by Giovanni Battista Guarini (1538 - 1612)
Translation © by Beate Binnig

Con che soavità, labbra odorate
Language: Italian (Italiano) 
Available translation(s): ENG FRE GER
Con che soavità, labbra adorate,
e vi bacio e v'ascolto;
ma se godo un piacer, l'altro m'è tolto.
Come i vostri diletti
s'ancidono fra lor, se dolcemente
vive per ambe due l'anima mia?
Che soave armonia
fareste, o cari baci, o dolci detti,
se foste unitamente
d'ambe due le dolcezze ambo capaci,
baciando, i detti, e ragionando, i baci.


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 or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ENG English (Beate Binnig) , "With what gentleness", copyright © 2019, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Avec quelle douceur, lèvres adorées", copyright © 2019, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Beate Binnig) , "Mit welcher Sanftheit", copyright © 2019, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Research team for this text: John Versmoren , Guy Laffaille [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 11
Word count: 59

With what gentleness
Language: English  after the Italian (Italiano) 
With what gentleness, adored lips,
I kiss you and I listen to you;
But when I am enjoying a pleasure, another one is taken away from me.
How your pleasures
Differ from one another,
When my soul gently lives for both of them?
What a delicate harmony
Would you create, o sweet kisses,
If you were jointly capable
Of both kinds of tenderness,
The words kissing and the kisses speaking.


  • Translation from Italian (Italiano) to English copyright © 2019 by Beate Binnig, (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:


This text was added to the website: 2019-11-04
Line count: 11
Word count: 70