Jerusalem Delivered

Melissa Haichel Bagaglio
SCMLA notes 2013

Jerusalem Delivered is a poem
major battle of Christians v pagans

time poems written
criticizing church was not allowed (Ariosto)
post-reformation, church more reverent (Tesso)

Ariosto:
Paris against pagans (like Troy against Greeks)
Christianity was open minded.
Christians cast spells.
Christians use enchanted objects.
Christians listened to witches and dead wizards.
There was lots of adultery and hanky panky (queen and dwarf–sex through peephole).
Morals are from Knights’ Code of Honor.
The knights’ Code comes from Christianity, but this is not mentioned by Ariosto.

Christianity as force takes precedence over nationality. –Molinaro
moral code in epic

A trip to the moon to recover wits involves Christ, Moses, and a flying hippogriff with an enchanted horn.

baptism – ritual
done by hermit, without witnesses
lacked pomp and circumstance
rite itself was all that mattered

marriage/wedding
no mention of church
no priest
instead witch and demons set up pavilion
Charlemagne presides

Tasso’s baptism involves water in a hat, because dying.
Still created a rite, was ritualistic.
Tancred performs the ritual, later becomes a crusader.

Race:
Clorinda–daughter of black Ethiopian queen, but her skin was white because she prayed before the image of St. George and the dragon.
Her patron saint is St. George.
Clorinda intended to be a Christian. This is why she is good. The saints look out for Christians.

Angels and demons enter the battle.

Mass organized in the middle of war.
Many priests and 2 bishops with the warriors.
Warriors able to confess and take communion.

Tasso: mass serves as the dinner of war.
Eucharist feeds body and soul.

Tasso and Ariosto wrote the same story into the poem.

Ariosto shows God with Gabriel as businessman ordering his employee.

Tasso’s first character is God.
God gives the first view of the world in the poem.

Tasso and Ariosto diverged.

Ariosto used Christianity as satire, criticized the church.

Tasso was writing during the Christian reformation, supported the church.

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