Luca Marenzio: Super flumina Babylonis

William Blake, By the Waters of Babylon
Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1806
Super flumina Babylonis are the opening words of psalm 136 (137) which speaks of the conditions of the Hebrews taken into captivity in Babylon (586 BCE) who, out of sadness, no longer want to sing of their homeland but are requested to do so by their captors.

1 Super flumina Babylonis illic sedimus et flevimus, dum recordaremur Sion.
By the waters of Babylon we sat down and wept when we remembered thee, O Sion. 
2 In salicibus in medio ejus suspendimus organa nostra:
As for our harps, we hanged them up upon the trees that are therein. 
3 quia illic interrogaverunt nos, qui captivos duxerunt nos,
verba cantionum; et qui abduxerunt nos: Hymnum cantate nobis de canticis Sion.
For they that led us away captive required of us then a song, and melody, in our heaviness: Sing us one of the songs of Sion. 
4 Quomodo cantabimus canticum Domini in terra aliena?
How shall we sing the Lord’s song in a strange land? 
5 Si oblitus fuero tui, Jerusalem, oblivioni detur dextera mea.
If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget her cunning. 
6 Adhæreat lingua mea faucibus meis, si non meminero tui;
si non proposuero Jerusalem in principio lætitiæ meæ.
If I do not remember thee, let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth; yea if I prefer not Jerusalem in my mirth. 
7 Memor esto, Domine, filiorum Edom, in die Jerusalem.  
Remember the children of Edom, O Lord, in the day of Jerusalem.

Performance of  Le Studio de musique ancienne de Montréal, Christopher Jackson conducting. [NML] (info)