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Rinascimento provides a reassessment of the notion of "Renaissance" and a definition of what should be intended by this term, which all sorts of temporal/geographical extensions, nationalistic agendas and semantic metaphorizations have reduced over the centuries to an empty container of most disparate ideas and hypotheses.

As the book shows in eight coherently interrelated chapters (see descriptions of the individual chapters below), the sense of change, various emblems of temporal decay and distance (ruins, lost objects, remnants, ancient literature), and the emergence of a modern historical consciousness constitute the backbone of the Renaissance.