[Milton-L] Tommaso Campanella's Milton Connection

Dario Rivarossa dario.rivarossa at gmail.com
Sun Jan 10 02:48:35 EST 2016

Dear friends and scholars

one of the most appreciated Christmas gift this year has been a Latin
version of Tommaso Campanella's "De Homine" (On Man), a section of his
monumental "Theologia." Mostly known because of his utopic book "The
City of the Sun" -- the Italian parallel to Thomas More's book --
Campanella worked on his own Summa in the early 1620s when he was in
prison as a heretic. The time period is more or less the same as
Milton's, and the last chapters of "De Homine" deal precisely with
Adam's prelapsarian condition. It might be worth translating all of
it, but we'll have to limit ourselves to a couple of paragraphs from
Book 4. Both similarities and differences with Milton are intriguing.
Hope you may find it interesting.

(. . .) People did not eat flesh until the Flood, as St. Jerome and
all Church Fathers teach. Therefore Eve was not frightened when she
saw the serpent on the tree, while all animals gave joy and
entertainment to them. She was not even amazed by its voice as by a
novelty, insofar as she could understand it as she did with the other
animals' -- we would perhaps prove more amazed if we heard a Scythian
speak our language. In fact, I think that the demon spoke serpent
language, not human, in order to deceive her. But, perhaps, Eve was
not yet very expert on the specific languages of the different
(Ch. 10. 2)

[In the state of innocence, Man could not be deceived, so. . .] If
anyone asked how Eve could be deceived, I would answer that she was
deprived of God's help [i.e. Edenic grace that defended Man against
any kind of accident] because of the sin in her mind, by which she
overestimated herself [praesumpsit de se supra se]. Adam, according to
the Apostle [Paul, in I Tim. 2.14], was not "in the transgression" but
was seduced: Choosing to follow his wife, he broke obedience by
preferring the good of present pleasure to divine good, that's why the
Apostle terms Adam "disobedient" and Eve "deceived."
(Ch. 11. 1)

il Tassista http://tassonomia.blogspot.it e http://stornielle.blogspot.it
co-artist with the Magic Trio http://tiziafra.wix.com/the-magic-trio

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