Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

crowning grace April 6, 2011

Filed under: Grace Beguiling - Petrarch,Pondering — Shawn L. Bird @ 4:35 pm
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“Love is the crowning grace of humanity, the holiest right of the soul, the golden link which binds us to duty and truth, the redeeming principle that chiefly reconciles the heart of life, and is prophetic of eternal good.”

~Francesco Petrarca

He had to say that.  He was so obsessed with his Laure, wife of another, that people talked.  He was a priest, after all, and a scholar.  His mind should have been set much higher than all this mundane love stuff.  He knew it, too.  He couched his obsession in lofty terms:  Such love as his for her was a crowning grace!  Oh, he adored her soul.  She inspired him to greater spirituality.  She was all purity and goodness.  Blah blah blah.  I know what obsession looks like.  Francesco had it bad! 

He was a very famous scholar and diplomat in his time.  He traveled through Italy, France and Germany negotiating peace treaties and mediating disputes.  He rescued early Greek and Roman literature and was the father of humanism.  He wrote biographies of the greatest warriors of Classical times.   He had a huge influence on civilization, but what is he most known for?  For his obsession with a married woman.  It’s kind of pathetic, really.  Except, one can’t help admiring his devotion.  What would it be like to be adored like that?  How did Laure feel about it all?  There is some reference to her reactions in his writings and those of others at the time.

What do you think?  How would you feel?

 

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