The Decameron

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W. W. Norton & Company, Sep 16, 2013 - Fiction - 947 pages

"Celebrated in the Renaissance as the foremost stylist of Italian prose, Boccaccio has seldom met his match in English translation...Wayne Rebhorn’s fluid and dynamic rendition hits the mark on every page." —William J. Kennedy, Cornell University

The year is 1348. The Black Death has begun to ravage Europe. Ten young Florentines—seven women and three men—escape the plague-infested city and retreat to the countryside around Fiesole. At their leisure in this isolated and bucolic setting, they spend ten days telling each other stories—tales of romance, tragedy, comedy, and farce—one hundred in all. The result, called by one critic "the greatest short story collection of all time" (Leonard Barkan, Princeton University) is a rich and entertaining celebration of the medley of medieval life.

Witty, earthy, and filled with bawdy irreverence, the one hundred stories of The Decameron offer more than simple escapism; they are also a life-affirming balm for trying times. The Decameron is a joyously comic book that has earned its place in world literature not just because it makes us laugh, but more importantly because it shows us how essential laughter is to the human condition.

Published on the 700th anniversary of Boccaccio’s birth, Wayne A. Rebhorn's new translation of The Decameron introduces a generation of readers to this "rich late-medieval feast" in a "lively, contemporary, American-inflected English" (Stephen Greenblatt, Harvard University) even as it retains the distinctly medieval flavor of Boccaccio's rhetorically expressive prose.

An extensive introduction provides useful details about Boccaccio's historical and cultural milieu, the themes and particularities of the text, and the lines of influence flowing into and out of this towering monument of world literature.

 

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THE DECAMERON

User Review  - Kirkus

A much-translated tale of plagues, priestly malfeasance, courtly love and the Seven Deadly Sins finds a satisfying new version in English.The Decameron, as its Greek-derived name suggests, is a cycle ... Read full review

User Review - Flag as inappropriate

Warning!! The link to buy the eBook does not take you to Rebhorn's translation but to the older one by McWilliams, which is much more difficult to read. Rebhorn's is great fun to read

Contents

Introduction
xxiii
Headnotes
lxvii
Preface
1
Ser Cepparello deceives a holy friar with a false confession and dies
24
With sprightly words Guiglielmo Borsiere rebukes the avarice
63
Day 2
76
Landolfo Rufolo is impoverished becomes a pirate and is ship
98
Having been falsely accused the Count of Antwerp goes into exile
157
Conclusion
469
A knight offers Madonna Oretta a horseback ride in the form of a
475
Michele Scalza proves to certain young men that the Baronci are the
491
Frate Cipolla promises a group of peasants that he will show them
502
Conclusion
511
Day 7
518
her lover in a barrel Her husband has sold it but she says that
526
Tofano locks his wife out of the house one night and when she
537

Deceived by Ambruogiuolo Bernabo of Genoa loses his money
174
Paganino da Monaco abducts the wife of Messer Ricciardo di
188
Conclusion
196
Masetto da Lamporecchio pretends he is a deafmute and becomes
204
A groom sleeps with the wife of King Agilulf When the King finds 112
212
Under the pretext of making her confession as someone with an
218
Dom Felice teaches Frate Puccio how to achieve blessedness byper
228
lO Alibech becomes a recluse and Rustico a monk teaches her how 9 90
290
Introduction
300
Tancredi Prince of Salerno kills his daughters lover and sends her
308
The wife of a doctor assumes that a lover of hers who has taken
374
Conclusion
384
Cimone acquires wisdom through his love for his lady Efigenia
390
ing become a rich man returns with her to Lipari
402
Fleeing with Agnolella Pietro Boccamazza runs into a gang of
409
Ricciardo Manardi is discovered by Messer Lizio da Valbona with
417
Before he dies Guidotto da Cremona entrusts a young girl to the
423
Having been found with the girl he loves who had been given to
430
Teodoro falls in love with Violante the daughter of his master
437
In love with a lady from the Traversari family Nastagio degli
445
In love with a lady who does not return his affection Federigo degli
451
After Pietro di Vinciolo goes out to have supper his wife invites
459
ing Leonetto home
551
A woman is loved by two Sienese one of whom is the godfather of
583
Day 8
592
scolds him he gets angry and beats her Finally he tells his friends
603
A Sicilian woman masterfully relieves a merchant of the goods
677
Conclusion
690
Introduction
693
Egged on by Bruno Buffalmacco and Nello Master Simone makes
705
When Calandrino falls in love with a young woman Bruno makes 7 15
715
and finds himself in a very serious and unpleasant predicament
724
When Biondello plays a trick on Ciacco about a dinner Ciacco clev
733
Donno Gianni is prevailed upon by compar Pietro to use an incan
744
Day 10
752
Envious of Nathans reputation for courtesy Mithridanes sets out
763
Messer Gentile de Carisendi comes from Modena and takes the
771
Induced by the entreaties of his vassals to take a wife the Mar
839
Conclusion
851
Acknowledgments
861
96
871
Suggestions for Further Reading
945
Copyright

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About the author (2013)

Wayne A. Rebhorn is the Celanese Centennial Professor of English at the University of Texas, where he teaches English, Italian, and comparative literature. He lives in Austin, Texas.

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