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jealousy; and that when the attendants complain in sonnet 115, either her own jealousy is implied or that of her parents; for Castelvetro says, restata in casa per invidia o gelosia de' parenti.
4th. p. 159. From examples of the application of the words castità, castitas, and chastity, to virgins and married women, and from the introduction of the nine muses, Calliope e Clio con l'altre sette, together with Virginia and the Vestal Tuccia, p. 160, (from the expression of Petrarch, lo non porria le sacre benedette Virgini ch' vi fur chiuder' in rim,,) the essayist considers this argument of the Abbé de Sade as untenable.
5t1 pp. 164-177. On the abbreviated word ptubs he remarks, that as the interpretations are merely conjectural, the question to be decided is, which of the two is the more probablehe rejects the confused and dogmatical certificate of Caperonnier, and he suspects, that, as the Abbé de Sade only mentions two MSS. without ascertaining their age, the word in all the others, which were probably prior to those two, was written at full length perturbationibus. The essayist farther contends, that if all the ancient MSS. had borne the contracted word ptubs, the context would best determine the probable interpretation, and that it will not allow of the Abbé's reading. Perturbations, he adds, might have broken Laura's constitution, for though we are ignorant of her private and domestic history, we cannot presume to say what causes she might have had for anguish; many women of prudence and modesty are, from unavoidable circumstances, the victims of mental inquietude.
The fourth section consists of a variety of observations on the internal evidence discoverable in the writings of Petrarch, p. 189; -his argument is indeed negative ;--Petrarch, says he, has never mentioned her husband, who, on bis account, is said to have used her harshly, p. 183;--if she had been married to such a husband," would he bave suffered her avowed admirer to see her daily, converse with her alone, write to her, make assignations, and send her presents ? but that he enjoyed all these liberties, he shews by numberless passages. He argues that a foreign prince at a brilliant festival at Avignon would never have dared to kiss her forehead and eyes, or a jealous husband have permitted so marked a distinction to his wife, merely through respect to Petrarch’s attachment to her. p. 189. Petrarch's moral character justifies us in sụpposing, that when he appeals to heaven for the purity of his passion for Laura, his sincerity was equal to his love, p. 202; in the third dialogue with St. Augustine, who is introduced reasoning with him on his passion, and urging every topic of dissuasion, would he have omitted the strongest of all arguments; namely, that Laura was the wife of another, and consequently that his passion was a crime in the sight of God and man? p. 206. That Petrarch's passion was not of a Platonic nature, he shews by quoting a very signi, ficant soppet, p. 213. As therefore his love for Laura was a real, honouable, and virtuous passiou, his works (Son. 64. 155. pt. J. 47, 48, 49, pt. 2.) afford sufficient evidence, that he ardently desired to be united to her in marriage, and had even a near prospect of tiat happiness.
We have thus given an impartial statement of the argument, and if it excites the curiosity of the reader, he will find in the work some very ingenious elucidations, and a closely connected series of reasoning. There are two parts of which we have hitherto not spoken, the first Section and the Postscript.
The section consists of a very brief sketch of the life of Petrarch :--short as it is, however, it contains some mistakes. If the Italiau gentlemen, who wished to see their countryman vindicated, had been Aretines, they would not have pardoned the author for omitting to record that Petrarch was born at Arezzo, (vide Advertisement):-this, however, is mentioned, p. 98, where the author inadvertently uses it as an argument, and allirons that it was the most splendid city Petrarch had ever seen ; whereas he had passed four years at Bologua, of which, he says, “quâ nil puto jucundiùs, nilque liberiùs toto esset orbe terrarum, quænam ubi præterea tunc ubertas rerum omnium, ut jam præscripto cognomine per omnes terras pinguis Bononia diceretur.' Rer. Senil. lib. x. 2. p. 2. In respect to the year of Laura's birth, the essayist follows Velutello, al. though the Baron della Bastie had already proved from Petrarch's words, that St. Augustine could not speak of a Laura born in 1314, nor could the poet, in his answer, have spoken of a woman of twenty-nine years of age, which Laura must have been at the time the dialogues were written. At p. 22, he says, that when Petrarch retired to the solitude of Vaucluse, disappointed ambition
at p. 24, he supposes that it was to be near Laura: but how shall we reconcile the following passages? In an epistle to his friend Giacomo Colonna (Carm. I. i. Ep. 12.) he informs him that he had undertaken a long journey (to Rome) for the purpose of overcoming his passion, and had retired with that view to Valchiusa.
* Diffugio, totoque vagus circumferor orbe,
Omnis ad arma fugæ spes est mihi versa, nec unquam
nunc montibus abditus istis Flens mecum
the cause ;
In his Epist. ad post, he says, diverticulum aliquod quasi portum quærens reperi vallem perexiguam, quæ clausa dicitur; captus loci dulcedine libellos meos et me ipsum transtuli':-this place he had seen when a child, and he chose it now for the same reasons for which he preferred it at that early age, naturæ meæ locus aptissimus :-he adds, illud fermè solum tempus vita fuit, reliquum omne supplicium; certainly he did not owe the happiness which he enjoyed there, to the vicinity of Laura's habitation. This is contirmed by the following passage, in an hitherto unpublished Jetter of Petrarch to his friend Giacomo Colonna, dated 10 Kal. Junj, 1338. “Godo in queste amene solitudini di Valclusa una dolce ed imperturbata tranquillita, el virtuoso e placidissimo ozio de miei studj, el tempo che mi vaca de le volte passo a Cabrieres per diportarmé. On se vi fosse licito Misser Jacomo el dimorare en la dicta valle, di certo vi rincrescereste di tutto il mondo, non che de la Corte del Papa.'--Speaking of the pleasure he received from rural retirement among the colli foschi' of the Sorga, he particularly mentions Laura's residence in Avignon.
• Ma mia fortuna a me sempre nemica
Mi risospigne al loco ov' io mi sdegno
Veder nel fango il bel tesoro mio.'--Son. 222. In 1341 Petrarch lost two friends, Giacomo Colonna, and Tommaso da Messina; but Laura (whom the author takes for one of the two) could not be said to die soon after the first, as she survived him seven years: at p. 37, we are told, that after the death of Laura, he took a warm part in the extraordinary enterprize of Nicola Rienzi;' the authority of Villani, 1. 12, c. 89, who says that it took place on the 20th of May, and that Rienzi Hled on the 15th of December, is confirmed by the letters of Petrarch to Rienzi, reproaching him with a change in his sentiments, and one to Lelio on the same subject, (Ep. Fam. l. 7. Epp. 5. 7,) which are dated November 27, and 29, and were written in 1347, a year before Laura's death.
It does not appear quite clear that Umil terreno, p. 68, means exclusively the country-seat where Laura was born : for if at p. 16 he allows that it is put in opposition to the country of Florence,' (which is another error, as Arezzo where the poet was born, was an independent state, and could not be included in the country of Florence,) it may as certainly mean the territory of Avignon, (which is the sense of the word in old Italian authors,) for, at the time of her birth, the popes had not long resided there, and Petrarch himself says locus angustus erat, domorum eâ tempestate inops, incolarumquecolluvie exundans ;' indeed it was so poor a place that Pasquier is surprised the Pope could exchange Rome for an * arrière-coin de la France, un nid-à-corneille à regard de l'autre.'
But why must she be born at a picciol borgo at some distance from Avignon, in order to account for Petrarch's meeting her often in the country ?* And why must borgo, p. 70, mean a small village, when the very line is cited in the Dizionario della Crusca, with this explanation, il nome del borgo, a' nostri antichi importa strada, fuor di citta, e per lo piu che risponda, o che cominci alle porte.' The essayist need not be informed that Petrarch himself was born in the Borgo dell'orto at Arezzo, and that two streets in Florence are now
called Borgo ogni Santi and Borgo Allegri, though at present far within the walls.
The Abbé de Sade has quoted two manuscripts in which the contraction ptubs is found, the essayist says that the Abbé must prove that those two manuscripts are the most ancient, for if the oldest have the word perturbationibus at length, the abbreviation in the latter must be explained in that mauner alone.—Baldelli, whose researches are the latest with which we are acquainted, and who has omitted nothing which could illustrate the life and writings of Petrarch, observes, ' su questi dati io feci nuove ricerche ed in Testo della Laurenziana (Cod. ix. Stroz. Sæc. xiv. p. 23, of course one of the earliest,) la trovai (l'abbreviatura) scritta påtubs, (the little dot over the a marks the abbreviation,) che senza contrasto significa partubus é non perturbationibus, giacchè solo nella prima voce l’A. precede il T. ed il B.' we may add, that persons conversant in manuscripts of nearly the same age, well know that påtbus. is the abbreviation of partibus. But, says the essayist,
at the distance of two hundred years from the death of Petrarch, it was no difficult matter for the possessor of this manuscript of Virgil, which is said to exhibit a great number of notes on its inargin, in the genuine haud writing of the poet, to have fabricated one additional note in imitation of that hand writing of which he had before him so many specimens.'--Who was to forge this note 200 years after ? the Virgil was never in the possession of any one of the Sade family, and was never brought as an argument that because it recorded that Laura was born and died at Avignon, she must have belonged to that family.- Velutello was the first who doubted its authenticity, because he had an hypothesis to support; but Filelfo, who is the oldest commentator on Petrarcn, (except Benvenuto da Imola,) and who was born only twenty-four years after his death, believed it to be genuine, and it appears in many MS. copies of the 14th century. When Petrarch's library was dispersed, the Virgil came into the hands of his friend Giovanni Dondi, a physician at Padua, who died in 1380; it descended to his brother,
* The expression 'ma assai fu bel paese, proves that the Comtat d'Avignon, as ageneral term, and not her own country residence, was the meaning of the poet.
then to his son, who having transcribed the note into a copy of Petrarch's Poems, parted with it, and it became the property of Galeazo Maria, fifth Duke of Milan, and was placed in the library of Pavia; this appears from an inscription by another hand in the book GỬ řDXML. Quin. Petrarca Miilxxxx.-When Pavia was taken by the French in 1499, this manuscript fell into the hands of Antonio Pirro; it successively came into the possession of Antonio Agostino and Fulvio Orsino, at whose death, in 1600, it was bought, at a very high price, by the Cardinal Federigo Borromeo, and placed in the Ambrosian Library at Milan,—it is now at Paris. It appears that this Virgil (the favourite companion of Petrarch) was a kind of register, in which he noted down the deaths of his friends, for in the year 1795, when the parchment, which was a little torn, became detached from the cover, the Librarians observed some writing; they endeavoured to remove the whole page, but it adhered so strongly to the board, as to leave some of the ink upon it; however, not without much difficulty, they discovered the following inscriptions, indisputably in Petrarch's hand writing, which, as they are a literary curiosity, and confirm the authenticity of the disputed note, we shall present to the reader;
• Johannes noster homo natus ad laborem ad dolorem meum et vivens gravibus atque perpetuis me curis exercuit, et acri dolore moriens vulneravit, qui cum paucos lætos dies vidisset in vitâ suâ, obiit anno Dni. 1361, ætatis suæ xxiv. die Julii x, seu ix, medio noctis inter diem Veneris, et Sabbati. Rumor ad me pervenerat xiuro mensis ad vesperam. Obiit autem Mlõi in illo publico excidio pestis insolito, quæ urbem illain hactenus immunem talibus malis nunc autem reperit atque invasit.
Rumor autem primum ambiguus 8o Augusti eodem anno per famulum meum Miño redeuntem, mox certus per famulum Dni Theatini Roma venientem. 18 mensis ejusdem, Mercurii, sero ad me pervenit de obitu Socratis mei amici, sotii (sic orig.) fratrisque optimi, qui obiisse dicitur Babilone seu Avenione de mense Maii proximo. Amisi comitem et solatium vitæ meæ. Recipe Xre Ihu hos duos et reliquos quinque in eterna tabernacula tua, ut qui jam hic mecum amplius--eé ñ possunt permutatione felicissima tecum sint.
Heu mihi imo septem nec sciebam. Rumor quoque jampridem hic fuerat de obilu Philippi de Vitriaco Epi Meldensis Pris et amici mei. Hoc àt die Dominica 22o Augusti compertum accepi. Dissimulabam, et credere recusabam. Heu mihi nimis crebescunt fortunæ vulnera. Eadem die atque hora percepi obitum optimi Prìs ac Dni '
mei Philippi alterius Cavallionensis Epi ad quem est liber' meus vitæ solitariæ maximus rerum mearum pco. Obiit; heu prope jam solus sum.
• Die Martis proximo 26 mensis inter nonam et vesperas rediit Gebel-, linus de ...... nuntius itidem infelicis, indignæ, et crudelissimæ mortis Maynardi mei.