François Villon

(c. 1431 – after 5 January 1463 / Paris)

François Villon
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François Villon was a French poet, thief, and vagabond. He is perhaps best known for his Testaments and his Ballade des Pendus, written while in prison. The question "Mais où sont les neiges d'antan?", taken from the Ballade des dames du temps jadis and translated by Dante Gabriel Rossetti as "Where are the snows of yesteryear?", is one of the most famous lines of translated secular poetry in the English-speaking world.

Life

Villon's real surname has been a matter of dispute; he has been called François de Montcorbier and François Des Loges and other names, though in literature Villon is the sole name used. Villon was born in 1431, almost certainly ... more »

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Comments about François Villon

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  • SareeMarcel (1/6/2019 4:42:00 PM)

    Ahhhh what it would be like to be a notorious gang member and yet still write poems. #Respect

  • david (11/21/2018 12:33:00 PM)

    Where is I know everything in the film himizu...

  • Fabrizio Frosini Fabrizio Frosini (2/14/2016 7:30:00 PM)

    the best known French poet of the late Middle Ages.. and - probably- also a member of a wandering gang of thieves...

  • John Xavier (4/17/2012 2:20:00 PM)

    It is Villon, in the French: Je connais tout fors que moi-mesme.

    I know everything except myself is certainly a good translation of the Villon line, which appears on more than one page of his work. John Xavier, M.A. (French) .

  • Maan Maan (12/1/2008 2:22:00 PM)

    I want to know if it's francois villon who has the poem: 'I know everything except myself'

Read all 5 comments »
Best Poem of François Villon

Villon’s Epitaph (Ballade Of The Hanged Men)

O brother men who after us remain,
Do not look coldly on the scene you view,
For if you pity wretchedness and pain,
God will the more incline to pity you.
You see us hang here, half a dozen who
Indulged the flesh in every liberty
Till it was pecked and rotted, as you see,
And these our bones to dust and ashes fall.
Let no one mock our sorry company,
But pray to God that He forgive us all.

If we have called you brothers, don’t disdain
The appellation, though alas it’s true
That not all men are equal as to brain,
And that our crimes and blunders were ...

Read the full of Villon’s Epitaph (Ballade Of The Hanged Men)

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