Alessandro Manzoni, an Italian poet and novelist, is best known for his book The Betrothed. Rev. Robert Sirico, president and co-founder of the Acton Institute, recently wrote an article for Crisis Magazine praising Manzoni and discussing some of the economic themes found in The Betrothed. Pope Francis is also a fan of the Italian writer. In his article, Rev. Sirico draws a connection between a sensible tradition of Catholic thought on economics and a work of literature that Pope Francis deems credible.
Sirico starts out by offering an introduction to The Betrothed:
The Betrothed is, as its title implies, an epic love story that traces the circumlocutions of the engagement of Lorenzo Tramaglino to Lucia Mondella across the magnificently described countryside of Italian Lake District and Milan. Though written in the early nineteenth century, the action of the novel takes place in the midst of the seventeenth century and depicts historical events and personages. It is no spoiler to say, and you will be relieved to know, that the boy gets the girl in the end and eventually marry. But it is what happens along that way that makes The Betrothed so engaging and instructive.