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date: 21 November 2019

Attilio Regolo (libretto by Metastasio) (‘Attilius Regulus’)locked

  • Don Neville

Extract

(‘Attilius Regulus’)

Libretto by Pietro Metastasio, first set by Johann Adolf Hasse (1750, Dresden).

Regulus, the former Roman consul, who has been a prisoner in Carthage for five years, returns to Rome with the Carthaginian ambassador, Amilcare [Hamilcar], to discuss a possible exchange of prisoners, the first gesture in a move for peace. If Hamilcar’s offer is rejected, Regulus must return to Carthage to be executed. To save the honour of Rome, Regulus nevertheless counsels the Senate to reject the proposal.

Regulus persuades his son, Publio [Publius], to argue his case in the Senate. Publius is torn between filial love and patriotic duty. Regulus’ daughter Attilia and her beloved, Licinio [Licinius], along with Barce, a Carthaginian slave, plot to save Regulus. Publius returns to announce the Senate’s rejection of the Carthaginian offer.

A crowd gathers, angered by the Senate’s verdict. Regulus addresses them and convinces them and his family not to let emotion mar a victory for Rome. All bid him farewell as he returns to Carthage to face death and glory....

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