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Source(s) du recueil :


FRENCH/ COURT-AIRES,/ With their Ditties Englished,/ Of foure and five Parts,/ TOGETHER WITH THAT/ OF THE LUTE/ Si propius fiet,/ te capient magis, & decies repetita placebunt./ Collected, Translated, Published/ By ED: FILMER, Gent:/ Dedicated to the Queene./ Gratia Regum/ Pierris tentata medis ; ne forte/ pudori/ Sit mihi Musa lyra solers, & cantor Apollo
 London, William Stansby, 1629
 4 ou 5 parties en diverses combinaisons (Cantus, Altus, Tenor, Bassus, Quintus, Triplex) et tablature de luth, en livre de table, [25] f.
 GB-Lbl/ K 2 g 6


Durosoir/ 105
 RISM B.I/ 1629.11
Ce recueil rassemble 17 airs de cour de Pierre Guédron et 2 d'Antoine Boesset, collectés par Edward Filmer qui en a traduit ou adapté en anglais les textes originaux ; il explique la difficulté et le détail de son travail dans les pièces liminaires, et donne en fin de volume les textes originaux dans leur intégralité.

La musique originale est fidèlement conservée. Le recueil est un intéressant composé des deux principales collections d'airs de cour publiés à Paris chez Pierre Ballard. Pour chaque pièce, Filmer a adjoint aux parties vocales des sources polyphoniques originales la tablature de la version pour voix et luth. Cette dernière, tirée de la grande anthologie publiée par Pierre Ballard (Airs avec la tablature de luth), est quelquefois légèrement adaptée (développement et notation in extenso de reprises) pour se calquer parfaitement à la version polyphonique, de structure généralement plus développée.

Au départ de chaque pièce figurent l'incipit littéraire du modèle français et son compositeur; le nom de Gabriel Bataille est précisé à la fin des tablatures qui lui sont attribuées d'après les titres des recueils français d'Airs avec tablature de luth (livres I-VI ; voir ces recueils) ; les autres tablatures, tirées des livres VII et VIII de la même collection, sont des auteurs eux-mêmes (non précisé par Filmer) ; au départ de trois des pièces du recueil, provenant de ballets français, figurent quelques informations sur les circonstances de création et apportent quelques éléments précis sur leur destination première.

Chaque pièce est numérotée (chiffre romain) ; le recueil n'est ni paginé, ni folioté.

Contient :
 - f. [1] [titre]
 - f. [1v] [armes royales d'Angleterre]
 - f. [2] «TO THE QUEENE. [...]», épître dédicatoire à la reine Henriette-Marie d'Angleterre, soeur de Louis XIII, signée Edward Filmer
 - f. [2v] [blanc]
 - f. [3-4] «THE PREFACE. [...]», signée E.[dward] F.[ilmer]
 - f. [4] «To the Musicall User of this Booke. [...]», avertissement non signé, probablement de Filmer ; «To my worthy Friend, Master Edward Filmer,/ on this Worke published. [...]», poème signé Ben Jonson
 [Aires :]
 [ 1] - f. [4v-5] Bright Abstract of us seaven (Pierre Guédron)
 [ 2] - f. [5v-6] At lenght heere Shee is (Pierre Guédron)
 [ 3] - f. [6v-7] Why have Thoughts conspired (Pierre Guédron)
 [ 4] - f. [7v-8] O what muster of glances (Cupids troupe of Lances !) (Pierre Guédron)
 [ 5] - f. [8v-9] With what wings can I fly (Pierre Guédron)
 [ 6] - f. [9v-10] What spell holds thee, my Sunne, from rising ? (Pierre Guédron)
 [ 7] - f. [10v-11] How was Amyntas blest (Pierre Guédron)
 [ 8] - f. [11v-12] Why, alas ! cri'd-out my Mother (Pierre Guédron)
 [ 9] - f. [12v-13] Sylvia, not long since, halfe-affrighted (Pierre Guédron)
 [10] - f. [13v-14] Willt thou, untam'd alas ! still flie, for fear of charming (Pierre Guédron)
 [11] - f. [14v-15] If key of Speach, or locke of Silence (Pierre Guédron)
 [12] - f. [15v-16] Too much wee range the waves (Pierre Guédron)
 [13] - f. [16v-17] That same little great King of harts (Pierre Guédron)
 [14] - f. [17v-18] Reason ! arme thy wrong'd hands (Antoine Boesset)
 [15] - f. [18v-19] Thou, whoe Fortune, now turn'd tender (Pierre Guédron)
 [16] - f. [19v-20] Since our round Yeare hath but one Spring (Pierre Guédron)
 [17] - f. [20v]
 et [21v] Say then ! my hard Jewell (Pierre Guédron)
 [18] - f. [21r]
 et [22r] Know, my dear Idoll Cloris ! (Antoine Boesset)
 [19] - f. [22v-23] To your sportstand delights, yee blith lasses ! (Pierre Guédron)
 - f. [23v] [double table alphabétique des «aires» en anglais et de leurs modèles français]
 - f. [23v-25v] «The Originals of the English Ditties of this Booke. [...]», textes littéraires originaux des modèles français, selon l'ordre du recueil
Pièces liminaires :


Out of Civill regard and speciall care ont to wrong Strangers, I have attempted to furnish these Forraine Compositions with a fortune equall to what they had at Home. Courtiers they were borne, (at being begot of purpose to serve in those Charabers where your Majestie had your high Beginning) and, in that Quality, have bee’n committed, by their first Publishers, to the Tutelarie Shadow of the most Crowned Branches of your thrice-Christian Stemme. My wishes are that they may not suffer in their Condition by meanes of my good Opinion of them, wich hath made mee Studie to make them Denisons of mine owne Countrie. And therefore, to preserve them in their first Degree and Safetie, I have thought meet to Arme them with the Majesticke Patronage of a Queene of their former Acquaintance, and of a fortune somewhat resembling their owne; who having nobly Favoured them in the time of their greatest Securitie amongst their Naturall and Potent friends at home, will, as is humbly hoped, resolutely undertake to Protect them now, in the time of Need, from the Affronts and Danger incident to the life af Aliens, and vouchsafe them (being now as it were Naturaliz’d for her owne Subjects, and taught the Language wherein by her nearest People shee is pray’d for) a more Princely measure of Countenance and Affection, then formely, when shee could not call them hers by so Soverainean interest.Heerein, Sacred Ladie, if it may please you, in their behalfe, to Seale with an indulgent Eye the Grant of ths my first Court-sute, they shall bee so farre from needing to envie the Domesticke Estate of their new happinesse heere abroad, will awake and stirre up some of the great Remnant of their Courtly Race to crave the Conduct of some second and more able Guide to put them in the way for the like Outlandish Adventure. This, and greater Miracles, your Grace may easily effect with the least Musicall Honour daigned at any time by your incomparable Voice unto these first-Devoted. The most harmonious Rectour of the immortall Quire instruct and perfit your Highnesse for the hearing of a Celestiall Part in the everlasting Hallelu-IAH. So prayeth,

YOUR MAJESTIES/ Thrice-humble, and thrice-obedient/ Subject



Though, in the highest times of the most Impriall Cities of the World, Literature and Musicke were counted the two Mentall Touchstones of a Gentlemann (for Wrastling was held but a Corporall one, and therfore, by the Comicke reciting the parts fit for a Gentleman, put in the last place: Fac periculum in Literis, in Musicis, in Palaestra) yet sole Scholler or Musician, unlesse elevated by Academicall Degrees, are held now but Lowe and Illiberall Conditions. So that aNihiligregie, or aNequid nimisis that which preserves such, as are hercunto addicted, in a freedome requisire to Gentilitie, which ought to bee Slave neither to Booke nor Fiddle. Farre therefore from a desire of testiving that my endevours en these kinds have soared above the pitch of mediocritie, I here expose to the users of my Naturall Tongue this small Labour, s whereby may nonly be discovered a Gentle incture of my mind in either, but a Deep die in neither of the fore-named Qualities. For, touching the Musicall part of this Booke, I have onely exercised my Judicative strenght in the Choice and Collection of the Aires, whiche is not sufficient to raise on a man the surname of Musician: and, for the Literature or Poetrie of the Ditties, I have no more then new colour’d their Forme, by changing their Language. I have not invented the subject, or Made the matter; wherein consists the maine Essence of a Poet, as being the Worke from whence he receives more properly his Denomination [citation en Grec, illisible], then from the Making of a Verse. In so much that hee that traceth a Chonicle sincerely, without any fabulous mixture, may rather be called a Versifying Historian, then a Poet; as not sufficiently shapping himselfe to the fashion of the great and ancient Masters of the Art, that first set-up the name of Poet. – Pictoribus atq. Poetis Quidlibet audens semper fuit aequa potestas; neither of them being tied to the Patterne of Truth, but left free to the Reach of Invention. Nor doe! here labour to shift-of, as ignominious, the gracefull Titles of Poet or Musician, which Persons farre higher then my selfe have accepted-of as Ornaments to their other Merits; my purpose being onely to acknowledge, that my sparing diligences and few retir’d houres employ’d these Wayes have in no wise effected, that I may, without van tie, either sue-for, or admit-of these Names, that I unfainedly gratulate to such as have purchased them with Surpassing Desert. –mediecribus esse Poetis Non-homines, non Dii, non concessere columna.

Now, for the Worke its selfe, whereunto the Muses have bee’n assistant with their double Skill (which the two-topp’d Mountaine they inhabit may bee thought to point-at). I meane Musicke and Poetrie, as I confesse that I have bee’n, generally, more taken with the Musicall part then the Poeticall; so I acknoledge to have tied my selfe more strictly to the presentation thereof (without swarving from the first publish’d Copie either in flourish or substance; then of the Other; wherein I have, sometime, suffered as well my Fant’sie as Reason to thrust mee a little from a punctuall insisting in the Steps of the Originall: upon what Motives (or per-adventure Necessitie) I leave to the likely conjectures of the judicious Comparer to find-out; having held in more workemanlike, upon welle-taken occasions, by a justifiable varying from the Phrase, without losse of the Plot and Scope of the Author, so to translate, that the Translater may be said to have some little share in the Apparell and Dresse, though not in the Bodie, of the worke, then (with a Schoole-Boyes resolution) to dare to aime no further then at such an interpretation, as may render the most exact account, that may bee, of the Syntax of the Originall. Indeed, where Poems are chosen to bee translated for no lesse then presuming selfe-conceit to straine, with new Flashes, to out-shine the primitive Beames of the Originall; or to intimate a waterish unsavorinesse in the translated Matter, by sprinkling the translation with frequent Graines of the Translaters peculiar Salt. But, where Lines are not so much turned into another Language for their owne, as for the Musickes ske that they belong-to and (in a manner) serve, I cannot absolutely conclude, but that the translater may, without the blot of insolence, carrie himselfe with a Looser regard to those Pieces of his Patterne that hee shall judge himselfe least Obliged unto. – &, quae Desperat tractata mitescere passe, relinquit.

Now, because translated Ditties and originals differ chiefly in this Preposterous Point, that, whereas the Musicall Notes are fitted to the Originals, the translations are, contrarily, to be fitted to the Musicall Notes, I have bee’n forced, by this new Taske, for the more even Accord with the Musicke, in divers Aires, to alter the naturall first Cast of the Verse, and to ordaine, in the proper place of anIambickeFoot, a dissonantTrochaicke, as more sutable to the nature of the Notes. For this cause, when the most busie Examiners shall, in some of the Ditties, find heere and thereIambickeMeeters that seeme to faulter in their P[l]ace, through the unlawfull frequencie of Trochaicke Motions, let them forbeare Censure, till they have tried them with tre Streame of the Air or Note; which, though it were blamelesly enough by the Composer adapted to the French Verse, yet, now and then, als our to make a Currant English Verse of the same Numbers to tunne, as it were, against the Biasse. The reason is, because the French syllabes, as well in Verse as Prose, are pronounced with a more Continu’d Equalitie of sound, then ours. For that Tongue admits seldome of any Tones or Intentions of the Voice (by Grammarians called Accents) unlesse at the End of the Clause, or in thepenultimsof words ending in their efoeminine. And this their Mother-pronunciation they often apply even to theLatine, and other acquired Tongues. from whence it is not unlikely, that some of them, having bee’n admonished by Strangers of this their Untunilesse, have not stucke to maintaine their dysprosodia (that I may so call it) or immodulation of the severely govern’d Syllabes of the Latine: as may appeare by thatgravely-accented or rather unaccented and indistinguish’d Piece father’d upon them Nòs-Gallì-nòn-cùràmùs-quàntìtàtèm-syllàbàrùm; erroneously thinking that way of Pronounciation to be Common to Other Tongues, which seemes Proper to their Owne; the Nerves of whose Syllabes (in Singing) neither Crampe of unnaturall correption, nor Racke of unusuall productioncan much Torture. Hence therefore it proceeds, that theFrench, when they Compose to a Dittie in their owne Language, being led rather by their free Fant’sie of Aire (wherein many of them doe naturally excell) then by any Strict and Artificiall scanning of the Line, by which they Buikd, doe often, by disroportion’d Musicall Quantities, invert the naturall Stroke of a Verse, applying to the place of an Iambicke Foot, such Modulation as Jumps rather with a Trochay. And this without much violence to their Poems, since the Disorder and Confusion ofmetricallFeet ein their Verse is as Inoffensive as Indiscernible, by reason, as is afor said, of the Even Pronunciation of Their Tongue: whereas Ours, more frequent and lively in Accenting allpolysyllabes, bewrayes presently to the Eare, by Our best Measure, the Accent, the Contrarietie betweene the Trochay in French, lights upon an Iambicke in English, is strangely Wrests the relucting Syllabes from their genuine Pronunciation, and changes the Friendly and Equall Conspiring, that ought to be betweene Word and Tune, into Injurious Contradiction; which unscemely unseemely Variance often breakes forth into so lowd aCacophonie, that, thereby, the one seemes to doe no lesse then Revile the other. In respect whereof, the intent of this Booke being more to please the Judicious Hearer of the Tunes, then the Criticall reader of the Lines, I have chosen rather, wittingly, to tolerate a little roughnesse in the Fluencie of some of the Verses, thereby the lesse to disrellish the Musicke, then, by an over-curious straining to please in that Part of the worke that concernes my selfe,neglect the better Part, the prayse whereof I am farre from colour of pretending the least Right unto. Yet herein also I dare not avouch to have bee’n so anxious an Observer of the Lawes of the Note in all places, as to distemper the Verse upon every flight Becke thereof, but, where I have thought the Lightnesse of thedissonanciemight the most easily bee Digested by Good Eares, I have sometimes permitted the Meeters to March forward with their most decent Steps, without Respect or Obeisance to the Musicall Measure discover’d in the Face of the Note, to the end that the Poeticall Reader might find the lesse whereat to Trip or be Offended; Having endeavoured, in this Doubtfull and Distracting Case, to make the Worke as little Scandalous as I could, either to the Grammaticall or Musicall Peruser.

In conclusion; that I may not too much Disproportion this small Building, by making the Porch of Preface too Bigge to correspond with the Littel Roomes within, my moderate desires are, that my Home hearted unaffecting Countrie-men, Favourers and Practizers of Musicke, would courteously entertaine this Recopilation as a Worke naturaliz’d chiefly for their sakes; and, whereas our Tailors Shops and Dancing-schooles have bee’n so employ’d in French Imitations, that our more deserving Masters of Musicke might sometimes, for pleasing Novelties sake, daigne to repaire hither for Life of Aire worthy of their more noble Arts Emulation. And, as for some Roving Spirits, whose Transitorie View ofFrancemay have magnified them with the Scumme onely and Froathie top of the French Tongue, without diving into the substantiall Depht by a more piercing diligence therein, I am patiently provided to heare them Counterblast these my Endeavours with these Airie Position: That it is impossible that any Words butFrenchshouldever Become theLooverAires (though they themselves, besides understanding them but to halves, pronounce them to a naturallFrenchEare as Misbecomingly as ever Crude Forrainer was heard to sing anEnglishBallet) such is the aptnesse of halfe-digested Noveltie to breed in the Stomackes of our yong Countrie-men a Queasie despising of the almost-marchlesse, Abilities of their owne Language. But, because I have learn’d among People of sound Tasts, that, Contra Gustus no ay que disputar; There is no disputing against Tasts, I will abstaine to play the ignorant Logician by attempting to raise Arguments on a Theme held Improbable; but rather, somewhat to gratifie their depraved Palates, have annexed theFrenchDitties in the end of the Booke; by the same meanes testifying, to the skilfull in both Tongues, my integritie (as farre as is formerly prossessed) in their Translations. Having hazarded to breake the yce to abler pennes, whose happier faculties in this kind may hereafter incite them, with some more rich English lining of other French pieces of this Musicall stuffe, to venture-for and winne the applause of my indegenerating Countriemen. Whose present acceptance of the homely threed here prepared to measure these first withall, shall fortifie mee against the future assaults of repentance.

E. F. ”

“To the Musicall User of this Booke.

Note that the usuall English measure of Songs (which is commonly by Sem-briefs or Minoms) cannot be applied to diverse of the French Aires. Where therefore you shall find an odde Crotchet in the Aire, measure the whole Aire by Crotchets; and, where an odde Minom, by Minoms. Note also that theTablature to each Aire hath not bee’n set by the Author of the Aire, but some of them by Gabriel Bataille, a French-man likewise. I have therefore put his name to those Lute-parts that were not Composed by the Authors themsealves of the Aires, to the intent that each man may bee duely reputed-of according to his Deserving. The single Letter before the beginning of the Lute-part gives the Tune that the singing Part, which is over it, begins-in. In those Aires, whose straines are to be sung twice over, you shall find the ending Note to bee twice set downe. Observe therefore that if, in this case, the first straine be to be repeated, you sing, the first time, the first of these Notes onely, and the second, the second onely; but, in the repetition of the last straine, you must, contrarily, sing the last Note (that stands without the barre) first, and that, which stands within the barre with the marke of Conclusion over the head, last. Other things (as namely the change of Time shew’n by Arithmeticall figures, or whatscever else may seeme new). I suppose that such, as have attained but to a mediocritie of Skill in Musicke, will, of themsealves, quickly conceive.”

“To my worthy Friend, Master Edward Filmer,/ on this Worke published.

What charming Peales are these,

That, while they bind the senses, doe to please?

Of two, the choicest Paire of Mans delights,

Musique and Poesie :

French Aire and English Verse here Wedded lie.

Who did this Knot compose,

Againe hath brought the Lillie to the Rose,

And, with their Chained dance,

Recelebrates the joyfull March with France.

They are a Schoole to win

The faire French Daughter to learne English in;

And, graced with her song,

To make the Language sweet upon her tongue.

Ben: Jonson.”

Autre exemplaire :
 - GB-Och/

Dépouillement (sigle RISM/ cote)

GB-Lbl/ K 2 g 6



Note(s) lieu(x)

LONDRES : ville d'édition de la source musicale A



Note(s) date(s)

1629 : édition source musicale A

Nom(s) cité(s)



HENRIETTE-MARIE DE FRANCE, reine d'Angleterre et d'Irlande


FILMER, Edward

Référence(s) bibliographique(s) :

CMBV/ ARC GUED 22 [GB-Lbl/ K 2 g 6]

Informations sur la notice :

Notice créée par Thomas Leconte (décembre 2003).

Date de référence :

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