Published when the great essays of medieval history had already seen the light, in which the author had come to investigate and illuminate the most significant aspects of the Italian Middle Ages - the "Studies on municipal constitutions in Pisa in the XII-XIII centuries", the " Fundamental issues on the origin and development of Italian municipalities "," The system of the Italian economic and social constitution in the age of municipalities "," Byzantinism and the Renaissance ", and the classic work" Religious movements and heretical sects in medieval Italian society "- this volume represents the logical conclusion of a patient and passionate research on the Italian Middle Ages from the eleventh to the fifteenth century, through which Volpe had succeeded in identifying a solid unitary connection in the events that constitute the changing fabric of this period of maximum creativity and originality of Italian civilization.
And it is particularly from the reading of the Middle Ages question, in which the master lines of the unfolding of medieval Italian and European history are traced with a sure hand and richness of detail, which appears evident as the concept that inspires the historiographical work of Gioacchino Volpe and constitutes one of the most conspicuous results, far from being an expression of mere pathos, is instead the result of a vigorous dialectical sense capable of grasping the relationships between the most disparate events and data and of composing in a living unity the multiple variety of historical becoming.
He was born in Paganica in 1876. He graduated in Pisa from the Scuola Normale Superiore in medieval history. Here he met Giovanni Gentile. He then taught in Milan and Rome. He participated in the First World War by obtaining a silver medal for valor. Signatory in 1925 of the Manifesto of Fascist intellectuals promoted by Gentile, he was also a parliamentary deputy in the XXVII legislature. Removed from teaching at the end of the Second World War, he devoted himself to historical studies. He died in Romagna in 1971.
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