Humanist Republic of Letters (The)



The expression “Republic of Letters”, mostly used today to designate the scholarly world of early modern humanist Europe, is an expression with multiple uses that was probably born in the circle of Italian men of letters in the early fifteenth century. Without presupposing the variations in its use during different periods or places, it refers to a community of scholars united by common practices, notably a shared love of belles lettres, and by an intention to build harmony and the common good thanks to knowledge and epistolary communication.

Harley catalogue 2571 gathering several manuscripts including De nobilitate vera (pp. 2-29), a letter from Carlo Aretino to Poggio (pp. 33-35), etc.