Stelutis alpinis

Stelutis alpinis is an elegiac song composed by Arturo Zardini (1869-1923) in his native Friulian language during the first world war, and first published in 1921. It has since become a much-loved anthem for the people of Friuli and for the alpine troops of the Italian army. The arrangement sung by Dante Musica Viva was adapted by David Wilson and Francesco Sofo from the one which first appeared in Canti Friulani, edited by Ercole Carletti, and published by Camillo Montico in 1925, and republished in Un salût ‘e Furlanie, edited by Franco Colussi, and published by Pizzicato edizioni musicali in 1998.

The words of the song are those of a soldier killed in one of the fierce alpine battles between Italian and Austro-Hungarian troops during the first world war. Speaking to his beloved from his grave on the battlefield where he fell, he asks her to pick one of the edelweiss which grow there, and hide it in her breast as a reminder of their love.

Resources

11/03/2009 lyrics
18/06/2013 score in C

Italian Wikipedia article about the song

Performances on YouTube

Coro Renzo Basaldella
Coro Ermes Grion

Friulian lyrics

Se tu vens cassù ta’ cretis
là che lôr mi àn soterât,
al è un splaz plen di stelutis
dal miò sanc ‘l è stât bagnât.

Par segnâl, une crosute
jè scolpide li tal cret:
fra chês stelis nàs l’erbute
sot di lôr jo duar cujèt.
Fra chês stelis nàs l’erbute
sot di lôr jo duar cujèt.

Cjol sù, cjol une stelute
je ‘a ricuarde il néstri ben,
tu ‘i daràs ‘ne bussadute,
e po plàtile tal sen.

Quan che a cjase tu sês sole
e di cûr tu prèis par me,
il miò spirt atôr ti svole:
jo e la stele sin cun te.
Il miò spirt atôr ti svole:
jo e la stele sin cun te.

English translation

If you come up here among these rocks,
here where they’ve buried me,
there’s a clearing full of edelweiss
which has been bathed with my blood

As a sign, a little cross
has been carved into a rock.
Grass grows among the edelweiss
and beneath them I sleep in peace.
 
 
 
Pick, pick one of these edelweiss
in remembrance of our love.
Give it a kiss
and hide it in your breast.

When you’re alone at home,
and pray for me from your heart,
my spirit will hover around thee.
The edelweiss and I will abide with thee.