|Gentle lady, to whom Heaven has been so||Donna gentil, che cosi largamente|
Gentle lady, to whom Heaven has been|
so generous, has given so much wealth,
in order to reveal limitless power,
created you rare and unparalleled.
Drive from your proud and noble mind all that
made you darkly think an obscure humble
life would satisfy you. Now that war so
powerful over him is over, done with.
And if until now Fortune has outraged,
and shamed you, shown you her fierce face,
it was to prove that high valor soujourned
in you. Now her face becomes serene, and
by how much she repents her acts she makes
the present good compensate for past suffering.
Donna gentil, che così largamente|
de le doti del Ciel foste arricchita,
che per mostrar la forza sua infinita
fece voi così rara ed excellente:
fuggan da vostra altera e real mente
tutti i pensier ch'a darvi oscura vita
fosser bastanti, perché omai finita
è la guerra di lui troppo possente.
E se finor con mille oltraggi ed onte
v'ha mostrato Fortuna il fiero volto
stato è sol per provar l'alto valore
che 'n voi soggiorna; or la serena fronte
vi volge, e, del suo error pentita molto,
quanto fu il mal tanto fia il ben maggiore.
There is a letter by Vittoria Colonna written in the very late 1520s which suggests she took Maria d'Aragona to see her nephew, Alfonso d'Avalos, after they had been separated for quite a while. It appears from this letter that, like many Renaissance soldiers of this period, he had been having a liaison with an (unnamed) woman and Colonna is delivering d'Aragona up to D'Avalos in order to make sure they will provide an heir for the family property. Interestingly, Finzi in a note at the back of his book says that "according to some writers, there is evidence to suggest that Amaryllis is not the wife of Del Vasto, although she was beloved." He comments: "The fact is believable, given the mores of the period, but there is nothing which authorizes us sufficiently to say these assertions are historically so. Here is the Italian: "Secondo alcuin scrittori, 'Amarilli' non era la moglie Del Marchese, bensì l'amante. Il fatto è credibile, data i tempi; ma nulla ci autorizza a concludere storicamente in tal senso." I suggest there is something unaccounted for going on here. See my commentary under Gambara's exchange of poetry with Alfonso d'Avalos, Marquis Del Vasto, particularly Là dove or d'erbe adorna ambe le sponde ("Where green plants float and flower by the shore").