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Le donne, i cavallier, l'arme, gli amori,
le cortesie, l'audaci imprese io canto,
che furo al tempo che passaro i Mori
d'Africa il mare, e in Francia nocquer tanto,
seguendo l'ire e i giovenil furori
d'Agramante lor re, che si diè vanto
di vendicar la morte di Troiano
sopra re Carlo imperator romano.
Of loves and ladies, knights and arms, I sing
Of courtesies, and many a daring feat,
And from those ancient days my story bring
When Moors from Afric passed in hostile fleet,
And ravaged France, with Agramant their king
Flushed with his youthful rage and furious heat
Who on king Charles', the Roman emperor's head
Had vowed due vengeance for Troyano dead.
Orlando Furioso (first canto, first stanza, trans. by William Stewart Rose)
A massive epic poem in 46 cantos by Ludovico Ariosto, written 1516-1532. Orlando Furioso ("Mad Orlando") continues the story begun in the unfinished epic poem, Orlando Innamorato ("Orlando in Love") by Matteo Maria Boiardo, Conte di Scandiano (1441-1494). Charlemagne (Carlo) is at war with the Saracens, and his paladin Orlando (Roland), the world's greatest knight (and hero of the French Chanson de Roland), goes mad from Unrequited Love for a pagan princess named Angelica of Cathay. Has a Beta Couple, which also consists of a pagan and a Christian: Ruggiero (Roger) of Risa and Bradamante, the mythical ancestors of Boiardo's and Ariosto's employers, the Este family, ducal house of Ferrara.
Tropes found in Orlando Furioso:
- Action Girl - Bradamante, Marfisa
- Anti-Magic - This is what the Ring of Angelica does when worn on a finger (it doubles as a Ring of Gyges if you put it on your tongue).
- Badass - Bradamante, Ruggiero, Orlando, most Saracens, especially Rodomonte
- Celibate Hero - Orlando used to be one before Boiardo got his hands on him
- Converting for Love - Ruggiero and his sister Marfisa
- Crystal Spires and Togas
- Chained to a Rock - This happened twice in Orlando Furioso. First, Princess Angelica is captured by Pirates Ebuda, only to strip her naked and exposed her to Sea Monster. Second, princess of Holland, Olympia, is stripped naked by the same suspect, and tied to a tree instead to a rock. Both girls cannot concealed their modesty when their rescuer approach them
- Deconstructor Fleet
- Defiled Forever - Discussed and deconstructed with Angelica and Guinevere.
- Did Not Get the Girl - Pretty much everybody who fell in love with Angelica. After being romantically pursued by the world's greatest knights, the princess ends up falling in love with and marrying Medoro, a wounded mere foot-soldier.
- Easy Evangelism - Lots of Muslim and Pagan warriors, kings and cities convert to Christianity after getting defeated by one of the protagonists. It's not even forced either: they impute the enemy's victory to their superior religion and willingly abandon theirs.
- Gilded Cage
- Historical Hero Upgrade
- Kudzu Plot
- Knight in Shining Armor
- Love Makes You Crazy
- No Social Skills - Marfisa
- Tomboy - Marfisa
- Unrequited Love - Orlando
- Ur Example - Of the hippogriff
- World's Most Beautiful Woman - Angelica
- World's Strongest Man - Orlando