Il viaggio dei monaci galilei al paradiso terrestre nel Pantheon di Goffredo da Viterbo


The Pantheon by Goffredo da Viterbo is one of the most interesting and curious works in medieval Latin literature. A
work of history, but also of poetry, it has been the subject of a troubled composition, rethought and rewritten several
times, bringing back numerous tales belonging to rare traditions, whose origin is often unknown. Among these is the
description of the journey to the earthly paradise of some Galilean monks, who left from the western coasts of Brittany
and reached their destination after crossing the ocean. The story is interesting for at least three reasons. First of all, for
the destination of the journey itself, since it is a successful journey to the earthly paradise. Secondly, since Goffredo
speaks of a manuscript, in the distant Breton abbey of Saint Mathieu, where one can read of this journey, anticipating a
literary tradition that goes from Cervantes, to Scott, to Manzoni up to the present day. Finally, the journey of the monks
is a journey into another temporal dimension, where time flows differently, a narrative peculiarity not very common
in medieval literature. In any case, the text presents inconsistencies that are not easily resolved. This study proposes
an edition of the text based on the author’s autograph, compared with the witnesses of the previous editions, drawing
indications on the working method of Goffredo da Viterbo and on the composition of the Pantheon.


Medieval Latin literature; Pantheon; Goffredo da Viterbo; literary tradition; journey to the earthly paradise; edition; previous editions’ witnesses; distorted time stories

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