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Merlino Coccajo

pinta, della and life

MERLINO COCCAJO, otherwise known as TEOFILO 'VOLE:NG°. Ids real name (1491-1544). One of the principal nutea ronic poets of the sixteenth century. At the age of eighteen he became a member of the Benedictine Order, and while a monk he wrote Latin verses in the style of Vergil. About 1515 he forsook monastic life and wandered about the country with a young woman of good family. Girolama Dieda. often in great poverty, for lie had no resource but his poetic talent. His first publieation was Iier/ini Cocci, ii Macarononicon (Venice, 1517 and 1521), which relates the ad ventures of a fictitious hero named Baldus. This poem is written in macaronie verse, which Fo lengo was the first to use with success. Coarse though it was, it contained much genuine poetry and it beeame very popular. Like the later Or landino, an Italian poem in octaves dealing with adventures of the youthful Roland, the work was a parody on the heroic epic as written by Ariosto. Ruing his wayward career, Folengo

returned to his Order. About this time appears the macaronie Chaos del tripperino, an autobio graphical account of his errors and repentance (1527). He seems to have devoted the rest of his life to the production of religious works only, such as the Palermitana o union/la di Cristo and the play .4 tto della pinta. For editions of his works, consult: Lc operc macchcronichr di Mer lins Coccaio, edited by Portioli (Mantua. 89) Marzo, Drammatiche rappresentazioni, 1.-ii. (Palermo. 1876), which contains the Alto della pinta and the Palermitana ; Thecalta dui pin celebri pormi eroicomicl italiutui, vol. i.

1841), which contains Orlandino; Luzia, Vuore riccrche sul Folcngo (Turin, 1880); Selmeegans, Gesvhivhte der grotesken Satire (Strassburg, 1S94) : Zumbini, "11 Folengo pre curso•e del Cervantes," in Studi di italiana (Florence, 1894).