Lyrics from Trois Couleurs - Bleu
The "Song for the Unification of Europe" was composed by Zbigniew Preisner for the 1993 movie "Trois Couleurs - Bleu" which was directed by his friend Krzysztof Kieslowski. The lyrics of this song are in ancient Greek and are taken directly from chapter 13 of the bible book I Corinthians in which Paul speaks of love. Translated to English these lyrics go something like this:
Though I speak the tongues of men and angels
if I don't have love
my words sound like noisy brass and clanging cymbals

And though I have the gift of prophecy
and though I understand all mysteries
so that I could remove mountains
if I don't have love, I am nothing

Love is patient, full of goodness
love doesn't envy, isn't boastful or proud
love tolerates all things
believes all things
aspires to all things
endures all things

Love never dies
while prophecies shall fail
languages shall cease
and knowledge shall vanish

Thus then remain these three
faith, hope and love
but the greatest of these is love
These lyrics are sung in full during the final minutes of the movie, when Kieslowski gives us a last look on all the characters. Unfortunately, in most versions of the movie the song isn't subtitled and the poetic combination of words and images is completely lost.


Since this final act touched me so much when I saw it with subtitles, I wanted to know the exact Greek lyrics and to learn them by heart. My Greek friend Eleni helped me with a word for word translation, which I present here. Each line is printed three times: first the original bible verse in ancient Greek, then again in Latin letters, and then the word for word translation in English.

I Corinthians 13


1.
Εαν ταις γλώσσαις των ανθρώπων λαλω και των αγγέλων,
Ean tes glosses ton anthropon lalo, ke ton angelon,
Tho the languages of men I-speak, and of angels,

αγάπην δε μη εχω, γέγονα χαλκος ηχων η κύμβαλον αλαλάζον.
agapi de mi echo, jegona chalkos ichon i kimvalon alalazon,
love not I have, noisy gong I-sound and cymbal clanging

2.
και εαν εχω προφητείαν και ειδω τα μυστήρια πάντα
ke ean echo profitian, ke ido ta mistiria panda,
and tho I-have prophecy, and understand the mysteries all

ωστε ορη μεθιστάναι, αγάπην δε μη εχω, ουθέν ειμι.
oste ori methistane, agapin de mi echo, outhen imi.
so-as mountains move, love not I have, nothing I-am

4.
Η αγάπη μακροθυμει, χρηστεύεται
i agapi makrothimi, christefete,
the love suffers, behaves-with-decency,

η αγάπη ου ζηλοι, ου περπερεύεται, ου φυσιουται,
i agapi ou zili, ou perperefete, ou fisioute
the love not jealous, not boastful, not full of pride

7.
πάντα στέγει, πάντα πιστεύει, πάντα ελπίζει, πάντα υπομένει.
panda stegi, panda pistevi, panda elpizi, panda ipomeni.
all bears, all believes, all hopes, all endures

8.
Η αγάπη ουδέποτε πίπτει. ειτε δε προφητειαι, καταργηθήσονται.
i agapi oudepote pipti. ite de profitie, katargithisonte.
the love never ends. or though prophecies, deconsecrate

ειτε γλωσσαι, παύσονται. ειτε γνωσις, καταργηθήσεται.
ite glosse, pafsonte. ite gnosis, katargithisete
or languages, cease. or knowledge, deconsecrate

13.
νυνι δε μένει πίστις, ελπίς, αγάπη, τα τρία ταυτα.
nini de meni pistis, elpis, agapi, ta tria tauta.
now then remain faith, hope, love, the three these

μείζων δε τούτων η αγάπη.
mizon de touton i agapi.
greatest of those the love (x3)



Halleth Mon 06 Sep 2010 @ 18:01
Thank you! Great, helpful job.

Jonas Wed 18 Aug 2010 @ 20:25
Thank you for your excellent work! In the beginning I had great trouble in matching the lyrics until I discovered that my DVD subtitles was completly mixed up on this part.

By the way: "outhen imi" at the end of section 2 should be repeated twice.

Mona Fri 16 Apr 2010 @ 06:00
I fell in love with the music of the trilogy and then I watched the movie. There was a melancholy mood dominated in the whole three parts.

divadeiwob Sat 16 Jan 2010 @ 06:39
thank you

Luis Marroquin Thu 27 Sep 2007 @ 20:19
Almost 10 years ago I saw Bleu, I didn´t understand at the time all the plot, but the music, I remember the moment when I saw Julie´s finger on the paper following the music notes and trying to fix what her husband did before his dead. I remember the blue color, I remember her hand and her fingers on the wall hurting herself. I remember the blackness of the Elipsis and the blue paper her daugther was holding out of the car´s window before the crash

khoffman Wed 12 Sep 2007 @ 13:54
Thanks so much for your work

Chris Sun 02 Sep 2007 @ 06:54
excellent, thanks very much 4 everything


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