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Monday, May 8, 2017

Churton (ii)

Here's a poem by Góngora, about El Escorial, built by Felipe II: 

Sacros, altos, dorados capiteles,
Que a las nubes borráis sus arreboles,
Febo os teme por más lucientes soles
Y el cielo por gigantes más crueles.

Depón tus rayos, Júpiter; no celes
Los tuyos, Sol; de un templo son faroles
Que al mayor mártir de los españoles
Erigió el mayor rey de los fieles.

Religiosa grandeza del Monarca
Cuya diestra real al Nuevo Mundo
Abrevia, y el Oriente se le humilla.

Perdone el tiempo, lisonjee la Parca
La beldad desta Octava Maravilla,
Los años deste Salomón Segundo.


Here is Chilton's wonderfully expansive translation: 

THIS gorgeous sacred dome,—no pile profane,—
Whose glories leave the clouds of morn outdone,
Flouting the sun-rays, where in dazzling stone
The columns rise like giants from the plain,
Provokes no wrath from heaven, no jealous pain        5
In day’s bright lord. The splendor but makes known
A temple reared to Spain’s great martyred son
By the great king of ever-faithful Spain.
A great religion works this marvel rare,
Meet for the monarch, whose unquestioned sway        10
The new-found West and Eastern Indians own:
Stern Fate, be gentle: Time, the beauty spare
Of this eighth wonder; spare for many a day
In peaceful age our second Solomon.

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