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The warlike virgin, whose resistless might,
Ver. 214. To her a gentle youth---] For the loves of Rogero and Bradamant, see General View of Boyardo's Story.
Ver. 216. Whom Agolant's unhappy daughter---] For the genealogy of Rogero, take the following fictitious account from Boyardo.
“ After the Grecians had taken Troy, and put most of their pri. soners to the sword, among whom was Polysena, daughter of Prian and Hecuba, who was sacrificed at the tomb of Achilles; in order entirely to extirpate the race of Ilector, they sought for As'yanax ; but Andromache, to preserve his life, concealed him in a sepulchre, and took another child in her arms, with whom being found, they were both put to death. In the mean tine, the real Astyanax was safely conveyed, by a friend of his father, to the island of Sicily, when, being grown to man's estate, he conquered Corinth and Argos: he established a government at Messina, and married the queen of Syracusa, but was afterwards killed by treachery, and his widow, being driven from the city by the Greeks, took shelter in Risa, where she was delivered of a son named Polydore, from whom descended Clovis and Constantius. Constantius was the head of the line of Pepin, father of Charlemain ; and from Clovis came Rogero, who married Galicella, daughter of Agolant : Rogero, being cruelly murdered, and his city destroyed, his wife fled to the coast of Africa, where she was delivered of two children, a boy and a girl, and died soon after: the boy, called Rogero, was brought up by Atlantes, a magician. See Orlando Innam, B.ij. C. i. &c.
Now Dradamant explores with fond desire
Here, as the virgin turn'd her eyes aside,
245 Urg’d by desire which prompts each generous heart In others woes to bear a friendly part, The virgin begs th' afflicted knight to show His secret state, and whence his sorrows flow: To whom the stranger all his grief display'd, 250 Mov'd with the courteous speeches of the maid, And by her looks misled, that seem'd to tell Some gallant warrior prov'd in battle well.
Thus lic---Know, gentle knight, a valiant crew
What could I do, alas! encompass’ul round
here not a track of human feet was worn.
Ver. 201.---(Illying steel.--) The fiction of this griffin-horse is Ariosto's own, nothing like it occurring in Boyardo.
At length a wild and lonely vale I found,
290 The beauteous pile more struck my raptur’d view. This fort, the demons, from th’infernal plains By fuming incense drawn and magic strains, Enclos'd with steel, to which the Stygian wave, And Stygian fire eternal temper gave:
293 A dazzling polish brighten'd ev'ry tower, Which spots could ne'er defile nor rust devour.
The robber scours ihe country day and night, Then, with his prey, he thither bends his flight: Thither my fair, my better part he bore,
300 And never, never must I view her more! What hope remain'd! In vain with longing eyes, I see the place where all my treasure lies ! The rock so high and steep, who enters there, Must learn to wing his passage through the air. 305 So when the mother-fox, with anguish stung, Hears in the eagle's nest her crying young; She circles round the tree, with wild affright, No wings vouchsaf'd her for so vast a flight.
While in suspense I stood, from far I spy'd 310 Two champions and a dwarf that seein'd their guide;
Ver. 311. Two champions and a dwarf.---) Boyardo tells us, that after the deliverance of Orlando, Gradasso and Rogero were led by a dwarf to an adventure of a castle, which seems to be the story here continued by our poet. See Orlando Innum. B. iii. C. vi, vii.
These with the hopes of praise had fir'd their mind,
325 Then all my griefs I spoke; while tears that roll'd Down my wan cheek, confirm’d the tale I told.
With courteous words they answer'd my request,
330 Beseeching IIeaven to aid the doubtful day.
Meanwhile the warriors to the rock drew nigli,