Translation © by Garrett Medlock

Quando nasceste voi
Language: Italian (Italiano) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Quando nasceste voi, disse la rosa:
"Vo' dare alle tue gote il mio colore,"
E 'l giglio: "Anch'io vo' darti qualcosa:
Ti darò la purezza e 'l mio candore..."
La colomba li udì così parlare
E smise tutt'a un tratto di volare...
"Oh, voglio darti qualche cosa anch'io:
Ti darò la mitezza del cor mio!"
Sentirono, di sù dal ciel, le stelle
E dissero anche loro tutte 'n coro:
"Noi daremo alle tue pupille belle
La nostra luce..." E 'l sole: "Io darò l'oro
Del mio colore a tuoi biondi capelli..."
E l'usignolo primo tra li augelli:
"Darò alle tue parole l'armonia
Del canto ch'esce dalla gola mia!"


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 (Garrett Medlock) , "When you were born", copyright © 2020, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website: 2007-08-18
Line count: 16
Word count: 108

When you were born
Language: English  after the Italian (Italiano) 
When you were born, the rose said:
“I want to give my color to your cheeks,”
And the lily: “I also want to give you something:
I will give you my purity and whiteness…”
The dove heard them [discussing] this
And stopped flying all of a sudden…
“Oh, I also want to give you something:
I will give you the mildness of my heart!”
From above the stars heard
And also said, all in chorus:
“We will give to your beautiful pupils
Our light…” And the sun: “I will give my golden
Color to your blonde hair…”
And the nightingale, first among the birds:
“I will give to your words the harmony
Of the song which pours from my throat!”


  • Translation from Italian (Italiano) to English copyright © 2020 by Garrett Medlock, (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: 2020-03-25
Line count: 16
Word count: 120