ANONYMOUS TEXTS

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Alza, rapido Tar, l'umida fronte 

Source:  16th century anonymous manuscript; Fondo Molza-Viti, Biblioteca Estense, Modena.

Alza, rapido Tar, l’umida fronte,
e grazie al cielo e alla tua gran ventura
rendi immortale, e cristallina e pura
l’onda per l’alveo d’or versa dal fonte.
Mira di doppio sol doppio orizzonte
nell’una e l’altra angelica figura,
la cui luce serena ogni ora fura
all’alto carro onde cadeň Fetonte.
D’odoriferi fiori ambe le sponde
di mille bei color dipingi e mostra
quanto sparga d’april Favonio e Flora,
e dolcemente, dov’Eco risponde
ninfe e pastori per l’ombrosa chiostra,
s’odan cantar TARQUINIA e LEONORA.
Raise, rapid Taro, your watery brow,
and by the grace of Heaven and of your great fortune
make immortal, and crystalline and pure
the wave spilt by the fountain into the riverbed of gold.
Look at the double sun, the double horizon of the one and the other angelic figure, whose serene light every hour steals
from the high carriage from which Pheobus fell.
Along the banks, reveal and paint with sweet-smelling flowers of a thousand beautiful colors, and show
how much springtime [April] is scattered by Favonio and Flora,
and sweetly, where Echo answers
the nymphs and shepherds by the shady bower,
hear Tarquinia and Leonora sing.

The text describes two singers, Tarquinia and Leonora, singing together on the banks of the Taro, a river running through Parmigiano territory between Parma and Piacenza, bordering on lands owned by the Sanvitale family.  The singers are presumably Tarquinia Molza and Leonora Sanvitale.

Written by Laurie Stras.

Last updated 04 October, 2002.

The views expressed on this page are those of the author and not of the University of Southampton.