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Friday, February 6, 2015

Casta Diva (2)

[7: 30]

Parte scoprìa del volto a chi più basso
Rimira quale e quanta al ciel s'estolle.
Move Tancredi, e così, passo passo,
Gli occhi rivolge ov'è colei su 'l colle;
Poscia immobil si ferma, e pare un sasso
Gelido tutto fuor, ma dentro ei bolle.
Sol di mirar s'appaga, e di battaglia
Sembiante ei fa che poco homai gli caglia.

She showed part of her face to those below
Who could see her rise towards the sky.
Tancred goes ahead, step after step, until
He looks at the hill on which she towers;
Then he stands so still as to recall a rock,
Cold on the outside while boiling inside.
Now he only enjoys gazing: (*) apparently
Without caring about the battle any more.

(*) Ironically echoing Dante, Purgatorio 27: 104-106. Clorinda's appearance on a hill also may hint at Dante, Inferno 1: 31-35. According to historical sources, Tancred was a valiant but very lustful guy.