A Guide to the Heavens

The Literary Reception of Herman Hugo's "Pia Desideria" in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth


This book is available in open access thanks to the generous support of the Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznań

This is the first monographic study of the reception of Herman Hugo's emblem book Pia desideria (1624) in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. It discusses ten different translations and adaptations, showing how the engravings, elegies and exegetical extracts of the original edition were used by Polish-speaking authors. Attention is also given to the reception of the engravings in paintings. Furthermore, the author examines the reasons for the book's popularity, proving that it was determined by the interest of women who did not know Latin, yet constituted the most important target group for the numerous and varied Polish adaptations.
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Radosław Grześkowiak (1968), Titular Professor, University of Gdańsk, Institute of Polish Philology, literary historian (author of three books) and academic publisher (author or co-author of seventeen editions) specialising in the study of Polish Renaissance and Baroque poetry.
List of Figures and Tables
 1 Introduction
 2 Pia desideria: the Anatomy of Success
 3 Adaptations of Pia desideria Based on Its Engravings
 4 Translations of the Pia desideria Elegies
 5 Translations and Adaptations of Exegetical Excerpts from Pia desideria
 6 Conclusions
The book is addressed to scholars of emblematic literature and those interested in the European contexts of old Polish literature. Keywords: Herman Hugo, Pia desideria, Boetius à Bolswert, religious emblematic literature, emblematics of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, literary reception of emblems, visual reception of embles.
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