Se voi poteste (Cipriano de Rore)

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  • (Posted 2015-01-01)  CPDL #34006:    (MIDI)    
Editor: Pothárn Imre (submitted 2015-01-01).   Score information: A4, 6 pages, 121 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: Original pitch (chiavi naturali) and note-values. Alto part is in tenor clef.

General Information

Title: Se voi poteste
Composer: Cipriano de Rore
Lyricist: Francesco Petrarca

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

Language: Italian
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 1548 in Il terzo libro de madrigali a cinque voci, Edition 1, no. 20

External websites:

Original text and translations

Italian.png Italian text

Se voi poteste per turbati segni,
per chinar gli occhi, o per piegar la testa,
o per esser piú d'altra al fuggir presta,
torcendo 'l viso a' preghi honesti et degni,

uscir già mai, over per altri ingegni,
del petto ove dal primo lauro innesta
Amor piú rami, i' direi ben che questa
fosse giusta cagione a' vostri sdegni:

ché gentil pianta in arido terreno
par che si disconvenga, et però lieta
naturalmente quindi si diparte;

ma poi vostro destino a voi pur vieta
l'esser altrove, provedete almeno
di non star sempre in odïosa parte.

Canzoniere 64

English.png English translation

If you, with signs of your unease,
lowering your eyes, bowing your head,
or being more ready than anyone to flee,
turning your face from honest worthy prayers,

or by some other ingenuity, seek escape
so from my heart, from which Love grafts
more branches of that first laurel, I'd agree
there was just cause for your disdain:

for a noble plant in arid soil
is embarrassed by it, so naturally
delights in being moved somewhere else:

and though your destiny prevents you
being elsewhere, you can at least provide
that you're not always somewhere you hate.

Translation by Anthony S. Kline ©