The Ring and the Book continues, as Guido receives the news of his sentencing. He’s mighty peeved to find out that killing your wife, your kid, and her family is an act with consequences, and that those consequences apply to him.
Gower’s Confessio Amantis is a great classic of English literature and poetry, and nobody reads it.
Until now. (cue ominous music)
I had to do something. All Browning’s blank verse is driving me insane. So welcome to my best Middle English, which stinks for accuracy but ought to be intelligible. Gower is also guaranteed to make you feel better about all the goings-on down at your local parish, because they probably aren’t as bad as the goings-on he complains about.
The Ring and the Book continues. In this segment, the Pope announces his continued belief in God from personal experience, and compares the virtue of a pagan poet without benefit of revelation to the lack of virtue of many of modern days. (Next week we’ll finish this book and move on to the next.)
The Ring and the Book continues, after being abandoned on this podcast since January. (Yes, it’s a little too big for me. I admit it.) For those who weren’t listening back then or who have forgotten in six months, this epic poem about a strange case of a wife’s flight and a family’s murder in Rome, in the days of the Papal States, is ripped from the pages of Italian history. Browning turned a book about the various court cases into a poem about the same events seen from various points of view of testimony and judgment. It’s fascinating stuff, and there’s certainly plenty of it.
In this segment, the Pope finishes thinking about his judgment of the actions of Pompilia and Caponsacchi.