SiStan ChapLee

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

The ancestor of NSA (2)

[16: 57.1-6]

La raccoglie Goffredo e la difende,
Poi scorge, in lei guardando, estrania cosa
Ché dal collo, ad un filo avinta, pende
Rinchiusa carta, e sotto l'ale ascosa.
La disserra e dispiega, e bene intende
Quella ch'in sé contien non lunga prosa
. . .

Godfrey takes it in his hands, defends it, (*)
Then he looks and notices something strange
As from its neck, tied to a thread, there hangs
A rolled sheet, hidden under the wings;
Unties, unfolds it. He well understands (**)
The very brief message that it contains:
. . .

(*) The dove that, as recounted in stanza 56 here not reported, had recovered in Godfrey's lap after fleeing from the attack of an eagle.
(**) Apparently, Godfrey also -- as Tancred has proved able to before -- can read Arabic.