by William Shakespeare (1564 - 1616)
Translation © by Ferdinando Albeggiani

When forty winters shall besiege thy...
Language: English 
Available translation(s): ITA
When forty winters shall besiege thy brow,
And dig deep trenches in thy beauty's field,
Thy youth's proud livery so gazed on now,
Will be a totter'd weed of small worth held:
Then being asked, where all thy beauty lies,
Where all the treasure of thy lusty days;
To say, within thine own deep sunken eyes,
Were an all-eating shame, and thriftless praise.
How much more praise deserv'd thy beauty's use,
If thou couldst answer 'This fair child of mine
Shall sum my count, and make my old excuse,'
Proving his beauty by succession thine!
  This were to be new made when thou art old,
  And see thy blood warm when thou feel'st it cold.

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):

Settings in other languages, adaptations, or excerpts:

  • Also set in French (Français), a translation by Claude Duboscq (1897 - 1938) ; composed by Claude Duboscq.
  • Also set in Hungarian (Magyar), a translation by Anonymous/Unidentified Artist ; composed by József Csire.

Other available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website: 2007-10-07
Line count: 14
Word count: 115

Quando quaranta inverni ti cingeranno...
Language: Italian (Italiano)  after the English 
Quando quaranta inverni  ti cingeranno d'assedio la fronte,
e profonde trincee scaveranno nel campo della tua bellezza,
l'abito superbo della tua giovinezza, così ammirato al presente,
diverrà veste a brandelli, che ognuno disprezza:
E se ti venisse chiesto, dove la tua bellezza ha dimora,
e dove si trova il tesoro dei gagliardi giorni di un tempo,
rispondere che al fondo dei tuoi occhi incavati sta ancora
sarebbe divorante vergogna ed infruttuoso vanto.
Quanta più lode meriterebbe l'uso della tua bellezza,
se potessi rispondere: "Questa è la creatura mia,
che salda il mio conto e riscatta la mia vecchiezza"
provando che la sua bellezza deriva dalla tua!
Nel tempo della vecchiaia sarebbe come rinnovarti,
vedere caldo il tuo sangue quando ormai freddo lo avverti.

About the headline (FAQ)


  • Translation from English to Italian (Italiano) copyright © 2009 by Ferdinando Albeggiani, (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: 2009-05-25
Line count: 14
Word count: 123