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  • Alla Fontana (By the Spring)
    Palermo (Sicily)

    Mamma, nun mi mannari all'acqua sula,
    Picciotta sugnu e mi mentu a ghiucari;
    Pri strata mi cascò la tuvagghiula,
    E un picciutteddu mi l'happi a pigghiari.
    Toinella, toinà, toinella toinà!

    E poi mi dissi, ch'è bedda sta gula,
    Ca un vasuneddu ci vurrissi dari,
    E sì ti'ngagghiu 'n'autra vota sula
    Tutti li santi ti fazzu chiamari.

    Mamma, pray do not send me to the spring alone,
    For I am young, and may begin to play there;
    To-day by chance I lost the kerchief I had on,
    A fine young fellow found it on the way there.
    Toinella, toinà, toinella, toinà!

    And then he said to me: “Your neck is very sweet,
    And I should like to kiss it, tho' no leave be given;
    But if another time alone we chance to meet,
    I'll make you call on all the saints in heaven!”

    Return to Folk Songs Page

    Additional Resources
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    Marzo, Eduardo. Songs of Italy; sixty-five Tuscan, Florentine, Lombardian and other Italian folk- and popular songs. New York: G. Schirmer, 1904. 166


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