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Presentation on theme: "THE UTOPIA OF ABUNDANCE I.T.C. BODONI 2002/03 3°TEI CLASS."— Presentation transcript:



3 POVERTY AND ABUNDANCE IN THE MIDDLE AGES For a long time in history hunger has been a daily experience for many people. Years of abundance were followed by years of misery. Wars and bad weather could provoke bad harvests and as a consequence famine. August – fresco – 15 th century

4 Famine was often followed by epidemics and pestilence which contributed to reduce the population weakened by hunger. Epidemics went on until the end of the 17th century The pestilence in Florence – manuscript - 14th century Reality

5 Since XIII century popular imagination has created the myth of a gastronomic paradise, a utopian land where food never lacks: this is the land of milk and honey, the so called land of Cuccagna. The land of Cuccagna - print of the middle 13th century Dream

6 CUCCAGNA: THE LAND OF MILK AND HONEY The dream of abundance The dream of abundance The word What is it like?

7 THE DREAM OF ABUNDANCE Cuccagna (the “land of milk and honey”) is a fantastic place of abundance, where food can be taken and eaten freely, without any limits. It is often an overturned world, where the absurd is common. Popular art has often described it from the Middle Ages to Modern Age. Pietre Brugel -The “land of milk and honey” -1567 index

8 The word “ Cuccagna” seems to come from the medieval Latin “Cocania”, formed by a word that means cakes (German: Kuchen) and the suffix “-ania” usually found at the end of country names. Other names of the “land of milk and honey” are: Bengodi, Ser Godigliano’s land, that comes from the word “godere”,to enjoy in English. Tommaso from Modena - fresco - 1352 The word index

9 Cuccagna “the land of milk and honey" is part of a fantastic place and it is described by a fancy geography. Many popular prints represent the map of this country. It is situated in an undefined European country and it is very far away. According to some people, the entrance might be placed under the current of a river. The land of Cuccagna – Print – Rome or Venice - about 16th century What is it like? index

10 It is a wonderful country. In the middle of a valley, a volcano is used as a cooker for a huge pot cooking maccheroni, ravioli and tortelli, then they roll and soak in butter and cheese. The mountains are covered with buttermilk curd, the lakes and the rivers are made of manna, milk and wine. The birds fall down the sky like rain drops to be roasted. The fish jump out of the water and they dive into the frying pan. The fruit on the trees is always ripe, ready to be eaten. The roads are paved with “lasagne”, the bridges are big salami, the walls are made of sweets. If a person washes his/her face in the fountain, he/she gets younger. The working people are in prison, while the sleeping people enjoy life. The land of Cuccagna - print - Rome or Venice-about 16th century index

11 ABUNDANCE IN LITERATURE Giovanni Boccaccio Decameron Calandrino and the district Bengodi

12 Giovanni Boccaccio He is one of the most important writers of Italian Literature. He lived in the 15th century in Florence and in Naples. He wrote his works in vulgar florentine (first form of Italian language). To follow his father’s will he studied law, but Giovanni loved literature. He read the French romances and Provencal poetry, and wrote several works. Boccaccio’s masterpiece is “Decameron”. Andrea del Castagno – Boccaccio - 1450 index

13 Decameron The title is formed by two Greek words “deca” and “hemera” that is ten days. It is a collection of one hundred tales split up in ten days. The themes were: love, mockery, luck, the ancient virtues of the riders, the cunning attitude of the new mercharts. The tales are either comical or tragic. The work symbolizes the society and the mercantile way of thinking of the Middle Ages. Decameron – miniature index

14 The author tells the story of seven girls and three boys who left the city of Florence in 1348 to escape a plague and they went to live in the country. There they felt isolated and to spend the time they told tales. Every day, at turn, one boy decided a theme and together, at turn, they told their stories. Spinello Aretino – Decameron – 14th century index

15 Calandrino and the district Bengodi Day VIII novella III Giovanni Boccaccio, an Italian writer of XIV century, describes the land of Cuccagna. In his most famous work the “Decameron”, he tells the short story of Calandrino. He is an ingenuous painter that is cheated by his friends Bruno and Buffalmacco. They describe the wonderful district Bengodi and Calandrino ingenuosly believes that this land really exists. In this short story the country of gastronomic abundance is called Bengodi (by the Italian word “godere”, in English “to enjoy”). index

16 The district Bengodi In Bengodi vineyards are tied up with sausages, geese cost only a denier, ducklings come as a present, cooks continue to cook “maccheroni” and “ravioli” that everybody can eat in large quantity. In Bengodi there is a mountain of grated “parmigiano” and there is a river of Vernaccia wine. Bengodi is situated in an imaginary land, but some people say that it is situated in the Basque land. The distance is expressed with an inexistent word “millanta” that looks like a real number “mille” (1000). index

17 FOLKLORE Popular festivities were an opportunity to forget difficulties. They celebrated the patron of the village or the city, or particular religious and secular festivities. Music, songs and dances contributed to give fun to people. In those days the Cuccagna’s tree, a tree of milk and honey, symbol of abundance,was often present. Gino Covili - The Feast – 1979/80

18 Cuccagna’s tree On feast days on the village square a high, smooth and fat strewn pole was raised. At the top ham, salami and food bags hung. The village guys climbed on the slippery pole to get the food. Gino Covili – Cuccagna’s tree - 1984

19 Music FRANCESCO BENDUSI “Pass’e mezzo ditto il Romano” “Moscheta” “Bandera”

20 3° t. e. i. Class Bianchi Leonardo Bonati Alessia Bonini Giorgio Bottali Kelly Cammarere Giuseppina Cavagni Vanessa Cundo Michela De Giovanni Vittoria Formica Cristina Gini Valentina Giuffredi Maria Chiara Guasti Luca Marino Davide Mele Laila Menna Antonella Monica Elisa Paini Alessandro Saletti Silvia Sikur Luca Tripodi Iole Zoboli Laura Prof.ssa Rossella Ollari Prof.ssa Manuela Pezzoni


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