This was one of four motets by Monteverdi published in 1620 in the Libro primo de motetti
of Giulio Cesare Bianchi, a cornett player then working at Milan who had earlier studied composition under Monteverdi at Mantua. Its text comprises verses 2 to 4 of Psalm 6. The setting, for six voices, is richly scored, but seems to have been designed for a choir of modest technical ability. Its generally smooth progression is occasionally disturbed by syncopated lines heard, for example, at the words ‘ne in furore tuo’ (‘in thine anger’), ‘neque in ira tua’ (‘nor in thy displeasure’) and ‘conturbata sunt ossa mea’ (‘my bones are troubled’).
from notes by John Whenham © 2005