Gasparo, Count Gozzi - Encyclopedia




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GASPARO GOZZI, Count (1713-1786), eldest brother of Carlo Gozzi, was born on the 4th of December 1713. In 1739 he married the poetess Luise Bergalli, and she undertook the management of the theatre of Sant' Angelo, Venice, he supplying the performers with dramas chiefly translated from the French. The speculation proved unfortunate, but meantime he had attained a high reputation for his contributions to the Gazzetta Veneta, and he soon came to be known as one of the ablest critics and purest and most elegant stylists in Italy. For a considerable period he was censor of the press in Venice, and in 1774 he was appointed to reorganize the university system at Padua. He died at Padua on the 26th of December 1786.

His principal writings are Osservatore Veneto periodico (1761), on the model of the English Spectator, and distinguished by its high moral tone and its light and pleasant satire; Lettere famigliari (1755), a collection of short racy pieces in prose and verse, on subjects of general interest; Sermoni, poems in blank verse after the manner of Horace; Il Mondo morale (1760), a personification of human passions with inwoven dialogues in the style of Lucian; and Giudizio degli antichi poeti sopra la moderna censura di Dante (1755), a defence of the great poet against the attacks of Bettinelli. He also translated various works from the French and English, including Marmontel's Tales and Pope's Essay on Criticism. His collected works were published at Venice, 1794-1798, in 12 volumes, and several editions have appeared since.

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