Eine alte Gattung neu erfunden: Die Apologi Centum des Leon Battista Alberti

Korenjak, Martin

In: Philologus, 2008, vol. 152, no. 2, p. 320-342

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    Leon Battista Alberti′s short fable collection Apologi Centum (1437) marks a radical departure from the medieval understanding of the genre as well as from the newly discovered Greek collections of 'truly Aesopian′ fables. It defines the genre in a new way, and becomes a model in its own right for the following generations of Renaissance fabulists. The extreme conciseness of his Apologi, Alberti claims, inevitably makes them obscure and hard to understand – the very contrary of the easy schooltexts fables are usually meant to be. This paper studies Alberti′s claim to novelty and the way he puts it into practice, naming and exemplifying a number of techniques by which he succeeds in creating pregnant, riddling fables for the educated, intelligent reader