O Fortuna volubile e leggiera (Luca Marenzio)

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Editor: Allen Garvin (submitted 2023-05-24).   Score information: Letter, 5 pages, 85 kB   Copyright: CC BY NC
Edition notes:
  • (Posted 2017-10-14)  CPDL #46792:         
Editor: Willem Verkaik (submitted 2017-10-14).   Score information: Letter, 3 pages, 334 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes:

General Information

Title: O Fortuna volubile e leggiera
Composer: Luca Marenzio
Lyricist: Luigi Tansillo

Number of voices: 6vv   Voicing: SAATTB
Genre: SecularMadrigal

Language: Italian
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 1595 in Il sesto libro de madrigali a sei voci, no. 14
Description: Capitolo, Quinta parte; All parts can be found at Il sesto libro de madrigali a sei voci (Luca Marenzio)

External websites:

Original text and translations

Italian.png Italian text

O Fortuna volubil e leggiera:
appena vidi il sol che ne fui privo,
al cominciar del dì giunse la sera.

Lunge da voi, se da voi lunge io vivo,
le lagrime, il pensiero e la speranza,
saranno il cibo mio d'ogn' altro schivo.

E se da lungo pianto ora m'avanza
il sonno, in braccio per pietà mi prenda,
la bella cara angelica sembianza.

English.png English translation

O Fortune, fickle and fleeting:
As soon as I caught a glimpse of the sun, I was deprived of it,
at the start of the day, evening came.

Far from you, if far from you I do live,
my tears, thoughts and hopes
will be my only nourishment, all else I shun.

And if, after long laments, sleep now comes,
I will embrace it out of pity,
its lovely, dear, angelic countenance.

Translation by Allen Garvin