Start

Related sources
   Copenhagen
   Dijon
   Laborde
   Leuven
   Nivelle
   Wolfenbüttel

Other sources
   Music
   Text

Compositions
   
by first line
   by composer

Bibliography

Abbreviations

Papers and notes

General Index of music editions
   
by first line
   by composer

 

Editions and papers
on this site:

Complete Works of Gilles Mureau

Amiens MS 162 D

Uppsala MS 76a

Homepage
Peter Woetmann Christoffersen


Papers on

Basiron’s chansons
Busnoys & scibes PDF
Caulaincourt
Chansons in Fa-clefs
Chansoner på nettet
Fede, Works
Dulot’s Ave Maria
Open access 15th c.
MS Florence 2794

 

 
Helas, mon cueur, tu m’occiras 3v · Anonymous

Appearance in the group of related chansonniers:

*Leuven ff. 17v-18 »Helas, mon cueur, tu m’occiras« 3v PDF · Facsimile

Text: Rondeau cinquain, full text in Leuven.

Helas, mon cueur, tu m’occiras
quant des dames departiras
en qui d’onneur as veu l’eslite;
lors sera ta vie mauldite,
car apres en brief temps mourras.

Tousjours languir si me feras,
et ma mort en pourchaceras
affin que de moy soiez quitte. 1)

Helas, mon cueur, tu m’occiras
quant des dames departiras
en qui d’onneur as veu l’eslite.

Incessaument tu larmoiras
tant plus que les eslongneras
dont mes en rien ne me deslite;
viengne vers moy la mort despite,
car aussi tost qu’eslongne feras.

Helas, mon cueur, tu m’occiras
quant des dames departiras
en qui d’onneur as veu l’eslite;
lors sera ta vie mauldite,
car apres en brief temps mourras.

Alas, my heart, you will kill me,
when you turn away from ladies
in whom you have seen perfect honour;
then your life will be damned,
for after a short time you die.

I suffer forever if you do this to me,
and you will seek my death
in order to be rid of me.

Alas, my heart, you will kill me,
when you turn away from ladies
in whom you have seen perfect honour,

You will cry without end
when you abandon those
who do not in any way delight me;
bring to me the despicable death,
for you will be far way very soon.

Alas, my heart, you will kill me,
when you turn away from ladies
in whom you have seen perfect honour;
then your life will be damned,
for after a short time you die.

1) line 8, “... de moy soiz ...” (one syllable is missing).

Evaluation of the sources:

The song was copied into the Leuven chansonnier by the main scribe with some errors – such as two brevis-values missing in the contratenor.

Comments on text and music:

This unique rondeau was most probable a local product. Its text and music are somewhat related to the more widely circulated rondeau »Mon cueur et moi d'une alliance«, which appears anonymous in the chansonniers Copenhagen, Laborde and Wolfenbüttel, and is ascribed to Prioris in the much later manuscript Florence 2439. Like “Mon cueur” the poem is written in ambitious rimes léonines, but the poet apparently ran out of rime words when he repeated “feras” from line 6 in the last line. Maybe the end of poem had been corrupted before the copying; the meaning becomes more and more opaque.

Where the heart and the I in Prioris’ “Mon cueur” did form a happy alliance, the lover and his heart here pretend to be in opposition with the heart turning its back on ladies in good standing, an attitude that certainly will cost the lover his life. The music makes use of the same setup of voices as “Mon cueur”, two upper voices in equal range (g-b’) – the one notated on the right hand page is labelled “Tenor” – and a low contratenor (F-a). The upper voices take turns in performing the roles of superius and tenor in constant crossing. The tenor ends the song by performing the superius cadence with the superius placed and octave below; exactly the same happens in Ockeghem’s famous »Fors seulement l’actente que je meure«.

The setting of the words is short and compact, mainly syllabic, and the upper voices prefer to move in thirds with the low contratenor in a supporting role. In nearly every instance it complete the concords with the triads’ fundamental notes providing the song with an unusual pedestrian quality. The strongest effect of its music comes when the repetitious first line moves downwards in the second line and the introduction of a notated e’-flat. In competence and charm this setting falls far behind the sure elegance of the song by Prioris.

PWCH October 2017