Michelangelo Florio and forgiveness; Shakespeare, “the real dramatist of forgiveness” (Von Balthasar). | Stampa |

1. M. O. Nobili examines two important letters, in Latin, sent by M. Florio to Cecil: i) in 1551, he denounced 14 of his parishioners for violation of religion (and recalled the strict Old Testament law); ii) in 1552, for his “act of fornication”, he asked for mercy (and recalled Jesus’ New Law of forgiveness in the New Testament).


2.  The play Measure for Measure by the Dramatist (as already perceived by R. Romani and I. Bellini-2012), seems a sort of autobiographical work, on the basis of the story that is documented by the said letters.


3. Some passages from Michelangelo’s letter of 1552 (on the themes of justice and mercy, already expressed by Aretino in hisSeven Psalms of 1534 and in his letter to Henry VIII of 1542) are -in an impressive way- found, translated into English, in Portia’s speech in praise of mercy (in The Merchant of Venice )!


4. Shakespeare is “the real dramatist of forgiveness”, according to Hans Urs von Balthasar, in his “Excursus: Shakespeare and Forgiveness”; the transition from equalizing justice [i.e., from the Old Testament law of retaliation, “An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth”] to mercy is one of the innermost motive forces of his art”.


Michelangelo Florio and forgiveness (960.93 kB)