by Pierre de Ronsard (1524 - 1585)
Translation © by David Wyatt

Amour, amour, que ma maîtresse est belle...
Language: French (Français) 
Available translation(s): ENG
[Amour, amour, que ma maîtresse est belle !]1
Soit que j'admire ou ses yeux mes seigneurs,
Ou de son front la grâce et les honneurs,
Ou le vermeil de sa lèvre jumelle.

Amour, amour, que ma dame est cruelle !
Soit qu'un dédain rengrége mes douleurs.
Soit qu'un dépit fasse naître mes pleurs,
Soit qu'un refus mes plaies renouvelle.

Ainsi le miel de sa douce beauté
Nourrit mon cœur : ainsi sa cruauté
D'un fiel amer aigrit toute ma vie :

Ainsi repu d'un si divers repas,
Ores je vis, ores je ne vis pas,
Égal au sort des frères d'Œbalie.

About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Bertrand uses the first line of the alternative version, "Mon Dieu, mon Dieu, que ma maistresse est belle"; the rest is the same.


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

Another version of this text exists in the database.

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

  • ENG English (David Wyatt) , "Love, o Love, my mistress is so beautiful!", copyright © 2012, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

Text added to the website: 2011-06-02 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-10-25 16:08:49
Line count: 14
Word count: 101

Love, o Love, my mistress is so beautiful!
Language: English  after the French (Français) 
Love, o Love, my mistress is so beautiful!
Whether I look on her eyes, which rule me,
Or the grace and beauty of her forehead,
Or the crimson of her twin lips.

Love, o Love, my mistress is so cruel!
Whether her disdain enmeshes me in sadness,
Or her spite makes my tears well up,
Or her refusal renews my pleas.

Thus the honey of her soft beauty
Feeds my heart: and thus her cruelty 
Embitters my whole life with acrid gall;

Thus, fed on such varied food
Sometimes I live, sometimes not,
Just like the fate of the brothers from Oebale1.

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Oebale, or Sparta, is in Greece; the twins Castor and Pollux were born there. When Castor was killed, Pollux shared his own immortality with his twin and they were transformed into the constellation Gemini.


  • Translation from French (Français) to English copyright © 2012 by David Wyatt, (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.

Based on


Text added to the website: 2012-05-22 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:04:55
Line count: 14
Word count: 102