This article studies the views on language of an important yet understudied humanist, Giovanni Pontano (1429–1503). Attention is paid to his ideas on the origins of language; the emotive and active functions of language; the intrinsic connection between language and sociability; and his grammatical work. When compared to developments in the Enlightenment his views turn out to be philosophically interesting and relevant. As such this article underscores a still undervalued point that, even though humanists were perhaps not philosophers, philosophical assumptions and convictions did drive their textual-philological studies, having important implications for their wider views on history and culture.
|Number of pages||22|
|Journal||Journal of the History of Ideas|
|Publication status||Published - 2011|