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Print and communication

Seminar Tutor

Luca Molà

Site Visit

The Biblioteca Marciana. Meet at the entrance to the Biblioteca Marciana.

Seminar Questions

  • Why was the printing industry so successful in Venice?
  • How and why did the Government and the Church seek to control the press? How successful were they?
  • To what degree did printing alter the dynamics of Venetian literary culture?
  • How did print interact with existing cultures of manuscript and oral communication in Venice?

Key Texts


Further Reading

  • Carroll, Linda, 'Venetian Literature and Publishing', in Dursteler, A Companion to Venetian History, 1400-1797 (Leiden, 2013), pp. 615-50.
  • Rosa Salzberg, Ephemeral City: Cheap Print and Urban Culture in Renaissance Venice (Manchester, 2014)
  • Rosa Salzberg, "Selling Stories and Many Other Things In and Through the City: Peddling Print in Sixteenth-Century Florence and Venice", Sixteenth-Century Journal, 42 (2011), n. 3, pp. 737-759.
  • Rosa Salzberg, "In the Mouth of Charlatans: Street Performers and the Dissemination of Pamphlets in Renaissance Italy", Renaissance Studies, 24/5 (2010), pp. 638-653.
  • Rosa Salzberg, "Print Peddling and Urban Culture in Renaissance Italy" in Not dead things: the dissemination of popular print in England and Wales, Italy, and the Low Countries, 1500-1820, edited by Jeroen Salman, Roeland Harms, Joad Raymond (Leiden, 2013), 33-52.
  • Christopher May, "The Venetian Moment: New Technologies, Legal Innovation and the Institutional Origins of Intellectual Property", Prometheus 20, n. 2 (2002): 159-179.
  • Brian Richardson, Print culture in Renaissance Italy: the editor and the vernacular text, 1470-1600 (Cambridge & New York, 1994).
  • Christopher Black, The Italian Inquisition (New Haven, 2009), chapter 7.
  • Deborah Parker, "Women in the book trade in Italy, 1475 - 1620", Renaissance Quarterly 49(3) (1996): 509 – 541.
  • Martin Lowry, The World of Aldus Manutius: Business and Scholarship in Renaissance Venice (Ithaca, NY, 1979).
  • Martin Lowry, Nicholas Jenson and the Rise of Venetian Printing in Renaissance Europe (Oxford, 1991)
  • Paul F. Grendler, Critics of the Italian World, 1530 - 1560: Anton Francesco Doni, Nicolò Franco and Ortensio Lando (Madison, 1969).
  • Raymond B. Waddington, Aretino’s Satyr: Sexuality, Satire, and Self-Projection in Sixteenth-Century Literature and Art (Toronto, 2004), Chapter 2.
  • Raymond B. Waddington, "A Satirist's Impresa: The Medals of Pietro Aretino", Renaissance Quarterly 42:4 (1989): 655-68.
  • Susan Gaylard, ‘‘Naked’ truth: Clothing, Patronage, and Genius in Aretino’s Letters’ The Italianist 28 (2008): 179-202.
  • Craig Kallendorf, “In Search of a Patron: Anguillara's Vernacular Virgil and the Print Culture of Renaissance Italy”, Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America 91, no. 3 (1997): 294 - 325.
  • Martin Lowry, “Venetian capital, German technology and Renaissance culture in the later fifteenth century”, Renaissance Studies 2, no. 1 (1988): 1-13.
  • Martha Feldman, City Culture and the Madrigal at Venice (Berkeley, CA, 1995).
  • Diana Robin, Publishing Women. Salons, the Presses, and the Counter-Reformation in Sixteenth-Century Italy (Chicago, 2007).
  • Margaret Rosenthal, The Honest Courtesan: Veronica Franco, Citizen and Writer in Sixteenth-Century Venice (Chicago, 1992).
  • Margaret Rosenthal, "Veronica Franco's Terze Rime: the Venetian Courtesan's Defense", Renaissance Quarterly 42:2 (1989): 227-257
  • John Monfasani, "The First Call for Press Censorship: Niccolò Perotti, Giovanni Andrea Bussi, Antonio Moreto, and the Editing of Pliny's Natural History," Renaissance Quarterly 41 (1988): 1 - 31.
  • C. L. C. E. Witcombe, Copyright in the Renaissance: Prints and the 'Privilegio' in Sixteenth-Century Venice and Rome (Leiden, 2004).
  • Richard Agee, "The Venetian privilege and music-printing in the sixteenth century," Early music history 3 (1983): 1–42.
  • Horatio F. Brown, The Venetian Printing Press (London, 1891).
  • Elizabeth Horodowich, Language and Statecraft in Early Modern Venice (Cambridge, 2008).
  • Paul F. Grendler, The Roman Inquisition and the Venetian Press, 1540 - 1605 (Princeton, NJ, 1977).
  • Iain Fenlon, The Ceremonial City. History, Memory and Myth in Renaissance Venice (New Haven, 2007).
  • Gigliola Fragnito (ed.), Church, Censorship and Culture in Early Modern Italy (Cambridge, 2001), 194-222.
  • Anne Jacobson Schutte, "The lettere volgari and the crisis of evangelism in Italy," Renaissance Quarterly 28, no. 4 (1975): 639 - 688.
  • Cristina Dondi, "Printers and Guilds in Fifteenth-Century Venice," La Bibliofilia 106, no. 3 (2004): 229-65.
  • Ivo Mattozzi, “‘Mondo del libro’ e decadenza a Venezia (1570-1730),” Quaderni storici 72, no. 3 (1989): 743-86.
  • Claudia di Filippo Bareggi, "L'editoria veneziana tra '500", in Storia di Venezia (1994).