Jacopo da Lentino. “Sonnet. Of his Lady in Heaven.”

Dante Gabriel Rossetti

General Description

Date: 1848?; 1861
Rhyme: abbaabbacddece
Meter: iambic pentameter
Genre: sonnet


“Table of Poets” in Early Italian Poets vol. 1, xxvi-xxvii.

◦ Valeriani and Lampredi, Poeti del primo secolo vol. 1, 319.

◦ Panvini, Le rime della scuola siciliana vol. 1, 49.

◦ Contini, Poeti de duecento vol. 1, 80; vol. 2, 804.

Scholarly Commentary


DGR's efforts to develop a spare and simple style are splendidly realized in this translation of the famous Italian original by Giacomo da Lentini. The poet's exact dates are not known but he flourished in the early thirteenth-century and was a leading figure in the court of Frederick II, where the Sicilian School emerged from an enthusiasm for provencal poetry. He may well have lived for a time in Bologna and Tuscany, where his influence was very great. He was regarded at the time, and may still claim to be, the most important poet of that period in Italy.

DGR's source text in Poeti del primo secolo (I. 319) leads him to the translation of “joyful” in the final line (for “gioia”). But the correct text—a far better one—is “ghiora”, a popular form for “gloria”.

Textual History: Composition

As with most of DGR's translations of the early Italian poets, the date of this cannot be precisely determined. It is probably an early translation.

Printing History

The translation was first published in 1861 in The Early Italian Poets; it was reprinted in 1874 in Dante and his Circle.

Electronic Archive Edition: 1
Source File: 165d-1861.raw.xml