The Lyrics of Henry VIII/Belle sur tautes (Agricola, Incipit)

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Lyrics  |  Manuscript  |  Authors and Composers
The Lyrics of Henry VIII
Appendix 1: Lyrics by Occasion/Theme  |  Appendix 2: Textual/Musical Witnesses  |  Appendix 3: Bibliography

Now ENglond be glad pluk vp thy lusty hart

[ff. 99v-100r]

Belle sur tautes

Tota pulcra es

Textual Commentary[edit | edit source]

“Belles sur tautes” appears as an incipit in H in only one of four voices. The initial capital is not provided, nor is space left for it in any of the other voices. Little room has been left among the musical notation for text. This piece is not listed in the manuscript’s table of contents. Unattributed in H, the piece is by Alexander Agricola. Stevens also notes that this piece is perhaps adapted here by a native composer (Stevens MCH8 109 #95).

“Belle sur tautes” also appears with music in FlC2439 (ff. 63v–64r), PBCan (ff. 161v–162r), PBFm (#84), and SG462 (f. 37r); in each case, only the incipit is present. The text of a lyric with the same incipit, though without music, is copied into P1722 (f. 3r), as follows:

Belle sur tourtez et sans quelque macule
je vostre serf ma diuine maistresse
A vous seulle humblement je madresse
vous supliant que peche ne maculle

Enfer me point et peche me macule                                       5
Mais vous pouez moster de ceste presse

Belle sur tourtez .

A voz vertus jamais napproucha nulle
Dont vous pesente mon ame percherresse
Que vous requiret que luy soiez adresse                              10
Tant qua bien faire et vertus ne reculle

Bell sur toutez .

Transcribed according to Lerner (ed., Agricola 4.52–53), the bass part throughout as follows:

Tota pulcra es amica mea et macula non est in te.

“Belles sur tautes” is reprinted in Lerner (ed., Agricola 4.52–53), and elsewhere.

Emendations of the Copy Text (H1):

1 Belle sur tautes] elle sur tautes H1