by Robert Burns (1759 - 1796)

Farewell, thou fair day, thou green...
Language: English 
Available translation(s): FRE
Farewell, thou fair day, thou green earth, and ye skies,
Now gay with the broad setting sun! 
Farewell! love and friendship, ye dear tender ties –
Our race of existence is run !
Thou grim King of Terrors, thou Life's gloomy foe,
Go frighten the coward and slave !
Go teach them to tremble, fell tyrant, but know, 
No terrors hast thou to the brave.

Thou strik'st the poor peasant – he sinks in the dark, 
Nor saves e'en the wreck of a name !
Thou strik'st the young hero -- a glorious mark,
He falls in the blaze of his fame.
In the field of proud honour, our swords in our hands, 
Our king and our country to save,
While victory shines on Life's last ebbing sands, 
O, who would not die with the brave ?

About the headline (FAQ)

Confirmed with The Complete Poetical Works of Robert Burns, Cambridge edition, Boston and New York, Houghton Mifflin Company, 1897, page 246.


Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

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

  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , title 1: "Le chant de mort", copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Ferdinando Albeggiani

This text was added to the website: 2012-02-11
Line count: 16
Word count: 136