‘I dote on Tasso’
in Tasso’s art and afterlives
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This introduction presents an overview of key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of the book. The book examines the literary, artistic and biographical afterlives in England of the great sixteenth-century Italian poet Torquato Tasso, from before his death to the end of the nineteenth century. It focuses on the literary impact of Armida's arrival in the poem, examining how the poets Abraham Fraunce and Samuel Daniel both responded to canto IV of Tasso's poem. The book also examines the numerous English poetic responses in the first half of the 1590s to the celebrated song from the amorous episode. It analyses the impact in England of visual depictions of scenes from Tasso's romantic episodes, featuring both Rinaldo and Armida and the almost equally popular Tancredi and Erminia, in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The book then examines the idiosyncratic interpretation, by Paolo Rolli, of a different romantic episode in Tasso.

Tasso’s art and afterlives

The Gerusalemme liberata in England


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