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Friday, November 14, 2014

What about Armida? (5)

[6: 100]

Dunque, prima ch'a lui novella apporti
Romor di fama incerto, o certa spia,
Scelga la tua pietà, fra' tuoi più forti,
Alcuni pochi e meco hora gli invia;
Ché se non mira il ciel con occhi torti
L'opre mortali, o l'innocenza oblia,
Non fia ch'egli m'ancida o mi costringa
D'andar la state e 'l verno anco raminga.

[Armida speaking to Godfrey:] "Therefore, before any news about me might be brought to that tyrant by uncertain rumors or certain spies, let Your Mercy choose, among your strongest warriors, a few to be sent with me. In fact, if Heaven does not look askance at the works of mortals, or does not ignore innocence, the tyrant won't succeed in killing me, nor will he force me to go wandering forever. (*)"

(*) Literally, "in summer and in winter." The fact that Armida asks Godfrey to choose her "body guards" [who, in fact, will just long for having a close look at her body] himself implies that she knows that the election of the new captain of the mercenary troops has ended in a failure, in a tragedy indeed. To be noted, again, her nerve in invoking God as a witness, cf. here.