Enríquez de Valderrábano

Ya cabalga Calaynos


Silva de sirenas (1547), fol. 26


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Source title Este romance sea de tañer el compas leua{n]tado, ay vnas q[u]atro cifras q[ue] esta[n] demasiadas, y pusiero[n] se por co[m]pañia de la boz. Primero grado.
Title in contents   Villancico ya cavalga calaynos.
Text incipit Ya cavalga calaynos


Category intabulation

Genre romance

Fantasia type

Mode 2

Voices 3

Length (compases) 43


Tuning G

Courses 6

Final V/2

Highest I/7

Lowest VI/2

Difficulty easy

Tempo medium

Song Text

Language ES

Vocal notation texted cifras rojas


A setting, possibly by Valderrábano, of a well-known romance (ballad) text about the moorish warrior Calaynos, his love for the princess Sebilla, his military exploits in her name, and his eventual death in France at the hand of the knight Roland. This is a classic Carolingian ballad. A full text of the romance (230 verses, equivalent to 115 strophes of the musical setting) is given by Binkley and Frenk also with a full English translation (binkley1995, 147-157) with the Spanisn text taken from Pliegos poéticos españoles en la Universidad de Praga, vol 1., pp. 73-80.
The initial rubric indicates that “this romance has to be played with a brisk tempo, there are some four figures which are too many and are there to accompany the voice.” This last comment might indicate that the work is an arrangement of an unknown piece of vocal polyphony. This makes sense given the imitation between the two outer voices at several places.