. [Napoli, 20-24 March 1996] (= Atti del convegno internazionale della Deutsche Leopardi-Gesellschaft. 3, 1996). A. Guida, Naples 1997, ISBN 88-7188-158-3 , pp. 273-297. ( Digitized version (PDF; 877 kB) ).
  • Winfried Wehle: Iconomachia. About Leopardi's reluctant modernity (“Imitazione”). In: Cornelia Klettke, Sebastian Neumeister (Ed.): Giacomo Leopardi. Poetry as a staged self-deception in the crisis of consciousness. Files from the German Leopardi Day 2015. Frank & Timme, Berlin 2017, pp. 25–57 ( PDF ).

Web links

Commons : Giacomo Leopardi  - album with pictures, videos and audio files
Wikisource: Giacomo Leopardi  - Sources and full texts
Wikisource: Giacomo Leopardi  - Sources and full texts (Italian)

Texts Leopardis online

Information about Leopardi


  1. Friedrich Nietzsche, Note on Wir Philologen No. 3/23 (March 1875), quoted from: ders., Kritische Studienausgabe , ed. by Giorgio Colli and Mazzino Montinari, dtv: Munich, new edition 1999, vol. 8, p. 22.
  2. The other three are Prosper Mérimée , Ralph Waldo Emerson and Walter Savage Landor . Friedrich Nietzsche: The happy science , 2nd book, section 92, quoted from: ders., Critical study edition , ed. by Giorgio Colli and Mazzino Montinari, dtv: Munich, new edition 1999, vol. 3, p. 448.
This version was added to the list of articles worth reading on July 25, 2006 .