Pagina:Baretti - Prefazioni e polemiche.djvu/106



well, because she was álways about me, now vvith irksome words, now with discourses. She laughed now and then, and her laughing shewed me a face empty of teeth and full of wrinkles. Wrinkled is her check and from her meagre face her dry jaws are almost falling. Shrivel’d are her limbs and ali over her body the skin shows the form of her bones. In the center of the horrid and ugly head stands fíxed the deep cells of her eyes; eyes that squint, livid and bloody dart on every body malignant glances. Her joints are loose and ili put together; her hooked nose hangs pendant over her lips; her dry ribs stick out their sharp points; the flabby belly hangs over the knees; both the sun-burnt and skinny teats extend their little buttons to the navel. She has a wen in her throat and on her chin a beard of spun silver; frizzled hair; harsh and bushy eyebrows; slabbering lips; oblique and large mouth; squallid forehead; melancholy face and in fine she is nothing but life and bones. She looks like a corpse uninterred, that is just escaped from the grave; she looks like an animated mummy quite worn out of human form and a palpable shade».

I know not whether in translating it is more difficult to express the beauties or the defects of the originai. But from the above quoted verses, I hope that the reader, if he dpes not see ali the nonsense which is mixedLwith a little wit ) in

the originai, will at least perceive by the translation that the poet, with a fourth part of the colour which he__,hgth_usedj_ nngIir~Rave driwn a picture much more naturaLjirLd perfect tKán~lie"ÌiatR’,~But when Tiis imagination was fired, Marini had no méáhs"or quenching it; and perhaps it happened to him as to a person, who weary of keeping a slow, measured and firm pace in the descending a declivity, when he begins to run ánd to abandon himself to his own weight, by the force which the hill gives to his running, precipitates himself to the bottom and, whether he will or not, goes beyond it.

Ariosto, who had an imagination as fervent as Marini, but accompanied with judgment, says in the seventh canto of Orlando furioso that Ruggiero having received a ring from