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 Ballade des dames du temps jadis

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PostSubject: Ballade des dames du temps jadis   Sun 28 Nov - 22:40

Ballade des dames du temps jadis


(François Villon, ca. 1460)
Dictes moy où, n’en quel pays,
Est Flora la belle Romaine;
Archipiada, ne Thaïs,
Qui fut sa cousine germaine,
Echo, parlant quand bruyt on maine
Dessus riviere ou sus estan,
Qui beauté eut trop plus qu’humaine?
Mais où sont les neiges d’antan?Où estla très sage Héloïs,
Pour qui chastré fut et puis moyne
Pierre Esbaillart à Saint Denis?
Pour son amour eut cest essoyne.
Semblablement, où est royne
Qui commanda que Buridan
Fust geté en ung sac en Seine?
Mais où sont les neiges d’antan?La royne Blanche comme lys,
Qui chantoit à voix de sereine,
Berthe au grand pied, Bietris, Allys,
Harembourgis qui tint le Mayne,
Et Jehanne, la bonne Lorraine,
Qu’Anglois bruslèrentà Rouen;
Où sont-ils, Vierge souveraine?
Mais où sont les neiges d’antan?Prince, n’enquerez de sepmaine
Où elles sont, ne de cest an,
Que ce refrain ne vous remaine:
Mais où sont les neiges d’antan?



Li
teral translation:
Ballad of the Ladies of Bygone Times

Tell me where, or in what land
is Flora, the lovely Roman,
or Archipiades, or Thaïs,
who was her first cousin;
or Echo, replying whenever called
across river or pool,
and whose beauty was more than human?
But where are the snows of yesteryear?

Where is that brilliant lady Heloise,
for whose sake Peter Abelard was castrated
and became a monk at Saint-Denis?
He suffered that misfortune because of his love for her.
And where is that queen who
ordered that Buridan
be thrown into the Seine in a sack?
But where are the snows of yesteryear?

Queen Blanche, white as a lily,
who sang with a siren’s voice;
Big-footed Bertha, Beatrice, Alice,
Arembourg who ruled over Maine;
and Joan, the good maiden of Lorraine
who was burned by the English at Rouen —
where are they, where, O sovereign Virgin?
But where are the snows of yesteryear?

Prince, do not ask in a week
where they are, or in a year.
The only answer you will get is this refrain:
But where are the snows of yesteryear?

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