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NOTES.

  • Note 1, Canto 1, Stanza XXXII.
  • A temple stands, a fane of other days.
  • The building here described is the Temple of Venus at Baiæ.
  • Note 2, Canto 1, Stanza XXXVI.

    "Believe there's heat in snow, or chill in fire,
    "Believe these circling stars have ceased to move,
    "Believe that holy truth can be a liar,"
    But never, never, doubt my constant love."
    It is scarcely necessary to remark that these lines are a transcript from Hamlet's letter to Ophelia, altered to suit the measure.
  • Note 3, Canto 1, Stanza XLI.
  • And now who can he be, th' intruding wooer.
  • The subject of the poem, and this part of its machinery, are taken from an old French tale by Madame de Murat. The Palais de la Vengeance ends differently, but still it suggested the idea of the inevitable termination of the tale.—Cabinet des Fées, 12mo. t.1, p. 373.
  • Note 4, Canto 2, Stanza VI.

    Not like the Hours, that dancing one and all,
    Follow Apollo's car the roof along.
    This fresco painting by Guido is in the garden house of the Palazzo Rospigliosi at Rome.

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  • Note 5, Canto 2, Stanza XVII.

    For grief devours a more abundant store
    Than health——
    A fact well known to those who have been conversant with the sufferers in the French and other revolutions. Terror and despair occasion a ravenous appetite, which greedily devours whatever is set before it, unconscious of the taste of the food, and almost of the act of eating.
  • Note 6, Canto 2, Stanza XXII.
  • —— the pale bright sky.
  • Those who have witnessed the tints of the fading twilight in an Italian summer's evening, or who have seen their representation by Raphael or Pietro Perugino, will be at no loss to understand these words, which to a mere English reader may seem to involve a contradiction—Editor.
  • Note 7, Canto 2, Stanza XXXVII.
  • It was an area, circular and wide.
  • The scene described is the site of Tyndaris, between Melazzo and Piatti on the northern coast of Sicily, where there are several ruins.
  • Note 8, Canto 2, Stanza XLIX.

    The tall rocks frowning o'er the subject wave,
    Repuls'd approach, and warn'd the ship away.
    Nothing can be more savage than the scenery on this coast near Cape Orlando, at the Passo di Carava: the mules were several times blindfolded in order to render them less timid. The road afterwards descended to the shore, and passed along rocks washed by occasional waves. We dismounted that the mules might be led over, and that we might choose our moment to run along. After again climbing, we made another dip to the sea. Nature has hollowed out an arch, which renders the passage practicable. If not nature, it must have been Count Roger, as they are the only benefactors to whom Sicily owed any permanent obligation.—MS. Journal.
  • Note 9, Canto 2, Stanza L.
  • Round was the quiet bay where now they steer.
  • Leaving Olivieri, we ascended the mountains on the west side of the bay, and enjoyed fine views of the smooth port and its surrounding scenery. A castle, standing on a little wooded eminence, which advances from the hills, added another beauty to the landscapes below; and above, a Capuchin Convent, called the Madonna di Tindaro, rose on a pinnacle between
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    us and the sea. This is the site of ancient Tyndaris. There is all immense variety of swells and falls in the ground, and the coast rises in a high precipice over the waves. Leaving Tyndaris behind, we descended to the level of the first range over the sea, which, sometimes elevated into rocky cones, sometimes cut into deep fissures, formed a fine frame to the Lipari Islands, seen through fringes of olives.—MS. Journal.
  • Note 10, Canto 3, Stanza XIV.
  • That simile is stolen,
  • From "The Antiquary."
  • Note 11, Canto 3, Stanza XLIX.
  • Last night I dream'd I stood on that dear shore.
  • The scenery of Cuma, near Naples.
  • Note 12, Canto 4, Stanza XIV.

    "Hear me," she said, "oh thou, who in my dreams
    "Hast oft look'd down with kindness."
    St. Theresa.—Theresa de Ahumada, the foundress of the reformed order of Mount Carmel, was an enthusiast, and the patroness of enthusiasts. I am aware that she lived too late for my story, being born in 1515 and dying in 1582, in the reign of Philip II. The story of the miraculous light emitted from her heart, is of later date, though the history of its taking fire is thus recorded in the Bull of her canonization. "Aliquando etiam Angelum vidit ignito jaculo sibi præcordia transverberantem, ex quibus coelestibus donis divini amoris flamma in ejus corde adeò exæstuabat, ut maxime arduum votum à Deo edocta emiserit efficiendi semper quidquid perfectiùs esse, et ad majorem Dei gloriam pertinere intelligeret." —Her letters, her poetry, her visions, are all accordant with this enthusiastic spirit, and she persuaded many, because she had first persuaded herself. The following canzonet is a fair specimen of her poetry:—

    Vivo sin vivir en mi
    Y tan alta vida espero
    Que muero porque no muero.

    [The remainder of the poem, with the exception of the final stanza, appeared in two columns in the original printed edition.]


    Aquesta divina union
    De l'amor, con que yo vivo,
    Haze Dios ser mi cautivo
    Y libre mi corazon—
    Mas causa en mi tal pasion
    Ver a Dios m i prisionero,
    Que muero porque no muero.

    Ay que larga es esta vida
    Que duros estos destierros
    Esta carcel y estos hierros
    En que el alma esta metida!
    Solo esperar la salida
    Me causa un dolor tan fiero,
    Que muero porque no muero.

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    Ay que vida tan amarga
    Do no se goza el Senor.
    Y si es dulce el amor
    No es la esperanza larga.
    Quiteme Dios esta carga
    Mas pesada que de azero,
    Que muero porque no muero.

    Solo con la confianza
    Vivo que he de morir,
    Porque muriendo el vivir
    Me assegura mi esperanza.
    Muerte, do el vivir so alcanza
    No te tardes: que te espero,
    Que muero porque no muero.

    Mira, que el amer es fuerte,
    Vida, no me seas molesta,
    Mira, que solo te resta
    Para ganarte, perderte.
    Venga ya la dulce Muerte
    Venga la Muerte muy ligero,
    Que muero porque no muero.

    Aquella vida de arriba
    Es la vida verdadera,
    Hasta que esta vida muera
    No se goza estando viva:
    Muerte, no me seas esquiva;
    Vivo muriendo primero,
    Que muero porque no muero.

    ¿Vida, que puedo yo darle
    A mi Dios que vive en mi?
    Si no es perderte a ti
    Para mejor a el gozarle.
    Quiero muriendo alcançarle,
    Pues a el es que quiero,
    Que muero porque no muero.

    ¿Estando ausente de ti
    Que vida puedo tener?
    Si no muerte padecer
    La mayor que nunca vì.
    Lastima tengo de mi,
    Por ser mi mal tan entero,
    Que muero porque no muero.

    El pez que del agua sale
    Aun de alivio no carece,
    A quien la muerte padece
    Alfin la muerte le vale:
    Que muerte habrà que se iguala
    A mi vivir lastimero,
    Que muero porque no muero.

    Quando me llego al alcazar,
    Viendote en el sacramiento,
    Me hace mas sentimiento
    El no poderte gozar:
    Todo es para mas penar,
    Por no verte como quiero,
    Que muero porque no muero.

    Quando me gozo, Senor,
    Con esperanza de verte,
    Viendo que puedo perderte
    Se me dobla mi dolor:
    Viviendo en tanto pavor,
    Y esperando como espero,
    Que muero porque no muero.

    Sacame de aquesta muerte,
    Mi Dios, y dame la vida,
    No me tengas impedida
    En este lazo tan fuerte.
    Mira que muero por verte,
    Y vivir sin ti no quiero,
    Que muero porque no muero.

    Llorarè mi muerte ya
    Y lamentarè mi vida,
    En tanto que detenida
    Por mis pecados està.
    ¡O mi Dios quando serà,
    Quando yo digo de vero
    Que muero porque no muero!
    "A witness of this great and seraphic love towards God, is the prodigy manifested in the heart of this seraphic virgin after her death. For having
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    been many times, in the city Of Alva, placed in shrines of the finest crystal, and every one of them having been found to break, no other method could be pursued than to leave it exposed in that inclosure to the public veneration, placing it on a silver stand only: and from such a marvel gathering ∗ how seraphic was that Ætna of love."—Life of St. Theresa, by Diego Yepes, Bishop of Tarragona, Confessor of the Saint, and of Philip II. of Spain. Book III, chapter 24th.
  • Note 13, Canto 4, Stanza XXXIV.
  • Look at his portrait ———
  • By Raphael, in the Borghese gallery, Rome.
  • Note 14, Canto 5, Stanza LIII.

    That e' en in ripening medlars, Venice' law,
    Consider'd Time's hard case, and gave him help of straw.
    Il tempo e la paglia maturano le nespole, is part of the wisdom of ages in Italy. This proverb, in the shape of two baskets of medlars, is sculptured in the rich ornaments of the Golden Staircase at Venice, in honour of the virtues of Industry and Patience.
  • Note 15, Canto 5, Stanza LIV.
  • ——— a richly-wooded plain.
  • The beautiful valley of Morreale, extending behind Palermo.
  • Note 16, Canto 5, Stanza LVIII.
  • It was an ancient tower———
  • The Saracen tower of Zisa, near Palermo. Its singular architecture, its hall with the fountain and mosaic channel, the venerable and mysterious antiquity which conceals its origin, all give it an interest, independent of the extraordinary beauty of its situation. Tradition assigns it to an Emir, who built it for his daughter, before the time of Count Roger's conquest.
  • Note 17, Canto 5, Stanza LXXI.
  • A noble city on the shore is spread.
  • Palermo.
  • Note 18, Canto 5, Stanza LXXVI.
  • Those small and twinkling gems of every dye.
  • On returning from Sferracavallo, we went to the Villa Ferreri, which was
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    destroyed by the populace during the revolution, the Marchese Ferreri holding that most dangerous piece of preferment, the chief direction of Finance. It is one of the most prominent buildings in the view from the Favorita, its long white lines showing brightly on the dark-wooded rocks of the mountain at whose base it stands. The smell of the orange-groves was oppressively sweet; and the variety of views from what had been the garden, were as beautiful as those from the Favorita, with the addition of a foreground of fine olive trees, fig-trees, and almond-trees, under which grew the cactus in immense luxuriance, hung with wreaths of Passion-flower. Still lower were the wild flowers. On ground which in England would have been covered with chickweed, grew flowers of every tint, from the white daisy to the scarlet anemone. Some vetches had wings of the brightest crimson, the centre of the flower being nearly black, and going off into crimson of the deepest colour, while a little spot of scarlet on each side served to show it off. Some were blue, others pure yellow, and a hyacinth, between the common and grape kind, was of the deepest blue. At Partenico, we sat, ate, and slept in an orange-grove, till our horses baited. The display of wild flowers here was beyond description. A large rose-coloured vetch, crimson vetches, blue convolvuli, pink catchfly, and a gigantic kind of rosemary, whose blossom was as large as a wallflower, were among the most conspicuous. A yellow shrub, something between furze and broom, covered the hedges with gold .—MS. Journal.

    asterisk. ∗ Between Palermo and Alcamo. — Editor.

  • Note 19, Canto 6, Stanza LXXI.
  • A mountain from its base of crumbling red.
  • The rise of the Monte Nuovo, in one night, is here made subservient to the story. It has encroached so much on the Lucrine Lake, as to fill it half up, and the effects of the earthquake and eruption together, appear to have altered very much the scenery of all that coast. The well-known malaria, there prevalent, is remarkable both for its extent and its dangerous strength.