Project Gutenberg · 58, free ebooks · 6 by Alessandro Manzoni. The Betrothed by Alessandro Manzoni. Book Cover. Download; Bibrec. The Betrothed: I Promessi Sposi (Penguin Classics) [Alessandro Manzoni, Bruce Penman] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Set in. Alessandro Manzoni’s “The Betrothed,” Italy’s national literary classic, was an instant success when it was first published in and.

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It has been called the most famous and widely read novel in the Italian language. Set in northern Italy induring the oppressive years of direct Spanish rule, it is seen as a veiled attack on the Austrian Empirewhich controlled the region at the time the novel was written the definitive version was published in It is also noted for the extraordinary description of the plague that struck Milan around It deals with a variety of themes, from the cowardly, hypocritical nature of one prelate Don Abbondio and the heroic sainthood of other priests Padre Cristoforo, Federico Borromeoto the unwavering strength of love the relationship between Renzo and Lucia, and their struggle to finally meet again and be marriedand offers some keen insights into the meanderings of the human mind.

I promessi sposi was made into an opera of the same name by Amilcare Ponchielli [2] in and by Errico Petrella [3] in There have been many film versions of I promessi sposiincluding I promessi sposi[4] The Betrothed [5] The Betrothed[6] and Renzo and Luciamade for television in In Mayat a weekly general audience at St. Peter’s SquarePope Francis asked engaged couples to read the novel for edification before marriage.

Manzoni hatched the basis for his novel in when he read a Italian edict that specified penalties for any priest who refused to perform a marriage when requested to do so. The first version, Fermo e Luciawas written between April and September Manzoni’s chosen title, Gli sposi promessiwas changed for the sake of euphony shortly before its final commitment to printing.

In the early 19th century, there was still some controversy as to what form the standard literary language of Italy should take. Manzoni was firmly in favour of the dialect of Florence and, after “washing his vocabulary on the banks of the Arno ” as he put ithe revised the novel’s language for its republication in Renzo and Lucia, a couple living in a village in Lombardynear Leccoon Lake Comoare planning to wed on 8 November The parish priest, Don Abbondio, is walking home on the eve of the wedding when he is accosted by two ” bravi ” thugs who warn him not to perform the marriage, because the local baron Don Rodrigo has forbidden it.

When he presents himself for the wedding ceremony, Renzo is amazed to hear that the marriage is to be postponed the priest didn’t have the courage to tell the truth. An argument ensues and Renzo succeeds in extracting from the priest the name of Don Rodrigo.

It turns out that Don Rodrigo has his eye on Lucia and that he had a bet about her with his cousin Count Attilio.

Lucia’s mother, Agnese, advises Renzo to ask the advice of “Dr. Quibbleweaver, in Colquhoun’s translationa lawyer in the town of Lecco. Azzeccagarbugli is at first sympathetic: Lucia sends a message to “Fra Cristoforo” Friar Christophera respected Capuchin friar at the monastery of Pescarenicoasking him to come as soon as he can. When Fra Cristoforo comes to Lucia’s cottage and hears the story, he immediately goes to Don Rodrigo’s mansion, where he finds the baron at a meal with his cousin Count Attilio, along with four guests, including the mayor and Dr.

When Don Rodrigo is taken aside by the friar, he explodes with anger at his presumption and sends him away, but not before an old servant has a chance to offer his help to Cristoforo. Meanwhile, Lorenzo comes up with a plan. In those days, it was possible for two people to marry by declaring themselves married before a priest and in the presence of two amenable witnesses.

Renzo runs to his friend Tonio and offers him 25 lire if he agrees to help.

The Betrothed by Alessandro Manzoni – Free Ebook

When Fra Cristoforo returns with the bad news, they decide to put their plan into action. The next morning, Lucia and Agnese are visited by beggars, Don Rodrigo’s men manzoi disguise. They examine the house in order to plan an assault. Late at night, Agnese distracts Don Abbondio’s servant Perpetua while Tonio and his brother Gervaso enter Don Abbondio’s study, ostensibly to pay a debt.

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They are followed indoors secretly by Lucia and Renzo. When they try to carry out their plan, the priest throws the tablecloth in Lucia’s face and betrotued the lamp. They struggle in the darkness.

In the meantime, Don Rodrigo’s men invade Lucia’s house, but nobody is there. Betrothes boy named Menico arrives with a message of warning from Fra Cristoforo and they seize him.

Oh no, there’s been an error

When they hear the alarm being raised by the sacristan, who is calling for help on the part of Don Abbondio who raised the alarm of invaders in his home, they assume they have been betrayed and flee in confusion. Menico sees Agnese, Lucia and Renzo in the street and warns them not to return home. They go to the monastery, where Fra Cristoforo gives Renzo a letter of introduction to a certain friar at Milanand another letter to the two women, to organise a refuge at a convent in the nearby city of Monza.

Lucia is entrusted to the nun Gertrude, a strange and unpredictable noblewoman whose story is told in these chapters. A child of the most important family of the area, her father decided to send her to the cloisters for no other reason than to simplify his affairs: As she grew up, she sensed that she was being forced betrkthed her parents into a life which would comport but little with her personality.

However, fear of scandal, as well as manoeuvres and menaces from her father, induced Gertrude to lie to her interviewers in order to enter the convent of Monzawhere she was received as la Signora “the lady”, also known as The Nun of Monza. Later, she fell under the spell of a young man of no scruples, Egidio, associated with the worst baron of that time, the Innominato the “Unnamed”. Egidio and Gertrude became lovers and when another nun discovered their relationship they killed her.

Renzo arrives in famine-stricken Milan and goes to the monastery, but the friar he is seeking is absent and so he wanders further into the city. A bakery in the Corsia de’ Servi, El prestin di scansc “Bakery of the Crutches”is destroyed by a mob, who then go to the house btrothed the Commissioner of Supply in order to lynch him. He is saved in the nick of time by Ferrer, the Grand Chancellor, who arrives in a coach and announces he is taking the Commissioner to prison.

Renzo becomes prominent as he helps Ferrer make his way through the crowd. After witnessing these scenes, Manzoji joins in a lively discussion and reveals views which attract the notice of a police agent in search of a scapegoat.

The agent tries to lead Renzo directly to “the best inn” i. The next morning, he is awakened by a notary and two bailiffs, who handcuff him and start to take him away. In the street Renzo announces loudly that he is being punished for his heroism the day before and, betrothedd the aid of sympathetic onlookers, he effects his escape. Leaving the city by the same gate through which he entered, he sets off for Bergamoknowing that his cousin Bortolo lives in a village nearby.

Once there, he will be beyond the reach of the authorities of Milan under Spanish dominationas Bergamo is territory of the Most Serene Republic of Venice. At an inn in Gorgonzolahe overhears a conversation which makes it clear to him how much trouble he is in and so he walks all night until he reaches the River Adda. After a short sleep in a hut, he crosses the river at dawn in the boat of a fisherman and makes his way to his cousin’s house, where he is welcomed as a silk-weaver under majzoni pseudonym of Antonio Rivolta.

The same day, orders for Renzo’s arrest reach the town of Leccoto the delight of Don Rodrigo. News of Renzo’s disgrace comes to the convent, but later Lucia is informed that Renzo is safe with his cousin. Their reassurance is mnazoni In fact, this has manzzoni engineered by Don Rodrigo and Count Attilio, who have leaned on a mutual uncle of the Secret Council, who has leaned on the Father Provincial.

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Meanwhile, Don Rodrigo has organised a plot to kidnap Lucia from the convent. This involves a great robber baron whose name has not been recorded, and who hence is called l’Innominatothe Unnamed.

Gertrude, blackmailed by Egidio, a neighbour acquaintance of l’Innominato and Gertrude’s loverpersuades Lucia to run an errand which will take her outside the convent for a short while. In the street Lucia is seized and bundled into a coach. After a nightmarish journey, Lucia arrives at the castle of the Unnamed, betroothed she is locked in a chamber.

The Unnamed is troubled by the sight of her, and spends a horrible night in which memories of his past and the uncertainty of his future almost drive him to suicide. Meanwhile, Lucia spends a similarly restless night, during which she vows to take the veil if she is delivered from her predicament. Towards the morning, on looking out of his window, the Unnamed sees throngs of people bettothed past.

On impulse, the Unnamed leaves his castle in order to meet this man. This meeting prompts a miraculous conversion which marks the turning-point of the novel.

The Unnamed announces to his men that his reign of terror is over. He decides to take Lucia back to her native land under his own protection, and with the help of the archbishop the deed is done. The astonishing course of events leads to an atmosphere in which Don Rodrigo can be defied openly and manozni fortunes take a turn for the worse. Don Abbondio is reprimanded by the archbishop.

Lucia, miserable about her vow to renounce Renzo, still frets about him. He is now the subject of diplomatic conflict between Milan and Bergamo. Her life is not improved when a wealthy busybody, Donna Prassede, insists on taking her into her household and admonishing her for getting mixed up with a good-for-nothing like Renzo.

The government of Milan is unable to keep bread prices down by decree and the city is swamped by beggars.

The Betrothed by Alessandro Manzoni

The lazzaretto is filled with the hungry and sick. Meanwhile, the Thirty Years’ War brings more calamities. The last three dukes of the house of Gonzaga die without legitimate heirs sparking a war for control of northern Italy, with France and the Holy Roman Empire backing rival claimants. Agnese, Don Abbondio and Perpetua take refuge in the well-defended territory of the Unnamed.

In their absence, their village is wrecked by the mercenaries. These chapters are occupied with an account of the betroted oflargely based on Giuseppe Ripamonti ‘s De peste quae fuit anno published in Manzoni’s full version of this, Storia della Colonna Infamewas finished inbut was not published until it was included as an appendix to the revised edition of The end of August sees the death in Milan of the original villains of the story.

Renzo, troubled by Agnese’s betrothef and recovering from plague, returns to his native village to find that many of the inhabitants are dead and that his house and vineyard have been destroyed.

The warrant, and Don Rodrigo, are forgotten. Tonio tells him that Lucia is in Milan. On his arrival in Milan, Renzo is astonished at the state of the city.

His highland clothes invite suspicion that he is an “anointer”; that is, a foreign agent deliberately spreading plague in some way. He learns that Lucia is now languishing at the Lazzaretto of Milanalong with 16, other victims of the plague. But in fact, Lucia is already recuperating.

The friar absolves her of her vow of celibacy. Renzo walks through a rainstorm to see Agnese at the village of Pasturo. When they all return to their native village, Lucia and Bterothed are finally married by Betrotned Abbondio and the couple make a fresh start at a silk-mill at the gates of Bergamo. The novel is commonly described as “the most widely read work in the Italian language. Many Italians believe that the novel is not fully appreciated abroad.