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Lyr Add: Corrido de Dona Elena (Murder)

Q (Frank Staplin) 05 Sep 12 - 08:56 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 06 Sep 12 - 02:21 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 06 Sep 12 - 06:40 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 06 Sep 12 - 06:43 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 07 Sep 12 - 04:05 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 07 Sep 12 - 05:21 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 08 Sep 12 - 03:53 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 08 Sep 12 - 06:34 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 08 Sep 12 - 08:44 PM
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Subject: Lyr Add: Corrido de Doña Elena (Murder)
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 05 Sep 12 - 08:56 PM

Corrido de Doña Elena

Fué don Fernando el Francés
un soldado muy valiente,
que combatió a los chinacos
de México independiente.
2
Vió a doña Elena en su finca
y de ella se enamoró,
sabiendo que su marido
por un crimen se ausentó.
3
Doña Elena se hizo fuerte
pero al fin correspondió;
porque era un hombre terrible
don Benito se perdió.
4
Noche a noche tenían citas
donde gozaban su amor
y entonaban sus canciones
mancillando así su honor.
5
Una tarde tempestuosa
don Benito fué a Jerez
y en el camino esperó
a don Fernando el Francés.
6
Benito, pistola en mano
y un rifle de diciséis,
le acerta quatro balazos
a don Fernando el Francés.
7
El Francés quedó tirado
muy cerca de la barranca
y don Benito, iracundo,
montó en su briosa potranca.
8
Se fué todo enfurecido
para su pueblo natal
y allá en la puerta hierro
se procuró serenar.
9
-Ábreme la puerta, Elena,
sin ninguna desconfianza,
que soy Fernando el Francés
que vengo desde la Francia.
10
-¿Quién es ese caballero
que mis puertas manda abrir?
No es de Fernando el acento,
pues que se acaba de ir.
11
-Soy Fernando, no lo dudes,
dueña de mi corazón,
que regreso por decirte
que nos han hecho traición.
12
-Oigame usted, don Fernando,
aunque no me importe a mi,
tiene usted amores en Francia
o quiere a otra más que a mí.
13
-No tengo amores en Francia
ni quiero a otra más a ti.
Elena, soy tu marido,
que vengo en contra de ti.
14
-Perdona, esposo querido,
perdona mis desventuras,
mira, no lo hagas por mí,
hazlo por mis dos criaturas.
15
Al abrir la media puerta
se les apagó el candil
tomándola por las manos
la arrastró para el jardin.
16
-Toma, criada, estas criaturas,
llévaselas a mis padres
y si preguntan de Elena,
les dices que tu no sabes.
17
Vestida estaba de blanco
que parecía un serafín,
que se cayó entre las flores
como si fuera a dormir.
18
¡Ay! ¡!Pobrecita de Elena!
¡Ay! ¡Qué suerte le tocó!
con tres tiros de pistola
que su marido le dió.
19
Fué don Fernando el Francés
un soldado muy valiente,
que combatió a los chinacos
de México independiente.

Translation, reference and comment in the following post.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Corrido de Doña Elena (Murder)
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 06 Sep 12 - 02:21 PM

Corrido de Doñ Elena
Translation of version in first post.

1
Fernando the Frenchman bold,
so valiant and brave was he
who fought against the liberals
of Mexico, land of the free.
2
At the ranch of Doña Elena
he gave her his love sublime,
knowing full well that her husband
was gone because of a crime.
3
Doña Elena resisted
but then succumbed to his will;
Benito must be forsaken
else Fernando would do her ill.
4
Night after night they would meet
to enjoy each other's love;
they raised their voices in song
but were scorned by Heaven above.
5
One tempestuous afternoon
Benito to Jerez did ride
and there by the roadside waited
'till Don Fernando he spied.
6
Benito, with his pistol
and sixteen calibre gun,
fires four shots at Don Fernando
as he turns and tries to run.
7
The Frenchman, mortally wounded,
fell in a nearby ravine,
and Benito, still enraged,
to mount his swift steed was seen.
8
With his fury at its height
toward his native town he stole
and there by the iron door
tried to calm his troubled soul.
9
"Open the door, dear Elena,
without any fret or fear
for I, Fernando the Frenchman
from faraway France, am here."
10
"Who is that strange gentleman
who comes knocking at my door?
The accent can't be Fernando's
since he's just been here before."
11
"It is I, your don Fernando,
you must believe me, my dear.
I have come back to inform you
that we've been betrayed, it's clear."
12
"Listen to me, don Fernando,
though it matters not, you see,
you have a sweetheart in France
or you love someone more than me."
13
"I have no sweetheart in France
nor love I any but you.
Elena, I am your husband
and I tell you now, we're through."
14
"Forgive, dear husband, I beg,
forgive my thoughtless mistake,
if you won't do it for me,
do it for our children's sake."
15
When the door was finally opened
it put out the candle light,
and seizing her by the hands
he dragged her out into the night.
16
"Maid, to you I give my children,
to my parents they will go,
should they ask about Elena,
you'll tell them you do not know."
17
She was dressed in a white robe
and an angel seemed to be
that had fallen among flowers
to rest there eternally.
18
Alas! poor little Elena!
Alas! how cruel was her lot!
With three bullets from his pistol
his wife he cruelly shot.
19
Fernando, the Frenchman bold,
so valiant and brave was he,
who fought against the liberals
of Mexico, land of the free.

Terrence L. Hansen, "Corridos in Southern California," made a poetic translation, attempting "to conserve the origin meter and rhyme."

"Corrido de Doña Elena," "seems to be a modern version of the traditional ballad, "The Unfaithful Wife." The version "presented (here) seems to reflect considerable Mexican influence, it contains, nevertheless, many elements found in the Spanish romance."

The version here provided by Rafael Salas, Corona, California.

Brief musical score from Mendoza, "Cinquenta Corridos Mexicanos," 1939, no. 104, p. 339 (not seen; reproduced on p. 205 of this article).

Terrence L. Hansen, 1959, "Corridos in Southern California," Western Folklore, vol. 18, no. 3, pp. 205-207.

The song is also sung in northern New Mexico-southern Colorado; a version from Chimayó, New Mexico, will be posted next.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Corrido de Doña Elena (Murder)
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 06 Sep 12 - 06:40 PM

Lyr. Add: El Corrido de Elena
New Mexico, Coll. J. D. Robb

1
Elena querida mía,
y una cosa has de escuchar,
unas dos o tres palabras
que contigo quiero hablar.
2
Y tú, Benito, ¿Qué tienes
que vienes tan enojado?
Mira no te andes creyendo
de cuentos que te han contado.
3
Elena, no digas eso,
ni lo vuelvas a decir,
que el día que encuentre a Fernando
ese día van a morir
4
En ese Plan de Barrancas
sin saber cómo ni cuándo,
allí; fué donde encontró
don Benito a don Fernando.
5
Por el honor que usted tiene [First two lines absent in MS]
y el honor que usted goza,
mira no te andes creyendo
que ni conozco a tu esposa.
6
Del más alto firmamento
yo vi bajar una estrella,
mire no se ande rejando,
un lunes lo hallé con ella.
7
Echó mano a su Wincheste, [mosquete in MS]
calibre cincuenta y seis, [tres in MS
le dió los cinco balazos
a don Fernando el Francés.
8
*Le quitó le querolina [pelorina (pelerina) in MS]
se puso la ropa de él
y se fué para la casa
a matar a la mujer.
9
Ya se agarran de la mano
y se fueron para el jardín;
al abrir la media puerta
se les apagó el candil
10
Elena, muy asustada,
se agachaba y lo miraba
y don Benito tan serio,
que ni siquiera la hablaba.
11
Pero, Fernando, ¿qué tienes
que nunca venías así?
¿Tienes amores en Francia
o quieres a otra más que a mí?
12
No tengo amores en Francia,
ni quiero a otra más que a tí
no soy más que te marido
que me hallo al lado de ti.
13
Perdóname, esposo mío
perdóname por piedad,
que no soy la primer mujer
que ha caído en fragilidad.
14
Perdóname, esposo mío
perdona mi desventura,
mira, no lo hagas por mí,
hazlo por mis dos criaturas.
15
De mí no alcanzas perdón,
de mí no alcanzas ventura,
que te perdone al francés,
que gozó de tu hermosura.
16
Ahi te encargo a mis chiquitos
Se les llevas a mis padres,
si te preguntan por mí,
les dirás que tú no sabes.
17
A mis hermanas les dices
que pongan luto por mí
y a las mujeres casadas
que pongan ejemplo en mí.
18
Le quitó la crinolina
y la dejó en camisón,
se le hincaba de rodillas,
pero no alcanzó perdón.
19
Le quitó la crinolina
y la dejó en camisón,
le dió los cinco balazos
en el mero corazón.
20
Vuela, vuela, palomita,
dale fuerza a tu volido,
anda a ver cómo le fué
a Elena con su marido
21
Vuela, vuela, palomita,
párate en aquella higuera,
aquí sa acaban cantando
los versitos de la Elena.

TRANSLATION from MS.

Elena, my dear,
There is one thing you must hear,
One, two or three words
That I want to speak to you.
2
And you, Benito? what is wrong,
That you come here so angry?
Take care before you believe
The tales that they have told you.
3
Elena, do not say that,
Nor try to change my mind,
For the day that I meet Fernando,
That day you both shall die.
4
In the plain of Barranca,
Without knowing when or where
They should meet,
Don Benito encountered Don Fernando.
5
Pardon me, Don Benito,
......................
Take care before you believe
That I have wronged you with your wife.
6
From the highest firmament
I saw a star falling,
Take care lest you destroy
The moon that is found with it.
7
Laying hands on his musket
Of the calibre of thirty-three
He fired the five bullets
Into Don Fernando, the Frenchman.
8
*He took off his cape, [pélerine (French)]
He put on Don Fernando's clothes
And he returned then to his house
To kill his wife.
9
But Benito, what is the matter
That now you come in this manner?
Do you have sweethearts in France
That you love more than me?
10
I have no sweethearts in France
Nor do I love anyone more than you,
I am only your husband
Who finds myself here beside you.
11
They took each other by the hand
And went out into the garden,
When she opened the middle door
The candle went out.
12
Elena, very excited
Stooped and regarded him
And Don Benito was very grave
And spoke not a word.
13
Pardon me, my husband,
Pardon me for the love of God,
For I am not the first wife
Who has fallen in her weakness.
14
Pardon me, my husband,
Pardon my misdeed.
Look, I do not beg mercy for my own sake,
I beg mercy for the sake of my two babies.
15
You shall have no pardon from me
From me you shall get no mercy;
Let the Frenchman pardon you
Who rejoiced in your beauty.
16
Alas! Then I charge you with my children,
That you take them to my relatives,
If they ask you about me,
Tell them that you know nothing.
17
Tell my sisters
To go into mourning for me
And tell all married women
To take a lesson from me.
18
He stripped off her gown of crinoline,
He stripped off her underclothes,
She sank to her knees before him
But no pardon she received.
19
He stripped of her gown of crinoline,
He left her in her shift.
He fired all five bullets
Right into her heart.
20
Fly, fly, little dove,
Fly with all your strength;
Go and see how it was
With Elena and her husband.
21
Fly, fly, little dove.
Perch in that fig tree.
Here concludes the singing
Of the verses of Elena.

Collected in Chimayó, New Mexico, from the singing of the Ortega family, 1946.

The word pelerina, verse 8, comes from the French pélerine, a cape such as the Zouaves wore.

Many thanks to Monique for this clarification; the verse now makes sense.

Above material from the publication and also typescript MS. John Donald Robb, Hispanic Folk Songs of New Mexico, Univ. New Mexico Press, Fine Arts No. 1, pp. 44-49, with musical score; MS. online, ZIM CSWR Robb MU 7, Index number 78 [misprinted 89]. The archive contains audio, and a brief musical score. The typewriter was worn; accents added by hand, not all accurately. Verse order slightly changed in the printed copy.

In the publication, Robb provided a poetic translation, which will be provided later

New Mexico's Digital Collections.
http://econtent.unm.edu

The online material is voluminous, and is (for me) difficult to use.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Corrido de Doña Elena (Murder)
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 06 Sep 12 - 06:43 PM

This is an edited thread. Comments welcome, but they may be edited (with permission from the submitter).

Further versions will be added, as they are found.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Corrido de Dona Elena (Murder)
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 07 Sep 12 - 04:05 PM

Note on Verse 8, New Mexico version:

pelorina (pelerina) in the MS. and querolina in the published text are words not found in Velásquez, Vox Larousse or the Diccionario of the Royal Academy of Spain.

Monique provided the correct translation: pélerine is a French word for a cape, such as the Zouaves wore. The word 'pelerina' seems to be an old one, taken from or related to the French word.

Robb incorrectly translated the word to mean a search

Verse 19:
Camisa means nightgown, shift or undergarment (a. o.); camisón can be a gown, chemise, nightdress or (modern) a sort of frock worn by laborers. The context here is nightdress or shift.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Corrido de Dona Elena (Murder)
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 07 Sep 12 - 05:21 PM

"Elena y el frances" on youtube; Sparx y Lorenzo Antonio Cantan Corridos.
http://youtube.com/watch?v=yZhm0KFBXiM

A New Mexico version on Folkways, "Spanish and Mexican Folk Music of New Mexico;" 1952 (2004). F. and C. Ortega.

One other version on youtube, Hispanic woman sings the song.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Corrido de Dona Elena (Murder)
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 08 Sep 12 - 03:53 PM

Corrido de Elena
J. D. Robb, published translation

1
"Elena, dearest Elena,
there's one thing that you must hear,
A word or two I would tell you,
a word or two for your ear."
2
And you, Benito? What is it
that brings you here in such a fury?
Take care before you believe
any lying, slanderous story."
3
"Elena, do not dissemble,
'twill gain you nothing to try;
The day I meet Don Fernando,
that day shall both of you die."
4
And on the plain of Barrancas,
without knowing when nor where
The two should meet, Don Benito
encountered Don Fernando there.
5
"By all the honor you have and
the honor that gladdens your life,
I beg you now to believe me,
I don't even know your wife."
6
From highest heaven a-falling
I saw a star in the blue;
Don't try to fool me, Fernando,
I saw her, Monday, with you."
7
Benito reached for his rifle,
a fifty-six Winchester* gun,
And five times shot he Fernando
Before he could turn and run.
8
His search being ended,
Benito puts on Don Fernando's clothes;
To kill his wife is his purpose
as back to his home he goes.
9
And hand in hand toward the garden
they moved like lovers devout,
But as she opened the door, then
her flick'ring candle went out.
10
Elena, very excited,
regarded him with attention,
For Don Benito was silent
and spoke not of his intention.
11
"Fernando, what is the matter?
Oh, what can the trouble be?
Do you have a sweetheart in France
that you love more truly than me?"
12
I have no sweetheart in France, and
I love no woman but you,
For I am only your husband
who wishes you were true."
13
"Forgive me, husband, forgive me
That I have stooped from my station;
I'm not the first of my sex who
has fallen into temptation.
14
Forgive me, husband, forgive me,
forgive me now, I implore you,
If only for our two children
whom I so lovingly bore you."
15
"From me you merit no pardon,
to say you no is my duty;
Let Don Fernando forgive you-
'twas he rejoiced in your beauty."
16
"I charge you then with my children,
to take them to my relations;
And if they ask you about me,
just tell them some fabrications.
17
"And to my sisters give notice
to put on their mourning weeds,
And all young matrons to listen
and learn from my wicked deeds."
18
He stripped off her outer garments
but left her her own nightgown;
She knelt and begged for his pardon,
but his reply was a frown.
19
He stripped off her outer garments,
a single white shift she wore,
And into her heart five bullets
from Benito's *musket tore.
20
Fly, fly, little dove, go flying
go flying, my palomito,
Go see how everything happened
to Elena and Benito.
21
Fly, fly, little dove, to your fig tree
where breezes gently are sighing,
For here concludeth the tale of
Elena and of her dying.

*Winchester 56 is a bolt action .22 long rifle. It was introduced in 1926. Muskets are muzzle-loaded, smooth bore.

Corrido de Elena, pp. 44-49, J. D. Robb, 1954, "Hispanic Songs of New Mexico, with selected songs collected, transcribed & arranged for voice and piano." Univ. New Mexico, Pub. Fine Arts No. 1, Univ. New Mexico Press.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Corrido de Dona Elena (Murder)
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 08 Sep 12 - 06:34 PM

Corrido de Doña Elena
Mexican version

Fue don Fernando el Francés
un soldado muy valiente
que combatió a los chinacos
del México independiente.
2
Se estableció en el Bajío
cuando Bazaine salió
y en los trabajos del campo
muy pronto se enriqueció.
3
Vió a doña Elena en su finca
y de ella se enamaró,
sabiendo que su marido
por un crimen se ausentó.
4
Doña Elena se hizo fuerte
pero al fin correspondió;
porque era un hombre terrible
don Fernando, y se perdió.
5
Noche a noche tenían citas
donde gozaban su amor
y entonaban sus canciones
mancillando así su honor.
6
Ya hacía tiempo que se amaban
don Fernando y doña Elena,
cuando a Benito avisaron
los dos hermanos Barrena.
7
Una noche tempestuosa
don Benito fue a Jerez
y en el camino esperó
a don Fernando el Francés.
8
Llegando al Plan de Barrancas,
sin saber cómo ni cuándo,
se encontró con don Benito
el mentado don Fernando.
9
Vuela, vuela, palomita,
vuela, si sabes volar,
y avísale a doña Elena
que ya la van a matar.
10
Benito, pistola en mano
y un rifle de dieciséis,
le acertó cuatro balazos
a don Fernando el Francés.
11
El Francés quedó tirado
muy cerca de la barranca
y don Benito iracundo
montó su briosa potranca.
12
Se regresó enfurecido
para su pueblo natal
y en la puerta de su casa
se procuró serenar.
13
Abrió la verja de hierro
y despacio se metió,
trillandro plantas y flores
hasta la puerta llegó.
14
-Ábreme la puerta, Elena
que vengo todo rendido,
que me persigue de cerca
don Benito, tu marido.
15
Ábreme la puerta, Elena,
ábreme sin desconfianza,
que soy Fernando el Francés
venido desde la Francia.
16
¿Quién es ese caballero
que mis puertas manda abrir?
No es de Fernando el acento.
pues que se acaba de ir.
17
-Soy Fernando no lo dudes,
dueña de mi corazón,
que regreso por decirte
que nos han hecho traición.
18
Al abrir la media puerta
se les apagó el candil
y tomándole las manos
lo arrastró para el jardín.
19
Óigame usted, don Fernando
aunque no me importe a mí,
¿tiene usted amores en Francia
o quiere a otra más que a mí?
20
No tengo amores en Francia
ni quiero a otra más que a ti,
Elena, soy tu marido
que vengo en contra de ti.
21
Perdona, esposo querido
perdona mis desventuras,
mira, no lo hagas por mí,
hazlo por mis dos criaturas.
22
-No te puedo perdonar,
me tienes muy ofendido,
que te perdone el Francés,
don Fernando, tu querido.
23
-Toma, criada, estas criaturas
se las llevas a mis padres,
y si preguntan de Elena,
les dices que nada sabes.
24
Hincada entre bellas flores
Elena se debatía,
pidiendo perdón a gritos
a quien piedad no tenía.
25
¡Ay! ¡Pobrecita de Elena!
¡Ay! ¡Qué suerte le tocó!
De un rifle de *dieciséis
con tres tiros completó.
26
Vestida estaba de blanco
que parecía un serafín,
y se cayó entre las flores
como si fuera a dormir.
27
Ya terminé de cantar
los versos de doña Elena
que por mancillar su honor
sufrió tan terrible pena,
28
A los hombres atrevidos
que les serva de experiencia,
y no enamoren casadas,
por no manchar su conciencia.

This version much more complete than those collected in southwestern United States.
*M-16?

The first published version was by Salvador Novo in 1929; previously, fragments were known to Enríquez Ureña. The corrido became very well-known.

The inclusion of a Frenchman suggests that the corrido was written after 1870, after the reign of Maximilian (1864-1867), a Hapsburg installed with the aid of French troops.
The corrido (romance) does not seem to appear in any records from before the 1920s, however, thus could be a product of the Mexican Nationalistic Period which extended from the 1920s to the 1950s.

No real life incident of the type described in the corrido is known.

Universidad Michoacana de San Nicolas de Hidalgo.
http://www.cie.umich.mx/corridosfamosos.htm.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Corrido de Dona Elena (Murder)
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 08 Sep 12 - 08:44 PM

The corrido recited by Ignacio Lopez Tarso, from his album "Corridos de la revolucion."
http://grooveshark.com/#!/s/Los+Versos+De+Do+a+Elena/3ck890?src=5

Spoken clearly and distinctly. Several other sites online have this corrido in audio and offer downloads

(Sony Discos Inc.)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Corrido de Dona Elena (Murder)
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 09 Sep 12 - 12:49 PM

Many thanks to Monique for correcting my many typos, and help with translation!


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