Reject Aeneas, Accept Pius

Reject Aeneas, Accept Pius: Selected Letters of Aeneas Sylvius Piccolomini (Pope Pius II)

Thomas M. Izbicki
Gerald Christianson
Philip Krey
Copyright Date: 2006
Pages: 453
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt32b0jk
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  • Book Info
    Reject Aeneas, Accept Pius
    Book Description:

    Aeneas Sylvius Piccolomini (1405-1464, elected Pope Pius II in 1458) was an important and enigmatic figure of the Renaissance as well as one of the most prolific writers and gifted stylists ever to occupy the papacy

    eISBN: 978-0-8132-1642-3
    Subjects: Religion

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. FOREWORD
    (pp. ix-x)
    John Monfasani

    The letter was the Renaissance humanists’ favorite mode of literary expression, and Pius II was a master of the genre. Some humanists, such as Petrarch and Erasmus, practiced the genre mainly as a means of private communication and literary expression, some as the way they earned their daily bread (Renaissance bureaucracies and the households of high lay and ecclesiastical officials could not do without humanist secretaries), and some as gifted switch-hitters who moved with seemingly effortless ease between official correspondence and the writing of letters of high literary and intellectual significance (the many illustrious papal secretaries and the great series...

  4. PREFACE
    (pp. xi-xii)
    Thomas M. Izbicki, Gerald Christianson and Philip Krey
  5. A NOTE ON THE TRANSLATIONS
    (pp. xiii-xiv)
  6. CITATIONS AND ABBREVIATIONS
    (pp. xv-xvi)
  7. INTRODUCTION: From Private Person to Posterity
    (pp. 1-58)

    In the first of several frescoes in the library of Siena Cathedral, we see the young Aeneas Sylvius Piccolomini (1405–64; pope after 1458). Originally a small-town boy from Corsignano, he is elaborately dressed and mounted on a handsome steed, ready to set forth on a great and lifelong adventure that will eventually lead him to the pinnacle of power as Pope Pius II. In the background we also see the cardinal who has just engaged his services as secretary and the ship they are to board for the journey northward to the Council of Basel (1431–49), while, ominously,...

  8. LETTERS (Nos. 1–75)
    (pp. 59-318)

    My most reverend sir etc.

    I promised to report to you in letters, as far as I was able, all things which befell my lord⁴ and me on our travels and also whatever I saw or heard which was worthy of report. But it also is my resolution at the present time not to write anything unless I myself have seen it with my eyes or touched it with my hands, for if I refer to a report I have heard from others, I will surely include something false, which never has pleased me. In this way, all that you...

  9. REVISED HISTORY OF THE COUNCIL (No. 76)
    (pp. 319-388)

    To Juan de Carvajal, cardinal deacon of Sant’ Angelo, cardinal of the holy Roman church, a most learned and holy father and his lord, Aeneas, bishop of Trieste, sends manifold greetings.

    No one but a fool would deny that it is healthful and useful for the public good to inform youths of those things which our ancestors did and those which we do. Nor would I think it badly said if we were to say history is the only thing that can, against nature, imbue youths with prudence. Here is its greatest praise: history is the witness of times past,...

  10. PAPAL DOCUMENTS (Nos. 77–78)
    (pp. 389-406)

    Pius, bishop, servant of the servants of God, for future reference.

    An execrable wrong, unheard of during earlier ages, has grown up in our tempestuous times, that several, infected with the spirit of rebellion, with no desire for sounder judgments but uniting to evade the penalty for sin, should dare to appeal from the Roman pontiff, the vicar of Jesus Christ, to whom was said, in the person of St. Peter, “Feed my sheep” [John 21:17] and “Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven” [Matt. 16:19], to a future council. How at odds this is with the...

  11. SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY
    (pp. 407-416)
  12. INDEX OF NAMES
    (pp. 417-428)
  13. INDEX OF PLACES
    (pp. 429-432)
  14. INDEX OF SUBJECTS
    (pp. 433-436)
  15. Back Matter
    (pp. 437-437)