Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Beatles Song of the Week

Nunc ipsam os videram, tempus non obliviscor
Aut locum unde nunc ipsam convenimus,
Puellam ipsam mihi est et volo totum mundum visurum,

Si dies alia fuisset, spectavissem alium locum,
Et nemo fuissem sciens sed cum est,
Somniabo eae hodie nocte.

Incipiens, ita vero amare incipio
Atque iterum me revocat.

Numquam scivi aliquid simile, solus fui et omissi res,
Et mansi invisibilis propter aliae puellae numquam fuerunt melior ea.

Incipiens, ita vero amare incipio,
Atque iterum me revocat.........

Saturday, July 11, 2009

The Sword of Roland

If you do not have a copy of Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, you should buy one. It might be a little expensive but it is worth the price. It is one of the best reference books out there and I look in it all the time.
While looking up something else, my eye was caught by an entry on Roland's sword, which according to Brewer's is fabled to have once belonged to Hector, the prince of Troy. He acquired this fantastic sword from a Icelandic giant called Jutmundus from whom he also won his horn Oliphant which may have belonged to Alexander the Great but I do not know how Jutmundus acquired these treasures. The ogres from The Hobbit are now dancing around in the back of my mind. Inspiration? Probably.
This addition to the myth does not occur in The Song of Roland; it is probably from Orlando Furioso, a 16th century poem by Ludovico Ariosto. I do not own a copy of this book or its predecessor Orlando Innamorato but I do own a copy of The Illiad and I could not see what happened to Hector's sword when Achilles killed him. Presumably Achilles took it and Hector's armor since Hector's body was wrapped in cloth to be given back to his father. It could also have been the sword that Hector gave to Ajax and with which Ajax killed himself but Homer does not name this sword.
Brewer's also states that Durendal had been hurled into a poisonous stream to prevent it from falling in to unworthy hands but this differs from the account in The Song of Roland. There, Roland lays down to die with his sword underneath him and, when Charlemagne finds Roland's body, he gives the sword and the Oliphant to his men Rabel or Guineman but does not state who received which item.
Brewer's does offer a meaning for the name of Durendal: it states that the name probably comes from the Latin word "durare", that is "to last" or "endure". I like it.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Beatles Song of the Week

In picturis movendis me ponere agunt,
De me magnam stellam facere agunt.
Picturas movendas de viro, quo tristi et solo est, faceamus.
Et omne quod habeo dicere est agere naturale.

Ponam te quod magnam stellam esse ago,
Vincam lauream, numquam dicas,
Picturae movendae magnam stellam me facere aunt,
Propter simulem partes ita bone.

Spero quod me in picturis movendis venis et vides,
Tum scio quod videbis clare,
Fatuum optimum quem unquam prospare,
Et omne habeo dicere est naturale agere.