S_V_H Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons(Summer)” Allegro Non Molto image3

Antonio Vivaldi’s Summer part 1, three panels (110 inches in length), with four add-on’s.  About 3/4 of this work is finished which leaves 12 and 1/4 canvases to go.

On all 13 of these canvases there will be added some of the words from the The Four Season Sonnets, attributed to Vivaldi.  It just seems like a great combination, wonderful music and words for all the unknowing to grasp onto, if the music do not move them. But!

In Italian here is the opening line of the Summer sonnet:  Sotto dura staggion dal sole accesa. That line would correspond with this canvas. You think it would be a simple translation to English.  It is not.  Here are a number of the translations that were found on the Internet and one from the Book Vivaldi Voice of the Baroque:  “Beneath the blazing sun’s relentless heat,”  “Under the heavy season of a burning sun,”  “Under a hard Season, fired up by the Sun,”  “In the harsh season scorched by the sun,”  “Beneath the blazing sun’s relentless heat,” “Beneath the baking sun,” and from the book “Under the heavy season of a burning sun.”  So, what is the best choice?  I have no idea.  So, I went to Google Translate, from Italian to English and for “Sotto dura staggion dal sole accesa,”  it said in English “Under a hard season of the sun on.”  That did not settle anything.

Here is the thought: since all of the sites started with the same Italian words, I have this choice which is to use the Italian words on these canvases.  It seems the only choice since the original sonnets where written in eighteen century Italian, who knows for sure what, if Vivaldi did write the Sonnets, just exactly what his words translated into eighteen century English where.  The meaning  of the words will rest with the viewer, and that is exactly what  has been the goal for all of this artist works.

Italian it is.

Scott Von Holzen

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