Before Petrarch, the conversation with the dead was located elsewhere – with Homer and Virgil – and, even with Petrarch's contemporary and fellow countryman Dante, the dialogue takes place in the Underworld. Petrarch wrote down his reflections on the conversation with the dead in the first half of the fourteenth century. To speak with the dead is to become aware of the productive force of what Hannah Arendt called the tears of remembrance, but also of the feeling of loss that is constitutive of all the memories. In general, the conversations conducted with the dead are a constant reminder of them.
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