Giraut de Bornelh

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"Girautz de Borneill" (as written at top) in a 13th-century chansonnier.

Giraut de Bornelh (Occitan: [ɡiˈɾawd de βuɾˈneʎ]; c. 1138 – 1215), whose first name is also spelled Guiraut and whose toponym is de Borneil or de Borneyll, was a troubadour connected to the castle of the viscount of Limoges. He is credited with the formalisation, if not the invention, of the "light" style, or trobar leu.


Giraut was born to a lower-class family in the Limousin, probably in Bourney, near Excideuil in modern-day France. Guiraut might have accompanied Richard I of England and Aimar V of Limoges on the Third Crusade and stayed a while with the "good prince of Antioch", Bohemond III. He certainly made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, but perhaps before the Crusade.


About ninety of Giraut's poems and four of his melodies survive; these were held in high esteem in the 13th century: Petrarch called him "master of the troubadours", while Dante, who preferred Arnaut Daniel, mentions that many considered him superior. Notable pieces include:


  • Sharman, Ruth V. (1989). The Cansos and Sirventes of the Troubadour Giraut de Borneil. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-25635-6.

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