"Guido Cavalcanti (d. 1300) is one of the greatest Italian poets of all time. His legacy consists of some fifty poems, of which his canzone on the nature of love, Donna me Prega, is the most famously difficult and complex. The poem is important not only because it sheds light on fundamental intellectual debates during the time of Dante, but also because of its influence on generations of poets and intellectuals. In this study, Maria Luisa Ardizzone sets Donna me Prega in an entirely new light - first, by examining its role in Cavalcanti's poetic practice, and second, by placing it in the context of ancient and medieval science and philosophy. The book deals with issues that are part of the intellectual history of Europe in the thirteenth century. Cavalcanti's work is interpreted by reconstructing the debate of ideas in which it participates, and the new model of poetry devised by Cavalcanti is one of the subjects of this book."--Jacket.