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Songs

Il modo di prender moglie

by Franz Schubert From Drei Gesänge (1827) D902 4–6.xii.1849

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Text & Translation

Il modo di prender moglie
Italian source: Pietro Metastasio

Or sù! non ci pensiamo,
Coraggio e concludiamo,
Al fin s’io prendo moglie,
Sò ben perchè lo fò.

Lo fò per pagar i debiti,
La prendo per contanti,
Di dirlo, e di ripeterlo,
Difficoltà non ho.

Fra tanti modi e tanti
Di prender moglie al mondo,
Un modo più giocondo
Del mio trovar non sò.

Si prende per affetto,
Si prende per rispetto,
Si prende per consiglio,
Si prende per puntiglio,
Si prende per capriccio.
È vero, si o nò?

Ed io per medicina
Di tutti i mali miei
Un poco di sposina
Prendere non potrò?

Ho detto e’l ridico,
Lo fò per li contanti,
Lo fanno tanti e tanti
Anch’ io lo farò.

How to choose a wife
English translation © Richard Wigmore

Now then, let’s not think about it;
Courage, let’s get it over with.
If in the end I have to take a wife
I know very well why I do it.

I do it to pay my debts.
I take her for the money.
I have no compunction telling you,
And repeating it.

Of all the ways of choosing a wife
In the world,
I know of no happier way
Than mine.

One chooses a wife for love,
Another out of respect,
Another because he is advised to,
Another out of propriety,
Another for a whim.
Is it true or not?

And I,
Why can’t I take a little wife
As remedy
For all my ills?

I’ve said it and I’ll say it again:
I do it for the money.
So many do it,
I do it too.

Il modo di prender moglie
Italian source: Pietro Metastasio

How to choose a wife
English source: Richard Wigmore

Or sù! non ci pensiamo,
Now then, let’s not think about it;
Coraggio e concludiamo,
Courage, let’s get it over with.
Al fin s’io prendo moglie,
If in the end I have to take a wife
Sò ben perchè lo fò.
I know very well why I do it.

Lo fò per pagar i debiti,
I do it to pay my debts.
La prendo per contanti,
I take her for the money.
Di dirlo, e di ripeterlo,
I have no compunction telling you,
Difficoltà non ho.
And repeating it.

Fra tanti modi e tanti
Of all the ways of choosing a wife
Di prender moglie al mondo,
In the world,
Un modo più giocondo
I know of no happier way
Del mio trovar non sò.
Than mine.

Si prende per affetto,
One chooses a wife for love,
Si prende per rispetto,
Another out of respect,
Si prende per consiglio,
Another because he is advised to,
Si prende per puntiglio,
Another out of propriety,
Si prende per capriccio.
Another for a whim.
È vero, si o nò?
Is it true or not?

Ed io per medicina
And I,
Di tutti i mali miei
Why can’t I take a little wife
Un poco di sposina
As remedy
Prendere non potrò?
For all my ills?

Ho detto e’l ridico,
I’ve said it and I’ll say it again:
Lo fò per li contanti,
I do it for the money.
Lo fanno tanti e tanti
So many do it,
Anch’ io lo farò.
I do it too.

Composer

Franz Schubert

Franz Peter Schubert was an late Classical and early Romantic composer. He produced a vast oeuvre during his short life, composing more the 600 vocal works (largely Lieder), and well as several symphonies, operas, and a large body of piano music. He…

Poet

Pietro Metastasio

Pietro Antonio Domenico Trapassi, better known by his pseudonym of Pietro Metastasio, was an Italian poet and librettist, considered the most important writer of opera seria libretti. Metastasio was born in Rome, where his father, Felice Trapassi,…

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