From Ethics to Philology and Back: The Fortune of Taddeo Alderotti’s Liber ethicorum between the Late Middle Ages and the Renaissance

Riccardo Saccenti, Università degli Studi di Bergamo & SIMS 2022-2023 Visiting Research Fellow

Presented in partnership with the Center for Italian Studies.

October 27, 2022 - 5:15 pm to 6:30 pm @ NEW LOCATION: Seminar Room 627, Kislak Center, Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center, 6th floor
Lecture Open to the public
Manuscript opening of Taddeo Alderotti's translation of the Summa Alexandrinorum with a decorative roundel in red, green, and gold.

Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics plays a crucial role in the intellectual history of Latin Europe and its impact was not limited to the universities. Brunetto Latini used an abridgment of Aristotle’s Ethics, the so-called Summa Alexandrinorum or Liber ethicorum, in his Tresor and the same text was translated into Italian by Taddeo Alderotti, spreading the Aristotelian ethics among the urban culture in Italy. Making use of three manuscripts and a printed edition of this Liber Ethicorum preserved at Penn Libraries, it is possible to go through the diffusion of this text, evaluating its impact in the building of the moral behaviour of the Italian and European elites between the fourteenth and the sixteenth centuries.

Image: Taddeo Alderroti's Leticha del magnio filosefo AristotileUPenn Ms. Codex 243, fol. 1r.