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Medieval Music Database

Dame, a qui m'ottri

virelai by Guillaume de Machaut


New York: Wildenstein Collection, fol. 326 (1/1);
Paris: Bibliothèque Nationale, fonds français 843 (text); Bibliothèque Nationale, fonds français 1584 (MachA), fol. 485v (1/1); Bibliothèque Nationale, fonds français 1585 (MachB), fol. 324 (1/1); Bibliothèque Nationale, fonds français 1586 (MachC), fol. 153 (1/1) (incomplete); Bibliothèque Nationale, fonds français 9221 (MachE), fol. 163v (1/1); Bibliothèque Nationale, fonds français 22546 (MachG), fol. 157 (1/1).


1. Guillaume de Machaut: Musikalische Werke. Erster Band: Balladen, Rondeaux und Virelais, edited by Friedrich Ludwig, Wiesbaden: Breitkopf & Härtel, 1926, p. 75.
2. The Works of Guillaume de Machaut, Second Part, edited by Leo Schrade, Monaco: Editions de L'Oiseau-Lyre, 1956. Polyphonic Music of the Fourteenth Century III, p. 173.
3. Guillaume de Machaut (1300-1377), p. 6.

Text Editions

Guillaume de Machaut: poésies lyriques, 2 vols., edited by V. Chichmaref, Paris: 1909, p. 594.


1. MACHABEY, Armand. Guillaume de Machault, 130?-1377: La vie et l'oeuvre musicale, 2 vols, Paris: Richard-Masse-Editeur, 1955. Bibliothèque d'études musicales, pp. 181-182.
2. GÜNTHER, Ursula. Der musikalische Stilwandel der französischen Liedkunst in der zweiten Hälfte des 14. Jahrhunderts, dargestelt an Virelais, Balladen und Rondeax von Machaut., Ph.D. dissertation, University of Hamburg: 1957, Chapter 4.3.
3. GÜNTHER, Ursula. 'Contribution de la musicologie à la biographie et à la chronologie de Guillaume de Machaut', Guillaume de Machaut, poète et compositeur. Colloque - Table Ronde, 1978, pp. 95-116.


The Mirror of Narcissus: Songs by Guillaume de Machaut, Gothic Voices, directed by Christopher Page (1983): Hyperion A66087 (GB).


Dame, a qui
De cuer, sans penser laidure.
Je n'ay mie deservi
Qu'en hai
M'ait si
Vos cuers qu'a desconfiture.
Soie pour l'amour de li.

Car de tres loyal amour
Meint jour
Vous ay ame et servi.
N'onques vos cuers n'ot tenrour
Dou plour
Qui m'a tout anienti.
S'en gemi
Et di
Que ce n'est mie droiture
Que toudis soie en oubli.
Car en mi
Par mi
Partiroit mon cuer d'ardure.
Belle, s'il estoit einssi.

Dame, a qui...

Dame, a qui...

Helas! toudis sans sejour
Vo doulz viaire joli.
Mais trouver n'i puis doucour
Fors samlance d'anemi.
S'en fremi
Ay mi!
Et en dolour qui trop dure
Dolereusement langui.
Quant meri
Ne d'esperance seure
Ne m'a encor esjoi.

Dame, a qui...

Dame, a qui...

Belle et bonne, sans folour.
Vous ha Dieus si enrichi
Que vous estes de valour
La flour;
Pour ce vous ay encheri.
Se vous pri
Que de vostre grace pure
Me daingnies clamer ami;
Et einsi
M'ares dou mal que j'endure.
Tresdont que premiers vous vi.

Dame, a qui...


Lady, to whom
I gave myself
With all my heart, thinking no dishonour.
I have never deserved
That in such contempt
I should be held
By your heart that I am thrown into confusion
For love of it.

For with most loyal love
For many a day
I have loved and served you.
Nor did your heart ever have compassion
On the lamentation
Which has quite crushed me.
So I groan at it
And say
That it is unjust
That I should always be forgotten.
For in me
In two
My heart would cleave with ardour.
Beauty, if it were so.

Lady, to whom...

Lady, to whom...

Alas! always without rest
I adore
Your sweet pretty face.
But in it I find no softness
Nor love.
Only a show of enmity.
So I tremble at it
Ah me!
And in pain which lasts too long
Painfully I languish.
Since no reward
Of the gift of myself
Nor of certain hope
Has yet given me joy.

Lady, to whom...

Lady, to whom...

Fair and good, without folly.
With honour
God has so enriched you
That you are of valour
The flower;
For this I have loved you.
So I pray you
That of your pure grace
You deign to call me friend;
And so
You will have
Cured me of the illness I endure
Ever since I first saw you.

Lady, to whom...

Text revision and translation © Jennifer Garnham

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

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