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Rappresentatione di Anima e di Corpo
Prologue Proem
Act I
Act II
Title Page
Prologo Proem
Act I
Act II


Scene 1
Leap up then to Heaven,
for in Heaven God is seen,
the heart’s rich reward.
Then flee Hell,
where every evil dwells,
where is the immortal worm.
Leap up then to Heaven,
where songs are heard
of the angels and of the saints.
Then flee Hell,
where the voices are heard
of the cruel angels.
The helmsman avoids the destructive
proud storm of the sea,
but rather must one avoid
the scorn and anger of Heaven.
In Heaven there is always cheerfulness,
in Heaven there is always light,
that shines eternally.
Hell is fear,
Hell is sorrow,
darkness, and horror.
In Heaven are riches,
in Heaven are treasures
and everlasting honours.
In Hell always
there is misery and shame,
disgrace and poverty.
In Heaven are palaces
made of stones of gold,
wonderfully wrought.
Some seek out always
precious gems:
but rather they should seek out
the rare gems of Heaven.
Hell holds
caves and grottos
where night dwells.
In Heaven is spring,
Paradise flowers
and perfumes eternally.
In the depth is winter,
the foulness and stench
of abominable odour.
Scene 2 – Counsel, Damned Souls, and the Mouth of Hell opens.
Intellect, Soul, and Body
You that are below,
what torments you more?
What is it in Hell?
Damned Souls
The fire, the eternal fire,
cruel, cruel sin,
for which has condemned us
the judge on high
to fire, to eternal fire.
Scene 3 – Intellect, Blessed Souls in Heaven, which opens, and Hell which closes.
Counsel, Soul, and Body.
Souls who rejoice in Heaven,
which prize in Heaven do you hold
the nobler and more worthy?
Blessed Souls
Eternal, eternal reign:
O reign, reign eternal:
O highest good above,
that never misses its mark:
eternal, eternal reign.
Soul, Intellect, Counsel, Body, together. Heaven is open.
O great wonder!
O grave error!
That mortal man
of such evil
that lasts for ever
takes so little care!
O great wonder!
O grave error!
That mortal man
for the immortal reign
that lasts eternally
foolishly takes no care!
Scene 4 – Counsel, Damned Souls, and Hell opens again.
Intellect, Soul, Body, and Heaven open
Unlucky souls,
raise your proud voices
what fate has been yours?
Damned Souls
Eternal, eternal death.
Alas! That is our lot:
death that never dies
buried in sorrow.
Harsh, painful and strong,
eternal, eternal death.
Scene 5 – Intellect, Blessed Souls, in Heaven open: Chorus, Soul, and Body:
Hell closes again
Souls blessed and fair,
up there above the stars,
what is it that pleases you most?
Blessed Souls
Eternal, eternal life:
life that lives and reigns,
sweet, celestial and worthy,
always, always pleasing.
Eternal, eternal life.
O great wonder!
O grave error!
That mortal man
for such evil
that lasts for ever
takes so little care!
O great wonder!
O grave error!
That mortal man
for the immortal reign
that lasts for ever
takes no care!
Scene 6 - Counsel, Damned Souls, and Hell opens.
Intellect, Soul, Body, and Heaven open
Souls, the pain and loss
that so afflicts you,
must it never end?
Damned Souls
Never, never, never.
O everlasting woe
that never ends!
Never, never, never.
Scene 7 – Intellect, Blessed Souls, Hell closes again.
Counsel, Soul, and Body
Souls, will your glory
in eternal memory
last for ever?
Blessed Souls
Yes, for ever, for ever, for ever.
It will last for ever
and will never end:
and perpetually enduring
will last for ever, for ever.
Intellect, Counsel, Soul, Body, together
Let each one always do right
for death hurries on:
love God, who is the Lord,
flee the deceiving World;
and when you have erred
for your sin
with pure faith
seek your payment:
Do good works and amend your life,
for on only a moment the Eternal hangs.
Soul and Body together
As the thirsting hart
runs to the desired fountain,
so we desire and long
to rise to Heaven with you on that steep way
and praise the great Lord.
Scene 8 - Angels, and Blessed Souls in Heaven:
Soul, Body, Intellect, and Counsel all together
Glory be to God on high
who lives for ever:
to the high and great Lord
be everlasting honour.
Blessed Souls, and Angels
Let us all all the world
and with happy song
let us sing, let us sing in joy
God’s praises and glorious deeds.
Scene 9 – Blessed Souls, Angels, Soul, Body, Intellect, Counsel, Chorus and the
whole multitude together.
O Lord holy, and true
that of the world has command:
O Lord holy, and strong,
tamer of death, giver of life;
supreme infinite goodness:
to you Lord, to you
glory, and praise be given;
to you greatest Lord,
supreme and worthy,
be eternal glory, and everlasting reign.
You who are listening,
why do you not rejoice?
No longer, no longer pensive:
all happy and joyful.
With festivity let us rejoice,
let us sing in rejoicing,
flee far from grief:
festivity, festivity for all.
The whole multitude together
Thanks, hymns, praises and rejoicing of love
sings the tongue and answers the heart.
Let every tongue every heart
give praise to my Lord
who raises poor souls
from earth to the stars.
I beg you, beloved souls,
choose to do good.
As from the angry snake,
flee from sin:
and return happy to your dwellings,
and with you carry
this my record:
that he who serves God shall have the eternal kingdom.
Let everyone take it, take it to heart,
that hours are quick to fly:
and everyone must leave aside
all good that is of the world.
In this the fleeting world deceives us
for every good comes from God:
and for holy and good works
there come in answer in Heaven sceptres and crowns.
The whole multitude together
Highest starry cloisters,
where the blessed dwell,
moon, sun, shining stars,
make in Heaven sweet music;
let all the world be full
of cheerfulness and harmony.

King of the world and great lords
rejoice with choruses,
each sex, every age,
women and men, sing
with boys and girls
cheerful, fair songs.

With harps, lyres, organs and trumpets,
let the air and earth and sea resound,
the graceful breezes, the joyful sound
carry away through the whole world
and playing let the heart
feel the joys of love.

You who faithfully love God,
just people, holy men,
give eternal thanks to God,
scatter lilies and roses together,
and with lilies and with roses,
eternal and glorious praises.

You celestial hierarchies
make new melodies:
lo another new star
all bright, all fair
flies splendid to Heaven,
for it shines eternally.

Join together good angels,
join together in songs and music:
and here below earth still,
happy the while, bears flowers,
with song and with laughter
rejoice in answer to Paradise.
(English version by Keith Anderson)


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