SiStan ChapLee

Thursday, October 10, 2013

From long-continued silence hoarse (1)

One of the major limits in this research on Tasso's works is the poor reference to Virgil's and Homer's poems, that would provide a lot of keys by linking passages from those classical epics and their Renaissance counterparts. For example, the description of Guidon's death we recently read (see) follows Virgil's description of the suicide of Dido, the queen who had fallen in love with Aeneas, in Aeneid 4: 690-692,
ter sese attollens cubitoque adnixa leuauit,
ter reuoluta toro est oculisque errantibus alto
quaesiuit caelo lucem ingemuitque reperta. 

This adds a powerful 'soundtrack' to Tasso's episode, letting readers 'see' more than a soldier dying in the battlefield here: it is a sad, painful farewell to life, to the most precious goods, to love, to the deceiving promise of a joyful future.