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Maria Villavecchia Bellonci 30 November — 13 May was an Italian writer , historian and journalist, known especially for her biography of Lucrezia Borgia. She and Guido Alberti set up the Strega Prize in Bellonci was born Maria Villavecchia in Rome on 30 November Her father, Gerolamo Vittorio Villavecchia, was a professor of chemistry, and came from an aristocratic Piedmontese family, while her mother, Felicita Bellucci, came from Umbria.
She had three younger siblings, a brother Leo and a sister, Gianna. From , she studied at the Liceo Umberto, graduating in Following the Second World War , the Belloncis established a salon at their residence, the Amici della domenica Friends of Sunday inviting Italian literates to discuss the promotion of Italian culture. Bellonci's husband died in August Bellonci died on 13 May in Rome. Aged 19, Bellonci wrote Clio e le amazzoni , a novel that remained unpublished,  but which circulated in Italian literary circles and introduced her to her future husband Goffredo Bellonci.
Bellonci's literary debut was in with the acclaimed biography of Lucrezia Borgia , published in Italian by Mondadori, and translated into twelve languages. Especially welcomed was her focus on women in the Renaissance and their interactions with power. By , Bellonci was beginning to experiment with the form. For the first time, in the compendium Tu vipera gentile , she introduced fictional characters in order to propel the historical narrative.
Similarly, her final novel Rinascimento Privato Private Renaissance which came out in , was written in the first person by the protagonist Isabella d'Este ; she added fictional characters to describe historical events, in essence creating a metahistorical novel.
Bellonci was actively involved in the promotion of Italian culture. Along with her husband and Guido Alberti , she established the literary Premio Strega in She recounted its history in her book Come un racconto. Gli anni del Premio Strega. She was a columnist in periodicals such as Il punto —64 , and Il Messaggero Many of these articles were compiled and republished in Pubblici segreti two volumes, and Her collection of articles on Italian cities were republished posthumously in Segni sul muro Signs on the wall , Bellonci was inspired by Stendhal , and translated some of his work into Italian: Vanina Vanini e altre cronache italiane , La duchessa di Paliano Bellonci was awarded the Viareggio Prize in for Lucrezia Borgia.
She was posthumously awarded the Strega prize in for Rinascimento privato. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani in Italian. In Gaetana Marrone ed. In Katharina M. Wilson ed. An Encyclopedia of Continental Women Writers. Marotti In Rinaldina Russell ed.
The Feminist Encyclopedia of Italian Literature. Greenwood Publishing Group. Elusive Subjects: Biography as Gendered Metafiction. Recipients of the Strega Prize. Recipients of the Viareggio Prize. Categories : births deaths Strega Prize winners Viareggio Prize winners 20th-century Italian novelists. Namespaces Article Talk. Views Read Edit View history. Contribute Help Community portal Recent changes Upload file.