Music to Hear (five Elizabethan Songs for soprano and piano)

Song Cycle by Robert Matthew-Walker (b. 1939)

Word count: 0

1. Madrigal: My thoughts hold mortal strife [sung text not yet checked]

My thoughts hold mortal strife;
I do detest my life,
And with lamenting cries
Peace to my soul to bring
Oft call that prince which here doth monarchize:
-- But he, grim grinning King,
Who caitiffs scorns, and doth the blest surprise,
Late having deck'd with beauty's rose his tomb,
Disdains to crop a weed, and will not come.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

2. Take, O take those lips away  [sung text not yet checked]

Take, o take those lips away,
That so sweetly [were]1 forsworn;
And those eyes, the break of day,
Lights [that]2 do mislead the morn:
But my kisses bring again;
Seals of love, [but]3 seal'd in vain, sealed in vain.

Hide, o hide those hills of snow
that thy frozen bosom wears,
On whose tops the pinks that grow
are yet of those that April wears;
But first set my poor heart free,
Bound in those icy chains by thee.

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

  • DUT Dutch (Nederlands) (L. A. J. Burgersdijk)
  • FIN Finnish (Suomi) (Paavo Cajander)
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , copyright © 2011, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Sarah L. Weller) , "Nimm, so nimm doch Deine Lippen fort", copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • POL Polish (Polski) (Jan Kasprowicz) , "Śpiew Pacholęcia", Warsaw, first published 1907

View original text (without footnotes)
Note: quoted by John Fletcher, in Bloody Brother, 1639 and by William Shakespeare, in Measure for Measure, Act IV, scene 1, c1604 (just one stanza)
1 Bishop: "are"
2 Bishop: "which"
3 Bishop: "tho'"

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

3. When icicles hang by the wall  [sung text not yet checked]

When icicles hang by the wall
And Dick the shepherd blows his nail,
And Tom bears logs into the hall,
And milk comes frozen home in pail;
When blood is nipt and ways be foul,
Then nightly sings the staring owl:
Tu-who! 
Tu-whit! Tu-who! -- A merry note!
While greasy Joan doth keel the pot.

When all aloud the wind doth blow,
And coughing drowns the parson's saw,
And birds sit brooding in the snow,
And Marian's nose looks red and raw;
When roasted crabs hiss in the bowl
Then nightly sings the staring owl:
Tu-who! 
Tu-whit! Tu-who! -- A merry note!
While greasy Joan doth keel the pot.

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

Researcher for this text: Clive Robinson

4. Full fathom five [sung text checked 1 time]

Full fathom five thy father lies,
Of his bones are coral made;
Those are pearls that were his eyes:
Nothing of him that doth fade,
But doth suffer a sea-change
Into something rich and strange.
Sea-nymphs hourly ring his knell:
[Ding-dong.]1
Hark! now I hear them, - ding-dong bell.

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

  • DUT Dutch (Nederlands) (Lidy van Noordenburg) , "Vijf vadem diep", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FIN Finnish (Suomi) (Erkki Pullinen) , copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy de Pourtalès)
  • GER German (Deutsch) [singable] (David Paley) , "Voll Faden fünf", copyright © 2012, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • IRI Irish (Gaelic) [singable] (Gabriel Rosenstock) , copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , "Tuo padre giace a una profondità di cinque tese", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Andrea Maffei) , no title, first published 1869
  • NOR Norwegian (Bokmål) (Arild Bakke) , "På fem favner", copyright © 2004, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

View original text (without footnotes)
1 omitted by Ives.

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

5. Tell me where is fancy bred? [sung text checked 1 time]

Tell me where is Fancy bred,
Or in the heart, or in the head?
How begot, how nourishèd?
Reply, reply.

It is engender'd in the eyes,
With gazing fed; and Fancy dies
In the cradle where it lies.
Let us all ring Fancy's knell:
I'll begin it, - Ding, dong, bell.

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

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]