by José-María de Hérédia (1842 - 1905)
Translation © by Emily Ezust

Soir de bataille
Language: French (Français) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Le choc avait été très rude. Les tribuns
Et les centurions, ralliant les cohortes,
Humaient encor dans l'air où vibraient leurs voix fortes
La chaleur du carnage et ses âcres parfums.

D'un oeil morne, comptant leurs compagnons défunts,
Les soldats regardaient, comme des feuilles mortes,
Au loin, tourbillonner les archers de Phraortes ;
Et la sueur coulait de leurs visages bruns.

C'est alors qu'apparut, tout hérissé de flèches,
Rouge du flux vermeil de ses blessures fraîches,
Sous la pourpre flottante et l'airain rutilant,

Au fracas des buccins qui sonnaient leur fanfare,
Superbe, maîtrisant son cheval qui s'effare,
Sur le ciel enflammé, l'Imperator sanglant.


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  • ENG English (Emily Ezust) , "The evening of the battle", copyright © 2020

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website: 2011-09-07
Line count: 14
Word count: 103

The evening of the battle
Language: English  after the French (Français) 
The confrontation had been very harsh. The tribunes
And the centurions, rallying the cohorts,
The air vibrating with their strong voices, still breathed
The heat of the carnage and its acrid odors.

With a dismal eye, counting their dead companions,
The soldiers watched the archers of Phraortes, 
Whirling like dead leaves in the distance,
And the sweat trickled down their brown faces.

It was then that, bristling all over with arrows, there appeared,
red with the vermillion stream of his fresh wounds,
Under the floating purple and gleaming bronze,

Amid the din of trombones ringing out their fanfare, 
Splendid, master of his alarmed steed,
Against the blazing sky, the blood-stained Emperor.

Translator's note: Phraortes refers to Phraates IV of Parthia. The Emperor referred to at the end must therefore be Anthony.


  • Translation from French (Français) to English copyright © 2020 by Emily Ezust

    Emily Ezust permits her translations to be reproduced without prior permission for printed (not online) programs to free-admission concerts only, provided the following credit is given:

    Translation copyright © by Emily Ezust,
    from the LiederNet Archive --

    For any other purpose, please write to the e-mail address below to request permission and discuss possible fees.

Based on


This text was added to the website: 2020-02-08
Line count: 14
Word count: 111