Cantabant Domino in celo (Orazio Vecchi)

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  • (Posted 2020-11-02)  CPDL #61127:         
Editor: Gerhard Weydt (submitted 2020-11-02).   Score information: A4, 3 pages, 99 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes:

General Information

Title: Cantabant Domino in celo
Composer: Orazio Vecchi
Lyricist:

Number of voices: 6vv   Voicing: SSATBB
Genre: SacredMotet

Language: Latin
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 1610 in Fatiche Spirituali, Book 1, no. 5
Description: This is a contrafact of Vecchi's Saltavan ninfe, satiri e pastori by Simone Molinaro.
Molinaro did not simply fit a sacred text to the music, but transposed it down a fifth, altered the octave for two voices, interchanged some sections between voices, and made some minor adjustments. But thus he simplified the structure, because in repetitions he used the same music for the same voices, whereas Vecchi used different voices.

External websites:

Original text and translations

Latin.png Latin text

Cantabant Domino in celo sancti
decoros inter flores
Cantantes dicebant dulce in unum
qui nos morte salvasti eternum vive

German.png German translation

Es sangen dem Herrn im Himmel die Heiligen,
inmitten schmückender Blumen,
singend sprachen sie es sanft im Einklang,
denn du hast uns vomTod errettet zum ewigen Leben.

Die letzte Zeile ist spekulativ, denn "salvasti" ist eine italienische Form und offenbar nicht lateinisch. "eternum vive" müsste eigentlich "er lebe ewiglich" bedeuten, was aber in Bezug auf Gott auch unangebracht erscheint.

Translation by Gerhard Weydt