Rossetti Archive Textual Transcription

Document Title: Francesca Da Rimini: Dante (fair copy manuscript)
Author: Dante Gabriel Rossetti
Date of Composition: 1862 September
Type of Manuscript: fair copy
Scribe: DGR

The full Rossetti Archive record for this transcribed document is available.

Image of page [1] page: [1]
Note: Manuscript headed with date “Sept. 1862”
Francesca da Rimini. (water colour)
D. G. Rossetti. Sept. 1862
  • “ When I made answer, I began: “Alas!
  • How many sweet thoughts and how much desire
  • Led these two onward to the dolorous pass!”—
  • Then turned to them, as who would fain inquire,
  • And said: “Francesca, these thine agonies
  • Wring tears for pity and grief which they inspire:
  • But tell me,—in the season of sweet sighs,
  • When and what way did Love instruct you so
  • That he in your vague longings made you wise?”
  • 10 Then she to me: “There is no greater woe
  • Than the remembrance of past happy days
  • In misery; and this thy guide doth know.
  • But if the first beginnings to retrace
  • Of our sad love may yield thee solace here,
  • So will I be as one that weeps and says.
  • “One day we read, for pastime and sweet cheer,
  • Of Lancelot, how he found Love tyrannous:
  • We were alone, and without any fear.
  • Our eyes were drawn together, reading thus,
  • 20 Full oft, and still our cheeks would pale & glow;
  • But one sole point it was that conquered us.
  • For when we read of that great lover, how
  • He kissed the smile which he had longed to win,—
  • Then he whom nought can sever from me now
  • For ever, kissed my mouth, all quivering.
  • A pander was the book, and he that writ:
  • Upon that day we read no more therein.”
Dante: Div. Com. Inf. c. V.
Electronic Archive Edition: 1
Source File: 7-1878.higgins.rad.xml
Copyright: Reproduced with permission of the Cecil Higgins Art Gallery.