Altiero sasso (Cipriano de Rore)

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  • (Posted 2020-04-05)  CPDL #57853:         
Editor: Pothárn Imre (submitted 2020-04-05).   Score information: A4, 6 pages, 139 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: Transcribed from 1552 Gardano edition. Original key (chiavi naturali) and note values.

General Information

Title: Altiero sasso
Composer: Cipriano de Rore
Lyricist: Francesco Maria Molza

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

Language: Italian
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 1542 in Il primo libro de madrigali a cinque voci, Edition 1, no. 6
    2nd published: 1544 in Il primo libro de madrigali a cinque voci, Edition 3, no. 6
Description: Written to mark the pending departure of Vittoria Farnese from Rome as part of the negotiations of her marriage to François de Lorraine, Duke of Guise.

External websites:

Original text and translations

Italian.png Italian text

Altiero sasso lo cui gioco spira
Gli antichi honor del gran popul di Marte,
Fiume che fendi questa et quella parte,
Hor quieto et piano, hor pien di sdegno et ira;

Piaggie che ’l mondo ancor ama et sospira,
Consecrate da tante et da tai carte,
Memorie eterne et voi reliquie sparte
Ch’ogni bon alma con pieta rimira:

Parmi d’udir fugendo a voi d’intorno
Sospirar l’onde, e i rami e i fior e l’ora
Lagnarsi, et per dolor romper i sassi,

Che già del pianto s’avicina el giorno
Che ’l bel viso ch’Italia tutta honora
Cinti d’horor al suo partir vi lassi.

English.png English translation

Proud rock whose peak breathes forth
the ancient rites of the great people of Mars;
river that breaks on this side and that,
now quiet and still, now full of rage and fury;

grounds that the world still loves and sighs for,
consecrated by so many and by such writings;
eternal memories, and you scattered relics
on which every good soul gazes with devotion:

I seem to hear fleeing around you
the waves sigh, and the branches and flowers and breeze
lament, and the stones break from grief,

for already the day of weeping draws near
when the beautiful face that all Italy honors
shall leave you wrapt in horror at her departure.