Rick Seddon wrote:
> Good thought abut Urania in Purgatorio. Interestingly the "Temple
> Classics" edition of "Purgatorio" that TSE carried in his pocket puts
> that canticle thusly:
> Now 'tis meet that Helicon for me stream forth
> and Urania aid me with her choir to set in verse
> things hard to conceive.
> Note the last word "conceive" fits nicely into the context of your
While the translation including the word "conceive" fits the context,
I don't think the original nor other translations do. I doubt that
the Italian "pensar" is used or was used in any kind of way for
Or convien che Elicona per me versi,
e Uranie m'aiuti col suo coro
forti cose a pensar mettere in versi.
Now Helicon must needs pour forth for me,
And with her choir Urania must assist me,
To put in verse things difficult to think.
O Virgins sacrosanct, if ever hunger, cold, or vigils I have
endured for you, time occasion spurs me that I claim reward
therefor. Now it behoves that Helicon pour forth for me, and
Urania aid me with her choir to put in verse things difficult
O ye thrice holy virgins! for your sakes
If e'er I suffer'd hunger, cold and watching,
Occasion calls on me to crave your bounty.
Now through my breast let Helicon his stream
Pour copious; and Urania with her choir
Arise to aid me: while the verse unfolds
Things that do almost mock the grasp of thought.
Now 'tis meet that Helicon for me stream forth
and Urania aid me with her choir to set in verse
things hard to conceive.