S'i' 'l dissi mai, ch'i' venga in odio a quella (Bartolomeo Tromboncino)

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  • (Posted 2020-09-16)  CPDL #60595:         
Editor: Andreas Stenberg (submitted 2020-09-16).   Score information: A4 (landscape), 17 pages, 1.63 MB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: A double edition containing: diplomatic editions from both sources, practical edition of the four-part setting and raw transcript of Lute-Voice setting. A transcription into French lute-tablature is also provided. Lyrics in diplomatic editions follow the source-readings but are normalised in the practical editions. English translation by A.S. Kline is provided. The translation is copyrighted by the translator but free for non-commercial use.

General Information

Title: S’i’ ’l dissi mai, ch’i’ vegna in odio a quella
Composer: Bartolomeo Tromboncino
Lyricist: Francesco Petrarca

Number of voices: 4vv   Voicing: SATB
Genre: SecularMadrigal

Language: Italian
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 1509 in Tenori e contrabassi intabulati... Francisci Bossinensis, Venetia, Ottaviano Petrucci, 1509
    2nd published: 1510 in Canzoni nove con alcune scelte ..., no. 6
Description: A four-part Frottola and it's Lute-Voice transcription from Canzoni nove 1510 and Tenori et Contrabassi intabulati... Fr. Bossinensis, 1509. The lyrics are from Francesco Petrarca: Cansoniere No.206.

External websites:

Original text and translations

Italian.png Italian text

Francesco Petrarca - Canzoniere (Rerum vulgarium fragmenta) (XIV secolo)

S’i’ ’l dissi mai, ch’i’ venga in odio a quella
del cui amor vivo, et senza ’l qual morrei;
s’i’ ’l dissi, che miei dí sian pochi et rei,
et di vil signoria l’anima ancella;
s’i’ ’l dissi, contra me s’arme ogni stella,
et dal mio lato sia
Paura et Gelosia,
et la nemica mia
piú feroce ver ’me sempre et piú bella.

S’i’ ’l dissi, Amor l’aurate sue quadrella
spenda in me tutte, et l’impiombate in lei;
s’i’ ’l dissi, cielo et terra, uomini et dèi
mi sian contrari, et essa ognor piú fella;
s’i’ ’l dissi, chi con sua cieca facella
dritto a morte m’invia,
pur come suol si stia,
né mai piú dolce o pia
ver’ me si mostri, in atto od in favella.

S’i’ ’l dissi mai, di quel ch’i’ men vorrei
piena trovi quest’aspra et breve via;
s’i’ ’l dissi, il fero ardor che mi desvia
cresca in me quanto il fier ghiaccio in costei;
s’i’ ’l dissi, unqua non veggianli occhi mei
sol chiaro, o sua sorella,
né donna né donzella,
ma terribil procella,
qual Pharaone in perseguir li hebrei.

S’i’ ’l dissi, coi sospir, quant’io mai fei,
sia Pietà per me morta, et Cortesia;
s’i’ ’l dissi, il dir s’innaspri, che s’udia
sí dolce allor che vinto mi rendei;
s’i’ ’l dissi, io spiaccia a quella ch’i’torrei
sol, chiuso in fosca cella,
dal dí che la mamella
lasciai, finché si svella
da me l’alma, adorar: forse e ’l farei.

Ma s’io nol dissi, chi sí dolce apria
meo cor a speme ne l’età novella,
regg ’anchor questa stanca navicella
col governo di sua pietà natia,
né diventi altra, ma pur qual solia
quando piú non potei,
che me stesso perdei
(né piú perder devrei).
Mal fa chi tanta fe’ sí tosto oblia.

I’nol dissi già mai, né per dir poria
per oro o per cittadi o per castella.
Vinca ’l ver dunque, et si rimanga in sella,
et vinta a terra caggia la bugia.
Tu sai in me il tutto, Amor: s’ella ne spia,
dinne quel che dir dêi.
I’ beato direi,
tre volte et quattro et sei,
chi, devendo languir, si morí pria.

Per Rachel ò servito, et non per Lia;
né con altra saprei
viver, et sosterrei,
quando ’l ciel ne rappella,
girmen con ella in sul carro de Helia.

Edizione: "Il Canzoniere" di Francesco Petrarca
a cura di Gianfranco Contini
Edizione Einaudi, 1964

English.png English translation

From: Petrarch: The Canzoniere
The Complete Canzoniere Translated by A. S. Kline

If I ever said so, may I be held to scorn by her
by whom love lives, and without whom I’d die:
if I said so, let my days be few and harsh,
and my poor soul bound in vile slavery:
if I said so, let ever star oppose me,
and Fear and Jealousy
be always at my side
and my enemy

always fiercer towards me and more lovely.
If I said so, may Love spend all his golden
arrows on me, and his lead ones on her:
if I said so, let heaven and earth, men and gods
oppose me, and she become more cruel:
if I said so, let her with her blind torch
who sends me straight to death,
be as she always was,
nor ever show me more
sweetness or pity, in actions or speech.

If I ever said so, let me find this short
bitter path full of what I least desire:
if I said so, let the fierce ardour that delays me
grow in me just as much as hard ice in her:
if I said so, may my eyes never see
the bright sun, or his sister,
nor girl or woman,
but a dreadful storm
like Pharaoh pursuing the Hebrews.

If I said so, however much I sigh,
let Pity and Courtesy be dead to me:
if I said so, let her speech be harsh, that once
was sweetly heard when she conquered me:
if I said so, let her hate me who I would
alone, shut in a cell,
from the days of childhood
to the freeing of my soul
adore: if I could do so.

But if I did not say so, let her who opened
my heart so sweetly to hope in my young days,
still steer my weary little boat
at the helm of her in-born pity,
nor alter, but be as she was
when I could do nothing
but lose myself
(nor could be more lost).
He does wrong who soon forgets such faith.

I have never said so, nor could say it
for gold or cities or for towers.
Let truth conquer, then, and stay in the saddle
and let falsehood be beaten to the earth.
You know all about me, Love: if she
doesn’t know, say what you must.
I’ll call him blessed,
three, four, six times blessed,
who, called to languish, died first.

I’ve served for Rachel and not for Leah:
and could not endure
to live with any other,
but when the heavens call me could suffer
to ascend with her in Elijah’s chariot.

The three hundred and sixty-six poems of the Canzoniere with, occasional, illustrated footnotes.

 © Copyright 2002 A. S. Kline, All Rights Reserved

Translation may be freely reproduced, stored and transmitted, electronically or otherwise, for any non-commercial purpose.