In the Bohemian Lands occasional verse written in Latin developed mostly in the sixteenth century. It comprises poetic texts of various lengths written for important events in life, such as birthdays, the completion of studies, departures for, or returns from, journeys to foreign lands, weddings, births, or deaths. This branch of humanist poetry employs models from classical antiquity, which is also where most of its sub-genres come from, mainly in the period of late Roman literature. Most preserved their form throughout the Middle Ages and into the period of humanism. The kinds of occasional verse are defined in works on poetics and rhetoric of various periods. The normative nature of Neo-Latin humanist literature therefore makes it possible to investigate the individual sub-genres and describe them in terms of genre theory. Among the most popular sub-genres of occasional verse (if one can judge fairly from the number of poems written) are epithalamia and epicedia. The article analyzes epithalamia written in the latter part of the humanist period (the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries), concerned chiefly with themes and motifs, and considers interesting aspects and remarkable examples in which the poets seek to achieve a measure of originality and to free themselves from the conventions of the times.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.