by Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475 - 1564)
Translation © by Carl Johengen

Language: Italian (Italiano) 
Available translation(s): ENG FRE SPA
Rendete agli occhi miei, o fonte o fiume,
L'onde della non vostra e salda vena.
Che più v'innalza, e cresce, e con più lena
Che non è 'l vostro natural costume.
E tu, folt'air, che 'l celeste lume
Tempri a' tristi occhi, de' sospir miei piena,
Rendigli al cor mio lasso e rasserena
Tua scura faccia al mio visivo acume.
Renda la terra i passi alle mie piante,
Ch'ancor l'erba germogli che gli è tolta;
E 'l suono Ecco, già sorda a' miei lamenti;
Gli sguardi agli occhi mie, tue luci sante,
Ch'io possa altra bellezza un'altra volta
Amar, po' che di me non ti contenti.


Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

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

  • ENG English (Carl Johengen) , title 1: "Sonnet XXXVIII", copyright ©, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • SPA Spanish (Español) (Juan Henríquez Concepción) , title unknown, copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , title 1: "Sonnet XXXVIII", copyright © 2015, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]
Language: English  after the Italian (Italiano) 
 Give back to my eyes, o fountains and rivers,
 the waves of powerful currents that are not yours,
 which swell you and surge with such force
 than was ever in your nature.
 And you, dense air, heaven's light
 obscuring from my sad eyes, full of sighs,
 give them back to my weary heart, and lighten
 your dark features to my sight.
 Let the earth return to me the traces of my steps,
 that the grass may grow where it was crushed;
 give back the sounds, Echo, yet deaf to my laments;
 their glances back to my eyes, you blessed pupils,
 that I may sometime love some other beauty
 since with me you are not satisfied.


  • Translation from Italian (Italiano) to English copyright © by Carl Johengen, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you may ask the copyright-holder(s) directly or ask us; we are authorized to grant permission on their behalf. Please provide the translator's name when contacting us.

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