Verse > Anthologies > Samuel Waddington, ed. > The Sonnets of Europe
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Samuel Waddington, comp.  The Sonnets of Europe.  1888.
 
Ye Airs! Sweet Airs
By Lodovico Paterno
 
Translated by Henry Francis Cary
Aure, O Aure! che’l ciel nudo e sereno.

YE 1 airs! sweet airs, that through the naked sky
  Fan your aurelian wings in wanton play;
  Or shedding quiet slumber, as ye fly,
  ’Mid the dim forest murmuring urge your way;
To you these garlands, and this basket high        5
  Piled up with lily-bells and roses gay,
  And fragrant violets of purplest dye,
  Icon, all fainting in the noontide ray,
Scatters, a votive offering to your power:
  And oh! as ye receive the balmy spoil,        10
  Temper the inclement beam; and while his flail
He plies unceasing through the sultry hour,
  Hoarse Echo answering ever to his toil,
  Dispel the parted chaff with brisker gale.
 
Note 1. This sonnet by Lodovico Paterno is a paraphrase from the Latin of Navagero:—
  “Auræ quæ levibus percurritis aëra pennis,
  Et strepitis blando per nemora alta sono;
Serta dat hæc vobis, vobis hæc rusticus Idmon
  Spargit odorato plena canistra croco.
Vos lenite æstum, et paleas sejungite inanes,
  Dum medio fruges ventilat ille die.
Which lines have also been imitated by the French poet, Joachim du Bellay, in his D’un Vanneur de blé aux vents:
  “A vous trouppe legere
  Qui d’aile passagere
  Par le monde volez,
  Et d’un sifflant murmure
  L’ ombrageuse verdure
  Doucement esbranlez
J’ offre ces violettes,
  Ces lis et ces fleurettes,
  Et ces roses icy
  Ces vermeillettes roses,
  Tout freschement éclauses,
  Et ces œillets aussi.
De vostre douce haleine
  Evantez ceste pleine,
  Evantez ce sejour:
  Cependant que j’ ahanne
  A mon blé, que je vanne
  A la chaleur du jour.”
  For an excellent translation of these lines see Mr. Lang’s Ballads and Lyrics of Old France. [back]
 
 
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