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La Cantiléne de Sainte Eulalie

Brigitte L.M. Bauer and Jonathan Slocum

This page contains a text in Old French with a modern English translation. This particular text and its translation are extracted from a lesson in the Early Indo-European Online series, where one may find detailed information about this text (see the Table of Contents page for Old French Online in EIEOL), and general information about the Old French language and its speakers' culture.

La Cantiléne de Sainte Eulalie

Buona pulcella fut Eulalia,
Bel auret corps, bellezour anima.

Voldrent la veintre li Deo inimi,
Voldrent la faire diaule servir.

Elle no'nt eskoltet les mals conselliers
Qu'elle Deo raneiet chi maent sus en ciel.

Ne por or ned argent ne paramenz,
Por manatce regiel ne preiement,
Niule cose non la pouret omque pleier,
La polle sempre non amast lo Deo menestier.

E por o fut presentede Maximiien,
Chi rex eret a cels dis soure pagiens.

Il li enortet, dont lei nonque chielt,
Qued elle fuiet lo nom christiien
Ell'ent aduret lo suon element.

Melz sostendreiet les empedementz
Qu'elle perdesse sa virginitét.
Por os furet morte a grand honestét.

Enz enl fou la getterent, com arde tost.
Elle colpes non auret, por o nos coist.
A czo nos voldret concreidre li rex pagiens;
Ad une spede li roveret tolir lo chief.

La domnizelle celle kose non contredist:
Volt lo seule lazsier, si ruovet Krist.
In figure de colomb volat a ciel.

Tuit oram que por nos degnet preier
Qued auuisset de nos Christus mercit
Post la mort et a lui nos laist venir
Par souue clementia


Eulalia was a good girl,
She had a beautiful body and an even more beautiful soul.
The enemies of God wanted to overcome her,
They wanted to make her serve the devil.
She does not listen to the mean men who advise
That she abjure God, who lives right up in heaven.
Not for gold, nor money, nor precious objects,
Not because of royal menaces or begging,
Not one thing could ever make her yield
From continuously loving God's service.
And for this reason she was brought before Maximian,
Who in those days was king over the pagans.
He urges her, but she is never interested,
That she abandon the name of christian
And subsequently worship his god.
She would rather undergo persecution
Than lose her spiritual purity.
For these reasons she died in great honor.
They threw her into the fire so that she would burn quickly.
She had no sins, for this reason she did not burn.
The pagan king did not want to give in to this;
He ordered her head to be cut off with a sword.
The girl did not oppose that idea:
She wants to abandon earthly life, and she calls upon Christ.
In the form of a dove she flew to heaven.
Let us all pray that she will deign to pray for us
That Christ may have mercy on us
And may allow us to come to Him after death
Through His grace.

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