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...notes of Music

Word count: 332

Song Cycle by Björn Johansson

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?. Let me confess that we two must be twain [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): FRE ITA

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Let me confess that we two must be twain,
Although our undivided loves are one:
So shall those blots that do with me remain
Without thy help by me be borne alone.
In our two loves there is but one respect,
Though in our lives a separable spite,
Which though it alter not love's sole effect,
Yet doth it steal sweet hours from love's delight.
I may not evermore acknowledge thee,
Lest my bewailed guilt should do thee shame,
Nor thou with public kindness honour me,
Unless thou take that honour from thy name:
  But do not so; I love thee in such sort
  As, thou being mine, mine is thy good report.


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?. Music to hear, why hear'st thou music sadly? [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): DUT FIN FRE FRE HUN ITA JPN ROM RUS

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Music to hear, why hear'st thou music sadly?
Sweets with sweets war not, joy delights in joy.
Why lovest thou that which thou receivest not gladly,
Or else receivest with pleasure thine annoy?
If the true concord of well-tunèd sounds,
By unions married, do offend thine ear,
They do but sweetly chide thee, who confounds
In singleness the parts that thou shouldst bear.
Mark how one string, sweet husband to another,
Strikes each in each by mutual ordering,
Resembling sire and child and happy mother,
Who, all in one, one pleasing note do sing.
  Whose speechless song, being many, seeming one,
  Sings this to thee: "Thou single wilt prove none."


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Submitted by Jeroen Scholten

?. Let me not to the marriage of true minds [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): CZE FRE GER GER GER ITA

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (François-Victor Hugo) , no title, appears in Sonnets de Shakespeare, no. 116, first published 1857
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , "Sonett CXVI", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , "Mai non avvenga che io ponga impedimento", copyright © 2007, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Let me not to the marriage of true minds 
Admit impediments. Love is not love 
Which alters when it alteration finds, 
Or bends with the remover to remove: 
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark 
That looks on tempests and is never shaken; 
It is the star to every wandering bark, 
Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken. 
Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks 
Within his bending sickle's compass come: 
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks, 
But bears it out even to the edge of doom. 
    If this be error and upon me proved, 
    I never writ, nor no man ever loved.


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Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

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