by Francesco Petrarca (1304 - 1374)
Translation © by A. S. Kline

Oimè il bel viso, oimè il soave sguardo
Language: Italian (Italiano) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Oimè il bel viso, oimè il soave sguardo,
oimè il leggiadro portamento altero;
oimè il parlar ch'ogni aspro ingegno et fero
facevi humile, ed ogni huom vil gagliardo!

et oimè il dolce riso, onde uscío 'l dardo
di che morte, altro bene omai non spero:
alma real, dignissima d'impero,
se non fossi fra noi scesa sí tardo!

Per voi conven ch'io arda, e 'n voi respire,
ch'i' pur fui vostro; et se di voi son privo,
via men d'ogni sventura altra mi dole.

Di speranza m'empieste et di desire,
quand'io partí' dal sommo piacer vivo;
ma 'l vento ne portava le parole.

About the headline (FAQ)


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):

  • FRE French (Français) (Francisque Reynard) , title 1: "Canzone CCLXVII Oimè il bel viso"
  • ENG English (A. S. Kline) , no title, copyright © 2002, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Ferdinando Albeggiani

Text added to the website: 2007-11-23 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:02:31
Line count: 14
Word count: 102

Ah me, the beautiful face, ah me, the...
Language: English  after the Italian (Italiano) 
Ah me, the beautiful face, ah me, the gentle look,
ah me, the graceful noble manner of her:
ah me, the speech that made every harsh
and bitter mind humble, and every coward brave!

And, ah me, the sweet smile, from which the arrow
of death, the only good I hope for now, issued:
regal soul, worthiest to reign,
if only you had not descended so late among us!

It is fitting that I burn for you, and breathe for you,
since I am yours: and if I am parted from you,
I suffer less from all my other grief.

You filled me with hope and with desire,
when I departed, living, from the highest delight:
but the wind did not carry my words to you.

About the headline (FAQ)


  • Translation from Italian (Italiano) to English copyright © 2002 by A. S. Kline, (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.

Based on


Text added to the website: 2015-03-10 00:00:00
Last modified: 2015-03-10 15:55:02
Line count: 14
Word count: 126