Verbal and Physical Violence in the Historie of Aurelio and Isabell

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Debate is the form of verbal violence par excellence.The verbal violence of the earlier debate that resulted in the deaths of the exemplary lovers is now replaced by physical violence, graphic vengeance by which he is tortured by a thousand different torments. Jakobson’s observation of the cyclical nature of referentiality is especially pertinent in the case of the Historie of Aurelio and Isabell, a work of translation and adaptation that appears in the mid-sixteenth century. The escalation of violence is precipitated by Afranio’s unanticipated infatuation with Hortensia following the death of Isabell. The importance of ritual sacrifice is paramount, its absence is cataclysmic: Mimetic desire is simply a term more comprehensive than violence for religious pollution. Given the violent dissolution of the three relationships portrayed in the text, it is tempting to read the text as an illustration of Ren Girard’s axiom that desire inevitably breeds disaster rather than romance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationVengeance in the Middle Ages
Subtitle of host publicationEmotion, Religion and Feud
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9781317002475
ISBN (Print)9780754664215
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Arts and Humanities


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