First published in 1831, and here presented in a dual-language edition with annotations and additional reading material, Leopardi’s poetical masterpiece is an unsurpassed anatomy of man’s unhappiness on earth.
Trapped between an admiration for the classical past and a disappointment in the impoverished present, Leopardi rejected both the easy allure of Catholic faith and the unbridled optimism proposed by science and the Enlightenment. His unflinching pessimism and existential resolve, here brilliantly rendered in verse by prize-winning translator J.G. Nichols, make him one of the most fascinating and best-loved Italian poets.
Born in Recanati in the Marche region, Giacomo Leopardi (1798–1837) became one of Italy’s most important poets and thinkers. He was notable in his writings for his avid thirst for knowledge and his stylistic meticulousness.