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For whose dear sake she found such way itstape
So Ilomer, who is all wonderful, and the father of all poetical wonders, speaks of Dolon, whose head was cut oil by Diomed. Nr. Pope's translation is admirable. “ The head, yet speaking, muttır'd as it fell."
Il. X. 10. See l'plon's Notes on Spenser. Ver. 180. Hail, spotless soul!] On this p.ssage Jr. Upton observes, that Ariosto, in admiration of the chastity and martyrdom of Isabella, breaks out into a most elegant apostrophe, which Spenser copies in his address to Florimel, when she is in prisou tempted by Proieus.
Eternal thraldom was to her more lies
Fairy Queen, L. vii. C. vi. Si. 19.
Henceforth I mean for ever for thy sake,
195 Amidst my Saints a great decree to make, Which by th' inviolable stream I swear, To every future age thy praise shall bear : Let every maid that holds thy name be blest With genius, beauty, virtue, o'er the res
200 Of woman's sex, but most the prize obtain For chastity and faith without a stain ; While Pindus, Helicon, Parnassus' hill Sound Isabella, Isabella still.
Th’Almighty spoke, the air was hush'd around, 205 Smooth spread the waves o'er ocean's vast profound, To the third Heaven the virgin-soul withdrew, And in the arms of her Zerbino fiew,
Ver. 197. Which by th' inviolable stream I swear.--) Ruscelli, the Italian commentator, takes great pains to clear Ariosto from censure, for having introduced the Supreme Being, on this occasion, taking an oath like Jupiter in the Iliad or Æneid; though I fear that such passage can be defended by no argument adduced in its justi. fication, but that it must in general be acknowledged, that Ariosto, like the rest of his countrymen, often introduces the fictions of poetry on the most solemn occasions. But a heavier charge may be here brought against the poet for making the Almighty approve the ac. tion of Lucretia, and thereby giving a sanction to suicide. This passage the Italian commentator has candidly confessed to be a gross breach of propriety and decorum.
Ver. 199. Let every maid that holds thy name, &c.] By this extra. vagant prophecy on all who bear the name of Isabella, the poet is said to make an eulogiin on the duchess of Mantua, the daughter of Hercules duke of Ferrara, and wife of Ferrando king of Naples; the wife of Ferdinando king of Spain, to whose wisdom is attributed chiefly the discovery of the new world by Columbus; the wife of Frederick, king of Naples; the wife of Ubaldo, duke of Urbino ; but more especially a daughter of the king of Hungary, who was canonized by pope Gregory IX. for the sanctity of her life; all these ladies bore the name of Isabella.
Porcacchi. Ver. 207. To the third Heaven...) Ariosto bere sollows the fiction of some of the ancient poets, who taught that those lovers, who had
While, left behind, this second Brusis stove,
nastering finnes divjell,
For this intent, the place where late slie selt,
* Zerbino and Isabella.
been constant, were after death received into the third Ilearen, the region of Venus, the goddess of love.
Purcacchi. Ver. 203. Brusus.--) Brusus, surnamed without mercy, it character in tlie romances of the Round-Table. He is largely spoken of by Alamanni, in his poetical romance of Girone il Cortes?; and is mentioned by Purci in luis Hory.inte, Canto xiii. who calls him Brusus without pity.
Ver. 230. By Adrian on the banks of Tyber rund--] The port neans the noble castle of St. Angelo at liome, built by Pobie
('less to the sepure a tower was join'd,
Adria il, on the rider Tyber. This building was afterwards ell. largeul by ses cral successive Pupes, till Pius V. put the finishing Benci lait.
Ver. 23. A 16"row bridge.-.] This fiction of Roromont's bridge is tality in inre spirit o: romance. We often read of kniglıts incetis : - adventures: in the old romance of Norte Arthur, Sir Laucevi raconuters a churl who diesended a passage over a IV.
“ On the third say he role over a great long bridge, and there stried louhiin -txienly a pasning foul chul, and he smote his biogines on the moni', that he urned about, aud ikrd him why he rode over thai bridlse without !iis ilcen-e? and he suck at him with a winiity mpcat cies ospins ciion. Then Sir Lancelot drew his on, and put the strobe back, and clore his heart to the navel.”
Morterthur, Part. i. C. exi. Spenser la primera niirilerto this on Iconll), wiele a kriegerif this kind is describit, illed it conibai ensues between Sirithesiz? ainda Sacc.
111?!, Quinn, B. V. C'i inint,
Yet well the work advanc'), and on the heilt 0:15
Few divs elaps’d, ere numerous knight were led, For Spil and Italy that path to tread. The thirst of fanie, to some more dear than lif', 26.5 Brought many knights to prove the dalyerous siife, While all who hop'd the victor's meed iv gain, Resign'd their arms, and numbers there were slain. Of vanquish'd Pagans that the course had run, He kept their spoils alone, and armour won.
270 Of these the names on tablets fairly trac’d, And hung on high the polish'd marble grac'd: But every Christian close in duralice pent He held, design’d for Afric to be sent. The work proceeding, on a certain day,
975 The mad Orlando thither bent his way.