A Shakespearean drama: Marin Držić

This year Croatia celebrates the 500th anniversary of Marin Držić, Croatia's foremost Renaissance writer. Držić was born into a big family in 1508 in the then city state of Dubrovnik. Dubrovnik is obviously proud of its writer, to say the least, and regards him as the Croatian Shakespeare, Goethe, Dante and Moliere. No visitor to Dubrovnik could possible miss the big cloth hanging at the Pile gate, the main entrance to the old town.
Chronologically speaking, Shakespeare, Goethe, Dante and Moliere should be referred to as the British, German, Italian and French Držić, since he was born before these literary icons. That no one does so, suggests that Držić passed into oblivion outside of his homeland.
I can't say much about the quality of his plays, but if they are only half as interesting as Držić's life then they are definitely worth reading. He travelled to Vienna, Constantinople, Venice, Sienna and Florence. There, in Florence, he tried to convince the Medici to help him overthrow the autocratic Dubrovnik government. Under the new government, the nobility would share power with popular representatives. The Medici, however, didn't even bother to answer Držić's letters. Držić moved to Venice, where he died in 1567. He was buried in the Santi Giovanni e Paolo church in Venice.

2 reacties:

Kristijan said...

Šta ste ludi? Držić prije Dantea!?
Isuse... ako to netko obrazovan vidi...

Boris Levalle said...

Sorry, my mistake. Dante was already dead for almost two centuries when Držić was born.