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[1223] shaped that hero, who has, without their feeling it moulded their existence.

Tasso,’ says Rousseau, ‘has predicted my misfortunes. Have you remarked that Tasso has this peculiarity, that you cannot take from his work a single strophe, nor from any strophe a single line, nor from any line a single word, without disarranging the whole poem? Very well! take away the strophe I speak of, the stanza has no connection with those that precede or follow it; it is absolutely useless. Tasso probably wrote it involuntarily, and without comprehending it himself.’

As to the impossibility of taking from Tasso without disarranging the poem, &c., I dare say 'tis not one whit more justly said of his, than of any other narrative poem. Mais, n'importe, 'tis sufficient if Rousseau believed this. I found the stanza in question; admire its meaning beauty.

I hope you have Italian enough to appreciate the singular perfection in expression. If not, look to Fairfax's Jerusalem Delivered, Canto 12, Stanza 77; but Rousseau says these lines have no connection with what goes before, or after; they are preceded, stanza 76, by these three lines, which he does not think fit to mention.

Misero mostro d'infelice amore;
Misero mostro a cui sol pena é degna
Della immensa impieta, la vita indegna.

Vivro fra i miei tormenti e fra le cure,
Mie giuste furie, forsennato errante.
Paventero l'ombre solinghe e secure,
Che l'primo error mi recheranno avante:

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