by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756 - 1791)
Translation © by Laura Prichard

Difficile lectu mihi mars et jonicu
Language: Latin 
Available translation(s): ENG
Difficile lectu mihi mars 
Et jonicu difficile.


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 (Laura Prichard) , "It's difficult", subtitle: "Vulgar Canon", copyright © 2020, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Guy Laffaille [Guest Editor]

Text added to the website: 2008-04-25 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:02:41
Line count: 2
Word count: 7

It's difficult
Language: English  after the Latin 
It is difficult, to kiss my own ass
And balls: it is difficult.

Subtitle: "Vulgar Canon"

Translator's notes:
The text is meant as a joke between friends, relying on two puns (involving Latin, German, and Italian) The joke was meant to be obvious when it was sung by Mozart's friend Johann Nepomuk Peyerl, a baritone with a strong Bavarian accent.
In the first line, "lectu mihi mars" is not strict Latin; it is meant to be heard as German: "Leck du mi am Arsch" ("lick you me in the arse.")
In the second line, "jonicu," is meant to sound like the colloquial Italian word "cujoni," or testicles."
Literally, the Latin words could mean (loosely): It's difficult, to choose the Ionian Sea [mar Jonico].


  • Translation from Latin to English copyright © 2020 by Laura Prichard, (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


Text added to the website: 2020-01-07 00:00:00
Last modified: 2020-01-11 15:56:39
Line count: 2
Word count: 13