Carl Orff: Circa Mea Pectora

Francesco Guarino San Giorgio (1645-50-ca.), Napoli Palazzo.

Circa Mea Pectora (“In My Heart”) is a love song in Latin and Middle High German, and the singing is put in the mouth of a man whose intentions were clearly not honorable. In a humorous and dramatic way as usual, lets say this represents an impure candidate’s ambitious and selfish intentions in their aspirations to “unveil the mysteries of Isis” (or Spiritual Nature).


Circa mea pectora 
multa sunt suspiria 
de tua pulchritudine, 
quae me laedunt misere. 
Manda liet, manda liet, 
min geselle 
chumet niet. 

Tui lucent oculi 
sicut solis radii, 
sicut splendor fulguris 
lucem donat tenebris. 
Manda liet, manda liet, 
min geselle 
chumet niet. 

Vellet Deus, 
vellent dii, 
quod mente proposui, 
ut eius virginea 
reserassem vincula. 
Manda liet, 
manda liet, 
min geselle 
chumet niet. 

In my heart
there are many sighs
for your beauty,
which wound me sorely.
Ah!

Mandaliet (Send a message),
mandaliet (Send a message),
my beloved
does not come.

Your eyes shine
like the rays of the sun,
like the flashing of lightening
which brightens the darkness.
Ah!

Mandaliet (Send a message),
mandaliet (Send a message),
my beloved
does not come.

May God grant, may the gods grant
what I have in mind:
that I may loose
the chains of her virginity.
Ah!

Mandaliet (Send a message),
mandaliet (Send a message)
my beloved
does not come.

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