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 You are here: Home > MIDI music! > Christmas carols from Provence > lyrics Quand la miejo-nue sounavo (When midnight was ringing). Wednesday February 28th 2024, Saint Romain. 

Quand la miejo-nue sounavo
(When midnight was ringing)
Lyrics and music by Nicolas Saboly, known as Micoulau Sabòli. Traditional from Provence.
Tune Iéu n’aviéu uno chambriero.

Nicolas Saboly has proposed two versions for this Christmas carol, whose first one is on familiar tune Iéu n’aviéu uno chambriero (Me I had a maidservant).

This Christmas carol has been published on 1672 in the 6th book. It appears with number 44 in the Fr. Seguin’s new edition.

1st verse
Quand la mièjo-nue sounavo,
Ai sauta dóu liech au sòu;
Ai vist un bèl ange que cantavo
Milo fes pu dous qu’un roussignòu.
 When midnight was ringing,
I’ve jump down from the bed to the ground;
I’ve seen a beautiful angel singing
One thousand sweeter than a nightingale.

2nd verse
Pèr de saut e de cambado,
N’ai fa mai que noun poudiéu,
Lorsque m’a parla d’uno acouchado
Qu’avié mes au jour lou Fiéu de Diéu.
 With jumps and strides,
I’ve done more than I could,
As he told me a new mother
That he gave birth to God’s Child.

3rd verse
Lei mastin dóu vesinage
Se soun toutes atroupa;
N’avien jamai vist aquéu visage,
Se soun tout-d’un-cop mes à japa.
 The likely lads (1) in the neighbourhood
Gathered together;
They had never seen this face,
They suddenly started to bark.

4th verse
Lei móutoun, agnèu e fedo,
Se soun tous mes à bela;
Se n’i’aguèsse gis agu de cledo,
S’en sarien ana de çà, de là!
 Sheep, lambs and ewes,
All began to bleat;
If it was not any fence,
They would go here and there!

5th verse
Lei pastre dessus la paio
Dourmien coume de soucas;
Quand an ausi lou bru dei sounaio,
An cresegu qu’èro lou souiras.
 The shepherds on straw
Were sleeping as stumps;
When they heard the noise of beasts’ bells,
They have believed it was the wolf (2).

6th verse
Aquéu bèl ange anounçavo
Proun de causos à la fes;
Mai aquelo pas que publicavo
Dèu pas èstre pèr leis Olandés.
 This nice angel was announcing
A lot of things at same time;
But the one he didn’t published
He isn’t in favour for the Dutch.

7th verse
Soun de gènt plen d’arrouganço,
Que noun an ni fe ni lèi;
Diéu benisse leis armo de Franço!
Saran lèu sout lou poudé dóu Rèi.
 They are people full of arrogance,
Fearing neither God nor man;
God bless weapons of France!
They will quickly be under king’s power.

8th verse
S’èron de gènt resounable,
Vendrien sèns èstre envita:
Trouvarien dins un petit estable
La lumiero emai la verita.
 If they were reasonable people,
They would come without being asked:
They would find in a little cowshed
The light with the truth.

1. Mastin or matèin: likely lad, cunning, crafty, sly, wily...
2. Lou souiras: hideous, vile (pejorative from sus, pig). Abusive term by which shepherds designate the wolf.

• Recueil des noëls composés en langue provençale (Collection of Christmas carols composed in Provençal language), reprint Fr. Seguin, printer and bookseller, Avignon, 1856, p. 53-54.


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