Sweet stay a while (John Dowland)

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  • (Posted 2008-05-30)  CPDL #17035:     
Editor: David Fraser (submitted 2008-05-30).   Score information: A4, 2 pages, 108 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: SATB plus lute (tenor G tuning)

General Information

Title: Sweet stay a while
Composer: John Dowland
Lyricist: John Donne (attr.)

Number of voices: 4vv   Voicing: SATB
Genre: SecularLute song

Language: English
Instruments: Lute, optional viols

First published: 1612 in A Pilgrimes Solace, no. 2
Description: Various performance options exist: solo voice (soprano or tenor) plus lute and (preferably) bass viol; SATB plus lute; S, 3 viols plus lute.

External websites:

Original text and translations

English.png English text

Sweet 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 joyes must dye,
And perish in their infancie.

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

attrib. John Donne (1572-1631)