Il fait bon aimer l'oiselet (Antoine de Févin)

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  • (Posted 2003-10-06)  CPDL #05618:      (MuP)
Editor: Vincent Carpentier (submitted 2003-10-06).   Score information: A4, 2 pages, 232 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes:

General Information

Title: Il fait bon aimer l'oiselet
Composer: Antoine de Févin

Number of voices: 3vv   Voicing: ATB
Genre: SecularChanson

Language: French
Instruments: A cappella

First published:
Description: Alfred Delvau's Dictionnaire érotique moderne (1864) indicates that rossignol ("nightingale") was sometimes used in Renaissance poetry as a metaphor for the male sexual organ. That is clearly the intent in this chanson.

External websites:

Original text and translations

French.png French text

Il fait bon aimer l’oiselet
Qui chante par nature
Ce mois de mai comment qu’il soit
Tant comme la nuit dure.

Il fait bon écouter son chant
Plus que nul autre en bonne foi
Car il réjouit maint amant,
Je le sais bien quand est à moi.

Il s’appelle rossignolet
Qui met toute sa cure
À chanter de son chant parfait,
Aussi, c’est sa nature.

English.png English translation

We all should love the little bird
Whose song is so steadfast
This month of May it can be heard
As long as night may last.

It’s good to hearken to its call
More than any ‘pon my word
It gives joy to one and all,
Or so from mine can be inferred.

It’s called a nightingale I’ve heard
And you know it’s unsurpassed
At singing perfectly when stirred,
That’s its job, since days long past.

Translation by Thomas Daughton