Francesco Petrarch was an illustrious Italian poet and scholar, and the earliest humanist in Renaissance Italy. He is also regarded as the instigator of Humanism. His rediscovery of Cicero’s letters is considered to have marked the 14th-century Renaissance. Petrarch’s works and thoughts formed the basis of the model for the modern Italian language which was created by Pietro Bembo in the 16th-century. Accademia della Crusca later endorsed Petrarch as a model for Italian style. During the Renaissance, Petrarch’s sonnets were imitated and admired across Europe and they also became a prototype for lyrical poetry. Following is a list of quotes and sayings by Francesco Petrarch, the man who is also known to be the first to enunciate the concept of ‘Dark Ages.' Go through the quotes and thoughts by Francesco Petrarch that will give you a glimpse of his lyrical mind.
Mere elegance of language can produce at best but an empty renown.
I saw the tracks of angels in the earth: the beauty of heaven walking by itself on the world.
It is more honorable to be raised to a throne than to be born to one. Fortune bestows the one, merit obtains the other.
It may be only glory that we seek here, but I persuade myself that, as long as we remain here, that is right. Another glory awaits us in heaven and he who reaches there will not wish even to think of earthly fame.
Alack our life, so beautiful to see, With how much ease life losest, in a day, What many years with pain and toil amassed!
I freeze and burn, love is bitter and sweet, my sighs are tempests and my tears are floods, I am in ecstasy and agony, I am possessed by memories of her and I am in exile from myself.
Who naught suspects is easily deceived.
Who over-refines his argument brings himself to grief
Nothing mortal is enduring, and there is nothing sweet which does not presently end in bitterness.
What name to call thee by, O virgin fair, I know not, for thy looks are not of earth And more than mortal seems thy countenances
Hitherto your eyes have been darkened and you have looked too much, yes, far too much, upon the things of earth. If these so much delight you what shall be your rapture when you lift your gaze to things eternal!
Often have I wondered with much curiosity as to our coming into this world and what will follow our departure.
I looked back at the summit of the mountain, which seemed but a cubit high in comparison with the height of human contemplation, were in not too often merged in the corruptions of the earth.
Books have led some to learning and others to madness.
Where you are is of no moment, but only what you are doing there. It is not the place that ennobles you, but you the place, and this only by doing that which is great and noble.
Continued work and application form my soul's nourishment. So soon as I commenced to rest and relax I should cease to live.
And men go about to wonder at the heights of the mountains, and the mighty waves of the sea, and the wide sweep of rivers, and the circuit of the ocean, and the revolution of the stars, but themselves they consider not.
Perhaps out there, somewhere, someone is sighing for your absence; and with this thought, my soul begins to breathe.
Gold, silver, jewels, purple garments, houses built of marble, groomed estates, pious paintings, caparisoned steeds, and other things of this kind offer a mutable and superficial pleasure; books give delight to the very marrow of one's bones. They speak to us, consult with us, and join with us in a living and intense intimacy.
Each famous author of antiquity whom I recover places a new offence and another cause of dishonor to the charge of earlier generations, who, not satisfied with their own disgraceful barrenness, permitted the fruit of other minds, and the writings that their ancestors had produced by toil and application, to perish through insufferable neglect. Although they had nothing of their own to hand down to those who were to come after, they robbed posterity of its ancestral heritage.
If a hundred or a thousand people, all of the same
age, of the same constitution and habits, were suddenly
seized by the same illness, and one half of them were to
place themselves under the care of doctors, such as they
are in our time, whilst the other half entrusted themselves
to Nature and to their own discretion, I have not the
slightest doubt that there would be more cases of death
amongst the former, and more cases of recovery among
The time will come when every change shall cease,
This quick revolving wheel shall rest in peace:
No summer then shall glow, not winter freeze;
Nothing shall be to come, and nothing past,
But an eternal now shall ever last.
Books come at my call and return when I desire them; they are never out of humor and they answer all my questions with readiness. Some present in review before me the events of past ages; others reveal to me the secrets of Nature. These teach me how to live, and those how to die; these dispel my melancholy by their mirth, and amuse me by their sallies of wit. Some there are who prepare my soul to suffer everything, to desire nothing, and to become thoroughly acquainted with itself. In a word, they open the door to all the arts and sciences.
Books never pall on me. They discourse with us, they take counsel with us, and are united to us by a certain living chatty familiarity. And not only does each book inspire the sense that it belongs to its readers, but it also suggests the name of others, and one begets the desire of the other.
Whyle I was abowte to chaunge myn olde lyff--
What sorowe I suffred, dyseese, angre and stryff,
Cracchynge myn here, my chekys all totare,
Wrythynge my fyngres for angwysshe and care,
Watrynge the erthe with my byttre salte teres
That the crye of my syghes ascended to Goddys eres,
My knees with myn handys grasped togedyre soore,
And yitt I stode the same man I was afore
Tyl a depe profounde remembraunce att the laste
Hadd all my wrecchednesse afore myn eyn caste
To begin with myself, then, the utterances of men concerning me will differ widely, since in passing judgment almost every one is influenced not so much by truth as by preference, and good and evil report alike know no bounds.
There is no lighter burden, nor more agreeable, than a pen. Other pleasures fail us or wound us while they charm, but the pen we take up rejoicing and lay down with satisfaction, for it has the power to advantage not only its lord and master, but many others as well, even though they be far away - sometimes, indeed, though they be not born for thousands of years to come.
Love is the crowning grace of humanity, the holiest right of the soul, the golden link which binds us to duty and truth, the redeeming principle that chiefly reconciles the heart to life, and is prophetic of eternal good.
I had got this far, and was thinking of what to say next, and as my habit is, I was pricking the paper idly with my pen. And I thought how, between one dip of the pen and the next, time goes on, and I hurry, drive myself, and speed toward death. We are always dying. I while I write, you while you read, and others while they listen or stop their ears, they are all dying.