Real natura, angelico intelletto.
ON THE KISS OF HONOUR GIVEN BY CHARLES OF LUXEMBURG TO LAURA AT A BANQUET.
A kingly nature, an angelic mind,
A spotless soul, prompt aspect and keen eye,
Quick penetration, contemplation high
And truly worthy of the breast which shrined:
In bright assembly lovely ladies join'd
To grace that festival with gratulant joy,
Amid so many and fair faces nigh
Soon his good judgment did the fairest find.
Of riper age and higher rank the rest
Gently he beckon'd with his hand aside,
And lovingly drew near the perfect ONE:
So courteously her eyes and brow he press'd,
All at his choice in fond approval vied--
Envy through my sole veins at that sweet freedom run.
A sovereign nature,--an exalted mind,--
A soul proud--sleepless--with a lynx's eye,--
An instant foresight,--thought as towering high,
E'en as the heart in which they are enshrined:
A bright assembly on that day combined
Each other in his honour to outvie,
When 'mid the fair his judgment did descry
That sweet perfection all to her resign'd.
Unmindful of her rival sisterhood,
He motion'd silently his preference,
And fondly welcomed her, that humblest one:
So pure a kiss he gave, that all who stood,
Though fair, rejoiced in beauty's recompense:
By that strange act nay heart was quite undone!
Sonnet CCI. by Francesco Petrarca