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Medieval Music Database

Orbis orbatus; Vos pastores adulteri; Fur non venit

Three-voice motet attributed to Philippe de Vitry


Paris: Bibliothèque Nationale, fonds français 146, fol. 7 (3/2).


1. Le Roman de Fauvel, manuscrit inédit de la Bibliothèque Nationale (français 146) reproduit par un procédé photographique inaltérable, facsimile edition by Pierre Aubry, Paris: Librairie Paul Geuthner, 1907.
2. PARRISH, Carl. The Notation of Medieval Music, New York: W. W. Norton, 1957, plate XLV.
3. ROESNER, Edward H. Le Roman de Fauvel in the edition of Mesire Chaillou de Pesstain, New York: Broude Brothers, 1990.


The Roman de Fauvel; The Works of Philippe de Vitry; French Cycles of the Ordinarium Missae, edited by Leo Schrade, Monaco: Editions de L'Oiseau-Lyre, 1956. Polyphonic Music of the Fourteenth Century I, p. 22.

Text Editions

BLACHLY, Alexander. The Motets of Philippe de Vitry, Columbia University (M.A. thesis), p. 92.


1. WOLF, Johannes. Geschichte der Mensural-Notation von 1250-1460 nach den theoretischen und praktischen Quellen, 3 vols., Leipzig: Breitkopf & Härtel, 1904. [reprinted Hildesheim: G. Olms, 1965].
2. LUDWIG, Friedrich. 'Die Quellen der Motetten ältesten Stils', Archiv für Musikwissenschaft, V (1923): 185-222; 273-315.
3. BESSELER, Heinrich. 'Studien zur Musik des Mittelalters. II. Die Motette von Franko von Köln bis Philippe von Vitry', Archiv für Musikwissenschaft, VIII (1926): 137-258.
4. DAHNK, Emilie. L'hérésie de Fauvel, Leipzig: C. & E. Vogel, 1935. Leipziger romanistische Studien II, Literatur-wissenschaftliche Reihe, Heft 4.
5. APEL, Willi. The Notation of Polyphonic Music 900-1600, Cambridge/Massachusetts: The Medieval Academy of America, 1942, p. 327 briefly.
6. ZWICK, Gabriel. 'Deux motets inédits de Philippe de Vitry et de Guillaume de Machaut', Revue de musicologie, XXVII (1948), p. 33.
7. SCHRADE, Leo. 'Philippe de Vitry: some new discoveries', Musical Quarterly, XLII (1956): 330-354.
8. SANDERS, Ernest. 'The mediaeval motet', Gattungen der Musik in Einzeldarstellungen: Gedenkschrift Leo Schrade, Erste Folge, Bern, Munich: 1971, pp. 497-573.
9. SANDERS, Ernest H. 'The early motets of Philippe de Vitry', Journal of the American Musicological Society, XXVIII (1975): 24-45.


Orbis orbatus oculis
in die cecus respitat
dum componendis loculis
mitratus quisque militat
pro ditandis nepotulis
et pauper Christus clamitat
ieiunijs verba populis
clamat iam raucis faucibus
ad cor redite filij
sed cum surdis sint auribus
et contemptores impii
induratis cervicibus
et ausi temerarij
hiis mox compellat vocibus
cur similes aspidibus
audire non dignaminj
mutis iam paret canibus
cur in gregem grassiminj
eius de pastis carnibus
nec in ut lupos armaminj
horum armati dentibus.

Vos pastores adulteri
et veri mercenarij.
successores Luciferi
Christi pseudovicarij
vicini dato muneri
a vero semper devij
ventris vacatis operi.

Fur non venit nisi ut furetur
et mactet et perdat.


Deprived of its eyes.
the blind world stumbles in the daylight.
as every mitred priest
fights to enrich his relatives
while stuffing his own purse.
and Christ, in poverty.
cries out words for the starving people.
crying now with a hoarse voice.
"Repent ye, o sons!"
But since they have deaf ears
and are stiff-necked.
He must soon acuse these impious.
rash and wilful blasphemers
with these words:
"Why are you like vipers.
not deigning to listen?
Why does it appear that you press
like mute dogs into a crowd;
and having eaten of its flesh.
why do you not take up arms, as against wolves.
since you are already armed with their teeth?"

Oh you adulterous shepherds.
and very mercenaries.
followers of Lucifer.
false vicars of Christ.
kindred spirits to bribery.
deviating ever from the truth
for the idle pleasures of your bellies!

The thief cometh not, but to steal
and to kill and to destroy.

Text revision and translation © Alexander Blachly

Content Approved by: MMDB Director
Last updated: Wednesday, 19 March 2003

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