Francesco Hayez: Der siebente Kreuzzug gegen Jerusalem (1838-1850)

Giuseppe Verdi – I Lombardi (1843)

I Lombardi, Verdi’s fourth opera, is set during the First Crusade. The librettist is Temistocle Solera. The libretto is based upon Tomasso Grossi’s verse epic in 15 cantos. Solera was also the librettist for Oberto (1839), Nabucco (1842), Giovanna d’Arco (1845), and Attila (1846). He was an active anti-Austrian resister, and was once incarcerated for…

Verdi, portrait by Molentini, 1839-40 (Courtesy: www.verdi.san.beniculturali.it)

King for a Day – Verdi – Un giorno di regno (1840)

Un giorno di regno — ‘King for a day’ — is Verdi’s second opera, and the first of his only two comic operas, the other being his last opera, Falstaff, written over half a century later. The ear will at once discern that Un giorno di regno is much influenced by Rossini, with reminiscences of the styles of Bellini…