by Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792 - 1822)
Translation © by Ferdinando Albeggiani

I met a traveller from an antique land
Language: English 
Available translation(s): ITA
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast [and]1 trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive (stamped on these lifeless things,)
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"[My name is]2 Ozimandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing besides remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

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Confirmed with The Poetical Works of Percy Bysshe Shelley, Volume 2, London, George Bell & Sons, 1892, page 294.

1 omitted by Manno.
2 Manno: "I am"


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 German (Deutsch), a translation by E. von Griesbach , "Ozymandias" ; composed by Max Wiedmann.
  • Also set in Russian (Русский), a translation by Konstantin Dmitrevich Bal'mont (1867 - 1942) , "Озимандия", first published 1896 ; composed by Fyodor Stepanovich Akimenko, Vladimir Evgenevich Byutsov, Leonid Leonidovich Lisovsky, Borys Mykolayovych Lyatoshynsky, Aleksandr Afanasievich Spendiarov.
  • Also set in Ukrainian (Українська), a translation by G. Grinevich (1900 - ?) ; composed by Borys Mykolayovych Lyatoshynsky.

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

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 14
Word count: 111

Language: Italian (Italiano)  after the English 
Un viaggiatore ho incontrato, giunto da un paese antico,
mi disse: "Due immense gambe di pietra prive di tronco
si ergono nel deserto...Vicino ad esse sulla sabbia,
mezzo sepolto, giace un volto in frantumi, il cui cipiglio
e il corrugato labbro, e il ghigno di freddo comando,
rivelano che lo scultore assai bene colse quelle passioni
che ancora sopravvivono -impresse in quegli oggetti senza vita-
a quella mano che le raffigurò e all'anima che le nutrì.

E sopra  il piedistallo stanno incise queste parole:
"Ozymandias è il mio nome, il Re dei Re:
guardate alle mie opere, o potenti, e disperate!"

Null'altro rimane. Attorno allo sfacelo
di quel rudere immenso, sconfinato e nudo,
si  stende delle sabbie, solitario, il piano.


  • 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.

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This text was added to the website: 2009-10-21
Line count: 14
Word count: 120