James Joyce - Notes: Literary Figures [Giordano Bruno]


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Giordano Bruno

See the 1911 Encyclopaedia Britannica article on Giordano Bruno - as attached
 
See also S.T. Coleridge’s remarks on, and quotations from, Bruno - as attached].

Giordano Bruno [1] - Joyce references Bruno, with others, in his “Portrait” essay of 1904: ‘Extravagance followed. The simple history of the Poverello was soon out of mind and he established himself in the maddest of companies, Joachim Abbas, Bruno the Nolan, Michael Sendivogius, all the hierarchs of initiation cast their spells upon him. He descended among the hells of Swedenborg and abased himself in the gloom of Saint John of the Cross. His heaven was suddenly illuminated by a horde of stars, the signatures of all nature, the soul remembering ancient days.’ (Poems and Shorter Writings, ed. Ellmann, Litz, & Whittier-Ferguson, Faber 1991, p.214; for longer extract, see under Quotations, supra; also full text version in RICORSO LIbrary, ‘Irish Classics’, via index or direct.)

Note: The sole explicit allusion to Bruno by name in Stephen Hero occurs in a conversation with Fr. Artifoni, the amiable Jesuit Italian teacher, where Stephen cites The Triumphant Beast (viz., Lo Spaccio de La Bestia Tromphante [The Expulsion of the Triumphant Beast], 1584) [SH 174].

Here, in response to Artifoni’s calling Bruno ‘a terrible heretic’, Stephen answers, ‘Yes [...] he was terribly burned.’ (Stephen Hero, Cape Edn. SH 175.) Immediately after, Joyce kindly concedes that the ‘teacher was a poor inquisitor’ [SH 175] - or inquisitioner, as the MS reads, while a marginal note, possibly by Stanislaus, prompts the correction inquisitor. (He means that Fr. Artifoni is not cruel.) In A Portrait Stephen’s bon mot is briefly paraphrased in one of the final diary entries [AP 253]: ‘’.

Michael Sendivogius = Michal Sedziwój (1566-1636), a Polish alchemist best known for Tractatus de Lapide Philosophorum (1604).

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Giordano Bruno (?1548-16 Feb. 1600) [2] - Joyce’s “The Day of the Rabblement” (1901) derives its haughty intellectual tone from Giordano Bruno’s heroic refusal to recant his unorthodox beliefs, leading to his execution by auto da fé at Campo dei Fiori in Rome in 1600. It is certain that Joyce had already read Isabella Frith’s Life of Giordano Bruno, the Nolan (1887) [see infra] when he wrote his pamphlet “The Day of the Rabblement” (1901) since he opens it with an epigram quoted in Frith which Richard Ellmann & Ellsworth Mason have identified with p.165 of her work in their edition of The Critical Writings of James Joyce (NY: Viking Press 1966; see p.69, n.3).

Bibliographical note: I[sabella] Frith [Mrs. Oppenheim], Life of Giordano Bruno the Nolan, revised by Professor Moriz Carrière [English and foreign philosophical library; Vol. XXXI] (London: Trübner, 1887), xii [Pref. vi-x; Contents, x-xii], 395pp., ill. [front. port.]; incls. 11 chaps. and Appendix: “Alphabetical list of authorities” (pp.379-88); “The existing works of Bruno” (pp.[309]-39); “The Noroff collection of manuscripts” (pp.[341]-69). [Available at Internet Archive - online; see reading notes - attached].

Viz., Frith writes: ‘In another place he says (W[agner], ii, 424): “No man truly loves goodness and truth who is not incensed with the multitude, as, in what is commonly called love, he would be jealous and fearful for the thing beloved.” It was his prayer to be all arms and all eyes, and a new Briareas and a new Argus, that he might penetrate and embrace the whole of the infinite universe together with “the matter of Nature,” which, “being always the same under all forms of Nature, is not to be seen by the eye, but with the reason alone, with the intellect.” (Frith, Life of Giordano Bruno, London: Trübner & Co. 1887, p.165) - viz.,

Page-image from Frith’s Bruno (1887)
[Source: The Internet Archive - online;
for longer extracts, see attached.

- Joyce writes: ‘No man, said the Nolan, can be a lover of the true or the good unless he abhors the multitude; and the artist, though he may employ the crowd, is very careful to isolate himself [...] and to-day when the highest form of art has been just preserved by desperate sacrifices, it is strange to see the artist making terms with the rabblement.’’ (Critical Writings, p.69.) Note: the sentence from Bruno given above in quoted in part only in the footnote to the Critical Writings [ending before ‘as, in what is ... &c.’].

Note that Frith uses the term ‘rabble’ but not ‘rabblement’ - viz., her translation of Bruno’s sonnet prefaced to Gli heroici furori (1585):

“O worthy love of the beautiful! desire for the divine!” he cries, “lend me thy wings; bring me to the dayspring, to the clearness of the young morning; and the outrage of the rabble, the storms of Time, the slings and arrows of Fortune, shall fall upon this tender body and shall weld it to steel.” (Frith, op. cit., pp.131-32; our italics).

See also: ‘In 1525 the Genoese rabble had hooted Francis I when he rode into their city after the battle of Pavia, [...]’ (p.38.), and the epigraph to Chapter VI: ‘And when I leave this rabble rout and defilement of the world, I have it as an inn and not a place of abode. For Nature has given us out bodies as an inn to lodge in, and not to dwell in.’— Cato. (p.136.) Note: There are no other instances of ‘rabble’ in Frith’s book.

Joyce also makes a veiled reference to Frith’s book in the opening of his review of J. Lewis MacIntyre’s Giordano Bruno (Macmillan 1903) for the Daily Express [Dublin] (30 Oct. 1903):

‘Except for a book in the English and Foreign Philosophical Library [I. Frith, Life of Giordano Bruno, London 1887], a book the interest of which is chiefly biographical, no considerable volume has appeared in English to give an account of the life and philosophy of the heresiarch martyr of Nola.’ (Critical Writings, ed. Ellmann & Mason, NY: Viking Press 1959, &c., p.132.) [See longer extracts, see under Joyce > Quotations > supra or as sep. page.]

Note: McIntyre, in his introductory remarks, makes a similar observation about the restriction of Frith’s book to biographical facts. In fact her chapter by chapter account of his perigrinations and trials is chiefly concerned with the roll-call of his writings while the apparatus of the book is largley bibliographical excepting only the transcription of Schoppius’s Latin letter on the execution of Bruno. [For reading notes on J. Lewis McIntyre, Giordano Bruno (London: Macmillan 1903), including longer extracts - see attached.]

The tone of his remarks suggests that he was not impressed by her grasp of Bruno’s philosophy and, in fact, his indebtedness to McIntyre in that respect is more pronounced (see Critical Writings, ed. Ellmann & Ellsworth, [1959] 1966, p.133, n. 1 & 2).

Frith quotes Coleridge [two allusions only]: ‘Had Bruno survived to write, like Descartes, a Discours sur la Methode, the Nolan must have escaped the accusation of pantheism which has arisen from his conception of a world-soul, with its attendant difficulties. “He suffered,” says Coleridge in his Table-Talk and Omniana [see bibl. note], “at Rome for atheism; that is, as is proved by all his works, for a lofty and enlightened piety, which was, of course, unintelligible to bigots and dangerous to an apostate hierarchy. If the human mind be, as it assuredly is, the sublimest object which nature affords to our contemplation, his lines, which [17] portray the human mind under the action of its own elevated affections, have a fair claim to the praise sublimity.”’ (pp.17-18.)

[Note however that McIntyre considers Bruno to be a pantheist - as infra.]

Note: The lines to which Coleridge refers are the ode beginning ‘Daedaleas ...” [as given under Coleridge, infra.] In this she make no attempt to describe or otherwise explain what Coleridge means by ‘his lines’ though there is enough bibliographical information here - viz., Omniana - to lead Joyce to the original, in which the glaring prominence of the name of ‘Daedalus’ -as it is spelt in Ovid’s Metamorphoses, but here given as ‘Daedalas’ - must immediately catch the attention of any Joyce reader. BS

Further [Frith]: ‘He seems,” says Professor Carrière, “to have reached his conclusions by means of intuition and induction, for his mathematics are insignificant [...] “Bruno,” says Libri, “seems a priori to have embraced the Copernican system by a species of intuition, being no mathematician whatever”. [...] “Coleridge,” says Lewes, “used to say that imagination was the greatest faculty of the philosopher;” and the German critic Hillebrand was told by Leibnitz himself “that all his discoveries had been the result of lightning-like intuition and divination, ascertained afterwards [146] by observation and experiment.’ (pp.146-47; see further in Reading Notes - attached; and see extracts from G. H. Lewis, infra. )

Karl Hillebrand (1829-1884) was sometime secretary to Heine and wrote in English and French as well as German. (See Encyc. Brit., 1949, p.Vol. 11, p.558.

Note: These two references to Samuel Taylor Coleridge in Giordano Bruno by I. Frith (1887) have been identified in browsing the copy held at the National Library of Ireland, and subsequently confirmed as the sole instances of his name in that work by using the Search command within the text-format copy heldat Internet Library [online] and OpenLibrary.org [online] [BS / 11.12.2012.]

[See extracts from Frith, The Life of Giordano the Nolan (1887) - attached.]

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Giordano Bruno [3]: An oblique allusion to Bruno occurs later on where Joyce writes: ‘Accordingy, the rabblement, placid and intensely moral, is enthroned in the boxes and galleries amid a hum of approval - la bestia Trionfante - and those who think that Echegaray is “morbid”, and titter coyly when Mélisande lets down her hair, are not sure but they are the trustees of every intellectual and poetic treasure.’ (Critical Writings, pp.70-71.) In an editorial footnote Richard Ellmann and Ellsworth Mason write: ‘Bruno wrote Spaccio della Bestia Trionfante, in which, however, the beast is not the rabblement of men but of human vices.’ (See Critical Writings, 1966, p.70, n.1.)

[See remarks on the ‘la bestia trionfante’ as the Pope in William Boulting, Giordano Bruno: His Life, Thought, and Martyrdom (London: K. Paul, Trench, Trübner 1914) - as infra.]

Giordano Bruno [4] - the review:

Joyce reviewed Giordano Bruno by J. Lewis McIntyre as “The Bruno Philosophy” in the Dublin Daily Express (30 Oct 1903), rep. in Critical Writings, ed. Ellmann & Mason [1959] (NY: Viking Press 1965), p.133-34. The reflections in Joyce’s review of some observations made by McIntyre in his book are noted by the editors of the Critical Writings in footnotes to their edition of the review by simple means of a page citation in McIntyre (Giordano Bruno, Macmillan, 1903; available at Internet Archive - online).

Note: Lewis McIntyre thinks that Bruno was a pantheist: ‘[...] the theory may be regarded as either dualistic (as Cusanus’ really was) or as pantheistic. There is no doubt, however, that it was in the latter sense that Bruno held the coincidence of contraries.’ (Giordano Bruno, Macmillan 1903, pp.179.) See further in reading notes, attached.]

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Giordano Bruno [5] - The editors of the Critical Writers indicate in their footnotes to “The Bruno Philosophy” that Joyce repeats Lewis McIntyre’s judgements on his subject at several points: firstly, where Joyce calls Bruno ‘the father of what is called modern philosophy’ rather than Bacon or Descartes [CW, 133]; secondly, where he speaks of Bruno’s notion of the relation between mind and body as ‘a curious anticipation of Spinoza’ [CW, 133], and thirdly where he styles Bruno ‘the god-intoxicated man’ rather than Spinoza [CW, 134; see note, infra]. A forth identification associated with Joyce’s comparison between Bruno and Averroes and Erigena is correct in principle but associated with the wrong page - i.e., p.110 for p.305 in McIntyre. Thus the eries of pages cited in Critical Writings at p.133, n.1 & 2; p.134, n.3 is pp.324, 338, 110, & 110 [sic] where the last is an error for p.305. [See quotation - infra.]

‘[...] more ingenuous than that of Averroes or of Scotus Erigena’ (CW, 134): In the Critical Writings, Ellmann and Mason erroneously associate this idea with p.110 of McIntyre’s book - perhaps a copying error since the antecedent remark about Spinoza is accurately tallied with that page also. In fact, the corresponding passage in McIntyre falls on p.305: “There were two types of rationalism in mediaeval philosophy - that of Averroes, which sought to supplant the positive religions by a religion of philosophy, and that of Scotus Erigena, which aimed at upholding popular faiths while allowing the philosopher freedom of thought in interpreting the doctrines these faiths involved. Bruno’s rationalism is clearly of the second type, although personally he disliked all prevailing religions for the reasons already given.’ Quite correctly, the editors of the Critical Writings state that McIntyre makes the comparison though ‘without drawing so forceful a conclusion.’

[See extracts from McIntyre’s Giordano Bruno (London: Macmillan 1903) where Joyce’s source-passages are indicated by underlining - attached.]

Note: Speaking in his own voice, Joyce discounts Bruno’s share in Raymond Lully’s theory of memory and his excursions into the field of ethics as “fantastical and middle-aged’, meaning ‘medieval’ - quite untypically - in a pejorative sense [CW, 133]. For the rest, he celebrates Bruno as one of ‘the number of those who loftily do not fear to die’, and identifies ׃his vindication of the freedom of intuition’ as ‘an enduring monument’ - a monument which, in Joyce’s parting comment, renders Bruno’s ‘legend [...] the most honourable, more sanctified, and more ingenuous than that of Averroes or of Scotus Erigena.’ [CW, 134.] BS.

God-intoxicated - see J. Lewis McIntyre:
‘He was full of enthusiasm, as we shall find, for the divine - in things, in us, in the world, in the universe - a “God-intoxicated man” far more strikingly than the impassive Spinoza. It was because the Copernican theory fitted into his mystical thought of the One, as an identity of the infinitely small, the point, and the infinitely great, the broad, deep, immeasurable universe, that it appeared to him an inspiration of genius.’ (p.110.) [Note: This sentence is indicated in the Critical Writings, ed. Mason & Ellmann [1959] 1965, as the source of Joyce’s remarks - as above.]

God-intoxicated - see John Owen:
‘Reading Bruno’s Eroici furori, one is forcibly reminded of Schleiermacher’s glowing description of Spinoza as a “God-intoxicated man”: [313; here quotes German - as attached.] This magnificent eulogy is as applicable to Bruno as to Spinoza. Indeed, of the two I think the author of Gli eroici furori is a few stages further advanced in God-intoxication than even Spinoza. That a man capable of conceiving such a noble and elevated object for human affections, of being permeated by such a divine passion, [n.1.] should have actually suffered death as an atheist, must be pronounced one of the most monstrous perversions of justice which defile the pages of history. Unhappily, it is not a solitary instance of the irony which occasionally overrules human destinies, and with diabolical humour prescribes slavery as the lot of lovers of liberty, compulsory falsehood or the stake as the destiny of lovers of truth; as well as persecution and death as an atheist for the God-intoxicated enthusiast. [n.2]

God-intoxicated - see Novalis:
Novalis [George Freidrich Freiherr von Hardendberg] is usually cited as the author of the phrase ‘god-intoxicated man’ as attached to Spinoza. See Novalis: Notes for a Romantic Encyclopaedia - Das Allgemeine Brouillon, trans., ed. and intro. by David W. Wood (NY: State University of New York Press 2007), p.261 [Notes on the text] - viz., ‘Fragmente und Studien 1799/1800 in which Novalis famously remarks, “Spinoza is a God-intoxicated man”’. (Novalis Schriften, six volumes, edited by Richard Samuel, Hans-Joachim Mähl and Gerhard Schulz, Stuttgart, Verlag W. Kohlhammer, 1960–2006, III, no. 562, p.651. [The said edition of the works of Novalis is usually style HKA for Historische-Kritische Ausgabe.]

Note 1. Few things in Bruno’s works are more remarkable than the depth and sincerity of his God-passion. The title which next to Philosophus he most affected is Theophilus (lover of God). From his point of view no doubt the terms are synonymous.

Note 2. (‘Bruno e stato bruciato vivo a Roma come sprezzatore della religione e di Dio. Oramai sappiamo che cosa importano questo accuse, e possiamo dire anche noi con tutta ragione. “Eh! Prole dolor! res eo jam pervenit ut qui assertè fatentur, se Dei ideam non habere, et Deum non nisi per res creatas (quorum causas ignorant) cognoscere, non erubescant philosophos atheismi accusant”’ — Spaventa, Saggi, p. 167, quoting Spinoza, Tract. Theo. Pol., om op., ii. p.82. (Owen, p.313-14; notes on p.314.)

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Giordano Bruno [6]: ‘Infinite other worlds, inhabited like our own, spread throughout space; a structure to the universe of suns and clusters of suns circling in grand orbits, but no “centre” except in the ground beneath two human feet; the presence of God not atop an empyrean throne past the threshold of the farthest stars, but inhabiting every atom of matter; an eternal span to matter, which can change its form but never be exhausted in any proportion; and finally and logically, infinity demanded of him an innate union of all contraries, by which evil and good, history and the future, localized humanity and an infinite universe inform and express one another.’ (Quoted in Bill Kuhns, ‘Reviewing the Reviews: Giordano Bruno and Marshall McLuhan’, in McLuhan Studies, 1, 2 [q.d.; 1996?] online; accessed 14.10.2008]. (Also cites inter alia Bruno’s death by burning [auto-da-fé] on 17 Feb. 1660 at Campo dei Fiere, Rome, and notes a biography by William Boulting.

On the Infinite Universe and Worlds (1584)

“I cleave the heavens and soar to the infinite.
And while I rise from my own globe to others
And penetrate ever further through the eternal field,
That which others saw from afar, I leave far behind me.”

Quoted on Gnostic Devotions website - online; accessed 1.08.2012.

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Giordano Bruno [4 - cont.]: ‘[...] even in the two extremes of the scale of nature, we contemplate two principles which are one; two beings which are one; two contraries which are harmonious and the same. Therefore height is depth, the abyss is light unvisited, darkness is brilliant, the large is small, the confused is distinct, dispute is friendship, the divided is united, the atom is immensity .... Here are the signs and proofs whereby we see that contraries do truly concur; they are from a single origin and are in truth and substance one. This, having been seen mathematically is accepted physically ... / Here as in a seed are contained and enfolded the manifold conclusions of natural science; here is the mosaic, the disposition and order of the speculative science.’

Giordano Bruno [4 - cont.] (from De immenso): ‘[...] I shall place you in the body of the moon; your senses, through proper adaptation, will enable you to use your faculty of reason and see these things ... From this side I shall show you the face of the earth shining in the opposite region, in the light of the radiant sun diffused into the surface of the ocean. Do you see how the vast machine seems contracted into a small mass? ... Now the moon is not the moon to you, but it seems to be the true earth ... Notice how Britain is condensed to a small point and the very narrow Italy is condensed into a thin and short hair.’ (All quoted without refs. in Kuhn, op. cit.) [On extremes, see Shem’s Latin sentence in Finnegans Wake [287.23-28] - as in Notes, 1, infra.]

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Bruno - “On the Infinite Universe and Worlds” [extract]

We are not compelled to define a number, we who say that there is an infinite number of worlds; there no distinction exists of odd or even, since these are differences of number, not of the innumerable. Nor can I think there have ever been philosophers who, in positing several worlds, did not posit them also as infinite: for would not reason, which demands something further beyond this sensible world, so also outside of and beyond whatever number of worlds is assumed, assume again another and another?’
 Whatever is an element of the infinite must be infinite also; hence both Earths and Suns are infinite in number. But the infinity of the former, is not greater than of the latter; nor where all are inhabited, are the inhabitants in greater proportion to the infinite than the stars themselves.
 Everywhere is one soul, one spirit of the world, wholly in the whole and in every part of it, as we find in our lesser world also. This soul ... produces all things everywhere; so that for the generations of some even time is not required ...
 Therefore the perfect, absolutely and in itself, is one, infinite, which cannot be greater or better, and than which nothing can be greater or better. This is one, everywhere, the only God, universal nature, of which nothing can be a perfect image or reflection, but the infinite.

-Quoted by Gevin Giorbran in “The Timeless Infinite Universe” - online:

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Giordano Bruno [5] Kuhn remarks that Bruno published three pamphlets in London with a fake Venetian imprint [1584], under the titles The Ash Wednesday Supper, On Cause, Prime Origin, and the One, and On the Infinite Universe and Worlds, and ends by quoting Bruno: ‘And while I venture out beyond this tiny globe Into reaches past the bounds of starry night I leave behind what others strain to see afar.’ (Bill Kuhns, op. cit.]

Antoine Faivre, Theosophy, Imagination, Tradition: Studies in Western Esotericism (NY State UP 2000) - “Exercises of Imagination” - Vis Imaginativa (A Study of some Aspects of the Magical Imagination and its Mythical Foundations [chap.]: ‘[... T]he work of Giordano Bruno, De Imaginum, Signorum et Idearum compositione (1591), propounded a theory of the imagination conceived of as the principal instrument of magical and religious processes. In so doing, Bruno, in the manner of Giulio Camillo (L’idea del Teatro, 1550), transformed the art of memory, which had been merely a rational technique using images (as in Thomas Aquinas), into a religious and magical one. It was a matter of training the imagination to make of it an instrument allowing the acquisition of divine powers. One could attract the spirits through incantations, seals, and [101] markings, but also by the imagination alone, this third method being the principal one.’ (pp.101-02).

Note: Earlier on, Faivre writes: ‘[...] a [9] knowledge of divine things is gained starting from the concrete world, from the entire universe, whose “signatures” or hieroglyphs it is first a matter of deciphering. The second philosophico-scientific factor was the appearance of mechanism, which favored the emergence of Cartesianism. In contrast to this new form of scientific imagination and to an epistemology that emptied the universe of its “correspondences,” theosophy and pansophy reaffirmed the place of the microcosm in the macrocosm. Certainly, theosophy is not scientific, and pansophy has never gone beyond the project stage. Nevertheless, at this time, both of them appeared to many people as a promise, a hope, a new dawn of thought. Moreover, the poetic aspect of their discourse favored a co-penetration of literature and science and by virtue of this contributed to the development of the popularization of science.’ (pp.9-10.)

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Giordano Bruno [6] - Hélène Cixous writes: ‘[Joyce’s] letters to Stanislaus during 1905-07 show that he was gradually disengaging himself from all idealism, including his youthful admiration for Ibsen or Giordano Bruno; he records, for example, that he had with complete indifference taken part in a procession in honour of the Nolan.’ (Letters, Vol. II, p.217; 1 March 1907; Cixous, The Exile of James Joyce, trans. Sally Purcell, London; Calder 1976, p.228.)

Bruno Commemoration [procession], 17 Feb. 1907: ‘The spectacle of the procession in honour of the Nolan [on 17 Feb.] left me quite cold. I understand that anti-clerical history probably contains a large percentage of lies but this is not enough to drive me back howling to my gods. This state of indifference ought to indicate artistic inclination, but doesn’t. Because I take a fortnight to read a small book. I was about two days making up my mind to go and see the Dusk of the Gods. I weighed the cold, the distance, the crush, discomfort &c. Finally I went and tried to interest myself but was considerably bored. [217; ...] The day of Bruno’s memorial procession I was standing among the crowd waiting for the cortege to appear. It was a murky day and, being Sunday, I had not washed. I was wearing a white felt hat, faded by reason of heavy rains, Scholz’s five crown cloak hung bawways on me. My boots, being Sunday, were coated with a week’s dirt and I was in need of a shave. In fact, I was a horrible example of free thought.’ (Letters, II, 217-18; see longer extract under Quotations, attached.)

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Bruno’s Works online: PDF versions of the works of Giordano Bruno and studies of him are available on Internet at the Bibliotheca Bruniana Electronica of the Instituto Italiano per gli Studi Filosofici and the Warburg Institute [SAS/London Unversity] - see parent directory .

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Giordano Bruno [7] - The Inquisition (properly the Holy Office):
Cardinal Bellarmino drew up a list of theories published by Bruno which were held to be heretical. The eight propositions that the philosopher refused to renounce were as follows:
  • 1. The statement of “two real and eternal principles of existence: the soul of the world and the original matter from which beings are derived”.
  • 2. The doctrine of the infinite universe and infinite worlds in conflict with the idea of Creation: “He who denies the infinite effect denies the infinite power”.
  • 3. The idea that every reality resides in the eternal and infinite soul of the world, including the body: “There is no reality that is not accompanied by a spirit and an intelligence”.
  • 4. The argument according to which “there is no transformation in the substance”, since the substance is eternal and generates nothing, but transforms.
  • 5 The idea of terrestrial movement, which according to Bruno, did not oppose the Holy Scriptures, which were popularised for the faithful and did not apply to scientists.
  • 6. The designation of stars as “messengers and interpreters of the ways of God”.
  • 7. The allocation of a “both sensory and intellectual” soul to earth.
  • 8. The opposition to the doctrine of St Thomas on the soul, the spiritual reality held captive in the body and not considered as the form of the human body.
‘[... T]he Inquisition accused him of having turned towards hermetism and the arcane, branding him a sorcerer for having written in On Heroic Frenzies that “Magi can accomplish more using the faith than doctors using the ways of liberty” and for recognising magic as beneficial and lawful. Whatever the case, on 20 January 1600, Pope Clement VIII declared that the accused was “an unrepentant heretic, tenacious and stubborn”. Taken to the secular arm, Cardinal Madruzzi pronounced the sentence on 8 February. Giordano Bruno was burned at the stake in Campo dei Fiori in Rome around 10 days later. Defiant to the very end, Bruno looked away from the crucifix before perishing in the flames.’
See Lawrence MacLachlan, ‘The Trials of Giordano Bruno: 1592 & 1600’, at the University of Kansas-Missouri’s Law School website - online [accessed 31.07.2012].

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Giordano Bruno [8] - called by Mason & Ellmann ‘a favourite philosopher of Joyce, whose name is mentioned constantly in Finnegans Wake.’ (Critical Writings, Viking Press 1959, &c., p.9.) The editors go on to quote Stanislaus Joyce: ‘Jim had kept the reference to “the Nolan” advisedly, overriding objections from me, his doubting Thomas. He intended that the readers of his article should have at first a false impression that he was quoting some little-known Irish writer - the definite article before some old family names being a courtesy title in Ireland - so that when they discovered their error, the name of Giordano Bruno might perhaps awaken some interest in his life and work. Laymen, he repeated, should be encouraged to think.’ (My Brother’s Keeper, p.146; here p.69, n.2.)

Gordon Brown - see Stanislaus Joyce: ‘[...] he thought seriously of abandoning his university studies and going on the stage in order to gain a practical knowledge of the production of dramatic works. Beginning with the easiest part of the probejct, he sometimes took a theatrical paper called, I think, The Stage and chose his stage name, Gordon Brown, a choice which bore witness to his admiration for Giordano Bruno whose philosophical essays he was reading at the time.’ (My Brother’s Keeper, London: Faber 1958, p.132.)

Note also: a Gordon Browne illustrated the poem “The Charity of Countess Kathleen” by Katherine Tynan in Atlanta (Feb. 1891). See Collected Letters of W. B. Yeats, Vol. I (OUP 1986), p.107, n8.

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Giordano Bruno [9] - see James Atherton, The Books at the Wake: A Study of Literary Allusion in James Joyce’s Finnegans Wake (Illinois UP 1959; Arcturus 1974), pp.36-37: ‘Bruno and Nicholas of Cusa alike believed in the coincidence of contraries. Joyce uses this theory to strange effect in Finnegans Wake where, for example, an arguing pair like Butt and Taff can suddenly become ‘one and the same person’ (354.8) because they are ‘equals of opposites ... and polarised for reunion by the symphysis of their antipathies’ (92.8). Bruno also stated in his Of the Infinite Universe and Innumerable Worlds that ‘The actual and the possible are not different in eternity.’ [Cites John Toland, A Collection of Several Pieces with an Account of Jordano Bruno’s Of the Infinite Universe and Innumerable Worlds (London 1726), p.322.] It is from this that Joyce derives his assumption that the events and characters described in history, literature and myth have equal validity. Maria Martin, Hamlet and the Duke of Wellington are characters of the same kind. [......; p.36] Probably Joyce was first attracted to him as a self-confessed ‘Restless spirit that overturns the structure of sound discipline’ (Spirito inquieti, che subverte gli edifice di buone discipline [Opere di Giordano Bruno. Lipzeig 1830, Vol.2, p.3]), and as a heretic who was burned to death. But he is not likely to have read his work very thoroughly for Bruno is one of the most verbose of all writers [...] Years afterwards, when planning Finnegan Wake, he remembered the theories of Bruno. Probably he then looked up Bruno again and found him just what he was needing, although he also seems to have found his style irritating on a second reading, and appears to be parodying the passage I have just quoted in ‘did not say to the old old, did not say to the scorbutic, scorbutic’ (136.10). It also seems probable, from various hints in the Wake, that Joyce also consulted Coleridge’s translations of parts of Bruno’s works in The Friend (1809-10, No. VI, pp.81-82). [See longer extracts in RICORSO Library, “Criticism > Major Authors > Joyce”, via index, or attached.]

Note: Atherton’s citation of The Friend is erroneous in any edition. Coleridge’s ‘translations’ from Bruno fall in Essay XIII of The Friend, while his untranslated and commented copies of longer passages appear ’ in Omniana under “Magnanimity” (Literary Remains, 1836). See Coleridge, The Friend (1893 Edn.) - online.

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Giordano Bruno [10] - See Samuel Beckett, “Dante ... Bruno. Vico.. Joyce”, in Exagmination Round His Factification for an Incamination of Work in Progress (1929; & edns. 1939, 1962, 1972):

‘[...] At this point Vico applies [5] Bruno - though he takes very good care not to say so - and proceeds from rather arbitrary data to philosophical abstraction. There is no difference, says Bruno between the smallest possible chord and the smallest possible arc, no difference between the infinite circle and the straight line. The maxima and the minima of particular contraries are one and indifferent. Minimal heat equals minimal cold. Consequently transmutations are circular. The principle (minimum) of one contrary takes its movement from the principle (maximum) of another. Therefore not only do the minima coincide with the minima, the maxima with the maxima, but the minima and the maxima are in the succession of transmutations. Maximal speed is a state of rest. The maximum corruption and the minimum of generation are identical: in principle, corruption is generation. All things are ultimately identified with God, the universal monad, Monad of Monads. From these considerations Vico evolved a Science and Philosophy of History [...].’ (Exagmination ... &c., 1929; rep. 1939, 2nd Edn. 1962; pb. 1972, pp.6-7.)

Further: ‘For the benefit of those who enjoy a parenthetical sneer, we would draw attention to the fact that when Mr. Joyce’s early pamphlet The Day of the Rabblement appeared, the local philosophers were thrown into a state of some bewilderment by a reference in the first line to “The Nolan”. They finally succeeded in identifying this mysterious individual with one of the obscurer ancient Irish kings. In the present work he appears frequently as “Browne & Nolan” the name of a very remarkable Dublin Bookseller and Stationer.’ (Ibid., 1972, p.17.)

Note: Beckett returned to Bruno and Joyce when, in 1955, he wrote to the Joyce scholar David Hayman that Joyce’s thinking when he knew him was ‘more consistent with Bruno’s identification of contraries than with the intellectualism of Mallarmé’. (Letter of 22 July 1955, in Letters of Samuel Beckett , 1941-1956, ed. George Craig, et al., Cambridge UP 2011, p.537.)

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Giordano Bruno [11] - Richard Ellmann writes: ‘[...] among philosophers he found an unexpected master in Giordano Bruno. Bruno had long been considered a clerical villain, but his vindication had begun. In 1889 [recte 1887] a statue to him was erected in Rome in the same Campo dei Fiori where he had been burned at the stake in 1600. Ghezzi piously reminded Joyce that Bruno was a terrible heretic, and Joyce dryly rejoined, “Yes, and he was terribly burned.” Bruno’s theory of an ultimate unity and its terrestrial division into contraries attracted Joyce, perhaps, because he saw his art as a reconciler of those opposites within his own mind which he would later personify as Shem and Shaun. In Finnegans Wake he made Bruno of Nola Irish by confusing him with the Dublin booksellers, Browne and Nolan.’ (James Joyce, 1965 Edn., p.61.) [Cont.]

Fr. Ghezzi: The model for Fr. Artifoni in Stephen Hero and, more incidentally, in Ulysses. In A Portrait he appears under his own name in Stephen’s diary entries [AP253 - as infra]. This was Joyce’s Italian teacher Fr. Charles Ghezzi, SJ, whose fictional name he took from Almidano Artifoni, the owner of the Berlitz School of languages in Trieste and Pola where Joyce worked. (See further in Notes, infra.)

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Giordano Bruno - Richard Ellmann [cont.]: ‘The publication of Two Essays [by Skeffington and Joyce] roused a good deal of talk. No one knew who the Nolan was. As Joyce told Herbert Gorman later, “University College was much intrigued by this personage whom it supposed to be an ancient Irish chieftain like the MacDermott or the O’Rahilly.’ [41] Some students thought it was Joyce himself, later identified in the columns of St. Stephen’s as “the dreamy one of Nola”; others thought it was the porter at the St. Cecilia medical school, whose name was Nolan [42] “Said the Nolan” became a catch phrase. Stanislaus had urged him to clarify this reference to Giordano Bruno of Nola, but James replied, “Laymen should be encouraged to think,” and fancied that when the students discovered who the Nolan was, they might go on to read some of his work. “The writer of Michael Kramer” was probably also a baffling phrase to most of his readers, though more easily illuminated. The implications of Joyce’s final sentence about the successor to Ibsen, which he had adapted from the curtain speech in the first act of The Master Builder, were not lost; he was twitted for them at the Sheehys’, where speaking of some Dublin event, Hannah Sheehy said, “0, there are sure to be great crowds.” Skeffington chimed in, “In fact it’ll be, as our friend Jocax would say, the day of the rabblement.” And Maggie Sheehy declaimed, “Even now the rabblement may be standing by the door!” Joyce wrote the dialogue down in an epiphany, perhaps to suggest how in Ireland all things are cheapened. / In St. Stephen’s the essay was handled both lightly and heavily.’ [Cont.]

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Giordano Bruno - Richard Ellmann [cont.]: ‘Arthur Clery, writing as “Chanel”, pretending to quote a State Paper, Aet. Eliz., said that Joyce was “corrupted, as we do verily believe, by the learning of Italie or othere foreign parts, hath no care for Holye Religion, but is fain to mislead our players.” A leading article, perhaps by Kennedy, took issue with Joyce more sharply. The multitude that he so detested was Catholic, it pointed out, and this multitude was willing to forego art if art interfered with the spirit. Only Joyce had refused to join in the protest against The Countess Cathleen, the writer reminded him, and smugly concluded: “If Mr. Joyce thinks that the artist must stand apart from the multitude, and means he must also sever himself from the moral and religious teachings which have, under Divine guidance, moulded its spiritual character, we join issue with him, and we prophesy but ill-success for any school which offers the Irish public art based upon such a principle.” Joyce had succeeded in flouting both the Irish Literary Theatre and the students who disliked its plays for the wrong reasons. He had found his private mountain top. / Although he was profoundly disaffected, Joyce was not like Skeffington a rebel day in and day out. He accepted the enemies he had sought, but did not much bother himself about them. Most of the rabblement liked him better than he desired.’ (Ellmann, James Joyce, 1957 &c., pp.93-94; see also pp.144, 151, 154, 249.)

On Nicolaus Copernicus, in Cena de al Cenari (1585): ‘He was a man of grave and cultivated mind, of rapid and mature intelligence; inferior to no preceding astronomer, unless in order of succession and time; a man, who in natural ability was far superior to Ptolemy, Hipparchus, Eudoxus, and all those others who followed in their footsteps. What he was, he became through having liberated himself from certain false axioms of the common and vulgar philosophy — I will not say blindness. Nevertheless, he did not depart far from them; because, studying mathematics rather than Nature, he failed to penetrate and dig deep enough altogether to cut away the roots of incongruous and vain principles, and thus, removing perfectly all opposing difficulties, free himself and others from so many empty investigations into things obvious and unchangeable. In spite of all this, who can sufficiently praise the magnanimity of this German, who, having little regard to the foolish multitude, stood firm against the torrent of contrary opinion, and, although well-nigh unarmed with living arguments, resuming those rusty and neglected fragments which antiquity had transmitted to him, polished, repaired, and put them together with reasonings more mathematical than philosophical; and so rendered that cause formerly contemned and contemptible, honourable, estimable, more probable than its rival, and certainly convenient and expeditious for purposes of theory and calculation? Thus this Teuton, although with means insufficient to vanquish, overthrow, and suppress falsehood, as well as resist it, nevertheless resolutely determined in his own mind, and openly confessed this final and necessary conclusion: that it is more possible that this globe should move with regard to the universe, than that the innumerable multitude of bodies, many of which are known to be greater and more magnificent than our earth, should be compelled, in spite of Nature and reason, which, by means of motions evident to the senses, proclaim the contrary, to acknowledge this globe as the centre and base of their revolutions and influences. Who then will be so churlish and discourteous towards the efforts of this man, as to cover with oblivion all he has done, by being ordained of the Gods as an Aurora - which was to precede the rising of this Sun of the true, ancient philosophy, buried during so many centuries in the tenebrous caverns of blind, malignant, froward, envious ignorance; and, taking note only of what he failed to accomplish, rank him amongst the number of the herded multitude, which discourses, guides itself, precipitates to destruction, according to the oral sense of a brutal and ignoble belief, rather than amongst those who, by the use of right reason, have been able to rise up, and resume the true course under the faithful guidance of the eye of divine intelligence.’ (Trans. by Agnes Mary Clerke in ‘Copernicus in Italy’, in the Edinburgh Review, July 1877, pp.102-18; this extract, pp.116-17 - available at Internet Archive - online.)

Further: Clerke remarks before introducing this quotation: ‘It was Giordano Bruno’s pride to have broken down the barriers of heaven, and like the “little old woman” of the nursery rhyme, to have “cleared the cobwebs out of the sky”, in the shape of the last vestiges of the cycles, epicycles, and rotating spheres. Space - immense, ethereal, illimitable - lay open before him; peopled with shining spheres - the “Divine Animals” of Plato - consciously rejoicing as they swept through their voluntary, majestic orbs. [...] His daring prescience multiplied even the traditional seven planets of the solar system, which, in the increasing [116] family of the planetoids alone, have, by the latest discovery of Borelly, grown to the imposing number of 172. / But with all his poetic fervour, which sometimes misses its mark, and sometimes anticipated the result of much later discoveries, Giordano Bruno has left us one of the grandest and most weighty tributes to the character and genius of Copernicus himself. We shall quote the passage as a remarkable example of the great Italian style of that age.’ (pp.116-17; quotation follows, as above.)

Globes, spheres & televisions: see Joyce’s Brunonian phrases in Finnegans Wake: ‘I can easily believe heartily in my own most spacious immensity [150] as my ownhouse and microbemost cosm when I am reassured by ratio that the cube of my volumes is to the surfaces of their subjects as the sphericity of these globes [...] is to the feracity of Fairynelly’s vacuum.’ (FW, 150-35-151-07.) In this passage - ascribed to Professor Loewy-Brueller - the ‘faroscope of television’ [150.31-32], described as a ‘nightlife instrument’ in need of ‘betterment’ or ‘readjustment’ [150.33-34], is said to reveal this cosmological order.]

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Coulson Turnbull, Life and Teachings of Giordano Bruno: Philosopher, Martyr, Mystic 1548-1600 (1913): ‘In an inspired speech Bruno, through the interpreter, Jean Hennequin, of Paris, declared the discovery of numberless worlds in the One Infinite Universe. Nothing was more deplorable, declared he, than the habit of blind belief, for of all other things it hinders the mind from recognizing such matters as are in themselves clear and open. It was proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people. However, he cautioned that they should not be influenced by the fervor of speech, but by the weight of his argument and the majesty of truth.’ (p.41; quoted at Wikiquotes online - noting that the italicised phrases were spoken in a debate at the College of Cambray on 25 May 1588, and quoted as such in George Seldes, The Great Quotations, 1977, p.35 [substituting ‘is’ for ‘was’ in this passage of reported speech.)  

Giordano Bruno [12] - Colin MacCabe gives an introductory account of Joyce’s use of Bruno (‘An Introduction to Finnegans Wake’, 1982): ‘[...] His unorthodox beliefs and his final death at the stake as a heretic in 1600 had interested Joyce from an early age. Bruno’s principle of the “coincidence of contraries” denied the existence of absolute identities in the universe. Bruno argued that oppositions collapsed into unities at their extremes, thus extreme heat and extreme cold were held to be indistinguishable, and all identities were, therefore, provisional. Bruno joined this belief to a belief in an [33] infinite universe composed of an infinity of worlds. [...] But to understand Joyce as simply providing an artistic gloss to the theories of an obscure philosopher is to minimise crucially the importance of the Wake. Bruno is important insofar as he provides a philosophical trellis on which the philosophical and linguistic presuppositions of identity can be unpicked. At one level of consciousness we claim an identity and stability both for ourselves and our objects of perception. But such identities can only be produced by a process of differentiation in which other identities are rejected. [...]’ (See in James Joyce: New Perspectives, ed. MacCabe, Brighton: Harvester Wheatsheaf, pp.29-40; longer extract in RICORSO Library, “Criticism / Major Authors / Joyce”, infra.].

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Giordano Bruno [12]:
Did Bruno inspire Joyce’s literary pseudonym in the first Dubliners stories and likewise the name of his literary alter ego Stephen Dedalus in A Portrait? Joyce read of Bruno in MacIntyre’s biography which he reviewed for the Daily Express in 1900. It seems certain that he also knew Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s tributes to Bruno in Essay XIII of The Friend [1809-10; 1811, 1812; 1818 Edn., et al.) since he quotes the coincidentia oppositorum exactly as it is given there - though he may have met with it in an intermediate source - though not Frith (1887) or McIntyre (1903), neither of whom reference Coleridge. There is no biographical evidence that he knew the Literary Remains (1836) in which Coleridge reproduces an ode by Bruno, written the eve of his execution - when, in answer to the glib charge that he was a “terrible heretic”, Joyce replies that he was “terribly burned” - A Portrait (Chap. V). Yet Bruno’s ode begins with an allusion to the mythological figure who would become Joyce’s nom de plume and autobiographical alter ego by turns:
 

Daedaleas vacuis plumas nectere humeris / Concupiant alii
[Let other seek to weave the wings of Daedalus on their empty shoulders].

A little later in the same piece, Bruno pronounces his indifference to public opinion in terms that Joyce expressly echoes in the pamphlet that Joyce directed against the management of the Irish National (later Abbey) Theatre under the title “The Day of the Rabblement”:
 

Non curamus stultorum quid opinio / De nobis ferat
[We care not what opinion the rabble hold of us]’.

See longer extract - attached.
 
Viewed in this light, the fact that Joyce prefixed an epigraph from Ovid to A Portrait - viz., ‘Et ignotas animum dimittit in artes. [And he sets his mind to work upon unknown arts]’ (Metamorphoses, VIII, l.188; see note on translation, infra) - may be something of a red herring, with the unfortunate effect of occluding the profound influence of English romantic thinkers on Joyce.
 
Note on trans. of Metamorphosis: For this translation of Ovid, see Don Gifford, Joyce Annotated: Notes for Dubliners and A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man [2nd rev. edn.] (California UP 1982), p.130 - and note that Gifford quotes the ensuing phrase: ‘and changes the laws of nature’ (in ibid., p.131). [See longer extract from Ovid under Portrait - as attached.]
 

For Coleridge’s printing of Bruno’s final ode under the heading “Magnanimity” in the Literary Remains, ed. Henry Nelson Coleridge (Pickering 1836), Vol. I, see attached.

 

Bruno’s Ode [provisional translation]: ‘Others may wish to connect Daedalian wings to their vacant shoulders; or to be suspended by wings on the power of clouds, or let them seek the steerage of winds, or to be snatched up into the belly of the flaming orb; or the wingèd (horse) of Bellerophon [...] We, however, are endowed with that disposition as to discern intrepidly Fate and the shadows set before us, lest blindly into the light of the sun, deaf to the clear voices of Nature, we approach the benefices of the Gods with ungrateful breast.’ [Contrib. by John Dillon, Chair of Classics, TCD Emeritus.]

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Giordano Bruno [13] - Oscar Wilde: Bruno’s Bestia Trionfante [Triumphant Beast] is the subject of a reference in Wilde’s “The Critic as Artist” [in Intentions, 1891], where he characterises dullness a ‘the permanent Bestia Trionfans that calls wisdom from its cave’:

‘Dulness [Dullness] is always an irresistible temptation for brilliancy, and stupidity is the permanent Bestia Trionfans that calls wisdom from its cave. To an artist so creative as the critic, what does subject-matter signify? No more and no less than it does to the novelist and the painter. Like them, he can find his motives everywhere. Treatment is the test. There is nothing that has not in it suggestion or challenge.’ (Works of Oscar Wilde, Galley Press 1987, p.966.) Note: footnote in this edition simply translating the phrase as ‘Triumphant beast’ without italics or allusion to Bruno.

See Wilde’s reference to Bruno in The Picture of Dorian Gray (1891; London: Nash & Grayson Edn., 1928]): ‘Soul and body, body and soul - how mysterious they were! [...] Was the soul a shadow seated in the house of sin? Or was the body really in the soul, as Giordano Bruno thought? The separation of spirit from matter was a mystery, and the union of spirit with matter was a mystery also.’ (p.87; for longer extract, see infra.)

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Giordano Bruno [14]: A Sonnet (Third Dialogue, in The Heroic Frenzies [De gli eroici furori], Pt. I (1585) [Sonnet XVI]: ‘Since I have spread my wings toward sweet delight, the more do I feel the air beneath my feet, the more I spread proud pinions to the wind, and contemn the world, and further my way toward heaven. / Nor does the cruel fate of Daedalus’s son burden me, on the contrary I follow his way the more: that I shall fall dead upon the earth I am well aware; but what life compares with this death? / I hear the voice of my heart upon the wind: Where do you take me, adventurous one? Resign yourself, for too much temerity is rarely without danger. / I reply: fear not boble destruction, burst boldly through the clouds, and die content, if heaven destines us to so illustrious a death.’ (Trans. Paulo Eugene Memmo, in Esoteric Archives - online; Pt. III [as supra] is echoed at Bibliotecapleyades - online.)

[Note: the interlocutors are called Tansilla and Cicada - but cf. Tansillo, the poet whose sonnets are employed by Bruno in Gli Heroici Furori (1585).]

[See works of Bruno at the Esoteric Archives site online - some digital and others with links to current volumes at Amazon.com; accessed 24.01.2013.]

Giordano Bruno [16]: On the Infinite Universe and Worlds (De L’Infinito Universo et Mondi): [ded.] To the Most Illustrious Monsieur de Mauvissière (Venice 1584) [come sobra stampato in Londra]- available at Positive Atheism online; accessed 26.07.2012.]

Introductory Epistle: ‘If, O most illustrious Knight, I had driven a plough, pastured a herd, tended a garden, tailored a garment: none would regard me, few observe me, seldom a one reprove me; and I could easily satisfy all men. But since I would survey the field of Nature, care for the nourishment of the soul, foster the cultivation of talent, become expert as Daedalus concerning the ways of the intellect; lo, one doth threaten upon beholding me, another doth assail me at sight, another doth bite upon reaching me, yet another who hath caught me would devour me; not one, nor few, they are many, indeed almost all. If you would know why, it is because I hate the mob, I loathe the vulgar herd and in the multitude I find no joy. It is Unity that doth enchant me. By her power I am free though thrall, happy in sorrow, rich in poverty, and quick even in death. Through her virtue I envy not those who are bond though free, who grieve in the midst of pleasures, who endure poverty in their wealth, and a living death. They carry their chains within them; their spirit containeth her own hell that bringeth them low; within their soul is the disease that wasteth, and within their mind the lethargy that bringeth death. They are without the generosity that would enfranchise, the long suffering that exalteth, the splendour that doth illumine, knowledge that bestoweth life. Therefore I do not in weariness shun the arduous path, nor idly refrain my arm from the present task, nor retreat in despair from  the enemy that confronteth me, nor do I turn my dazzled eyes from the divine end. Yet I am aware that I am mostly held to be a sophist, seeking rather to appear subtle than to reveal the truth; an ambitious fellow diligent rather to support a new and false sect than to establish the ancient and true; a snarer of birds who pursueth the splendour of fame, by spreading ahead the darkness of error; an unquiet spirit that would undermine the edifice of good discipline to establish the frame of perversity.

Wherefore, my lord, may the heavenly powers scatter before me all those who unjustly hate me; may my God be ever gracious unto me; may all the rulers of our world be favourable to me; may the stars yield me seed for the field and soil for the seed, that the harvest of my labour may appear to the world useful and glorious, that souls may be awakened and the understanding of those in darkness be illumined. For assuredly I do not feign; and if I err, I do so unwittingly; nor do I in speech or writing contend merely for victory, for I hold worldly repute and hollow success without truth to be hateful to God, most vile and dishonourable. But I thus exhaust, vex and torment myself for love of true wisdom and zeal for true contemplation. This I shall make manifest by conclusive arguments, dependent on lively reasonings derived from regulated sensation, instructed by true phenomena; for these as trustworthy ambassadors emerge from objects of Nature, rendering themselves present to those who seek them, obvious to those who gaze attentively on them, clear to those who apprehend, certain and sure to those who understand. Thus I present to you my contemplation concerning the infinite universe and innumerable worlds.’

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Giordano Bruno - On the Infinite Universe and Worlds [cont.]

    [...]
    To a body of infinite size there can be ascribed neither centre nor boundary... Thus the Earth no more than any other world is at the centre.
    [...]
    It is then unnecessary to investigate whether there be beyond the heaven Space, Void or Time. For there is a single general space, a single vast immensity which we may freely call Void; in it are innumerable globes like this one on which we live and grow. This space we declare to be infinite, since neither reason, convenience, possibility, sense-perception nor nature assign to it a limit. In it are an infinity of worlds of the same kind as our own.
    [...]
    When we consider the being and substance of that universe in which we are immutably set, we shall discover that neither we ourselves nor any substance doth suffer death. for nothing is in fact diminished in its substance, but all things, wandering through infinite space, undergo change of aspect.
Introductory Epistle: Argument of the Third Dialogue
    Make then your forecasts, my lords Astrologers, with your slavish physicians, by means of those astrolabes with which you seek to discern the fantastic nine moving spheres; in these you finally imprison your own minds, so that you appear to me but as parrots in a cage, while I watch you dancing up and down, turning and hopping within those circles. We know that the Supreme Ruler cannot have a seat so narrow, so miserable a throne, so trivial, so scanty a court, so small and feeble a simulacrum that phantasm can bring to birth, a dream shatter, a delusion restore, a calamity diminish, a misdeed abolish and a thought renew it again, so that indeed with a puff of air it were brimful and with a single gulp it were emptied. On the contrary we recognize a noble image, a marvellous conception, a supreme figure, an exalted shadow, an infinite representation of the represented infinity, a spectacle worthy of the excellence and supremacy of Him who transcendeth understanding, comprehension or grasp. Thus is the excellence of God magnified and the greatness of his kingdom made manifest; He is glorified not in one, but in countless suns; not in a single earth, a single world, but in a thousand thousand, I say in an infinity of worlds.
     
    I cleave the heavens and soar to the infinite.
    And while I rise from my own globe to others
    And penetrate ever further through the eternal field,
    That which others saw from afar, I leave far behind me.
    Variant translation: While I venture out beyond this tiny globe
    Into reaches past the bounds of starry night
    I leave behind what others strain to see afar.
 
The above quotations available with others at Wikiquotes - online; accessed 10.03.2013.

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Giordano Bruno [15]: Gareth Joseph Downes, ‘The Heretical Auctoritas of Giordano Bruno: The Significance of the Brunonian Presence in James Joyce’s The Day of the Rabblement and Stephen Hero’, in Joyce Studies Annual, 14 (Summer 2003), pp.37-73 - cites Beckett’s remark that Joyce thought Bruno insufficiently treated in his - or any? - article in Our Exagmination Round His Factification for an Incamination of Work in Progress (1929). The remarks was made by Beckett in an interview with James Knowlson [Damned to Fame].

[See further - including his listing of works on Bruno available to Joyce in the National Library of Ireland - under Commentary > G. F. Downes - attached; also our redaction - supra.]

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Giordano Bruno [16]: William Turner, “Giordano Bruno”, in The Catholic Encyclopedia, Vol. 3 (NY: Robert Appleton Co. 1908): ‘[...] Bruno’s system of thought is an incoherent materialistic pantheism. God and the world are one; matter and spirit, body and soul, are two phases of the same substance; the universe is infinite; beyond the visible world there is an infinity of other worlds, each of which is inhabited; this terrestrial globe has a soul; in fact, each and every part of it, mineral as well as plant and animal, is animated; all matter is made up of the same elements (no distinction between terrestrial and celestial matter); all souls are akin (transmigration is, therefore, not impossible). This unitary point of view is Bruno’s justification of “natural magic.” No doubt, the attempt to establish a scientific continuity among all the phenomena of nature is an important manifestation of the modern spirit, and interesting, especially on account of its appearance at the moment when the medieval point of view was being abandoned. And one can readily understand how Bruno’s effort to establish a unitary concept of nature commanded the admiration of such men as Spinoza, Jacobi, and Hegel. On the other hand, the exaggerations, the limitations, and the positive errors of his scientific system; his intolerance of even those who were working for the reforms to which he was devoted; the false analogies, fantastic allegories, and sophistical reasonings into which his emotional fervour often betrayed him have justified, in the eyes of many, Bayle’s characterization of him as “the knight-errant of philosophy.” His attitude of mind towards religious truth was that of a rationalist. Personally, he failed to feel any of the vital significance of Christianity as a religious system. It was not a Roman Inquisitor, but a Protestant divine, who said of him that he was “a man of great capacity, with infinite knowledge, but not a trace of religion.”’ (Available online.)

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Giordano Bruno [17]: The reinstatement of Bruno was the fruit of anti-clerical forces within the Risorgimento, while the statue raised in the Campo di Fiore was made by Ettore Ferrari on 9 June 1887.

The Bruno Procession - Joyce writes to Stanislaus on 16 Feb. 1907: ‘I have just been listening to Americans discussing Giordano Bruno in honour of whom there is a procession here tomorrow. They seem to know something of him but I dislike the accent.’ (Letters, II, p.215; Selected Letters, 1975, p.151; see longer extracts under Quotations, infra.) [See footnote reference to statue erected in 1889 at Campo di’ Fiore [sic].

In a letter to Stanislaus of Feb. 1907, Joyce wrote that the spectacle of his public commemoration ‘left me quite cold. I understand that anti-clerical history probably contains a large percentage of lies but this is not enough to drive me back howling to my gods.’ (Letters, II, 217; see longer extract, in Quotations, infra.)

Note: Joyce’s relation to Bruno in Dublin and after is the subject of Gareth Joseph Downes, ‘The Heretical Auctoritas of Giordano Bruno: The Significance of the Brunonian Presence in James Joyce’s The Day of the Rabblement and Stephen Hero’, in Joyce Studies Annual, 14 (Summer 2003), pp.37-73, in whcih the above is quoted at pp.38, 45. [See under Commentary, supra.]

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Giordano Bruno [18]: Domenico Berti, Vita di Giordano Bruno da Nola (Firenze 1868) [Note: there is no evidence or sign of Joyce having taken any allusions from this text.]

     II: La Bestia Trionfante (London: 1585):

La Bestia trionfante non appartiene strettamente ai libri metafìsici Bruniani, ma ai morali. Apparentemente è una confuta del paganesimo, ma sostanzialmente è la proclamazione della religione naturale e la negazione di tutte le religioni positive. La letteratura fìlosofìca italiana, e quasi potremmo dire le straniere, non hanno componimento più imagìnoso, più ricco di idee, più abbondante di osservazioni, più pellegrino di questo. È un poema ariostesco in prosa, è un romanzo cavalleresco filosofico, in cui i nomi di Orlando, di Rinaldo, di Angelica, di Erminia sono convertiti in quelli di Giove, di Marte, di Venere, di Giunone; è una vasta satira o commedia [181] con artificioso ordito e con dialogo vivo, svariato, pungente, singolarissimo. Il Bruno mette a fascio il paganesimo, il giudaismo, il cristianesimo, il maomettismo. Egli chiama tutte queste religioni al sindacato della ragionee tutte censura, accusa, condanna, tutte ripudia. Non mostra di capire l’essenza del cristianesimo e non vede differenza tra questa e le altre religioni. Sul serio e col riso si fa annunziatore della poligamia, facendo facoltà ad ogni maschio di avere in conformità della legge naturale quante mogli può nutrire; e del socialismo, parendogli strano che si possa usare in proprio delle cose. Questo suo libro ha pochi riscontri con altri stampati in quel secolo. [...] (pp.181-82.)

     II: narrative of Bruno’s reception by Sir Philip Sidney, and Bruno’s encomium to Sidney:

Filippo Sidney di nobilisimo casato, nipote ed erede presuntivo dei conti de Leicester, educato nei buoni studi, sostenne adolescente importantissime tesi nella Università di Oxford con meraviglia degi nomini dotti. Venuto giovenetto in Francis, e scampato a mala pena alla strage di S. Bartolomeo, viaggiò quasi tuta Europea, visitò per disiderio di istruirsi Padova e Venezia e quindi la Germania, dove conobbe, presso i librai [190] Wechel di Francfort, il Laguet che lo ebbe poi quasi mentore e maestro. Restituitosi in Inghilerra dedicò ad Elisabetta le primizie del suo ingegno The Lady of the May, che si rappresento le Corti straniere, e no tornò con gloria sodisfacimento del suo govern e della regina, all quale fu in ogn tempo carissimo. La nobilità del suo animo, la sua dottrine, la sua fama di squisito, leale e coraggiosissimo cavaliere, lo fecero segno all’amore dei Polacchi che gli offerono di quel regno, cui rinunziò per no reacre displacere ad Elisabetta. Il Sidney pose grande affecto al Bruno e fu a lui largo di cortesi accognlience e lo avrebbe ospitalo in sua cas a’egli non avesse ricusato. Di che questi gliene seppe non poco merito, e lo ricambio con affecto dedicandogli, come abbiamo detto, la Spaccio della Bestia trionfante e gli Eroici furori. (pp.189-90.)

[Note. Nella Cena del ceneri il Bruno coise si esprime intorno al Sidney: ‘Non ti viene a proposito l’onesta conversazione, civilita e buone creanza di molti cavalieri, e molto personaggi del regno, [...]e poi per espexeriencea, or che siamo nella sua patria, manifesto il molto illustre et eccellente cavaliero signor Filippo Sidneo, di cui il tersisimo ingegno, oltre i lodatissimi costumi, e si raro e singolare, che difficlente tra i signolarissimi e rarissimi, tanto fuori, quanto dentro Italia, ne trovarete un simile. (pp.190-91; available at Internet Archive - online.]

[Also cited as friends are Fulco [Fulke] Greville, Spenser, Wm. Temple [trans. of Ramo], Harvey, Warton, &c.; uncertain if he knew Bacon or Shakespeare; returned to Paris in 1585.]

Berti describes Bruno’s disputes with the Peripatetics of Paris, p.198; cited in John Owen, The Skeptics of the Italian Renaissance (NY: S. Sonnenschein & Co.; London: Macmillan 1893), p.194n. [online].

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Giordano Bruno [19] - see George Henry Lewes, The Biographical History of Philosophy from Its Origins in Greece Down to the Present Day (1845-46), which contains a chapter on Giordano Bruno in Pt. II, pp.373-97: Modern Philosophy [section on § V. “Giordano Bruno” - with alternate page-headings “From Proclus to Bacon” and “Giordano Bruno”]

Passage from which I. Frith quotes a sentence (in her Life of Giordano Bruno the Nolan, London 1887, p.146): ‘[...] with imperfect language, do get some sort of utterance. As a system, it is more imaginative than logical; but to many minds it would be all the more acceptable on that account. Coleridge used to say, and with truth, that imagination was the greatest faculty of the philosopher; and Bruno said, “Philosophi sunt quodammodo pictores atque poetae .. Non est philosophus nisi fingit et pingit”. Little as the dull man of science [...] (p.393.)

Lewes also writes of Bruno:

§ I. Scholasticism
  • [...] I find the whole career of philosophical inquiry, from Proclus to Bacon, can be presented in three typical figures: namely, Abelard, as representing Scholasticism; Algazzali, as representing Arabian philosophy; and GIORDANO BRUNO, as representing the philosophical struggle which overthrew the authority of Aristotle and the Church. (p.343.)
  • [...] we must pass at once to Giordano Bruno, whom we have selected as the type of the philosophical insurgents against the authority of Aristotle and the Church. (p.372.)
 
[Note: studies of Peter Abelard & Algazzali form § II and § III.]
 
§ IV. Revival of Learning
  • To have suddenly cast off all Authority would have been too violent a [370] change; [...] There is something profoundly significant in the principle of Authority, when not exercised despotically, and something essentially anarchical in the principle of Liberty of Thought, when not restrained within due limits. Both Authority and Liberty are necessary principles, which only in misuse become paralyzing or destructive. It may be made perfectly clear to the rational mind that there can be no such thing as ‘liberty of private judgment’ in Mathematics, Astronomy, Physics, Chemistry, or any other science the truths of which have been established; [... but] to require such submission is to pass beyond the principle of Authority, and assume that of Despotism. (p.371.)
§ V. Giordano Bruno
  • He could not let the world wag on its way, content to smile at its errors [...; 380] He rushed into the arena / ‘Confident as is the falcon’s flight’ (p.381.)
  • In adopting the form of dialogue, Bruno also followed the taste of his age. It is a form eminently suited to polemical subjects; and all his works are polemical. [...] He makes his dialogues far more entertaining [388] than works of metaphysics usually are; and this he does by digressions, by ridicule, by eloquence, and a liberal introduction of sonnets. Sometimes his very vivacity becomes wearisome. The reader is stunned and bewildered by the remorseless torrent of substantives and epithets which pours from his too prolific pen. There is nobody to rival him but Rabelais, in this flux of words. [Here Lewes quotes a prose passage of nine lines from Gli eroici furori beginning, “Che spectaccolo, o Dio buono! ...” - remarking, ‘it continues for some fifty lines more.’ (Opp. ital., ii, 299; here p.389, n.[1].
  • That Spinoza and Descartes were actually conversant with the writings of Giordano Bruno does not distinctly appear. Yet it is not to be disputed that Bruno anticipated Spinoza in his conception of the immanence of the Deity in his famous natura naturans and natura naturata, and in his pantheistic theory of evolution. He also anticipated Descartes’ famous criterium of truth ...’ (p.390.)
  • Bruno ‘looked to Nature as the great book for man to read’ and ‘deified Nature; and looked upon the Universe as the garment of God, as the incarnation of the divine activity.’ (p.390).
  • ‘Bruno’s creed was pantheism.’ (p.391.)
  • [...]

Lewes notes that in his section on Giordano Bruno (§ IV, pp.373-97.) he has ‘altered and abridged as essay of my own in the British Quarterly Review.’ (p.373, n.)

 
Lewes traces Bruno’s thought from traces from ‘Pythagoras, Plato, and Plotinus’ (p.379.) After a synopsis of his philosophy, he remarks: ‘Such is the faint outline of his doctrine, to preach which, Bruno became a homeless wanderer and a martyr; as he loftily says, “Con questa filosofia, l’anima mi s’ aggrandesce, e mi si magnifica “intelletto” If not original, this doctrine has at any rate the merit of poetical grandeur. In it deep thoughts, though [393] wrestling with imperfect language, do get some sort of utterance.’ [His italics; op. cit., pp.393-94.)

Internet: Lewes’ Biographical History of Philosophy from Its Origins in Greece Down to the Present Time [1845-46] (London: G. Cox 1852), Series I: Ancient Philosophy, in 2 vols. - of which Vol 1 is available in copy held at of University of St. Michael (Toronto) at Internet Archive - online.

The copy of A Biographical History of Philosophy (London: Charles Knight & Co. 1845-46) held in the National Library of Ireland was donated by Jasper Robert Joly (1819-93). Two sets of vols. 1-4 are held as call no. J 921 & 10912.

Jasper Robert Joly donated 23,000 volumes to the Royal Dublin Society in 1863 to be held in trust for the National Library of Ireland which was founded in 1877

See also Lewes, Do., Vol. 2 [Ancient Philosophy in 2 vols. - Vol II] (London: C. Knight 1845 edn.) held at Michigan UL [fnd. 1835; book accessioned in 1845], on Google Books - online; and Do., Part II: Modern Philosophy [1885 Edn.], facs. rep. (Kessinger 2004) - online.

[Note: Lewes uses the epithet ‘lofty’ in writing of Bruno [search at Internet Archive online]; see also his remarks under Johannes (Scotus) Erigena - as supra.]

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Giordano Bruno [20] - Bruno’s final days:
William Boulting, Giordano Bruno: His Life, Thought, and Martyrdom (London: K. Paul, Trench, Trübner 1914, 1916)
God-intoxicated
Of Bruno, as of Spinoza, it may be said that he was “God-intoxicated.’ He felt that the Divine Excellence had its abode in the very heart of Nature and within his own body and spirit. Indwelling in every dewdrop as in the [179] innumerable host of heaven, in the humblest flower and in the mind of man, he found the living spirit of God, setting forth the Divine glory, making the Divine perfection and inspiring with the Divine love.
The Roman Prison: Final Scenes:

“[...] The Pope himself presided at a Congregation held on January 20th 1600. It was reported that Bruno was settled in his resolve not to abjure, asserting that he had [297] no less a person than General of the Dominicans. never propounded any heretical doctrines and had been badly interpreted by the servants of the Holy Office. An appeal of his to the Pope was presented and opened but not read. Among the Catholic dignitaries who had visited and failed to convince Bruno was Cardinal Baronius, Clement’s confessor, from whom he was wont to obtain daily absolution, and who may have reported his impressions concerning the prisoner to the Pope. It was at once decreed that “further measures be proceeded with, sentence passed and the said Brother Jordan handed over to the secular arm.” There is a further record of this having been done on Feb. 8th.
  There are reasons for the final condemnation which readily suggest themselves, though those for the long delay which preceded it remain a mystery. The apostate monk demanded free enquiry into truth, unprejudiced and unaffected by theologic authority. And he was regarded as a heresiarch, the possible leader of a new sect, the fomenter of a new discord within the Church that had already suffered so much in purse, prestige and power from the sectaries of the Reformation.
 The sentence was publicly declared the next day. Caspar Schopp [Schioppus], a scholar and recent convert to Rome, was present. He was informed that the culprit had been about two years in prison. He says the Cardinals and Coadjutors were assembled together at the Monastery of the Minerva. The Governor of Rome represented the secular arm. Bruno was brought into the Hall of the Inquisition and forced down on his knees. Sentence was [298] pronounced, and therein his life, studies and opinions were recounted, as well as the zeal and brotherly love of the Inquisitors in their efforts to convert him. In the latter part of the last century copies of documents relating to Bruno and the Inquisition were, by sanction of the Pope, given by Canon Giovanni Battista Storti to Raffaelle De Martinis, a worthy priest. The document containing the sentence is mutilated just at the place where it should begin. Storti gave a few words of the condemnation: these run: “You have said that the transubstantiation of bread into flesh was great blasphemy.” But Storti adds: “This note (sic) is not in the Archives to-day. G. C. S.” [n.1] Gentile believes that the Canon was under orders. It is suspected by many that the record of the sentence was deliberately and designedly destroyed and false colouring given to the fact. One able critic writes: “The sad conclusion is that one can place no confidence in the Heads of the Holy Office” [n.2.]

Notes
1. G[iovanni] Gentile, G. B. nella Storia &c., 1907, pp.71 sqq.
2., Annibale Luigi, Due Artisti ed un scienziato, Atti Delia R. Ace. delle sc. mor. e pol[i]t. Napoli, xxiv, pp.468-69.

 This may be so. Schopp repeats the travesty of Bruno’s views, as given by Mocenigo, almost word for word, and, although he attributes these to the work entitled “The Shadow of Ideas,” he reproduces the denunciation so accurately that there can be no doubt about these charges having been repeated in Court for the edification of those not behind the scenes. Therefore one may well believe that it was convenient to suppress the terms of the condemnation; for Schopp heard that when the Nolan was only eighteen he began to doubt and subsequently denied Transubstantiation; he was also [299] charged with denying the Conception of Christ by a virgin, the publication in London “of a libel concerning the Triumphant Beast which is to say the Pope,” (sic!) and other manifold “terrible and most absurd doctrines” among which we find those of an eternal universe and innumerable worlds. All this should have been duly set forth in the precious document of which no trace can be found. “Then,” says Schopp, “he was unfrocked, excommunicated and handed over to the secular arm. The office of formally stripping a priest of his insignia and station should have been singularly unpleasant; but it was by no means unprofitable. The general register of Pontifical expenses bears the record that the bishop of Sidonia received 27 scudi for “the degradation of Giordano Bruno, heretic.” The Governor of Rome was addressed, in the usual formula: “take him under your jurisdiction, subject to your decision, so as to be punished with due chastisement; beseeching you, however, as we do earnestly beseech you, so to mitigate the severity of your sentence with respect to his body that there may be no danger of death or of the shedding of blood. So we, Cardinals, Inquisitor and General, whose names are written beneath decree.” By this hypocritical form, Holy Church was wont to secure its purpose while veiling its infamy.” When all these things were done,” writes Schopp,” he said not a word except in a menacing way, “Perchance your fear in passing judgment on me is greater than mine in receiving it.” (pp.197-300.)

Numerous notes have been omitted from this copy. The full text is Available at Internet Archive - online. See also a reprinted edition in Books for Libraries Press, 1972, at Amazon - online [20.01.2013].

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Giordano Bruno [21] - Dorothea Waley Singer on Bruno’s theory of contraries:

Bruno’s teaching on the coincidence of contraries was closely similar to that of the Cusan [viz., Nicholas of Cusa], though presented without mystic theological interpretation [quotes]:

Our philosophy ... reduceth to a single origin and relateth to a single end, and maketh contraries to coincide so that there is one primal foundation both of origin and of end. From this coincidence of contraries, we deduce that ultimately it is divinely true that contraries are within contraries; wherefore it is not difficult to compass the knowledge that each thing is within every other - which Aristotle and the other Sophists could not comprehend. [102]

All power and act which in origin is complicated, united and one is in other things explicate, dispersed and multiple. The universe, the great image, the figure, the only-begotten nature, is also all that it can be through the species and principal members and content of all matter; to which naught can be added and from which naught is wanting, of form complete and unique. But it is not yet all that it can be owing to differences, modes, qualities, individuality: [103] indeed it is but an umbra of the primal act and primal power. Wherefore power and act are not in it absolutely the same, for no part thereof is all which it can be ... [104]

Among many passages we may recall from the De immenso Bruno’s magnificent lines proclaiming that the potentiality of all parts is in the Whole and in each part (“All things are in all”). This is the real basis of his view of the Identity of Opposites, and he fortifies himself with the support of such names as Anaxagoras, Anaxamines and “the divine Parmenides,” as well as of Plato’s Timaeus and the Neo-Platonists. We have seen that various works current in Paris during Bruno’s first visit were in harmony with the doctrine of the coincidence of contraries.’ [106]

Available at Positive Theology - online; accessed 20.01.2013; see longer extracts - attached..

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A Giordano Bruno Bibliography

Note: This list is partly based on that given in Gareth Joseph Downes, ‘The Heretical Auctoritas of Giordano Bruno: The Significance of the Brunonian Presence in James Joyce’s The Day of the Rabblement and Stephen Hero’, in Joyce Studies Annual, 14 (Summer 2003), pp.37-73; p.50 - with additional details from electronic catalogue searches online. [BS]

[See also more extensive listing of current works by or about Bruno
held in the National Library of Ireland during 2012 - as attached.]
Primary sources
  • Felice Tocco, Opere latine di Giordano Bruno (Florence, 1889) [called ‘critical’ in EB 1911;
  • Felice Tocco, et al., F. Tocco et al., eds., Jordani Bruni Nolani opera latine conscriptapta publicis sumptibus edita, 3 vols. (Neapoli: D. Morano 1879-91) [incls. Ars Memoriae (1582) [Vol. II (i), p.56ff.; available at Esoteric Archives - online; digitally edited by Joseph H. Peterson.]
  • Felice Tocco, Opere inedite (Naples, 1891).
Studies of Bruno
  • Christian Bartholomess, Jordano Bruno, 2 vols. (Paris 1848) [cited in G. H. Lewes, A Biographical History of Philosophy [...] (London [1846]), p.375, n.]
  • Domenico Berti, La Vita da Giordano da Nola (Firenze: Presso G. D. Paravia 1868), 415pp. [Avvertenza sulle Notizie Contemporanee e Sui Documenti Inediti che servano ad illustrare La Vita e Gli Scritti di Giordano Bruno, pp.1-20; Bibliografia delle Opere Edite ed Inedite di Giordano Bruno, pp.21-31; half-title, p.33; Capitalo I-XVII, pp.[35]-323; Processo Errotosi dalla Tribunale Dell’ Inquisitione in Venizia contro GB (Documento I-XXVII, p.[325-95]; App. I: Conrado Ritershusio [Riterhausen] Suo G. Schoppius, FR. S, p.397-404; App. II: Giovanni Mocenigo, p.405-07; Aggiunta Bibliografica, p.408; Indices [Chaps. and Processo], p.409-14; Errata, p.415, [3]p. available at Internet Archive - online; see extract, infra.]
  • I[sabella] Frith, Life of Giordano Bruno, the Nolan, revised by Moriz Carrière (London: Trübner 1887) [available at Internet Archive - online; see also extracts - as attached]*;
  • John Owen, The Skeptics of the Italian Renaissance [2nd edn.] (NY: S. Sonnenschein & Co.; London: Macmillan 1893), xix, 419pp, xxxcvi, 8° [Chap. V: Giordano Bruno, pp.245-344; the whole available at Internet Archive - online; see also extracts - as attached.]
  • J. Lewis McIntyre, Giordano Bruno (London: Macmillan 1903), 365pp. [available at Internet Archive - online; see also extracts - as attached];
  • William Boulting, Giordano Bruno: His Life, Thought, and Martyrdom (London: K. Paul, Trench, Trübner 1914), and Do. (NY: E. P. Dutton & Co. [1916]), viii, 315pp., 8° [available at Internet Archive - online; see also extract];
  • Dorothea Waley Singer, Giordano Bruno, His Life and Thought (NY: Schuman 1950) [incls. an annotated translation of On the Infinite Universe and Worlds], and Do. [rep. edn.] (NY: Greenwood Press, 1977), xi, 389pp. ill. [charts, maps, ports.; 24 cm. Appendices (pp.203-224): List of Bruno’s writings; Printers of Bruno; Surviving manuscripts of Bruno’s works; Select bibliography of Bruno’s philosophy; available at Positive Atheism - online ; and extract, infra.]
  • Giorgio di Santillana, The Crime of Galileo (Chicago UP 1955);
  • James Broderick, Robert Bellarmine, Saint and Scholar (Westminster, MD: Newman Press 1961);
  • Roswell Park, The Evil Eye: Thanatology and Other Essays (Boston: Richard G. Badger 1912), “Giordano Bruno” [chap.], pp.164-98 [copy at Cornell UL available at Internet Archive - online].
  • Frances A. Yates, Giordano Bruno and the Hermetic Tradition (Chicago UP 1964), and Do. [rep. edn.] (Midway 1979; pb. 1991), 460pp. [partly available at Amazon - online; see extract].

*Note however that the copy of this work in the NLI is part of the library of Valentin Iremonger donated in 1991 rather than a copy contemporaneous with Joyce’s readership at the Library in 1900-04.

 
Works by Bruno in translation
  • L. Williams, The Heroic Enthusiasts - Gli eroici furori. An ethical poem ... Part the first translated by L. Williams, with an introduction, compiled chiefly from David Levis’ “Giordano Bruno o la religione del pensiero.” (London: George Redway 1887), 170pp. [trans. of De Gli Heroici Furori - Al Molto Illustre ed Eccellente Cavalliero, Signor Filippo Sidneo (Parigi: Appresso Antonio Baio 1585), Vol. I. [See also trans. by P. E. Memmo, as infra];
  • Arthur D. Imerti, The Expulsion of the Triumphant Beast (Nebraska UP 1992), 324pp. [see Google link.]
 
Add. There is a study of Bruno by Franz Jakob Clemens - viz., Giordano Bruno und Nicolaus on Cusa: Eine philosophische Abhandlung (Bonn: J. Wittmann 1847), [online] - also a Thoemmes reprint edition.
 
[See also more extensive listing of current works by or about Bruno
held in the National Library of Ireland during 2012 - as attached.]

[ There is a Bruno portalgiordanobruno.filosofia.sns.it.]

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Some contemporary critical sources on internet ...
I. Frith, Life of Giordano Bruno (London: Trübner & Co. [Ludgate Hill] 1887) - available at the Internet Archive [online]; accessed 30.07.2012. A facsimile of the 1st edition was published in Early Studies of Giordano Bruno [ser.], ed. Paul Richard Blum (Bristol: Thoemmes 2000). [Note that Firth’s book is inscribed to Nicholas Trubner, ‘faithful friend and adviser who proposed the subject of this book’. (p.v.).]
See extracts - attached.
John Owen, The Skeptics of the Italian Renaissance [2nd edn.] (NY: S. Sonnenschein & Co.; London: Macmillan 1893), xix, 419pp, xxxcvi, 8° [Chap. V: Giordano Bruno, pp.245-344; the whole available at Internet Archive - online.]
See extracts - attached.
Lewis J. McIntyre, Giordano Bruno (Macmillan 1903) - available at Internet Archive [online]; accessed 11.12.2012. For the full text of Joyce’s review of his work in Dublin Daily Express (20 October 1903), see RICORSO, Library, “Major Authors” > James Joyce, [infra].

Review of same by T. Whittaker in Mind n.s., 13, 50 (April 1904, pp.281-84 - available at JSTOR > online.

See extracts - attached.
Coulson Turnbull, Life and Teachings of Giordano Bruno : Philosopher, Martyr, Mystic 1548 - 1600 (q. pub. 1913) - by the author of The Solar Logos: or Studies in Arcana Mysticism (Pasadena: Gnostic Press 1923).  
No COPAC citation.
William Boulting, Giordano Bruno: His Life, Thought, and Martyrdom (London: K. Paul, Trench, Trübner 1914)
See extracts - infra.
The Great Theosophists: Giordano Bruno, in Theosoph [No. 23 of a 29-pt. Ser.], 26, 8 (June 1938), pp.338-44
Available at Wisdomworld - online.
Dorothea Waley Singer, Giordano Bruno, His Life and Thought (NY: Schuman 1950) [incls. an annotated translation of On the Infinite Universe and Worlds], and Do. [rep. edn.] (NY: Greenwood Press, 1977), xi, 389pp. ill. [Available at Positive Atheism - online.]
See extracts - attached.

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Bibliographical details of some featured works of Giordano Bruno
  • De Gli Heroici Furori - Al Molto Illustre ed Eccellente Cavalliero, Signor Filippo Sidneo (Parigi: Appresso Antonio Baio 1585).
  • Do., as The Heroic Enthusiasts (Gli Eroici Furori), An Ethical Poem, By Giordano Bruno, Part the First, translated by L. Williams with an introduction, compiled chiefly from David Levi’s “Giordiano Bruno o la religione del pensiero” (London: George Redway [York Street, Covent Garden] [1887]), and Do., Part the Second, translated by L. Williams (London: Bernard Quaritch, Piccadilly [1889]) [printers: London: G. Norman and Son, Hart Street, Covent Garden].
  • Do, as The Heroic Frenzies, translation with introduction and notes by Paulo Eugene Memmo, Jr., [Studies in Romance Languages and Literatures] (N. Carolina UP 1964), 274pp. [Columbia U. thesis; available online; see extract, supra]).
 
  • Spaccio de la Bestia Trionfante, preposto da Giove, effectuato dal Consiglio, avelato da Mercurio, recitato da Sofia, udito da Saulino, registrato dal Nolano. Diviso in tre dialogi, suddivisi in tre parti. Consecrato al molto ill. et eccellentiss. va. S. Filippo Sidneo. Parigo 1584 - Come sopra in Londra. [Cited as title XVII in Domenico Berti, La Vita da Giordano da Nola (Firenze: Presso G. D. Paravia 1868), Bibliografia, p.27; his notes.] Pdf. edition of 2007 available on Internet - online.
  • Do., as The expulsion of the triumphant beast [Spaccio de la bestia trionfante], translated and edited by Arthur D. Imerti, with an introduction and notes (New Brunswick, N.J.: Rutgers UP 1964), ix, 324pp. [25cm.]; Do. [rep. edn.] (Nebraska UP 1992).
 
  • Cabala del Cavallo Pegaseo con l’aggiunta dell’ Asino Cillenico, Descritta dal Nolano [Cabal of the Cheval Pegasus with Appendix on the Cillenican Ass, Described by the Nolan] ([London] 1585)  

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Electronic copies listed by Hathi Trust Digital Library
  • Candelaio, commedia, ed. Vincenzo Spampanato, [2nd edn.] (Bari: G. Laterza & figli, 1923), [vii]- see lxxi, 226pp. - see record.
  • Le opere italiane di Giordano Bruno, ed. Paul de Lagarde, 2 vols. (Gottinga: Dieterich 1888) - see record.
  • Le opere italiene, [ed.] Giovanni Gentile & Vincenzo Spampanato, 3 vols. ( Bari: G. Laterza 1907- see 09) - see record.
  • Le opere italiane / Giordano Bruno, commento di Giovanni Aquilecchia, 2 vols. (Torino: UTET libreria [2007]) - see record.
  • Opere [di Giordano Bruno e Tommaso Campanella], ed. Agusto Guzzo & Romano Amerio (Milano: R. Ricciardo [1956], 1297pp.
  • Gli eroici furori di Giordano Bruno ( Milano: G. Daelli 1864) , xiii, 227pp. - see record.
  • Gli eroici furori di Giordano Bruno [rep. of 1864 edn.] ([Bologna]: A. Forni [1974]), xiii, 227pp. - see record.
  • Gli eroici furori di Giordano Bruno, ed. Nicoletta Tirinnanzi (Milano: Biblioteca universale Rizzoli, 1999), 387pp. - see record.
  • De gl’heroici furori, Introduzione e note di Francesco Flora. Con tre tavole (Torino: Unione tipografico- see editrice torinese [1928]), xiii, 226pp.
  • Opere mnemotecniche [critical edition] (Milano: Adelphi 2004) [Incl. De umbris idearum and Cantus Circaeus; with facing orig. Latin texts.] - see record.
  • The Ash Wednesday supper / La cena de le ceneri (1977) - see record.
  • La cena de le ceneri: descritta in cinque dialoghi per quattro interlocutori con tre considerazioni circa doi suggetti [Nuova ed. diligentemente cor.] (Milano: G. Daelli 1864), xiii, 142pp., ill. - see record.
  • La cena de le ceneri, a cura di Giovanni Aquilecchia (Torino] G. Einaudi 1955), 314pp. - see record.
  • De la causa, principio e uno, con introduzione e note di Carmelo Licitra [new edn.] (Firenze: Vallecchi [1948]), 94pp. - see record.
  • Dialoghi italiani: dialoghi metafisici e dialoghi morali, nuovamente ristampati con note da Giovanni Gentile [3rd edn.; prev. as Earlier editions published as Opere itallane] (Firenze: Sansoni [1958]), lxiii, 1241pp. [21cm]. - see record.
  • Spaccio de la bestia trionfante ... Giordano Bruno; con prefazione di Giacinto Stiavelli (Roma: E. Perino 1888), 210pp. - see record
  • Spaccio de la bestia trionfante (Milano: Rizzoli Editore, 1985) - see record.
  • The expulsion of the triumphant beast [Spaccio de la bestia trionfante], translated and edited by Arthur D. Imerti, with an introduction and notes(New Brunswick, N.J.: Rutgers UP 1964), ix, 324pp. [25cm.] - see record
  • Opere italiane / di Giordano Bruno; testi critici e nota filologica di Giovanni Aquilecchia; introduzione e coordinamento generale di Nuccio Ordine; commento di G. Aquilecchia ... [et al.] [Classici UTET] (Torino: UTET 2002- see 07) - see record
  • Giordano Bruno, acura di Augusto Guzzo ([Milano:] Garzanti [1944]) 317pp. - see record
  • Scritti scelti di Giordano Bruno e di Tommaso Campanella (1949) - see record
  • [...]
 
See Hathi Catalogue > Bruno - see online.

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Giordano Bruno - Frances A. Yates, Giordano Bruno and the Hermetic Tradition (Chicago UP 1964; 1979, 1991 [pb.]) - Preface: ‘Many years ago I planned to make an English translation of Giordano Bruno’s La cena de le ceneri with an introduction emphasising the boldness with which this advanced philosopher of the Renaissance accepted the Copernican theory. But as I followed Bruno along the Strand to the house in Whitehall where he was to expound te Copernican theory to knights and doctors, doubts arose. Was that journey imaginaty and was the Supper really held at the French embassy? And was the Copernican theory really the subject of the debate or was there something else implied in it? The Bruno problem remained with me thereafter as the real centre of all my studies; masses of notes and manuscript accumulated but full understanding eluded me. Some major clue was missing.

[Speaks here of the work of P. O. Kristeller, E. Garin, and D. P. Walker in demonstrating the importance of Renaissance Hermetism.]

No one has yet spoken of Bruno in connection with Hermetism, nor, in spite of my interest in all these studes, did the possibility of such a connection occur to me for some time. [...; ix] It was not until a few years ago that it dawned upon me, quite suddenly, that Renaissance Hermetism provides the long-sought-for major clue to Bruno. [...].’ (pp.ix-x.)

[Signed Warburg Inst., Univ. of London.] Available at Amazon - online [i.e., Preface, Contents, 6pp., and Index].

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