Someone just quoted me a bit of Clément Marot I didn’t know (OK, let’s be honest: I’d didn’t even know Marot):
En tant qu’Ouy et Nenny se dira,
Par l’univers le monde me lira.
Which Leigh Hunt (The Companion, 1828) translates as:
As long as Love says Yes and No,
The universe shall read Marot.
More info on les langues d’oc, d’oïl, de sí, d’ok ;-) here.
Elsewhere in the same volume, a lovely translation of a verse from Mr Chapelle’s Trip to Languedoc and Provence (no original available):
Dame Richesse on hir honde gan lede
A yong man full of pmelyhede,
That she best loved of ony thing;
His lust was mych in housholding.
In clothyng was he ful fetys,
And loved to have well hors of prys.
He wende to have reproved be
Of theft or moordre, if that he
Hadde in his stable an hakeney.
Upon a hackney he came jumbling,
Trotting alternately and stumbling.
His riding-coat and bonnet both,
Not satisfied with being cloth,
Were furr’d with bear-skin–think of that–
And he was hot, and he was fat.
Unbutton’d all, his horse in froth,
His whole apparel wild and wroth,
He seem’d, along his headlong course,
Like Icarus tumbled on a horse.
The translator (I’m assuming it’s Mr Hunt, not having checked) writes:
I only wish it were as easy for my amount of English to give as true an idea of the lightness and grace of the original, as it is to dispense with these chains of its volatility [ie its rhyming scheme]. Our language on such occasions is not accustomed to need restraint, but abandonment. In our lightest moments we have more of the bee than the butterfly. We lag in the sunshine; are for being equally pungent and useful; and are apt to degenerate into the drone.
Maybe this was true in the 1820s.
- Regional government doesn't have to be a hysterical disaster
Georges Frêche in Languedoc-Roussillon: If possible with Paris, if necessary without Paris, but never against Paris.
- Whatever happened to romance?
I’ve finally figured out why the mountain bike was invented: to keep this lot in order when they head off-piste in
- Will Kemp Morris-danced from London to Norwich
But unfortunately he probably won’t figure in the results of the Singing Organ-Grinder’s historical explorations into English popular song.
- The Calathumpian Band and its horse-fiddle, great trombone and gyastacutas
Slightly off-topic, but irresistible, from Henry Hiram Riley‘s pseudo-ethnography, Puddleford and its people (New York, 1854): Another amusement, frequent in the country,
- Ya en los nidos de antaño no hay pájaros ocaño
An elderly Andalusian’s way of saying “this year” may constitute early warning of global (or at least Peninsular) cataclysm, perhaps a