Resvelons nous (Guillaume Dufay)

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  • (Posted 2009-09-28)  CPDL #20262:        (Finale 2009)
Editor: Paul R. Marchesano (submitted 2009-09-28).   Score information: Letter, 1 page, 67 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: Original key, note values halved.

General Information

Title: Resvelons nous
Composer: Guillaume Dufay

Number of voices: 3vv   Voicing: ATB
Genre: SecularChanson

Language: French
Instruments: A cappella

First published:

Description: Although identified as a cappella, the piece can be (and most likely was) performed with instruments doubling the voices. When used, the instruments should first play or introduce the rondeau and the melody. The language is 15th century French, thus spelling and form variations exist between it and modern French.

A note on some language specifics: TANTOST: ModF 'tantôt': 'as soon as possible' (translate 'now') - also, dialectally in Normandy at least, 'tantôt' means 'this afternoon'. The intent is to communicate a desire to go with urgency-and the dialectical reference to afternoon might even indicate a subtle message to party at dusk. CUEILLIR: means 'pluck' only in the literary sense of 'plucking a flower' = picking it. Usually 'cueillir' means 'harvest' for crops etc or 'pick' for flowers. LE MAI: most likely to be a shortened reference to the 'rose de mai'

Many thanks to Dr. Damien Hall for linguistic and translation assistance!

External websites:

Original text and translations

French.png French text

Resvelons nous, resvelons, amoureux
Alons au bois tantost cueillir le may,
Et chanterons chascun un virelay,
Pour sa dame, s'en serons plus joyeux.
Alons ent bien tos au may.

English.png English translation

Let us awake, let us arise, lovers.
Let's go now to the woods to pluck the mayflower,
And we'll sing a virelai for our ladies,
We'll be the more joyful for it
Let us all go to the May!