Imágenes de página

Yet some have been untouch'd who learnd to The Alp's snow summit nearer heaven is seen bear,

Than the volcano's fierce eruptive crest, Some whom no power could ever force to droop, Whose splendour from the black abyss is flung, Who could resist themselves even, hardest care! While the scorch'd mountain, from whose burn. And task most hopeless; but some such have ing breast been,

A temporary torturing flaine is wrung, And if my name amongst the number were,

Shines for a night of terror, then repels That destiny austere, and yet serene,

Its fire back to the hell from whence it sprung, Were prouder than more dazzling fame un. The hell which in its entrails ever dwells.



MANY are poets who have never penn'd

New wonders to the world; and while still stands Their inspiration, and perchance the best:

The austere Pantheon, into heaven shall soar They felt, and loved, and died, but would not A dome, its image, while the base expands lend

Into a fane surpassing all before,
Their thoughts to meaner beings; they compress'd Such as all flesh shall flock to kneel in : ne'er
The god within them, and rejoin'd the stars

Such sight hath been unfolded by a door
Unlaurell'd upon earth, but far more bless'd As this, to which all nations shall repair
Than those who are degraded by the jars

And lay their sins at this huge gate of heaven. Of passion, and their frailties link'd to fame,

And the bold Architect unto whose care Conquerors of high renown, but full of scars. The daring charge to raise it shall be given, Many are poets but without the name,

Whom all hearts shall acknowledge as their lord, For what is poesy but to create

Whether into the marble chaos driven From overfeeling good or ill; and aim

His chisel bid the Hebrew, at whose wordt At an external life beyond our fate,

Israel left Egypt, stop the waves in stone, And be the new Prometheus of new men,

Or hues of Hell be by his pencil pour'd Bestowing fire from heaven, and then, too late, Over the damn d before the Judgment-throne, i Finding the pleasure given repaid with pain,

Such as I saw them, such as all shall see, And vultures to the heart of the bestower,

Or fanes be built of grandeur yet unknown, Who, having lavish'd his high gift in vain,

The stream of his great thoughts shall spring from Lies chain'd to his lone rock by the sea-shore !

meg So be it : we can bear.-But thus all they

The Ghibelline, who traversed the three realıns Whose intellect is an o'ermastering power

Which forin the einpire of eternity. Which still recoils from its encumbering clay

Amidst the clash of swords, and clang of helms, Or lightens it to spirit, whatsoe'er

The age which I anticipate, no less The form which their creations may essay,

Shall be the Age of Beauty, and while whelins, Are bards; the kindled marble's bust may wear Calamity the nations with distress, More poesy upon its speaking brow

The genius of my country shall arise, Than aught less than the Homeric page may A cedar towering o'er the Wilderness, bear,

Lovely in all its branches to all eyes,
Inc noble stroke with a whole life may glow,
Or deify the canvas till it shine

• The Cupola of St. Peter's. With beauty so surpassing all below,

+ The statue of Moses on the monument of Julius II. "hat they who kneel to idols so divine

SONETTO Break no commandinent, for high heaven is there

Di Giovanni Battista Zappi. Transfused, transfigurated : and the line

Chi è costui, che in dura pietra scolto, If poesy, which peoples but the air

Siede gigante; e le più illustre, e conte With thought and beings of our thought reflected, Opre dell'arte avvanza, e ha vive, e pronte Can do no more: then let the artist share

Le labbia si, che le parole ascolto ?

Quest' è Mosè; ben me 'l diceva il folto 'he palm, he shares the peril, and dejected

Onor del mento, e 'l doppio raggio in fronte, Faints o'er the labour unapproved-Alas!

Quest' è Mosè, quando scendea del monte, Despair and Genius are too oft connected.

E gran parte del Nume avea nel volto.

Tal era allor, che le sonanti, e vaste 'ithin the ages which before me pass

Acquc ei sospese a se d' intorno, e tale Art shall resume and equal even the sway

Quando il mar chiuse, e ne fè tomba altrui. Which with Apelles and old Phidias

E voi sue turbe un rio vitello alzaste ?

Alzata aveste imago a questa eguale ! ne held in Hellas' unforgotten day.

Ch' era men fallo l' adorar costui. Ye shall be taught by ruin to revive

The Last Judgment, in the Sistine Chapel, The Grecian forms at least from their decay,

8 I have read somewhere if I do not err, for I

cannot recollect whcre), that Dante was so great it nd Roman souls at last again shall live

favourite of Michael Angelo's, that he had designed! In Roman works wrought by Italian hands, the whole of the Divina Commedia : but that the And temples, loftier than the old temples, give I volume containing these studies was lost by sea.

Fragrant as fair, and recognised afar,

The sway of petty tyrants in a state;
Wafting its nature incense through the skies. For such sway is not limited to kings,
Sovereigns shall pause amidst their sport of war, And demagogues yield to them but in date,
Wean'd for an hour from blood, to turn and gaze As swept off sooner; in all deadly things,
On canvas or on stone ; and they who mar

Which make men hate themselves, and one anAll beauty upon earth, compellid to praise,

other, Shall feel the power of that which they destroy ; In discord, cowardice, cruelty, all that springs, And Art's mistaken gratitude shall raise

From Death the Sin-born's incest with his mother, To tyrants who but take her for a toy,

In rank oppression in its rudest shape, Emblems and monuments, and prostitute

The faction Chief is but the Sultan's brother, Her charms to pontiffs proud," who but employ And the worst despot's far less human ape : The man of genius as the meanest brute

Florence! when this lone spirit, which so long To bear a burthen, and to serve a need,

Yearn'd, as the captive toiling at escape, To sell his labours, and his soul to boot.

To fly back to thee in despite of wrong, Who toils for nations may be poor indeed,

An exile, saddest of all prisoners, But free; who sweats for monarchs is no more Who has the whole world for a dungeon strong,

Than the gilt chamberlain, who, clothed and feed, Seas, mountains, and the horizon's verge for bars, Stands sleek and slavish, bowing at his door.

Which shut him from the sole small spot of earth, Oh, Power that rulest and inspirest 1 how

Where--whatsoe'er his fate-he still were hers, Is it that they on earth, whose earthly power His country's, and might die where he had birth Is likest thine in heaven in outward show,

Florence when this lone spirit shall return Least like to thee in attributes divine,

To kindred spirits, thou wilt feel my worth, Tread on the universal necks that bow.

And seek to honour with an empty urn And then assure us that their rights are thine ?

The ashes thou shalt ne'er obtain-Alas! And how is it that they, the sons of fame,

•What have I done to thee, my people ?'* Stern Whose inspiration seems to them to shine

Are all thy dealings, but in this they pass From high, they whom the nations oftest name,

The limits of man's common malice, for
Must pass their days in penury or pain,

All that a citizen could be I was ;
Or step to grandeur through the paths of shame, Raised by thy will, all thine in peace or war,
And wear a deeper brand and gaudier chain?

And for this thou hast warrd with me-Tis Or if their destiny be born aloof

done : From lowliness, or tempted thence in vain,

I may not overleap the eternal bar In their own souls sustain a harder proof,

Built up between us, and will die alone, The inner war of passions deep and fierce ?

Beholding with the dark eye of a seer Florence when thy harsh sentence razed my The evil days to gifted souls foreshown, roof,

Foretelling them to those who will not bear. I loved thee, but the vengeance of my verse,

As in the old time, till the hour be come The hate of injuries which every year

When truth shall strike their eyes through many Makes greater, and accumulates my curse,

a tear, Shall live, outliving all thou holdest dear,

And make them own the Prophet in his tomb. Thy pride, thy wealth, thy freedom, and eyen that,

* 'E scrisse più volte non solamente a particolari The most infernal of all evils here,

cittadini del reggimento ma ancora al popolo, e intra

l'altre una Epistola assai lunga che comincia: "Pe • See the treatment of Michael Angelo by Julius II., pule mi, quid feci tibi ?" -Vita di Dante scritta da and his neglect by Leo X.

ILionardo Aretino.



ADVERTISEMENT. THE Morgante Maggiore, of the first canto of which this translation is offered, divides with the Orlando Innamorato the honour of having formed and suggested the style and story of Ariosto. The great defects of Boiardo were his treating too seriously the narratives of chivalry, and his harsh style. Ariosto, in his continuation, by a judicious mixture of the gaiety of Pulci, has avoided the one; and Berni in his reformation of Boiardo's poem, has corrected the other. Pulci may be considered as the precursor and model of Berni altogether, as he has partly been to Ariosto; however inferior to both his copyists. He is no less the founder of a new style of poetry very lateiy sprung up in England. I allude to that of the ingenious Whistlecraft. The serious poeins on Roncesvalles in the same language, and more particularly the excellent one of Mr. Merivale, are to be traced to the same source. It has never yet been decided entirely whether Pulci's in. tention was or was not to deride the religion which is one of his favourite topics. It appears to me, that such an intention would have been no less hazardous to the poet than to the priest, particularly in that age and country; and the permission to publish the poem, and its reception aniong the classics of Italy, prove that it neither was nor is so interpreted. That he intended to ridicule the monastic life, and suffered his imagination to play with the simple dulness of his converted giant, seems evident enough; but surely it were as unjust to accuse him of irreligion on this account, as to denounce Fielding for his Parson Adams, Barnabas, Thwackum, Supple, and the Ordinary in Jonathan Wildl,--or Scott, for the exquisite use of his Covenanters in the Tales of my Landlord.'

In the following translation I have used the liberty of the original with the proper names : as Pulci uses Gan, Ganellon, or Ganellone; Carlo, Carlomagno, or Carlomano; Rondel, or Rondello, &c., as it suits his convenience; so has the translator. In other respects the version is faithful to the best of the translator's ability in combining his interpretation of the one language with the not very easy task of reducing it to the same versification in the other. The reader, on comparing it with the original, is requested to remember that the antiquated language of Pulci, however pure, is not easy to the generality of Italians themselves, from its great mixture of Tuscan proverbs; and he may therefore be more indulgent to the present attempt. How far the translator has succeeded, and whether or no he shall continue the work, are questions which he public will decide. He was induced to make the experiment partly by his love for, and partial intercourse with, the Italian language, of which it is so easy to acquire a slight knowledge, and with which it is so learly impossible for å foreigner to become accurately conversant. The Italian language is like a capricious

eauty, who accords her smiles to all, her favours to few, and sometimes least to those who have courted her ongest. The translator wished also to present in an English dress a part at least of a poem never yet endered into a northern language ; at the same time that it has been the original of some of the most cele. rated productions on this side of the Alps, as well as of those recent experiments in poetry in England rhich have been already mentioned.


Since to thy servants pity's ne'er denied,

With flowing rhymes, a pleasant style and free.
Be to my verses then benignly kind,
And to the end illuminate iny mind.

IN the beginning was the Word next God:

God was the Word, the Word no less was he: This was in the beginning, to my mode

Of thinking, and without him nought could be:
Therefore, just Lord! from out thy high abode,

Benign and pious, bid an angel flee,
One only, to be my companion, who
Shall help my famous, worthy, old song througlı.

And thou, oh Virgin ! daughter, mother, bride

of the same Lord, who gave to you each key Of heaven, and hell, and everything beside,

The day thy Gabriel said 'All haill' to thee,

'Twas in the season when sad Philomel

Weeps with her sister, who remembers and
Deplores the ancient woes which both befell,
And makes the nymphs enamour'd, to the

Of Phaeton by Phæbus loved so well

His car (but temper'd by his sire's command)
Was given, and on the horizon's verge just now
Appear'd, so that Tithonus scratch'd his brow:



Who was the son of the sad Ganellone, When I prepared my bark first to obey,

Were there, exciting too much gladness in As it should still obey, the helın, my mind,

The son of Pepin :--when his knights came hither, And carry prose or rhymne, and this my lay

He groaned with joy to see them all together, Of Charles the Emperor, whom you will find

By several pens already praised; but they
Who to diffuse his glory were inclined,

But watchful fortune, lurking, takes good heed For all that I can see in prose or verse,

Ever some bargainst our intents to bring, Have understood Charles badly-and wrote worse.

While Charles reposed him thus, in word and deed,

Orlando ruled court, Charles, and everything: v.

Curst Gan, with envy bursting, had such need Leonardo Aretino said already,

To vent his spite, that thus with Charles the king That if, like Pepin, Charles had had a writer One day he openly began to say, Of genius quick, and diligently steady,

Orlando must we always then obey ?
No hero would in history look brighter;

He in the cabinet being always ready,
And in the field a most victorious fighter,

A thousand times I've been about to say,
Who for the church and Christian faith had wrought, Orlando too presumptuously goes on;
Certes, far more than yet is said or thought.

Here are wc, counts, kings, dukes, to own thy sway,

Hamo, and Otho, Ogier, Solomon,

Each have to honour thee and to obey; You still may see at Saint Liberatore,

But he has too much credit near the throne, The abbey, no great way from Manopell,

Which we won't suffer, but are quite decided
Erected in the Abruzzi to his glory,

By such a boy to be no longer guided.
Because of the great battle in which fell
A Pagan king, according to the story,

And felon people whom Charles sent to hell :

And even at Aspramont thou didst begin And there are bones so many, and so many,

To let him know he was a gallant knight, Near them Giusaffa's would seem few, if any.

And by the fount did much the day to win;

But I know who that day had won the fight VIT.

If it had not for good Gherardo been; But the world, blind and ignorant, don't prize

The victory was Almonte's else; his sight His virtues as I wish to see them : thou,

He kept upon the standard, and the laurels Florence, by his great bounty don't arise,

In fact and fairness are his earning. Charles, And hast, and may have, if thou wilt allow, All proper customs and true courtesies :

XIV. Whate'er thou hast acquired from then till now,

*If thou rememberest being in Gascony, With knightly courage, treasure, or the lance,

When there advanced the nations out of Spain, Is sprung from out the noble blood of France.

The Christian cause had suffer'd shamefully,

Had not his valour driven them back again. Twelve Paladins had Charles in court, of whom

Best speak the truth when there's a reason why :

Know then, oh Emperor! that all complain; The wisest and most famous was Orlando ;

As for myself, I shall repass the mounts Him traitor Gan conducted to the tomb

O'er which I cross'd with two and sixty Counts. In Roncesvalles, as the villain plann'd ton), While the horn rang so loud, and kneli'd the doom

XV. of their sad rout, though he did all knight can do;

•'Tis fit thy grandeur should dispense relief, And Dante in his comedy hath given To him a happy seat with Charles in heaven.

So that each here may have his proper part,

For the whole court is more or less in grief:

Perhaps thou deem'st this lad a Mars in heart 'Twas Christmas-day; in Paris all his court

Orlando one day heard this speech in brief, Charles held; the chief, I say, Orlando was,

As by himself it chanced he sat apart: The Dane; Astolfo there too did resort,

Displeased he was with Gan because he said it. Also Ansuigi, the gay time to pass

But inuch more still that Charles should give him In festival and in triumphal sport,

credit, The much-renownd St. Dennis being the cause;

XVI. Angiolin of Bayonne, and Oliver,

And with the sword he would have murder'd Gan, And gentle Belinghieri too came there :

But Oliver thrust in between the pair,

And from his hand extracted Durlindan,

And thus at length they separated were.
Avolio, and Arino, and Othone

Orlando, angry too with Carloman, Of Normandy, and Richard Paladin,

Wanted but little to have slain him there ; Wise Hamo, and the ancient Salemone,

Then forth alone from Paris went the chief, Walter of Lion's Mount and Baldovin,

And burst and maddend with disdain and grief.


From savage brutes alone, too fierce to tame, From Ermellina, consort of the Danc,

'Twas fit our quiet dwelling to secure ; He took Cortana, and then took Rondell,

But now, if here we'd stay, we needs must guard And on towards Brara prick'd him o'er the plain;

Against domestic beasts with watch and ward. And when she saw him coming, Aldabelle

xxiv. Stretch'd forth her arms to clasp her lord again:

• These make us stand, in fact, upon the watch; Orlando, in whose brain all was not well,

For late there have appear'd three giants rough; As Welcome, my Orlando, home,' she said,

What nation or what kingdom bore the batch Raised up his sword to smite her on the head.

I know not, but they are all of savage stuf"; XVIII.

When force and malice with some genius match,

You know, they can do all--we are not enough Like him a fury counsels; his revenge

And these so much our orisons derange,
On Gan in that rash act he seem d to take,

I know not what to do, till matters change.
Which Aldabella thought extremely strange;
But soon Orlando found himself awake;

And his spouse took his bridle on this change,

Our ancient fathers living the desert in, And he dismounted from his horse, and spake

For just and holy works were duly sed; Of everything which pass d without demur,

Think not they lived on locusts sole, 'tis certain And then reposed himself some days with her.

That manna was rain'd down from heaven instead XIX.

But here 'tis fit we keep on the alert in

Our bounds, or taste the stones shower'd down Then full of wrath departed from the place,

for bread, And far as pagan countries roam'd astray,

From off yon mountain daily raining faster,
And while he rode, yet still at every pace

And flung by Passamont and Alabaster.
The traitor Gan remember'd by the way;
And wandering on in error a long space,

An abbey which in a lone desert lay,

.The third, Morgante's, savagest by far: he 'Midst glens obscure, and distant lands, he found,

Plucks up pines, beeches, poplar-trees, and oaks Which form'd the Christian's and the pagan's

And Aings them, our community to bury; bound.

And all that I can do but more provokes.' -XX

While thus they parley in the cemetery, The abbot was callid Clermont, and by blood

A stone from one of their gigantic strokes, Descended from Angrante: under cover

Which nearly crush'd Rondell, came tumbling over, of a great mountain's brow the abbey stood,

So that he took a long leap under cover.
But certain savage giants look'd him over;
One Passamont was foremost of the brood,

And Alabaster and Morgante hover

For God's sake, cavalier, come in with speed; Second and third, with certain slings, and throw The manna's falling now,' the abbot cried. In daily jeopardy the place below.

*This fellow does not wish my horse should feed,

Dear abbot,' Roland unto him replied.

of restiveness he'd cure him had he need; The monks could pass the convent gate no more, That stone seems with good will and aim applied.' Nor leave their cells for water or for wood;

The holy father said, 'I don't deceive; Orlando knock'd, but none would ope, before They'll one day Aling the mountain, I believe.'

Unto the prior it at length seem'd good; Enter'd, he said that he was taught to adore

XXVIII. Him who was born of Mary's holiest blood,

Orlando bade them take care of Rondello, And was baptized a Christian; and then show'd

And also made a breakfast of his own : How to the abbey he had found his road.

• Abbot,' he said, 'I want to find that fellow

Who flung at my good horse yon corner-stone. XXII.

Said the abbot, ‘Let not my advice seem shallow; Said the abbot, You are welcome ; what is inine

As to a brother dear I speak alone; We give you freely, since that you believe

I would dissuade you, baron, from this strife,
With us in Mary Mother's Son divine;

As knowing sure that you will lose your life.
And that you may not, cavalier, conceive
The cause of our delay to let you in

To be rusticity, you shall receive

• That Passamont has in his hand three dartsThe reason why our gate was barr'd to you:

Such slings, clubs, ballast-stones, that yield you Thus those who in suspicion live must do.


You know that giants have much stouter hearts XXIII.

Than us, with reason, in proportion just: •When hither to inhabit first we came

If go you will, guard well against their arts, These mountains, albeit that they are obscure, For these are very barbarous and robust.' As you perceive, yet without fear or blame

Orlando answer'd, .This I'll see, be sure, They seem'd to promise an asylum sure :

And walk the wild on foot to be secure.'

« AnteriorContinuar »