Ballade of the ladies of bygone times

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François Villon. Federico Cantu
Ballade des dames du temps jadis

Written by

François Villon in 1461,

after his release under

an amnesty and before

a new arrest

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The Lady and the Unicorn. Touch
Dictes-moy où, n’en quel pays

Tell me where,

or in what land

is Flora, the lovely Roman,

or Archipiades, or Thaïs,

who was her first cousin;

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The Lady and the Unicorn. Taste
Echo, parlant quand bruyt

or Echo, replying

whenever called

across river or pool,

and whose beauty

was more than human?

But where are

the snows of yesteryear?

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The Lady and the Unicorn. Smell
Où est la très sage Heloïs

Where is that

brilliant lady Heloise,

for whose sake

Peter Abelard was

castrated and became

a monk at Saint-Denis?

He suffered that misfortune

because of his love for her.

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The Lady and the Unicorn. Hearing
Semblablement, où est la royne

And where is

that queen who

ordered that Buridan

be thrown into

the Seine in a sack?

But where are

the snows of yesteryear?

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The Lady and the Unicorn. Sight
La royne Blanche comme lis

Queen Blanche,

white as a lily,

who sang with

a siren’s voice;

Big-footed Bertha,

Beatrice, Alice,

Arembourg who

ruled over Maine;

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The Lady and the Unicorn. My one desire
Et Jehanne, la bonne Lorraine

And Joan, the good

maiden of Lorraine

who was burned by

the English at Rouen —

where are they, where,

O sovereign Virgin?

But where are

the snows of yesteryear?

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Dame Montmartre. Unknown master
Prince, n'enquerez de sepmaine

Prince, do not ask

in a week where

they are, or in a year.

The only answer you

will get is this refrain:

But where are

the snows of yesteryear?