Orlando Furioso In English Heroical Verse. By Sir John Harington of Bathe, Knight. Now thirdly revised and amended, with the Addition of the Authors Epigrams. Principb[us], placuisse viris non ultima laus est. Horace.
London Printed by G. Miller for J. Parker, 1634. Folio, 273 x 164 mms., pp. [xviii], 423 [424 -432 index], [45 Epigrams, 46 blank], engraved title-page with vignette portraits of Ariosto and Harington, a partially clothed female figure to the left of the title (with a rather rude putto), centurion on right, 46 full-page engraved plates, tail-pieces, printed in double columns, with continuous text and registration going from the end of the twelfth book to the beginning of the fourteen (superstition rules), with very fine, well-inked impressions of the plates, bound in 18th calf, gilt border on covers, joints very skilfully restored and richly gilt spine with black morocco label laid down. With the autograph and date "John Barnard/ 1740" on the lower margin of the title-page; Barnard ( c. 1685 - 1764), born into a Quaker family, was a politician, and, according to ODNB "a devoutly evangelical churchman, of a latitudinarian bent, who preferred clergymen to be 'Tories in the Church and Whigs in the state...." He was exceptionally well-read, and I regret the absence of any annotations attributable to him. Peter France, in The Oxford Guide to English Literature in Translation (2000), comments that "Harington adopts the metre of the original, ottava rima. His translation, however, is anything but literal, feeling itself at liberty to abbreviate 'matters impertinent to us' [...], as well as freely reworking the phrasing of the original [...]. The result is a work quite distinct from the original, more robust and more directive of its readers, broader in its humour, less refined and allusive in its language, less airy and speculative in its treatment of the 'marvellous.' Harington's Orlando has been frequently derided (Ben Jonson flatly designated it 'under all translations the worst'). In recent criticism, however, it has tended to find a more sympathetic reception. [...] [C]ertain of Harington's deviations from Ariosto now tend to be seen as determined by cultural differences rather than insensitivity, and he is given credit for the fluency and ťlan which make his version one of the most enduringly enjoyable translations of the Furioso, as well as one of its most historically interesting readings. At its best, moreover, Harington's translation is not merely dashing but precise, shadowing the inflections of the original with an attentiveness and intelligence few later translators have matched." Stanzas 1 - 50 of Book XXXII were translated by Sir John's younger brother, Francis. The plates were first used in the 1591 edition and derive from Girolamo Porro's illustrations of the 1584 Venetian edition. Thomas Jefferson had a copy in his library. Lowndes p.64; Mary A. Scott, Elizabethan Translations from the Italian (1969); Sowerby, Library of Thomas Jefferson 4312.
John Price Antiquarian BooksProfessional seller
Book number: 9023
GBP 6600.00 [Appr.: EURO 7651.25 US$ 8009.16 | JP• 1080195]
Keywords: poetry translation literature