by William Shakespeare (1564 - 1616)
Translation by Andrea Maffei (1798 - 1885)

I told you, sir, they were red‑hot with...
Language: English 
[I told you, sir, they were red-hot with drinking;
So fun of valour that they smote the air
For breathing in their faces, beat the ground
For kissing of their feet; yet always bending
Towards their project.]1 Then I beat my tabour,
At which, like unbacked colts, they pricked their ears,
Advanced their eyelids, lifted up their noses
As they smelt music. So I charmed their ears
[That calf-like they my lowing followed through
Toothed briars, sharp furzes, pricking goss and thorns,
Which entered their frail shins. At last I left them
I'th' filthy-mantled pool beyond your cell,
There dancing up to th' chins, that the foul lake
O'er-stunk their feet]1. 

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1 omitted by Saariaho.

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Text added to the website: 2010-01-21 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:03:31
Line count: 14
Word count: 111

Ti dissi, o mio Signore
Language: Italian (Italiano)  after the English 
Ti dissi, o mio Signore,
Come briachi dal soverchio bere,
Ed enfiati il cervel da forsennata
Spavalderia menassero fendenti
All’aria vana che feriane i volti,
E quel suol che baciava i loro piedi
Battessero. In obblio l’infame intento
Non metteano però. D’un tratto io posi
Sul cembalo la mano, e quelli, a guisa
Di puledri selvaggi, alzàr gli orecchi,
Le narici allargaro, e i sopraccigli
Levàr, come volessero le dolci
Note fiutarne. Ho stretto i sensi loro
D’un nodo tal che dietro all’armonia,
Quasi vitelli desiosi al mugghio
Della madre, correan traverso rovi,
Macchie, veprai che ne’ tremuli stinchi
Figgean le acute spine. Alfin gl’immersi
In quel sozzo padul che giace a tergo
Della tua grotta; ed or nella belletta
Fino al mento ingolfati, in vane prove
Sciupano il poco di vigor per trarne
Dal fondo i piedi nel limo impacciati.

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Researcher for this text: Andrew Schneider [Guest Editor]

Text added to the website: 2019-05-09 00:00:00
Last modified: 2019-05-09 01:43:02
Line count: 23
Word count: 141