chapter  3
Elegies for a Bride
Pages 24

The opening of Urania's proem stages the poet and his son as about to embark on a walk through the starry sky, in the proximity of an altar built in Naples to commemorate Virgil, under the influence of the Muse Urania. While writing the Centiloquium and finalizing Urania, Pontano investigated further the literary implications of his astrological view of poetic authority in the aforementioned book of De rebus coelestibus. De rebus coelestibus explains in particular that, since the writing of poetry is an activity of the soul and the body, its study is not limited to moral philosophy or theology, but belongs to astrology. In this perspective, poetic problems such as the adoption of a specific language or literary genre are envisioned as being caused by stars and planets. In particular, the Centiloquium envisions astrological knowledge as caused by the influx of stars and planets upon a special portion of the soul that is closer to the stars.