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Source: Introduction to Some Love Songs of Petrarch, translated and annotated with a Biographical Introduction by William Dudley Foulke (Oxford University Press, 1915).
INTRODUCTION AND BIOGRAPHY
His reputation.Few names in literature have been more widely and permanently distinguished than that of Petrarch. Crowned with the laurel upon the Capitol at Rome as a great poet and historian, honoured above all others of his time, the chosen guest, companion, ambassador, and adviser of prince, pontiff, king, and emperor, he has come down to us after six centuries as second only to Dante among the five great classic authors of Italy and as worthy of the companionship of Homer, Virgil, Horace, Cervantes, Shakespeare, Milton, and Goethe on the world’s roll of fame.