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Medieval Music Database

S'aincy estoit que ne feust la noblesce

ballade by Solage


Chantilly: Bibliothèque du Musée Condé 564, fol. 36 (3/1).


French Secular Music of the Late Fourteenth Century, edited by Willi Apel, Cambridge/Massachusetts: Medieval Academy of America, 1950, plate 4.


1. French Secular Music of the Late Fourteenth Century, edited by Willi Apel, Cambridge/Massachusetts: Medieval Academy of America, 1950, no. 34.
2. French Secular Compositions of the Fourteenth Century, music edited by Willi Apel, texts edited by Samuel N. Rosenberg, Rome: American Institute of Musicology, 1970. Corpus Mensurabilis Musicae 53/I, p. 194.
3. French Secular Music. Manuscript Chantilly, Musée Condé 564, First Part, edited by Gordon K. Greene, Monaco: Editions de L'Oiseau-Lyre, 1981. Polyphonic Music of the Fourteenth Century XVIII, p. 139.


1. 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, pp. 225, 237-242.
2. GÜNTHER, Ursula. 'Der Gebrauch des tempus perfectum diminutum in der Handschrift Chantilly 1047', Archiv für Musikwissenschaft, XVII (1960), p. 283.
3. GÜNTHER, Ursula. 'Datierbare Balladen des späten 14. Jahrhunderts. Part 1', Musica Disciplina, XV (1961), pp. 51-55.
4. GÜNTHER, Ursula. 'Die Musiker des Herzogs von Berry', Musica Disciplina, XVII (1963), p. 87.
5. WILKINS, Nigel. 'The post-Machaut generation of poet-musicians', Nottingham Medieval Studies, XII (1968), p. 51.
6. GÜNTHER, Ursula. 'Unusual phenomena in the transmission of late fourteenth-century polyphonic music', Musica Disciplina, XXXVIII (1984), pp. 102-103.


Music from the Hundred Year War, Musica Reservata, directed by John Beckett (1969): Philips 6747 004 (set 5) (INT).


S'aincy estoit que ne feust la noblesce
du bon Jehan, duc gentilz de Berry.
France perdroit son pris et sa prouesce.
et le monde seroit amenuy.
Quar de certain sa valour
s'estent per tout et luist con le cler [jour];
[et] en tous fais son noble cuer habunde.
quar c'est celi qui est la flour du monde.

Nature l'a per sa grant soubtilesce
de ses dons richement enchiery.
Vaillant et preux, en bien met son adresce
et noble atour si est prouchain de li.
dont il n'a per ne greignour.
ains surmonte tout home par doutor.
Ce sont graces que Dieux en son cuer fonde.
quar c'est [celi qui est la flour du monde.]

Considerer doit chescun la sagesce
de ce seignour courageux et hardi.
quar c'est un cler mirouer ou jounesce
de chevaliers doit mettre son ottri.
son voloir et son amour.
quar il sont mis en tres souvrain honour
par sa vertu, qui est si tres parfonde.
quar [c'est celi qui est la flour du monde.]


If it hadn't been for the noble actions of the good Jean.
genteel Duke of Berry.
France would lose her worth and her prowess.
and the world would be diminished;
since, for certain, his valour
extends everywhere and shines like the bright day.
In all deeds his noble heart abounds.
for it is he who is the flower of the world.

Nature, by her great adroitness.
has richly endowed him with her gifts.
Valiant and gallant, he turns his skills to good
and a noble entourage is near him.
of which there is not one who is his equal nor who is greater;
rather does he surpass all men by his gentleness.
These are graces that God establishes in his heart.
for it is [he who is the flower of the world.]

Everyone should observe the wisdom
of this courageous and daring lord.
for he is a brilliant model on which the youth
of knighthood should bestow its agreement.
its will and its love.
for they are set in very high honour
by his virtue, which is so very profound.
for [it is he who is the flower of the world.]

Text revision and translation © Robyn Smith

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

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