Sur le Pont d'Avignon

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"Sur le Pont d'Avignon" (pronounced [syʁ lə pɔ̃ daviɲɔ̃]) (French: On The Bridge of Avignon) is a French song about a dance performed on the Pont d'Avignon (officially Pont Saint-Bénézet) that dates back to the 15th century. The dance actually took place under the bridge and not on the bridge (sous le Pont d'Avignon, not sur).[1][2][3]

Dance description[edit]

  1. It starts out with everyone in pairs and they dance around each other.
  2. When the chorus is done stop in front of your partner and traditionally the male will bow on the first part then tip his hat on the second.
  3. When the chorus begins again repeat step one.
  4. When this stops so does the dance and then the girl curtsies to one side then the other.
  5. For the first part, repeat step one and then if you have an audience turn on your heel and bow to them.

Lyrics[edit]

Chorus[edit]

Sur le Pont d'Avignon
L'on y danse, l'on y danse
Sur le Pont d'Avignon
L'on y danse tous en rond.

On the bridge of Avignon
We're all dancing, we're all dancing
On the bridge of Avignon
We're all dancing round and round.

First verse[edit]

Les beaux messieurs font comme ça
Et puis encore comme ça.

The fine gentlemen go like this (bow)
And then again like this.

Second verse[edit]

Les belles dames font comme ça
Et puis encore comme ça.

The beautiful ladies go like this (curtsy)
And then again like that.

Third verse[edit]

Les filles font comme ça
Et puis encore comme ça.

The young girls go like this (salute)
And then like that.

Fourth verse[edit]

Les musiciens font comme ça
Et puis encore comme ça.

The musicians go like this (they all bow to women)
And then like that.

Variation[edit]

American music publisher Cherry Lane Music Company has printed a different verse (1993):

Les jeunes filles font comme ça
Les jeunes gens font comme ça

The young girls go like this,
The young people go like this.

In popular culture[edit]

The Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Chain of Command" uses this song as a means for Captain Picard, an appreciator of philosophy and poetry born in France, to resist the effects of torture.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Historical articles and illustrations » Blog Archive Sous le Pont d'Avignon – Historical articles and illustrations". www.lookandlearn.com. Retrieved 23 December 2018.
  2. ^ "Sur, or is it Sous, le Pont d'Avignon". 13 April 2015. Retrieved 23 December 2018.
  3. ^ http://www.rvcampingeurope.com/avignon.html