Lorenzo Da Ponte Italian Library

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John Florio: a worlde of wordes

John Florio: a worlde of wordes

A Worlde of Wordes, the first-ever comprehensive Italian-English dictionary, was published in 1598 by John Florio. One of the most prominent linguists and educators in Elizabethan England, Florio was greatly responsible for the spreading of Italian letters and culture throughout educated English society. Especially important was Florio’s dictionary, which – thanks to its exuberant wealth of English definitions – made it initially possible for English readers to access Italy’s rich Renaissance literary and scientific culture.

Award-winning author Hermann W. Haller has prepared the first critical edition of A Worlde of Wordes, which features 46,000 Italian entries – among them dialect forms, erotic terminology, colloquial phrases, and proverbs of the Italian language. Haller reveals Florio as a brilliant English translator and creative writer, as well as a grammarian and language teacher. His helpful critical commentary highlights Florio’s love of words and his life-long dedication to promoting Italian language and culture abroad.

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