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Guinizelli, Guido

The Oxford Companion to Chaucer
Douglas Gray

Guinizelli, Guido 


of Bologna, Italian poet. His canzone ‘Al cor gentil rempaira sempre Amore’ (Love always seeks his dwelling in the gentle heart) insists on the unity of noble love and true ‘gentilesse’ (‘Within the gentle heart love shelters him, | As birds within the green shade of the grove. | Before the gentle heart, in Nature's scheme, | Love was not, nor the gentle heart ere love’ (D. G. Rossetti). This, and the way in which Guido combined passion and intellect to create a philosophical poetry of love, profoundly impressed Dante, who quotes and echoes the canzone several times. Chaucer's lines in Troilus and Criseyde ‘Plesance of love, O goodly debonaire, | In gentil hertes ay redy to repaire’ (III.4–5) seem to be a clear echo of the poem's opening. It is not certain that Chaucer knew the whole poem at first hand: he could well have picked up this passage from Dante. However, the sentiments of Antigone's song in Troilus are similar to Guinizelli's. Whether at first hand, or via Dante, Guinizelli's ideas influenced Chaucer.


Marti, Mario (1969) (ed.), Poeti del dolce stil nuovo (Florence).Find this resource: