Quis dabit capiti meo aquam (Heinrich Isaac)

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  • (Posted 2016-02-18)   CPDL #38614:      (LilyPond)
Editor: Ulrich Alpers (submitted 2016-02-18).   Score information: A4, 7 pages, 567 kB   Copyright: CC BY SA
Edition notes:

General Information

Title: Quis dabit capiti meo aquam
Composer: Heinrich Isaac
Lyricist: Angelo Poliziano

Number of voices: 4vv   Voicing: ATTB
Genre: SecularMotet

Language: Latin
Instruments: A cappella

Published: 1503 in Motetti de passione de cruce

Description: Composed in 1492.

External websites:

Original text and translations

Latin.png Latin text

Prima pars
Quis dabit capiti meo aquam?
Quis oculis meis fontem lachrimarum dabit,
ut nocte fleam, ut luce fleam?
Sic turtur viduus solet,
sic cygnus moriens solet,
sic luscinia conqueri.
Heu miser, o dolor!

Secunda pars, tenor 1 tacet. Upper voices:
Laurus impetu fulminis
illa iacet subito,
laurus omnium celebris
musarum choris,
nympharum choris.

Secunda pars, Bass
Et requiescamus in pace.

Tertia pars
Sub cuius patula coma
et Phebi lira blandius insonat
et vox blandius insonat.
Nunc muta omnia,
nunc surda omnia.

English.png English translation

Prima pars
Who will give water to my head?
Who will fill the fount of tears for my eyes,
that I may weep by night, that I may weep by day?
Thus the widowed turtle dove,
thus the dying swan,
thus the nightingale mourns.
Alas, wretched, o grief!

Secunda pars, tenor tacet. Upper voices:
Suddenly the laurel
by the lightning bolt,
the same laurel celebrated
by the choir of the muses,
by the choir of the nymphs.

Secunda pars, Bass
May we rest in peace.

Tertia pars
beneath whose canopy
Phoebus's lyre sounds mellower
and [his] voice sweeter;
Now all are mute,
now all are deaf.