Kythira

(redirected from Cerigo)

Ky·thi·ra

 (kē′thē-rä′)
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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The next day, the 16th of February, we left the basin which, between Rhodes and Alexandria, is reckoned about 1,500 fathoms in depth, and the Nautilus, passing some distance from Cerigo, quitted the Grecian Archipelago after having doubled Cape Matapan.
Nerval contributes all the more to the establishment of this new tonality, that he had earlier described, in his Voyage en Orient (1851), the disappointment he felt when he visited the island of Cythera (Cerigo to him).
For instance, Victor Hugo worked on a poem entitled, as Cythera was called in Nerval's text, "Cerigo", (18) published in the famous collection Les Contemplations, in 1855.
It is also known as Kitira, Kythera (in Greek), Kythira (also a Greek name but used in German), Citera (in Spanish), Cythere (in French), or Cerigo (in Italian), etc.
(19.) "Tout homme qui vieillit est ce roc solitaire/ Et triste, Cerigo, qui fut jadis Cythere, / Cythere aux nids charmants, Cythere aux myites verts,/ La vie auguste, goutte a goutte, heure par heure,/ S'epand sur ce qui passe et sur ce qui demeure [...] ;/ Cythere est la, lugubre, epuisee, idiote [...]." (Victor Hugo 1972, 344).
However, Baudelaire, in his two poems "A Voyage to Cythera" and "Cerigo" describes it as a depressingly desolate island representing shattered dreams, as does Gerard de Nerval in his book, Voyage en Orient.
His mother, Rosa Antonia Cassimati, was a native of the small island of Cerigo, the ancient Cythera, the most southern of the Ionian Islands and the most desolate and sea-dominated of those islands.