Sonnet CLIII.

A poem by Francesco Petrarca

Se Virgilio ed Omero avessin visto.

THE MOST FAMOUS POETS OF ANTIQUITY WOULD HAVE SUNG HER ONLY, HAD THEY SEEN HER.


Had tuneful Maro seen, and Homer old,
The living sun which here mine eyes behold,
The best powers they had join'd of either lyre,
Sweetness and strength, that fame she might acquire;
Unsung had been, with vex'd Æneas, then
Achilles and Ulysses, godlike men,
And for nigh sixty years who ruled so well
The world; and who before Ægysthus fell;
Nay, that old flower of virtues and of arms,
As this new flower of chastity and charms,
A rival star, had scarce such radiance flung.
In rugged verse him honour'd Ennius sung,
I her in mine. Grant, Heaven! on my poor lays
She frown not, nor disdain my humble praise.

ANON.

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