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Canções de Ofélia

Word count: 122

Song Cycle by Natho Henn (1901 - 1958)

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?. How should I your true love [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English after the English

Translation(s): FRE GER GER GER GER ITA POL

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):


How should I your true love know
From another one?
By his cockle hat and staff,
And his sandal shoon.

He is dead and gone, lady,
He is dead and gone;
At his head a grass green turf,
At his heels a stone.

White his shroud as the mountain snow,
Larded with sweet [flowers]1;
Which bewept to the grave did go
With true-love [showers]2.

And will he not come again?
And will he not come again?
No, no, he is dead:
Go to thy deathbed.
He never, never will come again,
He never will come again.

His beard was as white as snow,
All flaxen was his poll;
He is gone,
And we cast away moan:
God ha' mercy on his soul.


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Note: this is often referred to as the Walsingham Ballad, and is quoted in Shakespeare's Hamlet, Act IV, Scene 5

Dante Gabriel Rossetti's poem An old song ended refers to this song.

1 White: "flow'rs"
2 White: "show'rs"

Submitted by Ted Perry

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