The Matière de Rome

Works from this corpus are based on tales from Roman history and mythology and rely on direct interpretation from classical Latin poets as well as indirect borrowing from thirteenth-century French works. Vernacular renditions of classical material were particularly successful in Italy owing to the historical relationship between the Romans of antiquity and the Italians of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, who looked to these works as evidence of their own past. These works include:

• A Franco-Italian version of Le Roman d’Alexandre;
• The Roman d’Hector et Hercule
• The Pharsale of Niccolò da Verona.

Many other works written in French within this corpus were copied and circulated throughout Italy – including the Fatti dei Cesari, Roman d’Eneas, and the Alexandre en Prose -, forming the backdrop and inspiration for works composed in Italy.

General Bibliography

Carlesso, G. “La fortuna della ‘Historia destructionis Troiae’ di Guido della Colona e un volgarizzamento finora ignoto.” Giornale Storico della Letteratura Italiana 152 (1980): 230-51.

Everson, Jane. The Italian Romance Epic in the Age of Humanism: The Matter of Italy and the World of Rome.New York: Oxford University Press, 2001.

Flutre, Louis-Fernand. Li Fait des Romains dans les Littératures Française et Italienne du XIIIe au XVIe siècle.Geneva: Slatkine Reprints, 1974.

Morf, H. “Notes pour servir à la legende de Troie en Italie et en Espagne.” Romania 21 (1892): 18-38.