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Thursday, November 7, 2013

What the hell (22)

A true Tassean / Baroque picture, with supernatural powers blending with natural phenomena in a choral action in which darkness, light, wind, sounds partake.

The link between supernatural powers and natural phenomena is a very ancient one. Tasso could draw on many literary sources, from the description of the 'living' winds in the Aeneid to Dante, Purgatorio 5: 109-123.

Moreover, the third verse in this GC octave includes a direct quote from Dante: "a riveder le stelle," to see the stars again, or "Thence we came forth to rebehold the stars" in the Longfellow translation. That is the very last verse in Dante's Inferno, so it acquires an ironic meaning here: both Dante and the devils come out of hell, but supposedly for very different reasons -- or not?

lineart by dhr
colors by Selkis