Verdi's "Caro Nome" Lyrics and English Translation

A Favored Aria From Verdi's "Rigoletto"

View of an illuminated art deco theater from backstage
Verdi is one of opera's most famous composers. Adam Burn / Getty Images

Giuseppe Verdi (1813–1901) composed "Rigoletto" between 1850 and 1851. The opera, a twisted tale of lust, desire, love, and deceit, would become known as one of his masterpieces. Within the performance, the aria "Caro Nome" is one of the best-known and beloved pieces. Written in Italian, the English translation demonstrates Gilda's new-found love.

"Caro Nome" Italian Lyrics

"Caro Nome" is sung by the lead soprano of "Rigoletto" in Act 1, Scene II. It is right after Gilda falls in love with Gualtier Maldé, a poor student who is really the Duke in disguise. The aria is brief but plays a key role in the unfolding story.

Verdi wrote "Caro Nome" for a very high soprano, an interesting twist on his typical approach to such works. The aria also has what some scholars note as the composer's best work for woodwinds.

Caro nome che il mio cor
festi primo palpitar,
le delizie dell'amor
mi dêi sempre rammentar!
Col pensiero il mio desir
a te ognora volerà,
e pur l' ultimo sospir,
caro nome, tuo sarà.

English Translation

Translation by Guia K. Monti

Sweet name, you who made my heart
throb for the first time,
you must always remind me
the pleasures of love!
My desire will fly to you
on the wings of thought
and my last breath
will be yours, my beloved.