The Framing of Fiammetta: Gender, authorship and voice in an Elizabethan translation of Boccaccio

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Boccaccio was one of the most popular Italian authors in English translation in Elizabethan England, with translations being published of Decameron novellas, his Filocolo, Elegia di Madonna Fiammetta, and Ninfale fiesolano between the mid-1560s and the end of the century. This essay will consider the 1587 translation Amorous Fiammetta, an unusual romance narrative, written by a fourteenth-century male author as a first-person narrative in the voice of his female protagonist, and then translated into English two and a half centuries later by a male translator, Bartholemew Yong. Rather than focus only on the target, translated text as the site of this enquiry, this article approaches the translation via those material, textual, and visual features which reframe the work for an anglophone audience. In this way, it considers how a gendered narrative authority is negotiated via the interplay of paratextual features (such as the title page, addresses to the reader, titles, and names) and within the target text itself. The presence of imported paratexts from Italian and French source editions in this English translation adds a further nuanced dimension to the discussion of competing authorial and editorial voices in this book, and their mediation to the English readerships. In focusing on questions of gender and genre, I propose some conclusions about the readerships and function of this imported Italian romance in the English receiving context.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationElizabethan Translation and Literary Culture
EditorsGabriela Schmidt
Place of PublicationBerlin
Publisherde Gruyter, Walter GmbH & Co
Number of pages40
ISBN (Print)978-3110293029
Publication statusPublished - 17 Apr 2013

Publication series

NamePluralisierung & Autoritat
PublisherWalter de Gruyter & Co


  • Boccaccio
  • early modern translation
  • print cultures


Dive into the research topics of 'The Framing of Fiammetta: Gender, authorship and voice in an Elizabethan translation of Boccaccio'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this