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Document Details :
Title: Hollandse rederijkers in hun strijd om een plaats op de Parnassus
Author(s): SMITS-VELDT, Mieke B.
Journal: Spiegel der Letteren
Volume: 43 Issue: 3 Date: 2001
In 1616, the Leiden humanist Petrus Scriverius published his well-known attack on the Dutch retoricians, marked by him as a illiterate, drunken lot. Only Hooft and a few other Amsterdam writers escaped his scorn. In the same year, the secretary of the Vlaardingen chamber of rhetoric, Job van de Wael, took on the retorician defence, asserting they were serious poets, aiming at modern poetic standards. In this article, the contributions to nine rhetoricians’ contests between 1596 and 1616 are investigated to check Van de Wael’s claim. The analysis shows that quite a few rhetoricians, and not only those in Amsterdam, knew what modern poetry was about and tried to keep pace with it. Yet, this could not save the rhetoricians as a group from further being marginalized.