Orlande Lassus was born in Mons in what is present-day Belgium, but in his time the Low Counties were ruled by various German/Flemish Dukes and Princes. His name is often given in its Italian form, Orlando di Lasso, and sometimes in its French form, Rolande de Lassus. He travelled widely to France and Italy at a very early age. He became one of the most famous of all renaissance composers. In 1556 he went to Munich at the court of Duke Albrecht V, and stayed there till he died.

He wrote a large quantity of both sacred and secular music. His motet,  Beatus vir qui in sapienta morabitur (Blessed the man who dies in wisdom), is available for listening by clicking a row below, as also is one of his secular madrigals Elle s'en va de moy (She goes away from me).