Giuseppe Gioachino Belli

(1411 words)
  • Stefan Pedatella (Barnard College )

When Italian novelist Alberto Moravia wrote that there were few examples of nineteenth-century Italian fiction that could measure up to the achievement of Giuseppe Gioachino Belli's lyric poetry, he consciously decided to illustrate the importance of Belli's verse in narrative terms. Belli's immense corpus of 2279 sonnets (approximately 85% of which were written in an astonishingly fruitful period between 1830 and 1837) offers us perhaps the single most comprehensive picture of daily life in the working- and lower-class neighborhoods of pre-Risorgimento Rome. With their bitterly humorous depictions of street life--from the arrogance and corruption of all those with any kind of authority (priests, police, pimps etc.), to …

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Pedatella, Stefan. "Giuseppe Gioachino Belli". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 06 December 2011
[, accessed 28 November 2015.]