University of Chicago Library

Guide to the Teresa Bandettini Poems (Ms 1445) 19th century

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Descriptive Summary


Bandettini, Teresa. Poems (Ms 1445)


19th century

Manuscript Number:

Ms 1445


3.75 linear feet (5 boxes)


Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center
University of Chicago Library
1100 East 57th Street
Chicago, Illinois 60637 U.S.A.


Teresa Bandettini (1763-1837), often known by her Arcadian name, Amarilli Etrusca, was a dancer and composer of verse. Codex 1445, consists of 96 fascicles written in the early 19th century and compiled by an unknown witness to Teresa Bandettini’s productions.

Information on Use


The collection is open for research.


When quoting material from this collection, the preferred citation is: Bandettini, Teresa. Poems, [Box #, Folder #], Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library

Biographical Note

Teresa Bandettini, often known by her Arcadian name, Amarilli Etrusca, was born in Lucca in 1763. Her parents, Benedetto Bandettini and Maria Alba Micheli, died when she was seven. Bandettini quickly achieved fame as a dancer in the theatrical world, but would gain more lasting fame as a composer of extemporaneous verse. While in Imola in 1789 she met the Lucchese Pietro Landucci, whom she would marry. After her marriage, she abandoned her dancing career for that of an improvisatrix, and held "Accademie d'improvvisazione" in which paying members of the audience proposed themes that she then elaborated extemporaneously in verse. Bandettini achieved fame throughout Italy and was so well-respected as to draw words of praise from Parini, Monti, Mascheroni, and Alfieri. Bandettini had four children, three girls who died young and a son, Francesco. She died in Lucca in 1837.

Bandettini was reportedly a learned woman who was known to read Dante backstage when she was not dancing. Sources cite her as an "improvisatrice commossa," capable of simultaneously moving her audience and becoming emotional herself. She resisted the idea of publishing her extemporaneous verse, preferring instead to publish poems that had been subject to a more lengthy elaboration (although a volume of her Rime estemporanee would eventually come out in 1801 and another in 1807). She published a two volume collection of Rime varie in 1786, followed by the 1788 publication of her Poesie diverse. She also published poemetti (La morte d'Adone, 1790) and tragedies (La Teseide, 1805; La caduta de' giganti, 1814; Rosmunda in Ravenna, 1827), and left behind fragments of Romantic tales.

Bandettini's name resurfaced in 2002 with the discovery of six lost sonatas dedicated to her by the young Niccolò Paganini.


s.v. "Bandettini, Teresa." In Dizionario biografico degli italiani. Vol. 5 (Bacca-Baratta). Rome: Istituto della Enciclopedia Italiana, 1960-.

s.v. "Bandettini Landucci, Teresa." In Dizionario enciclopedico italiano. Vol. 2 (Bacce-Cas). Rome: Istituto della Enciclopedia Italiana fondata da G. Treccani, 1961.

s.v. "Bandettini Landucci, Teresa." In Enciclopedia Biografica e Bibliografica "Italiana." Serie 6: "Poetesse e scrittrici." 2 vols. Rome: E.B.B.I. Istituto Editoriale Italiano, 1941.

s.v. "Bandettini Landucci, Teresa." In Enciclopedia italiana di scienza, lettere, ed arti. Vol. 6 (Balta-Bik). Rome: Istituto della Enciclopedia Italiana fondata da G. Treccani, 1937.

Costa-Zalessow, Natalia. "Teresa Bandettini Landucci." In Scrittrici italiane dal XIII al XX secolo. Ravenna: Longo Editore, 1982. 187-192.

Biographical note provided by Margaret E. Kern, as seen in the Italian Women Writers database entry for Teresa Bandettini. http://www.lib.uchicago.edu/efts/IWW/BIOS/A0065.html

Scope Note

The collection, Codex 1445, consists of 96 fascicles written in the early 19th century compiled by an unknown witness to Teresa Bandettini’s productions. The poems are numbered and titled. Fascicle 88 is missing from our collection.

The collection was assembled, as stated in the first person in the Preface, by one of Bandettini’s patrons and hosts, whose house in Viareggio was a regular venue for the poet’s improvisations in 1794 and 1795. The unnamed compiler relates that on those occasions several identical transcriptions of poems n. 36-40 were taken simultaneously by different copists, evidently eager to capture Bandettini’s famed impromptu creations in the flow of the performance. The compiler endeavours to give as complete a transcription as possible, adding material as later performances occurred in the following years, giving an account of other occasions (in Perugia, Pisa, Livorno, etc) in which other poems where performed and transcribed, redacting a substantial gathering of ‘Frammenti’ (poems for which a complete transcription could not be obtained, not even through Tommaso Trenta with whom the compiler appears to have been acquainted), and regretting that much material escaped transcription - due partly to the absence of scribes at times, and partly to Bandettini’s personal dislike for the process.

As described in the original dealer description the extent of the collection compares favourably with the size of the Bandettini papers in the Lucca Archive and, most significantly, with Ms Vat. Lat. 10218 in the Vatican Library. The Vatican manuscript gathers dozens of Bandettini’s poems in a collection compiled between 1776 and 1800 by the secretary of the literary Academy of Lucca Tommaso Trenta (Artinio Dionisiade in Arcadia).

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Subject Headings


Box 1   Folder 1

Fascicle, Prefazione e Indice

Preface and Index

Box 1   Folder 2

Fascicle Frammenti

Fragments, 1 to 36

Box 1   Folder 3

Fascicle 1, Gli Spartani alle Termopili, ottonario

The Spartans at Thermopylae, octonary

Box 1   Folder 4

Fascicle 2, L’autunno, senario

Autumn, senario

Box 1   Folder 5

Fascicle 3, Invocazione di Giunone, settenario

Invocation of Juno, septenary

Box 1   Folder 6

Fascicle 4, Dircea, che va al sagrifizio, senario

Dircea goes to be sacrificed, senario

Box 1   Folder 7

Fascicle 5, Enone abbandonata da Paride

Oenone abandoned by Paris

Box 1   Folder 8

Fascicle 6, Il vaticinio di Nereo, ode saffica

Prophecy of Nereus, Sapphic ode

Box 1   Folder 9

Fascicle 7, Achille nella reggia di Licomede, ottonario

Achilles at the Palace of Lycomedes, octonary

Box 1   Folder 10

Fascicle 8, La morte di Patroclo, ottonario, settenario

The death of Patroclus, octonary and septenary

Box 1   Folder 11

Fascicle 9, Priamo, chiede ad Achille il corpo di Ettore suo figlio, settenario con intercalare

Priam asks Achilles for the body of his son Hector, septenary with interlayer

Box 1   Folder 12

Fascicle 10, Ecuba, che rimprovera Pirro sulla tomba di Achille, settenario con intercalare

Hecuba scolds Pirro on the tomb of Achilles, septenary with interlayer

Box 1   Folder 13

Fascicle 11, Lamento di Didone abbandonata, settenario con intercalare

Dido’s lament, septenary with interlayer

Box 1   Folder 14

Fascicle 12, Incontro di Clitennestra con Agamemonne nell’ inferno, ottonario

Meeting of Clytemnestra with Agamemnon in Hell, octonary

Box 1   Folder 15

Fascicle 13, Giasone alla conquista del vello d’oro, ottonario

Jason, the conquest of the Golden Fleece, octonary

Box 1   Folder 16

Fascicle 14, Medea, che ringiovanisce Erone

Medea rejuvenates Heron

Box 1   Folder 17

Fascicle 15, Medea, che fugge in cieleo, ottonario

Medea escapes, octonary

Box 1   Folder 18

Fascicle 16, Il pianto di Psiche avere scottato amore, settenario con intercalare

The lament of Psyche have seared love, septenary with interlayer

Box 1   Folder 19

Fascicle 17, Il conte Ugolino all’inferno, ottonario

Count Ugolino in Hell, octonary

Box 1   Folder 20

Fascicle 18, Il Petrarca nell’incontro con Madonna Laura agli Elisi; Lamento del

Petrarch on the death of Lady Laura

Box 1   Folder 21

Fascicle 19, La Partenza, settenario

The Departure, septenary

Box 1   Folder 22

Fascicle 20, Cesare al Rubicone, ottave

Caesar at the Rubicon, eighth

Box 2   Folder 1

Fascicle 21, Roma che parla a Cesare e a Pompeo nellatto, che stavano y combattere nei campi di Farraglia

Roma speaks to Caesar and to Pompey, who were about to fight in the fields of Farraglia

Box 2   Folder 2

Fascicle 22, La morte di Catone, settenario con intercalare

The death of Cato, septenary with interlayer

Box 2   Folder 3

Fascicle 23, La morte di Cesare, ottave

The death of Caesar, eighth

Box 2   Folder 4

Fascicle 24, Ercole e Jolen, ottonario

Hercules and Jole, octonary

Box 2   Folder 5

Fascicle 25, La morte d’Ercole Ottave, La parlata d’ercole a Filottete, settenario con intercalare

The death of Hercules Octaves, The speech of Hercules to Philoctetes, septenary with interlayer

Box 2   Folder 6

Fascicle 26, Dejanice nella morte d’Erole, settenario con intercalave

Dejanira in the death of Hercules, septenary with interlayer

Box 2   Folder 7

Fascicle 27, La morte del Re di Francia, ottonario

The death of the King of France, octonary

Box 2   Folder 8

Fascicle 28, Inno a Morfeo, quinario

Hymn of Morpheus, quinary

Box 2   Folder 9

Fascicle 29, Inno di Bacco a Giunone, settenario con intercalare

Hymn of Bacchus to Juno, septenary with interlayer

Box 2   Folder 10

Fascicle 30, Bauci e Filemone, Settenario

Bauci and Philemon, septenary

Box 2   Folder 11

Fascicle 31, Se vi sia arte, che giovi a risonare dall amore, settenario

If there is art, let it serve to resonate from love, septenary

Box 2   Folder 12

Fascicle 32, Piramo e Tisbe, settenario

Pyramus and Thisbe, septenary

Box 2   Folder 13

Fascicle 33, Augurio di un figlio, quinario

Wish for a son

Box 2   Folder 14

Fascicle 34 a and b, Clizia convertita in elitropio [eliotropio]

Clizia converted into heliotrope

Lamento di Clizia

Clizia’s Lament

Box 2   Folder 15

Fascicle 35, Il viaggio del Colombo, ottonario

The Voyage of Columbus, octonary

Box 2   Folder 16

Fascicle 36, Inno a Cerere sulla coltivazione di Viareggio, settenario

Hymn to Ceres on the cultivation of Viareggio, septenary

Box 2   Folder 17

Fascicle 37, Perché amore sia bendato, e se si dia amore senza gelosia, settenario

Because love is blindfolded, and if you give love without jealousy, septenary

Box 2   Folder 18

Fascicle 38, Inno a Nettuno, quinario

Hymn to Neptune, quinary

Box 2   Folder 19

Fascicle 39 a and b, La parlata di Giuditta dopo il suo ritorno dal campo assiro

Judith’s speech after her return from the Assyrian camp

La parlata, che da la sacerdotessa Giuditta

The speech that the priestess gives to Judith

Box 2   Folder 20

Fascicle 40, Giona che fugge in Tarso, ottonario e settenario

Jonah fleeing to Tarsus, octonary and septenary

Box 3   Folder 1

Fascicle 41, La creazione della donna, ottonario

The creation of woman, octonary

Box 3   Folder 2

Fascicle 42, Pianto di Adamo, settenario con intercalare

Adam’s Lament, septenary with interlayer

Box 3   Folder 3

Fascicle 43, Il sagrifizio di Jefte, settenario con intercalare

The sacrifice of Jephthah

Box 3   Folder 4

Fascicle 44, La cena di Baldassarre, ottave

Baldassare’s dinner, eighth

Box 3   Folder 5

Fascicle 45, Davide uccisore del gigante, ottonario

David the giant slayer, octonary

Box 3   Folder 6

Fascicle 46, Il passaggio del Mar Rosso, ottonario

The crossing of the Red Sea, octonary

Box 3   Folder 7

Fascicle 47, Il rimprovero di Mosè agli Israeliti, ottonario

The reprimand of Moses to the Israelites, octonary

Box 3   Folder 8

Fascicle 48, La notte del Santo Natale, ottonario a ode

The holy night of Christmas, octonary and ode

Box 3   Folder 9

Fascicle 49, L’Assunzione di Maria Vergine, scenario

The assumption of the Virgin Mary

Box 3   Folder 10

Fascicle 50, Il giudizio universale, ottave

The universal judgement, eighth

Box 3   Folder 11

Fascicle 51, La favola di Aristeo, settenario

The fable of Aristaeus, septenary

Box 3   Folder 12

Fascicle 52, Breve elogio di Caterina II, ottonario

Brief eulogy of Caterina II, octonary

Box 3   Folder 13

Fascicle 53, La partenza di Ovidio, settenario con intercatare

The departure of Ovid, septenary with interlayer

Box 3   Folder 14

Fascicle 54, La caduta di Fetonte, settenario

The fall of Phaeton, septenary

Box 3   Folder 15

Fascicle 55, Preghiera di Egle a Venere, ode

Egle’s prayer to Venus

Box 3   Folder 16

Fascicle 56, Riepilogo degli argomenti, settenario

Summary of arguments, septenary

Box 3   Folder 17

Fascicle 57, La famiglia de Fiori, ode

The Fiori family, ode

Box 3   Folder 18

Fascicle 58, L’addio di Zeffiro a Flora, quinario

Zephyr’s farewell to Flora, quinary

Box 3   Folder 19

Fascicle 59, La nascita di Venere, quinario

The birth of Venus, quinary

Box 3   Folder 20

Fascicle 60, Lamento dell Aurora a Filone, settenario con intercalare

The lament of Aurora for Philo, septenary with interlayer

Box 4   Folder 1

Fascicle 61, Il Ratto di Europa, scenario

The Rape of Europa

Box 4   Folder 2

Fascicle 62, Il Ratto di Orizia, ottonario

The Rape of Orizia, octonary

Box 4   Folder 3

Fascicle 63, Trasformazione d’Atteone, settenario

Transformation of Actaeon, septenary

Box 4   Folder 4

Fascicle 64, Lamento d’una pastorella, ode

Lament of a shepherdess, ode

Box 4   Folder 5

Fascicle 65, La lite di Apollo e Pane, settenario

The duel of Apollo and Pan, septenary

Box 4   Folder 6

Fascicle 66, Zeffiro e Clori, settenario

Zephyr and Chloris, septenary

Box 4   Folder 7

Fascicle 67, Orfeo, che richiede la sposa a Plutone, settenario con intercalare

Orpheus takes the bride of Pluto, septenary with interlayer

Box 4   Folder 8

Fascicle 68, Gli amori d'Adone e Venere, settenario

The loves of Adonis and Venus, septenary

Box 4   Folder 9

Fascicle 69, Ringraziamento, settenario

Thanksgiving, septenary

Box 4   Folder 10

Fascicle 70, Se sia più felice la vita di una pastorella o di una cittadina, settenario

Whether it is happier the life of a shepherdess or a town, septenary

Box 4   Folder 11

Fascicle 71, Un amante, che dimanda alla sua bella di essere corrisposto, sonetto

A lover, who asks his beauty to be loved in return, sonnet

Box 4   Folder 12

Fascicle 72, L'eco, settenario

Eco, septenary

Box 4   Folder 13

Fascicle 73, Lamento d'Io cangiato in giovenca, ottonario

Lament by Io changed into a heifer, octonary

Box 4   Folder 14

Fascicle 74, La morte d'Ippolito, settenario

Death of Hippolytus, septenary

Box 4   Folder 15

Fascicle 75, La metamorfosi del Leone in Africa, settenario

The metamorphosis of the lion in Africa, septenary

Box 4   Folder 16

Fascicle 76, Inno alla pace, settenario

Ode to peace, septenary

Box 4   Folder 17

Fascicle 77, La battaglia di Costantino contro Massenzio, ottave

The battle of Constantine against Maxentius, eighth

Box 4   Folder 18

Fascicle 78, La nascita di Apollo e Diana, ottonario e settenario

The birth of Apollo and Diana, octonary and septenary

Box 4   Folder 19

Fascicle 79, Il Pigmalione, ottenario

Pygmalion, octonary

Box 4   Folder 20

Fascicle 80, Aci e Galatea, ottonario

Acis and Galatea, octonary

Box 5   Folder 1

Fascicle 81, Il Trionfo di Clelia, ottave

The triumph of Clelia, eighth

Box 5   Folder 2

Fascicle 82, Profezia della distruzione di Gerusalemme, terzine

Prophecy of the destruction of Jerusalem, triplets

Box 5   Folder 3

Fascicle 83, La morte di Laocoonte, settenario

The death of Laocoon, septenary

Box 5   Folder 4

Fascicle 84, Curzio che si getta nella voragine, ottenario

Curzio plunges into the abyss, octonary

Box 5   Folder 5

Fascicle 85, Andromeda, ottave

Andromeda, eighth

Box 5   Folder 6

Fascicle 86, Arione, settenario

Arion, septenary

Box 5   Folder 7

Fascicle 87, Annibale sulla sommità delle Alpi, settenario con intercalare

Hannibal on the summit of the Alps, septenary with interlayer

Box 5   Folder 8

Fascicle 89, Lo sposalizio di Bacco con Arianna, ottonario

The marriage of Bacchus and Ariadne, octonary

Box 5   Folder 9

Fascicle 90, Caino dopo la morte di Abele, ottonario

Cain after Abel’s death, octonary

Box 5   Folder 10

Fascicle 91, Cleopatra, settenario con intercalare

Cleopatra, septenary with interlayer

Box 5   Folder 11

Fascicle 92, A Montano, che si finge passato agli elisi, settenario

To Montano, who one pretends passed into Elysium, septenary

Box 5   Folder 12

Fascicle 93, Inno a Giove, scenario

Hymn to Jupiter, scenario

Box 5   Folder 13

Fascicle 94, Alla signora contessa Bentivoglio in morte di un passero, quinario

Lady Bentivoglio in the death of a sparrow, quinary

Box 5   Folder 14

Fascicle 95, I giganti fulminati da Giove, ottave

The giants struck by Jupiter, eighth