Parting Words Posted by Serena on Jul 4, 2019 in History, Music
When I was a kid we had a vinyl disk of patriotic folk songs sung by the Alpini, the Italian mountaineering corp famous for its a cappella choirs.
I used to listen to this record almost every day because those songs inspired many images in my head, and I would lose myself in them. Amongst these songs was Addio Mia Bella Addio (Farewell My Darling, Farewell), which was one of my absolute favourites.
Based on a typical Tuscan folk harmony, Addio Mia Bella Addio was written in Firenze by Carlo Alberto Bosi (1813-1886) on the 29th of March 1848, when the first battalion of volunteers was leaving Florence to go to the north of Italy and fight in the First Italian War Of Independence. For this reason this song is also known as L’Addio del Volontario (The Farewell Of The Volunteer), and it soon became very popular, being sung through all of the subsequent Wars of Independence, the expeditions of Garibaldi’s Mille, and the First World War.
Here’s a nice version sung a cappella by the Coro Vocilassù. Below are the lyrics followed by our English translation. N.B. as happens with many popular folk songs, there are lots of variations to Addio Mia Bella Addio.
Addio mia bella, addio
che l’armata se ne va,
e se non partissi anch’io
sarebbe una viltà.
Farewell my darling, farewell
as the army is leaving,
and if I didn’t leave too
it would be cowardly.
Il sacco è preparato,
il fucile l’ho con me,
ed allo spuntar del sole
io partirò da te.
The haversack is ready,
I’ve got the gun with me,
and at sunrise
I’ll be leaving you.
Ma non ti lascio sola
io ti lascio un figlio ancor,
sarà quel che ti consola:
il figlio dell’amor.
But I’m not leaving you alone
I’ll leave you a child too,
it will console you:
the child of our love.
__________________________________________________Footnote by Geoff Cari lettori, dear readers,
Many times over the years we’ve ended our blogs with the words ‘a presto‘, or ‘alla prossima‘. But this time, I’m afraid, it’s time to say ‘ciao‘ (goodbye).
We’ve had loads of fun writing the nearly 1,500 blogs that we’ve published during the past eleven years, and it’s been a real pleasure reading and responding to your comments.
Some of you have become friends, a few of you have even come to visit us in Italy (we hope you’ll continue to do so!)
But 11 years is a long time to maintain one’s creativity in a job, and it has become gradually harder to come up with new ideas and topics.
We need a change!
If you’ve followed my blogs over the past months, you’ll have seen that I’ve started helping out in a local elementary school. I’ve loved doing this, and it has reminded me how much I enjoy direct teaching.
This is something that I’ve missed with blogging. I always say that publishing blogs is rather like sending out messages in bottles: who sees them? what meaning or impact do they have? It’s really hard to tell from the small handful of comments that come back.
Serena also plans to begin new projects, and after 18 years of teaching Yoga, is finally cutting down on her classes. That’s also nice for me because it means we can spend more time together on our joint projects, and go off exploring some of the beautiful places that we’ve not visited yet in this amazing and surprising land.Ciao!