Ugolino da Montegiorgio
The little Flowers of Saint Francis - The Canticle of creatures
I FIORETTI di San Francesco (“The little flowers” of St. Francis) constitute a marvelous and inimitable collection of “miracles and devout examples” concerning the life of St. Francis of Assisi. Composed in the vernacular in the last quarter of the fourteenth century by an anonymous Tuscan author, they were taken almost entirely from the “Actus beati Francisci et sociorum eius”, written probably by Ugolino da Montegiorgio between 1327 and 1340. They weave together the purest and most idealized themes of Franciscan thought, and stand out above all for the frankness of the spoken language, the candor of religious sentiment, and for the elevated words of the Poor Monk’s moral message. Their primary purpose was that of inspiring a spiritual emotion: the reality presented here acquires value only if it contains elements of edification, if it is capable of touching the reader’s soul and inducing him to a better life. The domesticated wolf, the calmed sparrows, the resolved quarrels, the praise of perfect happiness: all these become symbols of a renewed and luminous universal harmony in which the divine and the human blend harmoniously together. All things, even the most humble, are approached with loving solicitude and accepted joyously in their smallness as a means to rise towards transcendence. On this recording, the saint’s words are interpreted by Arnoldo Foà and immersed in the sound of the organ, instrument of mystic communication par excellence thanks to its close association with the sacred world.