With the poignant expression “ocean of my passions, tears, and torments” (“pelago delle passioni, delle lagrime, et de’ tormenti”)—a “bottomless ocean” (“mar senza fondo”)—Stampa unabashedly admits, in the dedicatory address of her Rime (“To My Illustrious Lord”), that love pains are a major constitutive element of her canzoniere.1 This is promptly corroborated by the proemial sonnet, which emphasizes the emotional charge of the Petrarchan archetype she closely follows.2 It suffices just to skim through Stampa’s Rime in order to see that her initial claim for a poetry laden with exceptional love pains is, in fact, substantiated by her poetry. What exactly can be made of this distinctive rhetorical mood or pathos in her poetry, besides noting its existence, is a much more complicated issue, which I will address in this chapter.