Writings on the Sober Life: The Art and Grace of Living Long

By Alvise Cornaro
Translated by Hiroko Fudemoto
Introduction by Marisa Milani
Foreword by Greg Critser

© 2014

Alvise Cornaro (c.1484–1566) was the son of a Paduan innkeeper with presumed ties to the patrician Cornaro family of Venice. Highly ambitious, he acquired a name for himself as a businessman, architect, and patron of the arts. Critically ill around age 40 – likely with diabetes and gout – he resolved to abandon his intemperate lifestyle. The strict rules regarding food and drink that he adopted and which led to his recovery are outlined in his most famous treatise, the Vita Sobria (1558). The work, which featured prescriptions for living to 100 years – stressing healthy lifestyle, proper diet, and avoidance of excess –became an international success.

This edition offers the most comprehensive and faithful version of this early modern classic ever available in English, and includes Cornaro’s Aggionta (“Addition”), translated here for the first time. An introductory essay by the late Marisa Milani offers biographical background and analysis and discusses the work’s publication history. The volume also presents letters by Cornaro’s contemporaries commenting on the treatise as well as his Eulogy, now viewed as having been written by Cornaro himself. A foreword by award-winning health journalist Greg Critser speaks to the continuing relevance of Cornaro’s fascinating and seminal work.

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Product Details

  • Series: Lorenzo Da Ponte Italian Library
  • Division: Scholarly Publishing
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 288 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.3in x 1.0in x 9.2in
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SKU# SP003423

  • PUBLISHED FEB 2014

    From: $42.75

    Regular Price: $57.00

    ISBN 9781442645097
  • PUBLISHED FEB 2014

    From: $42.75

    Regular Price: $57.00

Quick Overview

This edition offers the most coherent, uncensored, and complete rendering of this Early Modern classic ever available in English.

Writings on the Sober Life: The Art and Grace of Living Long

By Alvise Cornaro
Translated by Hiroko Fudemoto
Introduction by Marisa Milani
Foreword by Greg Critser

© 2014

Alvise Cornaro (c.1484–1566) was the son of a Paduan innkeeper with presumed ties to the patrician Cornaro family of Venice. Highly ambitious, he acquired a name for himself as a businessman, architect, and patron of the arts. Critically ill around age 40 – likely with diabetes and gout – he resolved to abandon his intemperate lifestyle. The strict rules regarding food and drink that he adopted and which led to his recovery are outlined in his most famous treatise, the Vita Sobria (1558). The work, which featured prescriptions for living to 100 years – stressing healthy lifestyle, proper diet, and avoidance of excess –became an international success.

This edition offers the most comprehensive and faithful version of this early modern classic ever available in English, and includes Cornaro’s Aggionta (“Addition”), translated here for the first time. An introductory essay by the late Marisa Milani offers biographical background and analysis and discusses the work’s publication history. The volume also presents letters by Cornaro’s contemporaries commenting on the treatise as well as his Eulogy, now viewed as having been written by Cornaro himself. A foreword by award-winning health journalist Greg Critser speaks to the continuing relevance of Cornaro’s fascinating and seminal work.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • Series: Lorenzo Da Ponte Italian Library
  • Division: Scholarly Publishing
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 288 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.3in x 1.0in x 9.2in
  • Reviews

    ‘The volume provides a useful service by making these materials available in English.’


    Linda L. Carroll
    Renaissance Quarterly vol 68:04:2015

    “Students of the early modern period, literary scholars, anthropologists, and historians will be eager to have a taste of Writings on the Sober Life. This excellently executed volume will introduce them to Alvise Cornaro, a figure moving among the important members of Paduan and Venetian academic and courtly life. The general reader who is interested in folklore and foodways will also find Cornaro’s Writings on the Sober Life satisfying, for it offers a glimpse into an early modern common-sense approach to bringing order to the chaotic life most of us lead most of the time.”


    Dennis Looney, Department of French and Italian, University of Pittsburgh
  • Author Information

    Hiroko Fudemoto is a translator based in Los Angeles.

  • Table of contents

    Notes on the Translation

    ‘Introduction’ by Marisa Milani

    Letter to Bishop Musso by Bernardino Tomitano

    Cornaro’s Treatise on the Sober Life

    Addition to the Sober Life

    Brief Compendium

    Letter to Daniele Barbaro

    Loving Exhortation

    Glossary

    Notes to Cornaro (pp.1-64)

    Eulogy

    Sperone Speroni: Letter Against Sobriety

    Sperone Speroni: Letter In Favour of the Sober Life

    Selected Letters

    Letter by Alvise Giacomo Cornaro Piscopia

    Notes on the Texts (pp. 81-127)

    Essay by Marisa Milani:

    ‘How to Attain Immortality Living One Hundred Years,

    Or the Fortune of the Vita Sobria in the Anglo-Saxon World’

    Notes to Essay Immortality…’

    Bibliography

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