Storia e cronistoria della battaglia di Benevento

Autore: Matteo Palumbo
In: I libri di Viella. 126

History and Chronohistory of the Benevento Battle\

The battle of Benevento between the Aragonese and the French armies took place in June 1496. The event, which was part of the Italian expedition of Charles VIII, was told by Paolo Giovio, Commynes, and Guicciardini. The three writers represent alternative ways to conceive the historian’s work. Comparing their narrations, we realize in an exemplary way how the authors understood the events. While Giovio and Commynes pointed toward the presentation of facts and of widely known episodes, Guicciardini offered an in-depth account. He pondered the choices available to the protagonists, dwelled on the reasons behind their decisions, and summed up the consequences of their actions. In this way, the setting became more dramatic and complicated. What happened was evaluated against what could have been. In this way, the responsibilities of men were interpreted and judged according to each individual’s motivations.