T'amo, mia vita (Carlo Gesualdo)

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  • (Posted 2018-03-03)   CPDL #48968:         
Editor: James Gibb (submitted 2018-03-03).   Score information: Letter, 3 pages, 65 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: Reformatting of #19327. Time signature standardised at 4/2 throughout. MusicXML source file is in compressed .mxl format.
  • (Posted 2011-10-08)   CPDL #23801:   
Editor: Adam Steele (submitted 2011-06-27).   Score information: Letter, 5 pages, 64 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: Includes intralinear translation and editorial suggestions for solo/tutti sections.
  • CPDL #19327:        (Sibelius 5)
Editor: Daniel Harmer (submitted 2009-04-23).   Score information: Letter, 4 pages, 42 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: MusicXML source file is in compressed .mxl format.

General Information

Title: T'amo, mia vita
Composer: Carlo Gesualdo
Lyricist: Giovanni Battista Guarini

Number of voices: 5vv   Voicing: SSATB
Genre: SecularMadrigal

Language: Italian
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 1611 in Madrigali a 5 voci, libro quinto, no. 21


External websites:

Original text and translations

Italian.png Italian text

“T'amo, mia vita”, la mia cara vita
mi dice, e in questa sóla
dolcissima paròla
par che trasformi lietamente il còre
per farsene signóre.
O voce di dolcezza e di diletto,
prèndila tosto, Amóre,
stàmpala nel mio còre!
Spiri solo per te l'anima mia:
“T'amo, mia vita” la mia vita sia.

English.png English translation

“I love you, my life*” is what my beloved
says to me, and
in these few sweet words
it seems as if the god of love fills my heart with joy,
taking control of it.
Such sweet, delightful words:
Cupid, take them
and imprint them on my heart.
May I live and breathe only for you;
Let “I love you, my life” be my life.
(* i.e., my sweetheart)

Translation by Mick Swithinbank