Gianni Alfani. “Sonnet (to Guido Cavalcanti). On the part of a Lady of Pisa.”

Dante Gabriel Rossetti

General Description

Date: 1861
Rhyme: abbaaccadefdef
Meter: iambic pentameter
Genre: sonnet


“Introduction to Part II” (in Early Italian Poets) 193-206

◦ Contini, Poeti de Duecento, I. 614

◦ Cassata, Guido Cavalcanti. Rime, 198-199


Editorial glosses and textual notes are available in a pop-up window. Line numbering reflects the structure of the The Early Italian Poets text.

Scholarly Commentary


DGR's note to the poem does not describe the context of this sonnet correctly. Alfani's is a burlesque query to Cavalcanti for advice to help Alfani's lover ward off certain family members who disapprove of her relationship with Alfani. Cavalcanti responded to this sonnet with a witty mottetto unknown to DGR (it was not printed in DGR's source edition, Cicciaporci's Rime di Guido Cavalcanti), the “Gianni, quell Guido salute”.

The rhyme scheme varies from the original sonnet in DGR's source text, Poeti del Primo Secolo (II. 427).

Textual History: Composition

Probably translated early, in the late 1840s.

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: 4d-1861.raw.xml