Giovanni Albino belongs to Lucanian Humanism and hardly ever worked in its region and always inside power clubs. He came from the Senise or Lagonegrese (from Lagonegro) area, he was born in Castelluccio around 1445. As written in the documents of the Lucanus period, he had an ecclesiastical carrier like many other writers, but he also worked as diplomat, ambassador, orator, courtier and librarian. He also was secretary of Alfonso, Duke and heir of Calabria.
Very soon he moved from Castelluccio to Naples. He entered the Accademia Pontaniana and he gained a great Authority. He travelled a lot for political business; certainly he went to Ferrara, Tuscany, Urbino, Milan, Rome and Albany as well. When Charles VIII arrived in Naples in 1494, Giovanni Albino and all the intellectual and political court of Aragonesi left the active life, although he was still young, for retiring to S. Angelo Abbey, in Fasanella, not far from his birthplace Castelluccio, where he ended his days.
He wrote gestis regum Neapolitanorum (“On Naples’ kings deeds”), six books published later on by his grandson Ottavio. Emanuele Giordano, professor by the Lucania-Basilicata University, reminds us that the third and fourth book have been lost. The last book, De Bello Gallico, is dedicated to the war against Charles VIII, king of France, with whom ended the Aragonese story and Albino’s vicissitudes, who had started from the war against Florence (De bello hetrusco), dated 1478-80.
him we have to underline his attempt to popularize Vite Parallele
by Plutarco, which demonstrates how the Southern culture was reaching
the National culture, although 150 years later, by using instead
of Latin, the Italian language or Tuscan, Hetrusca, language. This
thing has already happened in the Centre of Italy, particularly
in Tuscany, at the time of Brunetto Latini and then with Dante.
It is not by chance that simultaneously Giovanni Brancati, an other
Lucanian , probably from Matera, tried to translate the very difficult
Naturalis historia by Plinio il Vecchio. The very famous Masuccio
Salernitano and Iacopo Sannazzaro belong to these years.
Albino came from province and, in one way, is the symbol, together
with many others, of the perfect Lucanian intellectual “humanist”,
aristocratic, emigrated for culture, for whom his province is far
away or just a place for physical rest or a waste land for regret
in his old age. So his culture helped his fame but not the people
living in the province where he came from, to whom he assumed, for
social conditions, an air of detachment and contempt. The tender
sensibility, all feminine, of Isabella Morra, some decades later,
had to be subjected to the same attitude.