The First Set Of English Madrigals To 3. 4. 5. and 6. Voices Newly Composed By John Wilbye

This page contains my transcriptions from John Wilbye's book published in 1598. The lyrics for all the songs are listed here, along with some of the music files. I'll add more music files as I complete them, no doubt in fits and spurts.


No.TitleModeFinal chordFiles
Songs to 3 voices
1)Fly love aloftG MyxB G G
2)Away, thou shalt not love meeG MyxG B G
3)Ay mee, can every rumourG DorG B GNoteworthy, PDF
4)Weep O mine eiesG DorB G G
5)Deere pittie how? Ah how?G MyxG B GNoteworthy, PDF
6)Yee restless thoughtsG DorG B GNoteworthy, PDF
Songs to 4 voices
7)What needeth all this travaile and turmoilingG MyxD G B GNoteworthy, PDF
8)O fools, can you not see a traffick neererC IonG E C C
9)Alas what hope of speedingA AeoA E C# ANoteworthy, PDF
10)Lady when I behold the roses sproutingG DorG B D G
11)Thus saith my Cloris brightG DorG D B G
12)Adew sweet AmarillisG DorG D G G
Songs to 5 voices
13)Dye haplesse manG MyxG B G D G
14)I Fall, O stay meeD AeoF# A D A D
15)And though my love aboundingG DorB G G D G
16)I Allwaies begE PhrG# E E B ENoteworthy, PDF
17)Thus love commaundsA AeoA C# A E A
18)Lady, your words doe spight meeG MyxG G B D G
19)Alas, what a wretched life is thisA AeoA C# E A A
20)Unkinde, O stay thy flyingG DorB G D G G
21)I soung sometimes my thoughts and fancies pleasureG DorG B G D G
22)Flora gave me fayrest flowersBb IonD Bb F Bb Bb
Songs to 6 voices
23)Sweet loveG MyxB G D G D G
24)Lady, when I beholdC IonG C C E G C
25)When shall my wretched lifeA PhrE A A E C# A
26)Of joyes, & pleasing painesG DorD B D G G G
27)My throte is soreG DorD G D B G GNoteworthy, PDF
28)Cruell behold my heavie endingG DorB D G D G G
29)Thou art but yong thou sai'stG DorG G D G D G
30)Why dost thou shootC IonC E C G G CNoteworthy, PDF


1) Fly love aloft, to heaven and looke out Fortune,
Then sweetly hir importune,
That I from my Calisto beloved,
As you and she set downe be never moved,
And love, to Carimel see you commend me,
Fortune for his sweet sake, may chaunce befriend mee.

2) Away, away, thou shalt not love mee.
So shall my love seeme greater,
And I shall love the better,
Shall it be so. What say you?
Why speake you not, I pray you?
Nay then I know you love mee,
That so you may disprove mee.

3) Ay mee, Can every rumor,
Thus start my ladies humor?
Name yee some gallant to hir;
why straight forsooth I woe hir,
Then burst she forth in passion,
You men love but for fashion,
Yet sure I am that no man,
ever so loved woman,
Yet alas Love be wary,
For women be contrary.

4) Weep O mine eies & cease not:
Your spring tides out alas, me thinkes increase not,
O when begin you,
To swell so high, that I may drowne mee in you.

5) Deere pittie how? Ah how? wouldst thou become her?
That beft becometh beauties best at-tyring,
Shall my desert deserve no favour from her?
But still to wast my selfe in deep admiring,
Like him that calls to Eccho to relieve him,
Still tels and heares the tale, Oh tale that grieves him.

6) Yee restless thoughts that harbour discontent,
Cease you assaults: and let my hart lament,
And let my tongue have leave to tell my griefe,
That she may pittie, though not graunt reliefe.
Pittie would help (alas) what love hath almost slaine,
And salve the wound, that festred this disdaine.

7) What needeth all this travayle and turmoyling,
Shortning the lyfes sweet pleasure,
To seeke this far fetcht treasure,
In those hot clymates, Under Phoebus broyling.

8) O fools, can you not see a traffick neerer,
In my sweet Ladies face, Where Nature showeth,
what ever treasure eye sees, or hart knoweth?
Rubies and Diamonds daintie,
And orient Perles such plentie,
Corral & Ambergirs, sweeter & deerer,
Then which the South seas or Moluccas lend us,
or either Indies, East of West, do send us.

9) Alas, what hope of speeding,
wher hope beguild lies bleeding;
She bad come, when she spied mee:
And when I came she flide mee,
Thus when I was beguiled,
She at my sighing smiled.
But if you take such pleasure,
Of hope & joy, my treasure,
By deceipt to bereave me,
Love mee and so deceive mee.

10) Lady, when I behold, the Roses sprouting,
Which clad in damaske mantells deck the arbours:
And then behold your lips, Where sweet love harbours,
My eyes presents me with a double, double doubting:
For viewing both a like, hardly my mind supposes,
whether the Roses be your lips, or your lips the Roses,

11) Thus saith my Cloris bright,
when we of Love sit downe and talke together,
Beware of Love, (deere) Love is a walking sprite,
And Love is this and that, And O I wot not what,
And comes and goes againe, I wot not whether,
No, no, these are but bugs to breed amazing,
For in her eies I saw his tourch light blazing.

12) Adew sweet Amarillis
For since to part your will is,
O heavy tyding,
Heere is for mee no biding:
Yet once againe ere I part with you,
Amarillis, sweet Adew.

13) Dye haplesse man, Since she denies thee grace,
Dye and dispaire, sith she doth scorne to love thee,
Farewell most fayer, though thou dost fayer deface,
Sith for my duteous love, thou dost reprove mee,
Those smiling eies, that sometimes mee revived,
Clowded with frownes, have mee of life deprived.

14) I Fall, I fall, O stay mee,
Deere love with joyes yee slay mee,
Of life your lips deprive mee,
Sweet, let your lips revive mee,
O whether are you hasting,
and leave my life thus wasting?
My health on you relyeing,
'Twer sinne to leave mee dyeing.

15) And though my love abounding,
Did make mee fall asounding,
Yet am I well contented,
Still so to be tormented,
And death cn never feare mee,
As long as you are neare mee.

16) I allwaies beg, Yet never am releeved:
I greeve, because my griefes are not beleved:
I cry aloud in vaine, my voice out streched:
And get but this, mine Ecco cals mee wretched.

17) Thus love commaunds, That I in vaine complaine mee,
And sorrow will, That shee shall still disdaine mee,
Yet did I hope, Which hope my life prolonged,
To heare hir say (alas) his Love was wronged.

18) Lady, your words doe spight mee,
Yet your sweet lippes so soft, Kisse and delight mee,
Your deeds my hart surchargd with over joying,
You taunts my lyfe destroying.
Since both have force to spill mee,
Let kisses sweet, sweet kill me,
Knights fight with swords & launces,
Fight you with smiling glaunces,
So like Swans of Leander,
my ghost from hence shall wander.
Singing and dying.

19) Alas, what a wretched life is this, Nay, what a death,
where the tyrant Love commaundeth?
My flouring daies are in their prime declining,
All my proud hop, quite false, and life untwining,
My joyes each after other, In hast are flying,
And leave mee dying, For hir that skornes my crying:
O shee from hence departs, My Love refraining,
For whom all hartles, Alas, I dye complayning.

20) Unkinde, O stay thy flying,
And if I needs must dye, pitty mee dying,
But in thee, my hart is lying,
And no death can assaile mee,
Alas till life doth faile thee,
O therfore, If the Fates bid thee be fleeting,
Stay for mee, whose poore hart, thou hast in keeping,

21) I soung sometimes my thoughts and fancies pleasure,
Wher then I list, or time serv'd best and leasure,
While Daphne did invite mee,
To supper once, and dranck to mee to spite mee.
I smild: yet still did doubt hir,
And dranck wher shee had dranck before, to flout hir.
But o while I did eye hir,
Myne eyes dranck Love, my lips dranck burning fier.

22) Flora gave me fayrest flowers,
none so fayer, In Floras treasure:
These I plast on Phillis Bowers,
She was pleasd, And she my pleasure,
Smiling meadowes seeme to say,
Come yee wantons, heere to play.

23) Sweet love: I f thou wilt gaine a Monarches glory,
Subdue her hart, who makes mee glad and sorry,
Out of thy golden quiver,
take thou thy strongest arrow,
That will through bone and marrow,
And mee and thee, of griefe and feare deliver:
But come behinde, for if shee looke uppon thee,
Alas poore Love, Then though art woe beegon thee.

24) Lady, when I behold, the Roses sprouting,
Which clad in damaske mantells deck the arbours:
And then behold your lips, Where sweet love harbours,
My eyes presents me with a double, double doubting:
For viewing both a like, hardly my mind supposes,
whether the Roses be your lips, or your lips the Roses,

25) When shall my wretched life give place to death?
That my sad cares may be inforc'd to leave mee:
Come sadest shadow, stop my vital breath,
For I am thine, Then let not care bereave thee,
Of thy sad thrall: But with that fatall dart,
Kil care and mee, While care lyes at my hart.

26) Of joyes, & pleasing paines I late went singing,
O joyes with paines, oh paines with joyes consenting,
And little thought as then of now repenting,
But now, think of my sweet bitter stinging:
All day long, I my hands, Alas goe wringing,
The baleful notes, of which my sad tormenting,
Are, ruth, & mone, frights, sobs, & lound lamenting,
From hills and dales, in my dull eares still ringing.

27) My throte is sore, my voice is horse with skriking,
My rests are sighes, Deep from the hart root fetched:
My song runs all on sharps, & with oft striking,
time on my brest, I shrink with hands out stretched:
Thus still, and still I sing, And neare am linning,
For still the close points to my first beginning.

28) Cruell behold my heavie ending,
See what you wrought, by your disdaining,
Causelesse I die, Love still attending,
Your hopeles pitty, pitty of my complaining,
Suffer those eies which thus have slaine mee,
With speed, to end their killing power:
So shall you prove how Love paine mee:
And see mee dye still yower.

29) Thou art but yong thou sai'st,
And loves delight thou wai'st not:
Oh take time while thou mai'st,
Least when thou would'st thou mai'st not,
If love shall then assaile thee,
A double double anguish will torment thee:
And thouwilt wish, (But wishes all wil faile thee,)
O mee, that I were yong againe, And so repent thee.

30) Why dost thou shoot and I seeke not to shield mee?
I yeild (sweet love) Spare then my wounded liver,
and doe not make my hart thy arrowes quiver.
O hold; What needs this shooting, when I yeeld mee?

Last updated 28/07/2012.

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