The opera is based on the play El Trobador, or The Troubador, by Antonio Garcia Gutierrez.  Verdi became so engrossed with the character Azucena, that he nearly named his version “La Vendetta”, (The Revenge) and “La Zingara”, The Gypsy. Either would have been suitable; The plot revolves around the gypsy Azucena, and the revenge she seeks for her mother. You’re listening to Mai Reggendo All Aspro Assalto, sung by Enrico Caruso and Louise Homer.

The aria is from Act II, Scene 1…Azucena has convinced her son Manrico to join her vengeful quest. But with his foe at swordpoint, he stops. The title actually translates as ““At My Mercy Lay The Foe”. So, what stayed his hand? Find out right here.