Qual donna attende a gloriosa fama (Cipriano de Rore)

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  • (Posted 2008-03-04)  CPDL #16295:      (Finale 2007)
Editor: Paul R. Marchesano (submitted 2008-03-04).   Score information: Letter, 8 pages, 216 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: Transposed up minor third for mixed voicing.

General Information

Title: Qual donna attende a gloriosa fama
Composer: Cipriano de Rore

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. 18
Description: Orlando di Lasso composed a parody mass on this madrigal.

External websites:

Original text and translations

Italian.png Italian text

Qual donn’ attende a gloriosa fama
Di seno, di valor, di cortesia,
Miri fiso ne gli occhi a quella mia
Nemica che mia donna il mondo chiama.

Come s’acquist’honor come Dio s’ama,
Come giont’honestà con leggiadria,
Ivi s’impara e qual è dritta via
Di gir al ciel, che lei aspett’e brama.

Ivi’l parlar che nullo stil agguaglia,
E’l bel tacere e suoi santi costumi
Ch’ingegn’human non può spiegar in carte.

L’infinita bellezza ch’altrui abbaglia
Non vi s’impara che quei dolci lumi,
S’acquistan per ventura, e non per arte.

English.png English translation

Doth any maiden seek the glorious fame
Of chastity, of strength, of courtesy?
Gaze in the eyes of that sweet enemy
Whom all the world doth as my lady name!

How honor grows, and pure devotion's flame,
How truth is joined with graceful dignity,
There thou mayst learn, and what the path may be
To that high heaven which doth her spirit claim;

There learn soft speech, beyond all poet's skill,
And softer silence, and those holy ways
Unutterable, untold by human heart.

But the infinite beauty that all eyes doth fill,
This none can copy! since its lovely rays
Are given by God's pure grace, and not by art.