SIGISMUND HERBERSTEIN’S AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL WORK ‘GRATAE POSTERITATI’: ITS STRUCTURE AND SIGNIFICANCE

  • Hribersek, M.
Abstract:
Sigismund (Siegmund, Ziga) Herberstein, born in 1486 at Vipava in the present-day Littoral (Primorska) region of Slovenia, followed up his successful military career by serving as a diplomat at the Austrian court under three emperors: Maximilian I, Charles V, and Ferdinand. He won the greatest renown with two diplomatic missions to the Grand Duchy of Moscow (1516–1518 and 1526–1527), both described in his Latin work Rerum Moscoviticarum Commentarii (Notes on Muscovite Affairs, 1549), which presented to Europe the then largely unknown Grand Duchy of Moscow. In 1560, six years before his death, he published another, less known work (likewise written in Latin), which he entitled Gratae Posteritati, ‘To My Beloved Descendants’. While intended for self-promotion and promulgation of his own achievements, this brief 119-page work was also dedicated to his relatives, nephews and nieces (he had no children of his own), as an edifying example. The work interweaves poetry and prose: approximately one third was written (in prose) by Herberstein himself, while the remaining two thirds comprise laudatory poems of varying lengths. Composed in Herberstein’s honour by his contemporaries, colleagues, friends and clients, all of them employ the metrical forms of classical antiquity: hexameters, elegiac couplets, Sapphic stanzas, etc. Despite its modest size, the compilation gives a concise account of all major early 16th century events and of the individuals who shaped the history of that period.
SGEM Research areas:
Year:
2016
Type of Publication:
In Proceedings
Keywords:
Sigismund Herberstein; humanism; autobiography; laudatory poetry; Latin
Volume:
16
SGEM Book title:
3rd International Multidisciplinary Scientific Conference on Social Sciences and Arts SGEM2016, Vienna Extended Session
Book number:
3.1
SGEM Series:
International Multidisciplinary Scientific Conference on Social Sciences and Arts-SGEM
Pages:
225-232
Publisher address:
51 Al. Malinov blvd, Sofia, 1712, Bulgaria
SGEM supporters:
SWS Scholarly Society; Acad Sci Czech Republ; Latvian Acad Sci; Polish Acad Sci; Russian Acad Sci; Serbian Acad Sci & Arts; Natl Acad Sci Ukraine; Natl Acad Sci Armenia; Sci Council Japan; European Acad Sci, Arts & Letters; Acad Fine Arts Zagreb Croatia; C
Period:
06-09 April, 2016
ISBN:
978-619-7105-52-0
ISSN:
2367-5659
Conference:
3rd International Multidisciplinary Scientific Conference on Social Sciences and Arts SGEM2016, Vienna Extended Session, 06-09 April, 2016
DOI:
10.5593/SGEMSOCIAL2016/HB31/S02.029
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