Under Nencioni's leadership the Accademia della Crusca gained renewed vigor and prestige. Not only did he direct the Centro Studi di Grammatica and serve as editor of the journal Studi di Grammatica Italiana, he also participated in the foundation of the Opera del Vocabolario's Tesoro della Lingua Italiana delle Origini (TLIO), and he modernized lexicographical research by opening it to computer applications. Thanks to these new approaches we now have available online all of the editions of the Vocabolario della Crusca, allowing for the study of its lexicon through successive editions, a project that was completed between 2000 and 2006 (www.lessicografia.it). Nencioni was also keenly aware of the need to internationalize the Academy beyond Florence and the national borders, by bringing into the Academy new members from Eastern Europe and other countries. He also endeavored to build ties with other institutions such as New York's Italian Academy for Advanced Studies in America, and with national and international linguistic societies, making of the Accademia a site for scholarly exchange. To build bridges between the Academy and everyday users of the language, Nencioni founded in 1990 the journal La Crusca per voi, a forum on questions of language use and language history aimed at schools and lovers of the Italian language which he directed for ten years.
As an open-minded and mindful custodian of the Italian language Giovanni Nencioni had the gift of instilling his own passion for the Italian language in generations of students and scholars. He was eager to share his scholarship and experience with visitors among the books of his formidable library overlooking the Arno River and the Ponte della Santa Trinita. Generous with advice for the young he encouraged original research and innovative thinking. He was forward looking, with an endless curiosity for novelty, a tireless promoter of the Crusca Academy and the study of all aspects of the written and spoken language across time.
He was a great "maestro" and a true humanist whose personality and teachings will live in our memory and inspire future students and scholars of the Italian language.
Hermann W. Haller
Queens College & Graduate Center
City University of New York
|Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback|
|Author:||Haller, Hermann W.|
|Article Type:||In memoriam|
|Date:||Jun 22, 2008|
|Previous Article:||From the editor.|
|Next Article:||Per un'edizione critica di Le lagrime d'una vedova di Camillo Federici (1749-1802): il manoscritto inedito della University of Toronto.|