Boccaccio’s Decameron in Florence

A lecture by Alexandra Lawrence



After spending his youth in the elegant and courtly world of the Kingdom of Naples, Giovanni Boccaccio moved back to his native Florence in the late 1330s where he found himself immersed in the excesses of the fanatical, prosperous, bawdy, and often irreverent mercantile city. Though it took some time to adjust to his new neighbours, when it came to writing his masterpiece the Decameron, Boccaccio placed more than one-fifth of the one hundred novellas in Florence—in addition to famously setting the entire work against the backdrop of the 1348 plague that was ravishing the city. In this lecture we will take a trip through the Florentine places of the Decameron via tales of unlucky lovers, witty women, vicious practical jokers, extremely naughty monks, and much more.


If you are in Florence and would like to attend the lecture in person at the British Institute Library, please register here or send an email to

The registration fee is 15 Euro per person. 


To join this lecture online, simply click on this link to register and receive the Zoom meeting invitation:

The virtual doors will open at 18:00 Italian time on Wednesday 25th September.


A recording of the virtual lecture will be published on our YouTube channel. Clicking on the link above, you authorise the British Institute of Florence to use your image, name and comments.


There is no charge to attend the event on Zoom, but we ask you to consider making a donation to support the Institute and its beautiful library if you wish to attend an event.