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Avril est de retour

Language: French (Français)

Avril est de retour,
La première des roses,
De ses lèvres mi-closes,
Rit au premier beau jour,
La terre bien heureuse
S'ouvre et s'épanouit ;
Tout aime, tout jouit.
Hélas! j'ai dans le coeur une tristesse affreuse.

Les buveurs en gaîté, 
Dans leurs chansons vermeilles,
Célèbrent sous les treilles
Le vin et la beauté ;
La musique joyeuse,
Avec leur rire clair
S'éparpille dans l'air.
Hélas! j'ai dans le coeur une tristesse affreuse.

En [déshabillés blancs]1
Les jeunes demoiselles
S'en vont sous les tonnelles
Au bras de leur [galants]2 ;
La lune langoureuse
Argente leurs baisers
Longuement appuyés,
Hélas! j'ai dans le coeur une tristesse affreuse.

Moi, je n'aime plus rien,
Ni l'homme, ni la femme,
Ni mon corps, ni mon âme,
Pas même mon vieux chien.
Allez dire qu'on creuse,
Sous le pâle gazon
Une fosse sans nom.
Hélas! j'ai dans le coeur une tristesse affreuse.

Translation(s): ENG

List of language codes

F. Bonoldi sets stanzas 1-2, 4
P. Fiévet sets stanzas 1, 3-4

About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Fauré: "déshabillé blanc"
2 Fauré: "galant"

Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]


Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

Settings in other languages, adaptations, or excerpts:

  • Also set in French (Français), a translation by Albert Grimault [an adaptation] ENG ; composed by Louis Diémer.

Other available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ENG English (Peter Low) , "Sadness", copyright © 2000, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.

Last modified: 2014-09-03 12:35:37

Line count: 32
Word count: 147

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Language: English after the French (Français)

April has returned;
the first of the roses
with its half-opened lips
smiles at the first fine day.
The happy earth
opens up and out.
Everything loves and rejoices...
Alas! in my heart I have a terrible sadness!

Gaily the drinkers
with their rosy songs
under the trellises celebrate
wine and beauty.
The joyful music
and their bright laughter
float out in the air...
Alas! in my heart I have a terrible sadness!

In scant white dresses
the girls walk off
under the arbours
arm in arm with their suitors.
The languid moon
shines its silver light on their
kisses long pressed...
Alas! in my heart I have a terrible sadness!

As for me, I love nothing any more:
neither man nor woman,
nor my body, nor my soul,
not even my old dog:
Go tell them to dig
under the pale lawn
a grave without a name!
Alas! in my heart I have a terrible sadness!

IMPORTANT NOTE: The material directly above is protected by copyright and appears here by special permission. If you wish to copy it and distribute it, you must obtain permission or you will be breaking the law. Once you have permission, you must give credit to the author and display the copyright symbol ©. Copyright infringement is a criminal offense under international law.


  • Translation from French (Français) to English copyright © 2000 by Peter Low, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you may ask the copyright-holder(s) directly or ask us; we are authorized to grant permission on their behalf. Please provide the translator's name when contacting us.


    licenses (AT) lieder (DOT) net
    (licenses at lieder dot net)

Based on
  • a text in French (Français) by Pierre-Jules-Théophile Gautier (1811 - 1872), "Tristesse", written 1838, appears in La Comédie de la Mort, Paris, Éd. Desessart, first published 1838
      • This text was set to music by the following composer(s): François Bonoldi, Louis-Albert Bourgault-Ducoudray, Vincenzo Capecelatro, Auguste Cœdès, Gustave Collignon, Gabriel Fauré, Paul Fiévet, Ange Flégier, Édouard Garnier, Gustave Herloz, Paul Xavier Désiré, Marquis Richard d'Ivry, Gustave Kéfer, Léon Charles François Kreutzer, Alfred Mutel, Ferdinand Raynal, Paul Rosticher, Jozef Troch, Paul Viardot, Pauline Viardot-García. Go to the text.


Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.

Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:01:29

Line count: 32
Word count: 157