Pietro della Valle. Pietro della Valle was a highly sociable geek with an interest in all things Middle Eastern, c. 1620. His extensive surviving personal correspondence, preserved in the Vatican Archives in Rome, allows me to reconstruct the far-flung intellectual community of which he was a part. By exploring Della Valle and his world, I hope to discover why Europeans suddenly became so interested in Arabic and other “Orientalist” studies in the early seventeenth century, and how this knowledge affected the ways in which they related to Middle Eastern Christians and Muslims.Read the rest of Avitabile’s handwriting.
Rosemary Lee is a graduate student in the Corcoran Department of History at the University of Virginia. Her research focuses on early modern Italy.
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Friday, July 29th, 2011