I mi vivea (Cipriano de Rore)

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  • (Posted 2020-05-22)  CPDL #58764:    (MIDI)    
Editor: Pothárn Imre (submitted 2020-05-22).   Score information: A4, 7 pages, 161 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: Transcribed from 1563 Gardano edition (Quinto corrected against 1551 edition). Original key and note values.

General Information

Title: I mi vivea
Composer: Cipriano de Rore
Lyricist: Francesco Petrarca

Number of voices: 5vv   Voicing: TTBarBB
Genre: SecularMadrigal

Language: Italian
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 1544 in Il secondo libro de madrigali a cinque voci, no. 16
    2nd published: 1544 in Il primo libro de madrigali a cinque voci, Edition 2, no. 4

External websites:

Original text and translations

Italian.png Italian text

I' mi vivea di mia sorte contento,
senza lagrime et senza invidia alcuna,
che, s'altro amante à piú destra fortuna,
mille piacer' non vaglion un tormento.

Or quei belli occhi ond'io mai non mi pento
de le mie pene, et men non ne voglio una,
tal nebbia copre, sí gravosa et bruna,
che 'l sol de la mia vita à quasi spento.

O Natura, pietosa et fera madre,
onde tal possa et sí contrarie voglie
di far cose et disfar tanto leggiadre?

D'un vivo fonte ogni poder s'accoglie:
ma Tu come 'l consenti, o sommo Padre,
che del Tuo caro dono altri ne spoglie?

Canzoniere 231
English.png English translation

I had lived contented with my fate,
without tears, not envying anyone,
since if any lover had better fortune,
his thousand joys were not worth my torment.

Now, the lovely eyes of which I never will
regret the pain, and wish not one pain less,
are misted over, so heavily, so darkly,
that my life’s sun is almost quenched.

O Nature, merciful and savage mother,
how can you will such contrary things
to create and then un-create so lightly?

All power flows from one living fountain:
and how can You consent, O heavenly Father,
to another spoiling your beloved gift?

Translation by Anthony S. Kline ©