Bryd one brere (Anonymous)
- Editor: Kitty Briton (submitted 2007-09-28). Score information: A4, 2 pages, 82 kB Copyright: Personal
- Edition notes: ABC file zipped.
Title: Bryd one brere
First published: c. 1300
Description: The First English Love Song.
- Once upon a time, a bored English cleric flipped over a papal bull which was already a hundred years old and
- began to write down a song. That song today is recognized as being the oldest extant English love song.
- Bryd one Brere is an honest confession of undying love (from the poet to a bird in a tree), devotion, and
- praise of a lady. It eloquently conveys the very heart of amor courtoise. Its soaring melody is one of the
- most beautiful melodies ever written, yet it conveys some element of bittersweetness.
- Article on a University of Chicago Personal Web Page
- Constance Fairfax's Commonplace Book - Medieval Resources
- More Medieval songs
- About 14th century music and poetry
- About 14th century composers
- Play an ABC source file here
Original text and translations
Bird on a briar, bird on a briar, mankind has come of love, love to crave.
Blissful bird, rue thou on me, or ready, love, ready thou me my grave.
I am so blithe, so blithe, bird on a briar, When I see that maid in the hall.
She is white of limb, lovely, :true, She is fair and the flower of all.
Might her I have at my will, steadfast of love, lovely, and true,
Of my sorrow she might me save, Joy and bliss were ever new to me.