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 You are here: Home > MIDI music! > Popular songs > lyrics Li Baumeta (The Baumettes). Tuesday September 17th 2019, Saint Robert Bellarmine. 

Li Baumeta listen the Midi file for this traditional music tune score of this traditional tune
(The Baumettes)
Nissart lyrics by (Bernard ?) Martin-Saytour. Traditional from County of Nice.

The French original lyrics by René d’Helbingue are not reproduced here. The text given corresponds to the literal translation from the version in Nissart.

A bucolic description of the everyday life, in this Baumettes (1) suburb. Here after, the 8 more frequently publicated verses.

1st verse        
À li Baumeta
Si respir’un bouon èr,
À li Baumeta
Noun li a jamai d’iver.
Trouvas palai, jardin,
Guingueta, de bouon vin.
De poulidi filheta
Filon sus lou camin
La coulougneta !
 In the Baumettes suburb
One can breathe a good air,
In the Baumettes
There is never winter.
You find palaces, gardens,
Open-air cafés, good wine.
Polite (2) little girls
Spin while walking
The distaff!

2nd verse        
Au mes de Flora,
O sia en lou printèmp,
Au mes de Flora
Viron lou mai souvènt.
Caduna va sautà,
Caduna va ballà,
Deguna noun descouora ;
N’en vouolon profità,
Messié e nouòra.
 During the month of Flora (3),
Or during spring,
During the month of Flora
They turn often [around] the May-tree.
Every one of the girls goes and jump,
Each one of the girls goes and dance,
No girl discourages herself;
They want to make the most,
Gentlemen (fathers-in-law) and daughters-in-law.

3rd verse        
Aqui si trova
De pèu e de favoun ;
Aqui si trova
Toumetta e saucissoun.
E per pescà de pèi,
La mar es souta l’uèlh,
Au ban de Terra-Nova
Lu merlan soun tre bei,
Fes-n’en la prova.
 Here one finds
Peas and broad beans;
Here one finds
Cheese and sausage.
And for fishing,
The sea is right in front of eyes,
At the Grand Banks of Newfoundland,
Whiting are very beautiful,
Try out.

4th verse        
Qu es que devina
Aquela qu’aimi iéu ?
Qu es que devina ?
Escoutas, lou vous diéu :
A de jupoun tout blanc,
Boutoun d’or au mitan,
Bourdura cremesina ;
Dei bouosc, de prat e camp
Es la regina.
 Who guess
[Who is] the one I love?
Who guess?
Listen, I say it to you:
She wears white underskirt,
Golden button in the middle,
Of the woods, meadows and fields
She is the queen.

5th verse        
Dès oura picon,
Fau virà lu taloun.
Dès oura picon,
Fau regagnà maioun.
Van trià lu couhin,
Li cìmia au traversin,
E se li niera piton,
Graton fin au matin
E mai noun quiton.
 Ten o’clock rings,
It is necessary to turn on one’s heel.
Ten o’clock rings,
It is necessary to go back home.
They go and pick over (hunt) the craneflies,
The bedbugs in the bolster,
And if the fleas bite (4),
They scratch themselves up to the morning
And never abandon.

6th verse        
Lou matin, calon
E si venon poustà,
Lou matin, calon,
Si venon assetà.
Cerieia, pruna e poun
Jemplon lou bourdigoun.
Veguessias couma embalon !
Finda lu merilhoun
Entié s’avalon !
 In the morning, they go down
And come to take up position,
In the morning, they go down,
They come and seat.
Cherries, plums and apples
Fill up the crawl (5).
If you could see how they “pack up”!
Even the pit
They swallow!

7th verse        
Su cada planta
Nidon lu passeroun,
Su cada planta
Audès lou siéu jargoun ;
Merlou e roussignòu,
La calàndra, que vòu
Imità coura canta,
Fa toute cenque pòu
Ma noun s’en vanta.
 On each plant
Nest the sparrows,
On each plant
Hear their gibberish;
Blackbird and nightingale,
The lark, who wants
To imitate [them] when it sings,
Do all it cans
But doesn’t boast.

8th verse        
La merenjaina
Farcida esta bèn,
La merenjaina,
L’archicota tambèn ;
Ma pèr emplun li fòu
D’oli, de froumai, d’òu
Embé d’espècia fina,
Verdura, aietoun nòu,
Crousta en farina !
 The aubergine
Stuffed is good,
The aubergine,
The artichoke also;
But for [the] stuff it is needed
Oil, cheese, eggs
With fine spices,
Greenery, spring garlic,
Crust in flour!

Jean-Baptiste Toselli (see below Bibliography) has published the 25 following verses:

verses A, B, C: see above n° 1, 2, 3.

verse D        
Gioinome e fia
Aimon touplen l’oudou,
Gioinome e fia
Aimon touplen li flou ;
Tau fia un tulipan
Préféra avè davan,
Tau rosa au rosié bria
Che lou giove en passan
Se poù la pia.
 Young boys and young girls
Like very much the fragrance,
Young boys and young girls
Like very much the flowers;
Such a girl, a tulip
She prefers have before,
Such [a] rose on the rosebush glistens
That the young boy, passing,
Can pick up.

verse E: see above n° 4.

verse F        
Flora fa plassa
E rientra l’estieù,
Flora fa plassa,
Escoutàs sen che dieu :
D’uni si van bagnà,
D’autre van calignà,
E un pescadou che passe
Di, sensa malignà :
« Buon proun vou fasse. »
 Flora leave the place
And comes summer,
Flora leave the place,
Listen what I say:
Someones go and bathe,
Other ones go and flirt,
And a fisherman passing
Says, without thinking doing wrong:
“Enjoy the most of life!”

verses G, H: see above n° 5, 6.

verse I        
Lou pei abonda
E se lou gibiè non,
Lou pei abonda
E avès poulas, pigion,
Gallina, dindoneu,
Lou mouton, lou vudeu,
Trouvàs, s’anàs per ronda,
Limassa e cantareu
En cada bonda.
 Fish is abundant
And if game doesn’t,
Fish is abundant
And you have pullets, pigeons,
Hens, turkeys,
Sheep, calves,
You can find, if you go by lanes,
Snails and small snails (6)
In each edge (7).

verse J        
La frucia veira
Non nen fa plus beson,
La frucia veira
Non es plus de seson ;
Avès li figa-flou,
Verdala e abicou,
Belouna e doùcueira,
Che ieu aimi surtou
Cour fan la seira.
 Fruits from the previous crop
Make no more need,
Fruits from the previous crop
Are no more seasonal;
You have “flower-fig”,
The verdala and the abicò,
The belouna and the doùcueira (8),
I prefer particularly
When they look like mistlethrush.

verse K        
Pomona arriva,
La frucia farà fen.
Pomona arriva
E sen alasseren ;
De raïn mouscateu
Iempleren lu budeu,
Mi fa già fà saliva,
Bella seson, fai leu,
Sies fuor tardiva.
 Pomona (9) is coming,
Fruits will make hay.
Pomona is coming
And we will grow tired.
With muscat grape
We will fill our entrails,
[This] makes already my mouth water,
Beautiful season, hurry up!
You are greatly late.

verse L        
Suorba, aserola
Son de tapa pertus.
Suorba, aserola
Fan anà embau fus.
Bernissoù negre e blan,
Pera de buon cristian
E pesseghe de cuola
Son de frui buoi e san,
Suivès l’escola.
 Sorbs, berries
Are space-fillers.
Sorbs, berries
Make going with the spindle.
The bernissoù (10) black and white,
The “good-christian” pears
And the peaches from the hills
Are good and wholesome fruits,
Follow the example.

verse M        
Li a de bouscarla,
Piola e fournighié,
Li a de bouscarla
En tout lou cartié.
Ma se ven regalas,
Lu fou ciausì ben gras,
Avè la saladetta
Lesta, cour lu levas
Da la brocetta.
 There are warblers,
Bifasciated larks and ants’ nests,
There are warblers
In the whole suburb.
But if you have a feast of them,
You have to choose them well fatty,
With the small salad
Ready, when you remove them
From the skewer.

verse N: see above n° 7.

verse O        
La matinada
Cu cassa emb’au fusieu,
La matinada
Cu embe l’arret de fieu,
Cu embe l’aubre en man
Percourre toui lu cian.
Cu va embe la viscada,
Ma ’s rar pià en passan
Una coupada.
 In the morning
Everyone goes huntil with the shotgun,
In the morning
One with the thread snare (11),
One with the tree (12) in his hands,
They go all over the fields.
One with the birdlime-twig,
But it’s rare to catch while passing
A skylark.

verse P        
Li a cu va tendre
L’esperença ai rigau,
Li a cu va tendre
De las ai animau :
Si cassa au trabuquet,
Au furet, au falquet,
Ma ni a che non si tiron
Che cour dintre un bousquet
Si retiron.
 There is the one who is going to set
The pitch (13) to robins,
There is the one who is going to set
Nooses to animals:
It’s hunted with bird-trap,
With ferret, with young hawk,
But there are which can be shot
Only when, in a bush,
They withdraw.

verse Q        
Una serventa,
E la conouissi ieu,
Una serventa
Casset un merlo vieu ;
Despì che lou piet,
Despì che l’emaillet,
Li arrive che plante
Voù, dau sera au matin,
Che tougiou cante.
 A maidservant,
And I know her,
A maidservant
Has hunted a living blackbird;
Since she has caught it,
Since she has stuffed it,
She sometimes stops,
She wants, from evenig to morning,
That always it sings.

verse R        
O che riada !
Gianin va visità,
O che riada !
Una leca ch’avia fa :
Aussa plan lou malon,
Crès pià un passeron,
La man resta enviscada,
La sente e di : « N’hai pron,
N’hai fa giornada. »
 Oh, what a laugh!
Johnny is going to inspect,
Oh, what a laugh!
A trap he has made:
He slowly lifts the briquet,
Thinks to catch a passerine,
His hand gets sticky,
He feels it and says: “I’ve had enough,
I’ve put my day’s work.”

verse S        
Laissen la cassa,
Lu autis gros e picion,
Laissen la cassa,
Li tana e lu bouisson ;
Ientren en lu giardin,
Veiren lou daissemin,
Flou, frui de touta rassa
D’audou, de gust fin
Migliou ch’en plassa.
 Let’s leave hunting,
Implements big and small,
Let’s leave hunting,
Burrows and bushes;
Let’s enter in the gardens,
We will see jasmine,
Flowers, fruits of all kinds
Of fragrances, of fine tastes
Better than on the [market] square.

verse T        
Veiren de cardo,
Faioù e cougourdon,
Veiren de cardo,
D’espargo e de pebron ;
Caüles, raba, naveu,
De toumati a batèu,
Seba, ensien sauvage,
Cougombre e gnif beu,
Salada a rage.
 We will see cardoons,
Beans and “small gourds”,
We will see cardoons,
Asparaguses and sweet peppers;
Cabbages, turnips, radishes,
Tomatoes in plenty,
Onions, (...),
Cucumbers and beautiful carrots,
Neglected salads.

verse U: see above n° 8.

verse V        
Parlen doù puorre
Che si cuei sensa fuec,
Parlen doù puorre
Devinas en che luec :
Doù rifuò che sen fa,
Coma l’accomodà ?
Lou sabi da ma suore
Di ch’en lou pissalà
Conven che muore.
 Let’s speak about pork
Which is cooked without fire,
Let’s speak about pork
Guess in what place:
Of radish which does care,
How to prepare it?
I know that from my sister.
She says that, in anchovy paste,
It is proper for it to die.

verse W        
Can lou Nor souffla
Rampounciou e spinas,
Can lou Nor souffla
Si foù soufflà lou nas.
De radicia souven,
De blea pou e ren,
S’adona a la tantifla
Acheu ch’es sensa argen
Per mettre gnifla.
 When north [wind] blows
Biting and piercing,
When north [wind] blows
We need to blow the nose.
With salsifies often,
With Swiss chards little and nothing,
He devotes himself to potato
The one who has no money
To put [into] the fatty cheek.

verse X        
Belli Baumetta,
Sies un picion Paris ;
Belli Baumetta
Sies un beù paradis.
Angles, Russo, Alleman
Da vou trovoun buon pan,
Buon vin en li bouteta,
Un clima dous e san,
Un suol ch’alleta.
 Beautiful Baumettes,
You are a little Paris;
Beautiful Baumettes
You are a nice paradise.
The English, Russians, Germans,
By you find good bread,
Good wine in the bottles,
A climate mild and healthy,
A soil that bewitches (14).

verse Y        
O Pier d’Arena,
Lu vuostre enfan, si sau,
O Pier d’Arena,
Non soffron degun mau ;
Mantenelu gagliar,
Fes abondà la mar,
E vou rendes, Elena,
Lu vuostre urous doù par
E sensa pena.
 Oh Peter of Arene,
Your children, we know,
Oh Peter of Arene,
Don’t suffer from any harm;
Keep them nimble,
Make the sea to be abundant,
And you, Helen (15), make
Yours happy
And painless.

1. This Nice west located suburb is so called according to bauma (diminutive baumeta), cave, cavern.
2. Pleasant, welcoming, pretty; see Lou Tint dòu moulin or La Rouseta de Nanoun.
3. Flora: Italic goddess of Flowers and Gardens, in honour of whom were celebrated the floralies (“flower show”); here, the spring.
4. Pità: to peck at, to rise to the bait, to snap up...
5. From Provençal bourdigo, “enclosure made of hurdles, on the sea side, to catch or keep fish” (according to Larousse). Here, in a figurative meaning: paunch, potbelly.
6. Cantarèu or tapé: small white snail, frequent in the olive groves.
7. Bonda: the edge overhanging the lower faissa (terrace) of a soil.
8. Abicò, belouna, doùcueira, verdala: varieties of figs. The “bellone” is black and of great repute.
9. Pomona: Greek goddess of Flowers and Gardens.
10. Bernissoù: an other variety of figs.
11. Arret or aret: a kind of bird-catcher snare (from Latin rete). See the expression: “to ensnare somebody”.
12. Aubre: here, a small tree (natural or artificial) whose branches are fitted with birdlime-twigs.
13. Esperença: pitch or tar, used on birdlime-twig to catch birds.
14. Alletà or aletà: to allure, to bewitch, to entice, to get round, to lead on, to tempt, to wheedle... (from Latin alleciare).
15. Pier d’Arena, Elena: Peter of Arène, and Helen, an allusion to the neighbouring suburbs of the Baumettes.

     • Delrieu (Georges), Anthologie de la chanson niçoise (Anthology of the Song from Nice), Nice, publisher Delrieu & Co, 1960, p. 80-81.
     • Tosan (Albert), Princivalle (Gaël) and d’Hulster (Frédéric), Anthologie de la chanson du comté de Nice (Anthology of the Song from County of Nice), Nice, Serre publisher, series “Encyclopædia niciensis – Patrimoine régional”, volume III, 2001, p. 36-37.
     • Toselli (Jean-Baptiste), Rapport d’une conversation sur le dialecte niçois, Nice, Ch. Cauvin, 1864, p. 120-122.
     • revue Nice historique, Nice, n° 9, 1907, p. 141.

     • Collectage, Nissa vielha, réalisation Nux vomica.


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