The works of John Dowland

A Pilgrimes Solace

A Pilgrimes Solace

Dowland´s A Pilgrimes Solace was published October 28th, 1611.
The text of the title-page reads:

A Pilgrimes Solace
Wherein is contained Musicall
Harmonie of 3. 4. and 5. parts, to be
sung and plaid with the Lute
and Viols.

By John Douland, Batchelor of Musicke in
both the Vniuersities: and Lutenist to the
Right Honourable the
the Lord Walden.

Printed for M.L.J.B. and T.S.
by the Assignment of
William Barley.

A Pilgrimes Solace contains the following 22 songs:


Disdaine me still, that I may euer loue

Structure: G-major, 4/4 rhythm, 2 St.
Comment: Poem was printed in Poems, written by the Right Honourable William, Earl of Pembroke, 1660.

Disdaine me still, that I may euer loue,
For who his Loue inioyes can loue no more.
The warre once past with ease men cowards proue :
And ships returnde, doe rot vpon the shore.
And though thou frowne, Ile say thou art most faire :
And still Ile loue, though still I must despayre.

As heate to life so is desire to loue,
and these once quencht both life and loue are gone.
Let not my sighes nor teares thy vertue moue,
like baser mettals doe not melt too soone.
Laugh at my woes although I euer mourne,
Loue surfets with reward, his nurse is scorne. 

Sweete stay a while , why will you?

Structure: A-minor, 4/4 rhythm, 2 St.
Comment: This song was set by Gibbons as a madrigal.

Sweete stay a while, why will you rise ?
The light you see comes from your eyes :
The day breakes not, it is my heart,
To thinke that you and I must part.
O stay, or else my ioyes must dye,
And perish in their infancie.

Deare let me dye in this faire breast,
Farre sweeter then the Phœnix nest.
Loue raise desire by his sweete charmes
Within this circle of thine armes :
And let thy blissefull kisses cherish
Mine infant ioyes, that else must perish. 

To aske for all thy loue

Structure: G-minor, 4/4 rhythm, 4 St.
Comment: The poem is an imitation of Donne´s "Lover´s Infiniteness", and ascribed to him in one manuscript.

To aske for loue, and thy whole heart t'were madnesse.
I doe not sue,
nor can admit
(Fairest) from you
to haue all yet.
Who giueth all hath nothing to impart, but sanesse.

He that receiueth all, can haue no more then seeing.
My Loue by length
of euery houre,
Gathers new srtength,
new growth, new flower.
You must haue daily new rewards in store still being.

You cannot euery day giue me your heart for merit:
Yet if you will,
when yours doth goe,
You shall haue still
one to bestow :
For you shall mine when yours doth part inherit.

Yet if you please, Ile finde a better way, then change them :
For so alone
dearest we shall
Be one and one,
anothers all.
Let vs so ioyne our hearts that nothing may estrange them. 

Loue those beames that breede

Structure: G-minor, 4/4 rhythm, 3 St.

Loue those beames that breede, all day long, breed and feed, this burning :
Loue I quench with flouds, flouds of teares, nightly teares, and mourning.
But alas, teares coole this fire in vaine,
The more I quench, the more there doth remaine.

Ile goe to the woods, and alone, make my moane, oh cruell :
For I am deceiu'd and bereau'd of my life, my iewell.
O but in the woods, though Loue be blinde,
Hee hath his spies, my secret haunts to finde.

Loue then I must yeeld to thy might, might and spight oppressed,
Since I see my wrongs, woe is me, cannot be redressed.
Come at last, be friendly Loue to me,
And let me not endure this miserie. 

Shall I striue with wordes to moue

Structure: E-minor, 3/2 rhythm, 1 St.
Comment: This song appears in Lachrimæ as "Mr Henry Noel, his Galliard".

Shall I striue with wordes to moue, when deedes receiue not due regard ?
Shall I speake, and neyther please, nor be freely heard ?
Griefe alas though all in vaine, her restlesse anguish must reueale :
Shee alone my wound shall know, though shee will not heale.
All woes haue end, though a while delaid, our patience prouing :
O that times strange effects could but make her louing.
Stormes calme at last, and why may not shee leaue off her frowning ?
O sweet Loue, help her hands my affection crowning.
I woo'd her, I lou'd her, and none but her admire.
O come deare ioy, and answere my desire. 

Were euery thought an eye

Structure: C-minor, 3/2 rhythm
Comment: A strange song, the final cadence is not the least of its oddities.

Were euery thought an eye, and all those eyes could see,
Her subtill wiles their sights would beguile, and mocke their iealousie.
Wher fires doe inward burne, they make no outward show.
And her delights amid the dark shades, which none discouer, grow.

Desire liues in her heart, Diana in her eyes.
T'were vaine to wish women true, t'is well, if they proue wife.
The flowers growth is vnseene, yet euery day it growes.
So where her fancy is set it thriues, but how none knowes.

Such a Loue deserues more grace,
Then a truer heart that hath no conceit,
To make vse both of time and place,
When a wit hath need of all his sleight. 

Stay time a while thy flying

Structure: A-minor, 3/2 rhythm, 3 St.
Comment: Much of this song is in 4/2 rather than 3/2 rhythm, an interesting rhythmic exercise in what appears a simple song.

Stay time a while thy flying,
Stay and pittie me dying.
For fates and friends haue left mee,
And of comfort berest mee.
Come, come close mine eyes, better to dye blessed,
Then to liue thus distressed.

To whom shall I complaine me,
When thus friends doe disdaine mee ?
T'is time that must befriend me,
Drown'd in sorrow to end mee.
Come, come close mine eyes, better to dye blessed,
Then to liue thus distressed.

Teares but augment this fewell,
I feede by night, ( oh cruell )
Light griefes can speake their pleasure,
Mine are dumbe passing measure.
Quicke, quicke close mine eyes, better to dye blessed,
Then here to liue distressed. 

Tell me true Loue

Structure: G-minor, 4/4 rhythm, 4 St.
Comment: This song is an example of the new style being introduced by Johnson and Ferrabosco in their masque songs.

Tell me true Loue where shall I seeke thy being,
In thoughts or words, in vowes or promise making,
In reasons, lookes, or passions neuer seeing,
In men on earth, or womens minds partaking.
Thou canst not dye, and therefore liuing, tell me
Where is thy seate, Why doth this age expell thee.

When thoughts are still vnseene and words disguised,
Vowes are not sacred held, nor promise debt :
By passion reasons glory is surprised,
In neyther sexe is true loue firmely set.
Thoughts fainde, words false, vowes and promise broken
Made true Loue flye from earth, this is the token.

Mount then my thoughts, here is for thee no dwelling,
Since truth and falshood liue like twins together :
Beleeue not sense, eyes, eares, touch, taste, or smelling,
Both Art and Nature's forc'd : put trust in neyther.
One onely shee doth true Loue captiue binde
In fairest brest, but in a fairer minde.

O fairest minde, enrich'd with Loues residing,
Retaine the best; in hearts let some seede fall,
In stead of weeds Loues fruits may haue abiding;
At Haruest you shall reape encrease of all.
O happy Loue, more happy man that findes thee,
Most happy Saint, that keepes, restores, vnbindes thee. 

Goe nightly, cares the enemy to rest


Goe nightly cares, the enemy to rest
Forbeare a while to vexe my grieued sprite,
So long your weight hath lyne vpon my breast,
That loe I liue of life bereaued quite,
O giue me time to draw my weary breath,
Or let me dye, as I desire the death.
Welcome sweete death, Oh life, A hell,
Then thus, and thus I bid the world farewell.

False world farewell the enemy to rest,
Now doe thy worst, I doe not weigh thy spight :
Free from thy cares I liue for euer blest,
Enioying peace and heauenly true delight.
Delight, whom woes nor sorrowes shall amate,
Nor feares or teares disturbe her happy state.
And thus I leaue thy hopes, thy ioyes vntrue,
And thus, and thus vaine world againe adue. 

From silent night, true register of moanes

Structure: 3 St.

From silent night, true register of moanes,
From saddest Soule consumde with deepest sinnes,
From hart quite rent with sighes and heauie groanes,
My wayling Muse her wofull worke beginnes.
And to the world brings tunes of sad despaire,
Sounding nought else but sorrow, griefe and care.

Sorrow to see my sorrowes cause augmented,
And yet lesse sorrowfull were my sorrowes more :
Griefe that my griefe with griefe is not preuented,
For griefe it is must ease my grieued sore.
Thus griefe and sorrow cares but how to grieue,
For griefe and sorrow must my cares relieue.

If any eye therefore can spare a teare
To fill the well-spring that must wet my cheekes,
O let that eye to this sad feast draw neere,
Refuse me not my humble soule beseekes :
For all the teares mine eyes haue euer wept
Were now too little had they all beene kept. 

Lasso vita mia, mi fa morire

Structure: 1 St.

Lasso vita mia mi fa morire,
Crudel amor mio cor consume da mille ferite,
Che mi fa morir, Ahi me, deh che non mi fa morire.
Crudel amor, mi fa sofrir mille martire. 

In this trembling shadow

Structure:G-minor, 4/4 rhythm, 3 St.

In this trembling shadow, cast
From those boughes which thy wings shake,
Farre from humane troubles plac'd :
Songs to the Lord would I make,
Darknesse from my minde then take,
For thy rites none may begin,
Till they feele thy light within.

As I sing, sweete flowers Ile strow,
From the fruitfull vallies brought :
Praising him by whom they grow,
Him that heauen and earth hath wrought,
Him that all things framde of nought,
Him that all for man did make,
But made man for his owne sake.

Musicke all thy sweetnesse lend,
While of his high power I speake,
On whom all powers else depend,
But my brest is now too weake,
Trumpets shrill the ayre should breake,
All in vaine my sounds I raise,
Boundlesse power askes boundlesse praise. 

If that a Sinners sighes be Angels food

Structure: G-minor, 4/4 rhythm, 1 St.
Comment: Conservative style, with the voice one of several contrapuntal parts.

If that a Sinners sighes be Angels foode,
Or that repentant teares be Angels wine,
Accept O Lord in this most pensiue moode,
These hearty sighes and dolefull plaints of mine.
That went with Peter forth most sinfully,
But not as Peter did, weepe bitterly. 

Thou mighty God

Structure: A-minor, 4/4 rhythm, 1 St.
Comment: Nicolas Breton, The Soul´s Harmony, 1602. Part 1 of 3

Thou mightie God, that rightest euery wrong,
Listen to patience in a dying song.
When Iob had lost his Children, Lands and goods,
Patience asswaged his excessiue paine,
And when his sorrowes came as fast as flouds,
Hope kept his heart till comfort came againe. 

When Dauids life by Saul

Structure: A-minor, 2/2 rhythm, 1 St.
Comment: Nicolas Breton, The Soul´s Harmony, 1602. Part 2 of 3

When Dauids life by Saul was often sought,
And worlds of woes did compasse him about,
On dire reuenge he neuer had a thought,
But in his griefes, Hope still did help him out. 

When the poore Criple

Structure: A-minor, 4/4 rhythm, 1 St.
Comment: Nicolas Breton, The Soul´s Harmony, 1602. Part 3 of 3

When the poore Criple by the Poole did lye,
Full many yeeres in misery and paine,
No sooner hee on Christ had set his eye,
But hee was well, and comfort came againe,
No Dauid, Iob, nor Criple in more griefe,
Christ giue mee patience, and my Hopes reliefe. 

Where Sinne sore wounding

Structure: G-minor, 4/4 rhythm, 4 St.

Where Sinne sore wounding, daily doth oppresse me,
There Grace abounding, freely doth redresse mee :
So that resounding still I shall confesse thee,
Father of mercy.

Though Sinne offending daily doth torment mee,
Yet Grace amending, since I doe repent mee,
At my liues ending will I hope present mee
cleare to thy mercy.

The wound Sinne gaue me was of Death assured,
Did not Grace saue mee, whereby it is cured :
So thou wilt haue mee to thy loue invred,
free without merit.

Sinnes stripe is healed, and his sting abated,
Deaths mouth is sealed, and the Graue amated,
Thy Loue reuealed, and thy Grace related
giues me this spirit. 

My heart and tongue were twinnes

Structure: D-minor, 3/2 rhythm
Comment: Printed 1600 with the title: "Apollo´s Love-song for faire Daphne", and a note: "This Dittie was sung before her Majestie, at the right honourable Lord Chandos`, at Sudley Castell."

My heart and tongue were twinnes, at once conceiued,
Th'eldest was my heart, borne dumbe by destinie,
The last my tongue, of all sweet thoughts bereaued :
Yet strung and tunde to play hearts harmonie.

Both knit in one, and yet a sunder placed :
What heart would speake the tongue doth still discouer.
What tongue doth speake is of the heart embraced,
And both are one to make a new found Louer.

New found, and onely found in Gods and Kings,
Whose wordes are deedes, but wordes nor deedes regarded.
Chaste thoughts doe mount and flye with swiftest wings,
My loue with paine, my paine with losse rewarded.


Then this be sure, since it is true perfection,
That neyther men nor Gods can force affection. 

Vp merry Mates, to Neptunes praise


Vp merry mates, to Neptunes prayse.
Your voyces high aduance :
The watrie Nymphs shall dance,
And Eolus shall whistle to your layes,
Mr. Stereman, how stands the winde ?
S. Full North, North-east,
M. What course ?
S. Full South South-west.
M. No worse,
And blow so faire,
Then sincke despayre,
Come solace to the minde,
ere night we shall the heauen finde.
O happy dayes,
Who may containe,
But swell with proud disdaine,
When seas are smooth, sailes full, and all things please ?

Stay merry mates, proud Neptune lowres,.
Your voyces all deplore you,
The Nymphes stand weeping o're you :,
And Eolus and Iris bandy showres.,
Mr. Boates man hale in the Boate.
S. Harke, harke the ratlings,
M. Tis haile.
S. Make fast the tacklings.
M. Strike saile.
Make quicke dispatches,
Shut close the hatches.
Hold sterne, cast Ancour out,
This night we shall at randome floate.
O dismall houres,
Who can forbeare,
But sinke with sad despaire.
When seas are rough, sailes rent, and each thing lowres.


The golden meane that constant spirit beares,
In such extremes that nor presumes nor feares. 

Welcome black night


Welcome blacke night, Hymens faire day,
Help Hymen Loues due debt to pay,
Loues due debt is chaste delight,
Which if the turtles want to night,
Hymen forfets his Dietie,
And night in loue her dignitie.
Help, help, blacke night, Hymens faire day,
Help Hymen Loues due debt to pay.

Stay (happy paire) stay but a while,
Hymen comes not, loue to beguile,
These sports are alluring baites,
And sawce are to Loues sweetest Cates :
Longing hope doth no hurt but this,
It heightens Loues attained blisse.
Then stay (most happie) stay a while,
Hymen comes not, Loue to beguile.


Hymen, O Hymen myne
Of treasures more diuine,
What dietie is like to thee
That freest from mortalitie ? 

Cease these false sports


Cease these false sports, hast, hast away,
Loue's made a trewant by your stay.
Good night, good night, yet virgin Bride,
But looke ere day, ere day be spide.
You change that fruitlesse name,
Least you your sex defame,
Fear not Hymens peaceful war,
You'le conquer though you subdued are.
Good night, and ere the day be old
Rise to the Sunne a Marigold.

Hymen, O Hymen, blesse this night,
That Loues darke workes may come to light. 

A Galliard to Lachrimæ