Tuesday, August 12, 2008


Two Footnotes

Thanks to Pierre Wechter for the following interesting email (links added, image of the page from the Regrets provided below rather than above):
The first line in Du Bellay’s last tercet [Homecoming (Wednesday, July 23, 2008)] is limping and should read:
Plus mon Loire gaulois, que le Tibre latin
as you may see above in the original (1558) edition of the Regrets.

Reading I Was My Best Companion (Friday, July 18, 2008) and Fere and Mate (Saturday, July 19, 2008) put me in mind of Latin cŏmĕs, cŏmĭtis (Lewis & Short: ‘one who goes with another’), etymon of Italian conte, Spanish conde, French comte and therefore English count, and semantically comparable to ġefēra (Middle-English ifēre, ivēre) and German Gefährte.

Incidentally, fere is to be found in Chaucer — for instance in Troilus an Criseyde:
As proude Bayard gynneth for to skippe
Out of the weye, so pryketh him his corn,
Til he a lasshe have of the longe whippe,
Than thynketh he, “Though I praunce al byforn
First in the trays, ful fat and newe shorn,
Yet am I but an hors, and horses lawe
I moot endure, and with my feres drawe”
and in Spenser (‘But faire Charissa to a lovely fere Was lincked, and by him had many pledges dere’).
I have updated Homecoming to fix the error in my quotation of du Bellay's sonnet.

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