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TIIS

TWENTY-SEVENTH BOOK

OF

ORLANDO FURIOSO.

AMIDST the various gifts by Ileaven assign'd,
With special grace to enrich the female kind,
Be this the praise, where most the sex aspires,
To counsel well when sudden need requires:
But seldom man mature advice supplies,
When time the means of long debate denics :
Good Malagigi wrought with fair intent,
And well it seem’d, but different was th’ event:
For while he kept, by force of magic charms,
His kinsman Richardetto safe from harms,
The fiend, obedient to his potent word,
Convey'd the Tartar* prince and Sarzan lord
To distance far; nor then the sage foreknew,
What mischief hence on Christian Charles he drew.
llad time allow'd him leisure to reflect,
Some safer means had offer'd to protect

10

15

* Mandricardo and Rodomont.

His kinsman's life, nor would, in evil hour,
His spells have thus distrest the Christian power:
Some wiser arts the demon had constrain'd,
To bear to furthest cast or western land

20
Th’ affrighted dame, for France no more to view,
Where both the lovers might her flight pursue.
But that malignant fiend, man's endless foe,
By Heaven's high justice doom'd to realms of woe,
Contriv'd what most the faithful would dismay, 25
Since his dread master ne'er prescrib'd his way.

The palfrey with the hidden demon, held Ilis rapid flight; no crossing stream repell’d His bounding course; nor woods' entangled shade, Nor fen, nor cliff, nor rock, his speed delay'd : 30 Till through the Franks and English camps he bore (And all th’ unnumber'd host that Christ adore) Th'affrighted dame, and safely had restor'd To her lov'd sire Granada's royal lord. Meanwhile the son of Agrican pursu'd

35 The flying fair, and soon no longer view'd : With him was Ulien's son, but either knight Had lost her image from his straining sight: Yet, lvy the track they follow'd still the chace, As nimble hounds the goat or lereret trace:

10 Till either lover certain tidings gain'd, That with her sire the princely dame remain’d.

Ver. 20. Since his dread master---] Since Malagigi had not pre scribed the rout which the demon was to take, but left him to his own disposal, he took that course with the damsel which would draw Mandricardo and Rodomont towards the Christian camp, and consequently bring distress on Charlemain.

Take heed, 0 Charles !---What clouds thy sky deform! Hang o'er thy head, and threat the burstiny storm! Not these alone, but king Gradasso stands

45 With Sacripant, prepar'd to assault thy bands; While fortune, to complete thy ruin’d state, Has robb’d thee of each glorious lamp, that late, Of strength and wisdom beam'd thy purest light, And leaves thee now in long enduring night.

50 Orlando now, estrarig'd to every thought Of good or evil, roves with wit distraught, O’er hill and plain, unhous'd and naked lies In heat or cold, in fair or stormy skies ! Rinaldo, scarce with better sense inspir’d,

55 Hlas left his prince, when aid was most requir’d, Of fair Angelica the news to gain, In Paris lately sought, but sought in vain: An aged hermit, vers'd in magic art, (As once I told) had play'd a fraudful part;

00 And wrought th' unwary knight to fond belief, That she, so luv'd, was won by Brava’sä сhier. At this, with jealous rage and grief distrest, That ne'er before a lover's heart oppress’d; He enter'd Paris' walls, then voyay'd o'er

65 (So chance decreed) to Britain's distant shore.

Orlando.

Ver. 15... king Gradassu.] The last we heard of Cradasso was at the enchanted palace of Atlantes, Book xii. from which place all the knights were released by Astolpho.

Ver. 54. An aged hermit -- ) See Book ii. ver. 29. where the hypo. critical hermit cieceives Rinaldo and Sacripant with a lying vision, and pails the battle between the two rivals.

The battle fought, in which such fame he won,
The Moors besieg'd and freed the regal town,
Paris again he view'd; each convent there,
And every dome explor'd with fruitless care;
Ile deem'd, with Brava's chief, the lovely maid
To Brava or Anglante's scats convey'd:
Now pass'd the hours; and thither hastes the knight,
But there nor chief nor damsel meets his sight;
And thence to Paris' walls he turns anew,
In hopes, ere long, the Paladin to view :
No Paladin he views: with

rage

he burns: Again to Brava and Anglante turns. Alike he journeys on by night or day, In morn's cool breeze, or noon-tide’s sultry ray; 80 And many å time one path repeated tries, The sun or moon, by turns, its light supplies.

But he, our ancient foe, through whom the hand Of hapless Eve transgress'd the high command, With livid eyes imperial Charles beheld,

85 What time vain love had from the camp espellid Albano's kuight: he mark’d with horrid joy, What force might then the Christian powers annoy; And now together brought against their host, The flower of arms the Pagan world could boast. 90 Ile fires the king Gradasso, fires the breast Of noble Sacripant; who, since releas’u From old Atlantes' castle, where they shar'd One common error, had companions far'd

Ver. 67.---such fame he won, &c.] Sce Books xvi. xvii. and seq.

Ver.1..--had companions fard] This seems to be a little slip of the poet's memory, as Sacripant and Gradasso did not leave the palace of Atlantes together; for Sacripant (see Book xii. ver. 220.)

100?

Along the way: he these incites to aid

95 Their sovereign Agramant, and Charles invade. Ilimself, by secret ways, their course attends, And safely brings to join their Pagar friends. Another fiend he bids with trusty speed, Ficrce Rodomont and Mandricardo lead,

100) Where late the demon urg'd the damsel's steed. A third le sent, that to the Pagan crew, Valiant Rogero and Marphisa drew; Nor yet so swiftly to the camp they pass’d, But of the six, these two arriv'd the last.

103
Th' infernal angel who relentless sought
The Christian's loss, this subtle train had wrought,
Lest with Rogero Rolomont arriv'd,
The late contention for the steed revir'd
Should cross his great design, for either knight 116
Might then renew his undecided fiylit.
The first brave warrior that together join’d,
Beheld in distant prospect to the wind
The banners wave, and saw the tent, ascend,
Where those besiege the works, and these defend. 115

And now, the counsel held, the dauntless four,
In spite of Charles, and all his numerous power,
To raise the siege, with joint consent agree,
And Agramant from threatening ruin free.

when the ring had di-pelled the illusion that so long detained lum, had quitted the palace with Orlando and Terrau, and followed the 11ght of Angelica ; but it appears (sle Book xxii. ver. 111.) that Gradasso remained behind in the enchanted palace with Romero, Bradamant, Iroldo, and others, till the enchantinent was cin--ulved by stolpho. Or this oversight of the port the Italian uom!!!!Nfators have taken nu notice.

VOL, IV

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