Writing and rewriting in the poetry of Jacopo Durandi

Francesco Lucioli

It is customary to retain that the poetry of the Piedmontese man of letters Jacopo Durandi (Santhià, 25 July 1737 – Turin, 28 october 1817) stopped after the writing of the librettos for Armida (1770) and Annibale in Torino (1771), to leave space for the historical and erudite research characterising his works published between the end of the eighteenth century and beginning of the nineteenth. Nevertheless a close reading of the volume Idilj printed in 1808, which presents itself as a second edition of works published in 1766, instead reveals a project of scrupulous revision and profound rewriting of the earlier poetic texts, a project that dissolves the image of the severe jurist by then far from the world of letters and that permits understanding of the way in which Durandi intended to achieve, through the practice of writing, the supersession of the Arcadian classicism hoped for in Discorso intorno a’ Geni della poesia e del canto venerati dai nostri antichi come dai greci Apollo e le Muse, academic prose preliminary to this final poetic sylloge.