Lodovico Ariosto, the poet (1474-1533), was born in Reggio, and his father's house is still preserved.
It is desultory to a degree; it is a base libel on religion and history; it differs from its model Ariosto in being, not, as Ariosto is, a mixture of romance and burlesque, but a sometimes tedious tissue of burlesque pure and simple; and it is exposed to the objection - often and justly urged - that much of its fun depends simply on the fact that there were and are many people who believe enough in Christianity to make its jokes give pain to them and to make their disgust at such jokes piquant to others.
Among his principal works upon these subjects may be noted the four volumes of Letteratura della nuova Italia (1860-1910); his essays upon Goethe, Ariosto, Shakespeare, Corneille, and the Poetry of Dante; his two volumes Storia della storiografia italiana del secolo XIX.
The Charlemagne legend was fully developed in Italy, where it was to have later a great poetic development at the hands of Boiardo, Ariosto and Tasso.
To this class belong the fairies of Boiardo, Ariosto and Spenser.
And Charles V., Ariosto and Montaigne.
The simple house of Ariosto, erected by himself after 1526, in which he died in 1532, lies farther west.
He was the patron of Ariosto from 1518 onwards.
During his leisure he wrote a translation of Ariosto (1781), and Memoires sur la vie de Turgot (1782).
But the victor's laurels were reserved for Ariosto, whose Orlando Furioso is the purest and most perfect extant example of Renaissance poetry.
Even the comedies of the best authors are too observant of Latin precedents, although some pieces of Machiavelli, Ariosto, Aretino, Cecchi and Gelli are admirable for vivid delineation of contemporary manners.
He modelled himself on the Roman theatre as reflected by the plays of Ariosto, and he avowedly wrote the Estrangeiros to combat the school of Gil Vicente, while in it, as in Os Vilhalpandos, the action takes place in Italy.
It expressed itself at last in the monumental work of Don Quixote, which places Cervantes beside Rabelais, Ariosto and Shakespeare as one of the four supreme exponents of the Renaissance.
What Ariosto is for Italy, Cervantes for Spain, Erasmus for Holland, Luther for Germany, Shakespeare for England, that is Rabelais for France.