,until he forgets to fly and plummets down, for the sheer delight which goes to his heart,

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Bernart de Ventadorn, Troubadour song, “Can vei la”
additional performance (Emmanuel Bouquey)

Medieval dance – Estampie (Arany Zoltan) –

Setting and Context
Today’s romantic love tradition stems from the great art and courtly love, or chivalry, culture created in the south of France by troubadours that arose around the time of first Crusades, from the 1100s into almost 1300s.
Watch this documentary to learn about Troubadours, their time, their role and music
Trail of the Troubadours – complete (28:37) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J23ZYkIhVJw
Additional resource:
Chapter 1, Episode 5 – The Troubadours & Courtly Love (23:30)

Troubadour Music and Bernart de Ventadorn
Music of troubadours is the only secular repertoire we have remaining from the Middle Ages. Troubadours were knights, aristocratic poets, composers and performers who used vernacular (local language) in their art, not Latin language of the
church.
Bernart de Ventadorn (c. 1130- c. 1200), Troubadour song, “Can vei la”

additional performance (Emmanuel Bouquey)
About Bernart de Ventadorn:
GW1 – Bernart de Ventadorn (15:30)

Text translation (first two stanzas):
When I see the lark beat his wings for joy against the sun’s ray
,until he forgets to fly and plummets down,
for the sheer delight which goes to his heart,
alas, great envy comes to me of those whom I see filled with happiness,
and I marvel that my heart does not instantly melt from desire.
Alas, I thought I knew so much about love,
and really I know so little,
for I cannot keep myself from loving her from whom I shall have no favor.
She has stolen from me my heart, myself, herself,
and all the world.When she took herself from me,
she left me nothing but desire and a longing heart.
Text:
Cuando veo a la alondra mover
de alegría sus alas contra el rayo de sol,
y se desvanece y se deja caer
por la dulzura que le llega al corazón,
¡ay!, me entra una envidia tan grande
de cualquiera que vea gozoso,
que me maravillo de que al momento
el corazón no se funda de deseo.
¡Ay de mi!, creía saber mucho
de amor,
¡y sé tan poco!,
pues no me puedo abstener de amar
a aquella de quien nunca obtendré
ventaja.
Me ha robado el corazón, me ha
robado a mí,
y a sí misma y a todo el mundo;
y cuando me privó de ella no me dejó
nada más que deseo y corazón
anheloso.
Important elements of the troubadour songs:
– unattainable lady
– melody and lute accompaniment
– topics – love, weather, crusades
Find a troubadour and a recording of one song by that troubadour.
Write an essay about the troubadour, this song, the elements of the chivalry you can find in the text and your thoughts about the music.

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