Laura, se pur sei l'aura (Luca Marenzio)

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  • (Posted 2017-06-08)   CPDL #44905:          (Finale 2014)
Editor: Willem Verkaik (submitted 2017-06-08).   Score information: Letter, 8 pages, 568 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: MusicXML source file is in compressed .mxl format.

General Information

Title: Laura, se pur sei l'aura
Composer: Luca Marenzio
Lyricist: Angelo Grillo

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

Language: Italian
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 1598 in L'ottavo libro de madrigali a cinque voci, no. 16

Description: The high tessitura of the four upper parts, and the reference to Laura Peverara suggest that this madrigal was written for the Concerto delle Donne; hence SSAAB-voicing.

External websites:

Original text and translations

Italian.png Italian text

Laura, se pur sei l'aura
Ch'ogn' arso cor d’Amor dolce ristaura,
Come sì m'arde il core
D'inusitato ardore?
Ahi, che cangi costume
Sol perch' io mi consume
E neghi d'esser l'aura e Laura sei,
Per non refrigerar gli spirti miei.

Perfida, pur potesti,
Negarmi ancor in sù l'estremo aita,
Non dando fede a l'aspra mia ferita?
Hor godi di mia morte
Ch'io spero ignudo spirto, haver in sorte
Di tormentar quel dispietato core
Che non hebbe pietà del mio dolore.

English.png English translation

Laura, if indeed you are the breeze
that restores all burned hearts with sweet Love,
why does my heart burn
with such unusual heat?
You change your habits
only so that I burn,
and deny being the breeze—yet you are!—
so as not to refresh my spirits.

Perfidious one, could you really
deny me help, even to the last,
refusing to believe in my harsh wound?
Now enjoy my death,
for I hope that, as a naked spirit, my lot
is to torment that pitiless heart
which did not take pity on my sorrow.

Translation by Campelli