Quanta gioia (Philippe de Monte)

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  • (Posted 2023-11-15)  CPDL #77360: 
Original key (high chiavette)        
Transposed down a fourth      
Editor: Pothárn Imre (submitted 2023-11-15).   Score information: A4, 6 pages, 107 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: Transcribed from 1589 print. Original note values.

General Information

Title: Quanta gioia
Composer: Philippe de Monte
Lyricist: Vittoria Colonna
Number of voices: 7vv   Voicing: SSAATTB
Genre: SacredMadrigal

Language: Italian
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 1589 Il secondo libro de madrigali spirituali a sei, & sette voci, no. 10

External websites:

Original text and translations

Italian.png Italian text

Quanta gioia tu segno e stella ardente
All’hor che i vivi bei raggi fermaste
Sul tugurio felice al cor mandaste
Dei saggi re del bel ricco oriente

E voi quanto più basso il re possente
Fasciato, piccolin, pover trovaste
Più grand’alto il vedeste e più l’amaste
Ch’al ciel tanta humiltà v’alzó la mente

Il loco, gli animali, il fredd’e’l fieno
Davano e i panni vili e’l duro letto
De l’alta sua bontà sicuro segno

E per la stella e per lo chiaro aspetto
De la possanza havend’in man’il pegno
L’adoraste col cor di gioia pieno.

English.png English translation

How much joy – you sign and burning star,
when you held your living rays
on the happy stable – you sent to the heart
of the wise kings from the beautiful rich east.

And you, sages, the lower you saw the mighty King,
swaddled, small, and poor,
the greater He appeared to you and the more you loved Him,
so much that such humility lifted your mind to Heaven.

The place, the animals, the cold, and the hay,
the vile clothes and the hard bed
gave a sure sign of his lofty goodness.

You worshipped with a heart full of joy
the star and the sweet countenance,
carrying in your hands gifts of power.