- Pub. Date:
- Penn State University Press
Following studies by Goodman, Waley, and Darst, this new study of Garcilaso's work rejects as unfounded the traditional readings of Garcilaso's poetry based on the idea of sincerity and the poet's frustrated love for the Portuguese lady-in-waiting Isabel Freire. In place of the much-abused concept of sincerity, Heiple argues that the intellectual currents of the Renaissance are much more important for the analysis of Garcilaso's poetry. He analyzes in Garcilaso's poetry the uses of Renaissance concepts of mythology, poetic style, theories of love, primitivism, and iconological traditions. Especially important in these analyses are the poetic practices of Petrarchism as defined by Pietro Bembo and the reaction against them proclaimed by Bernardo Tasso.
Heiple studies each of the sonnets, tracing their roots in the Hispanic cancionero poetry through Petrarchism and Neoplatonism to the specific reactions against the Italian Petrarchan mode, ending with the sonnets in imitation of the classical epigram. Several longer poems, Canción IV, Elegy II, and Ode ad florem Gnidi, are discussed within the contexts of Renaissance poetic conventions and ideas, bringing to the fore Garcilaso's incisive wit. By abandoning the traditional search for biographical elements in the love poems, Heiple is able to bring new relevant information to the interpretation of well-known texts and provide new readings for many of Garcilaso's poems.