Orlando Furioso: Canto 1, 16-30
03/20/2009 § Leave a comment
So in our previous installment we left Rinaldo happening upon Ferraú who are both madly in love with the coy Angelica. She happens to be fleeing on Rinaldo’s horse, Baiardo, who has man intelligence. Since they both love her, they engage in battle. And though Ferraú lost his helm and plume, he still proves a gallant cavalier…unfortunately Angelica slips away while these two jerks fight.
They fight for about four stanzas full of adjectives. It is epic in the mind’s eye. Oh, if only you could see it. *wink* Then the realize, “F!”, Angelica has slipped away. They decide to have an armistice. They look around to see which direction Angelica has headed, but lo!, there are horseprints everywhere. Damn horse with man intelligence! So, “Along two paths, as Fortune prompts, they hark,/One here, one there….”
Ferraú comes again to where he dropped his helmet in the mud and decides that finding Angelica is unlikely, so instead of looking for his dream girl, he wades about in the mud for his helmet. (Again, it might be magic! which explains his choice). There is a stanza of him finding the perfect branch to form into a pole with which to retrieve helm and plume.
While searching fo the helmet he sees the head and shoulders of a knight, who, gasp!, is holding the helmet he is looking for. It’s a ghost. The ghost knight delivers insults to Ferraú. He turns out to be the ghost of the brother of Angelica, Argalía, who Farraú had killed. Ferraú had thrown his arms into a stream and had promised to throw the helmet into the stream as well, but he didn’t. Ferraú laments.
Then Ferraú vows to win Orlando’s helmet. The ghost makes him pledge to leave his old helmet and promises that if he does this Ferraú’s acquisition of a new helmet will come to be. Ferraú is so startled by this proposition that all the hair on his face stands erect! Classic!
He speaks no words but is now determined to win Orlando’s helmet; a helmet Orlando had won from the proud Almonte.
Characters in this section:
Rinaldo: of course. He was in the last section.
Ferraú: also, of course. he was in the last section as well.
Argalía: Brother of Angelica; Ghost.
Almonte: Slain foe of Orlando. Orlando now wears his helmet.