Grammatica e p ratica in alcuni manuali di italiano per stranieri del Seicento
The 17 th -century handbooks of Italian for foreigners are rather different from one another in content, organisation, and size. Each author maintains that his book is better than the others', and although these statements have a promotional aim in general, these differences give us a glimpse of important questions that are the subject of discussion to this day, i.e., the varying emphasis on either norm or usage; models and examples to be proposed; and the weight to be given to the various
... to the various components. While many authors deal with travels and travellers, Pierre Soulas, in his Grammaire et instruction pour comprendre en bref la langue italienne (1616), written for French students, states that grammar is more important than practice, and he considers himself a good teacher, even if he never set foot in Italy: he believes that sound rules and clear explanations allow for a greater advancement in two or three months than practice alone in one year. Girolamo Buoninsegni, on the other hand, boasts of a wealth of experience with his German students at Siena University, for whom he writes I primi principi della grammatica toscana (1618), which contains the basis of the language and starts from the very beginning. Lorenzo Franciosini, a native teacher but a Spanish scholar as well, is the author of several volumes and addresses even those "who in passing and, as it were, ready to run away, wish to learn the Tuscan language" (Fax linguae italicae, 1628).