Ave nobilissima creatura (Josquin des Prez)

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  • (Posted 2011-08-28)  CPDL #24288:       
Editor: John Hetland (submitted 2011-08-28).   Score information: Letter, 22 pages, 588 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: Source: Werken van Josquin des Prés, ed. A. Smijers, Leipsig, 1938. We have raised the notation a fourth from the original and halved the time values. Score is SAAATB, but 4th part can be sung by altos or tenors. Translation, text underlay and musica ficta by John Hetland and The Renaissance Street Singers, 20 Jun 2010.

General Information

Title: Ave nobilissima creatura
Composer: Josquin des Prez

Number of voices: 6vv   Voicing: SAATTB
Genre: SacredMotet

Language: Latin
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 1519 in Motetti de la corona, Volume 3, no. 3
Description: Motet printed by Petrucci in 1519, Junta in 1527: Motetti de la Corona, Libro tertio.

External websites:

Original text and translations

Latin.png Latin text

Ave nobilissima creatura,
humillima virgo Maria,
est tibi quasi osculum
hunc audire versum angelicum:
Ave Maria, gratia plena,
Dominus tecum.
Ergo ad imaginem tuam accedo,
genua flecto, osculum imprimo,
ave Maria dico.
o domina gloriae, 0 regina laetitiae,
angelorum domina, virginum gemma,
omniumque sanctorum justitia,
peccatorum consolatrix,
infirmorum curatrix,
errantium revocatrix,
desolatorum auxiliatrix,
mea promptissima adj utrix,
virgo sancta Maria.

Tibi, domina gloriosa,
commendo hodie et quotidie
animam meam et corpus meuql,
ut me in tua custodia custodias,
et ab omnibus malis
et fraudibus diaboli
me educas,
et in ultima hora mortis meae
constanter mihi assistas,
et animam meam
ad aetema gaudia perducas,
ubi tu, benedicta Maria,
in vera caritate permanes
cum Domino nostro Jesu Cmisto,
Filio tuo dulcissimo,
per infinita saecula saeculorum.

Cantus firmus:
Benedicta tu in mulieribus,
et benedictus fructus ventris tui.

English.png English translation

Hail, most noble creature,
most humble virgin Mary;
to you, it is like a kiss
to hear this angelic verse:
"Hail Mary, full of grace,
the Lord is with you."
So I draw near to your image,
I bend my knees, I place a kiss:
I say "Hail Mary."
O mistress of glory, 0 queen of gladness,
ruler of angels, jewel of virgins
and judge of all the saints,
consoler of sinners,
healer of the infirm,
finder of the lost,
handmaiden of the desolate,
my most prompt helper,
holy virgin Mary.

To you, glorious lady,
I commend today and every day
my soul and my body,
that you may guard me in your care,
and from all evils
and deceits of the devil
deliver me,
and in the final hour of my death
unfailingly assist me,
and lead my soul
to the etemal joys,
where you, blessed Mary,
ever remain in true esteem
with our Lord Jesus Christ,
your most sweet Son,
for unending ages of ages.

Blessed are you among women,
and blessed is the fruit of your womb.