Thursday, September 11, 2008

A bit of insight on current events from the Montpellier Codex

Here's a bit of 13th-century wisdom, brought to virtual life by Anonymous 4:

Ne sai, que je die,
tant voi vilanie
et orgueil et felonie
monter en haut pris.
Toute cortoisie
s'en est si fouie
qu'en tout ce siecle n'a mie
de bons dis;
quar ypocrisie
et avarice, s'amie,
les ont si seurpris,
ceus qui plus ont pris.
Joie et compaignie
tienent a folie,
mes en derriere font pis!

I do not know what to say
I see so much villainy
and pride and evil
gaining high esteem.
Courtesy has utterly fled
before them so that in
the whole world there is
no more noble speech;
for Hypocrisy
and her friend Avarice
have captured those who are most prized.
They consider joy and fellowship
to be foolishness,
and behind one's back they do even worse!

From this recording of music from the Montpellier Codex


Crayons said...

Wonderful. I sang Early Music in the south of France -- in Montpellier actually. I am savoring your posts in these three blogs.

I really enjoyed reading your list of books and films and passions. What a great experience for me to find a blog with substance, if you know what I mean.

I was a cellist (up to the age of 19), and I am also Sephardic, and I live within driving distance of the concert. Thank you for writing the piece. I can't wait.

Elaine Fine said...

How absolutely wonderful! I imagined from your beautiful blog that you were a true Renaissance woman, and am thrilled to know that you are a Medieval and Sephardic woman too! I hope you enjoy the concert. I am sad that I won't be able to be there, but I'm glad that you will be able serve as a pair of friendly eyes and ears.