Last Updated: 21 February 2023

Bon voyage Monsieur Dumollet is a traditional French song with lyrics dating from the early 19th century.

The story of the song

Bon voyage Monsieur Dumollet refers to a popular song from a vaudeville by Marc Antoine Madeleine Désaugiers, Le départ pour Saint-Malo, created at the Théâtre des Variétés in 1809.

Marc Antoine Madeleine Desaugiers

Marc Antoine Madeleine Desaugiers

The song quickly became popular and the author of the caricature depicted King Charles X as Monsieur Dumollet, leaving his city where he had "suffered a thousand and one torments". This echoed the year 1830 when king Charles X abdicated.

In 1892 Tchaikovsky transcribed it for his ballet The Nutcracker, along with another French classic rhyme, Cadet Rousselle.

The tune is still sung during the Dunkirk Carnival.

Bon voyage Monsieur Dumollet

Lyrics, music, free download... let's learn more about the popular song:

Bon voyage Monsieur Dumollet

The lyrics in French

The original song of Bon voyage Monsieur Dumollet has 4 verses and a chorus.


Bon voyage, Monsieur Dumollet,
A Saint-Malo débarquez sans naufrage;
Bon voyage, Monsieur Dumollet,
Et revenez si le pays vous plaît.

Couplet 1

Si vous venez voir la capitale,
Méfiez-vous des voleurs, des amis,
Des billets doux, des coups, de la cabale,
Des pistolets et des torticolis.

Couplet 2

Là vous verrez les deux mains dans les poches,
Aller, venir des sages et des fous,
Des gens bien faits, des tordus, des bancroches,
Nul ne sera jambé si bien que vous.

Couplet 3

Des polissons vous feront bien des niches,
À votre nez riront bien des valets,
Craignez surtout les barbets, les caniches,
Car ils voudront caresser vos mollets.

Couplet 4

L'air de la mer peut vous être contraire,
Pour vos bas bleus les flots sont un écueil,
Si ce séjour enfin, sait vous déplaire,
Revenez-nous avec bon pied, bon œil !

Translation of the lyrics into English

Here is an approximative translation into English:


Bon voyage, Mister Dumollet,
Disembark at Saint-Malo without being shipwrecked;
Bon voyage, Mister Dumollet,
And come back if you like the country.

Verse 1

If you come to see the capital,
Beware of thieves, of friends,
Of soft notes, of blows, of cabal,
Of pistols and stiff neck.

Verse 2

There you will see both hands in the pockets,
Come and go, wise men and fools,
Well-made people, twisted people, wobbly people,
No one will be so well off as you.

Verse 3

The rascals will make you many niches,
At your nose will laugh many jacks,
Especially fear the barbets, the poodles,
For they will want to caress your calves.

Verse 4

The air of the sea can be contrary to you,
For your blue stockings the waves are a reef,
If this stay, finally, knows how to displease you,
Come back to us with good foot, good eye!

Download the Lyrics for FREE!

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Bon voyage Monsieur Dumollet © French Moments

French Nursery Rhymes

My challenge for the year 2023 is to publish 80 French Nursery Rhymes lyrics and descriptions (list below). Come back as time goes by to discover the new articles:

About the author

Pierre is a French/Australian who is passionate about France and its culture. He grew up in France and Germany and has also lived in Australia and England. He has a background teaching French, Economics and Current Affairs, and holds a Master of Translating and Interpreting English-French with the degree of Master of International Relations, and a degree of Economics and Management. Pierre is the author of Discovery Courses and books about France.

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