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JOHN RUSKIN: A NEW SAINT FRANCIS OF ASSISI? RUSKIN’S CRITICAL RECEPTION IN ITALY AND THE ORIGINS OF THE ‘RENAISSANCE’ 

 

Marie Tavinor

 

 

This paper studies the quaint comparison between John Ruskin and Francis of Assisi which was made in some intellectual circles in France and Italy at the end of the nineteenth century and early twentieth century. It attempts to answer the question of how this comparison came about and what its intellectual premises were. Most of all, it shows how such a comparison of potentially marginal interest actually related to critical debates crystallizing on the search for the origins of the Renaissance seen as the first modern period.