Humor say what makst thou heere (John Dowland)

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  • (Posted 2017-02-07)  CPDL #43017:         
Editor: James Gibb (submitted 2017-02-07).   Score information: A4, 3 pages, 50 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: Reformatting of #16811, with minor corrections. English modernised.
  • (Posted 2008-05-06)  CPDL #16811:         
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  • (Posted 2004-09-10)  CPDL #07838:        (Finale 2000)
Editor: Sabine Cassola (submitted 2004-09-10).   Score information: A4, 2 pages, 116 kB   Copyright: CPDL
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General Information

Title: Humor say what makst thou heere
Composer: John Dowland

Number of voices: 5vv   Voicings: SSATB or SATTB
Genre: SecularMadrigal

Language: English
Instruments: String ensemble

Viols; also, Lute (optional).

First published: 1600 in The Second Booke of Songs or Ayres, no. 22

External websites:

Original text and translations

English.png English text

1st Voice:
 Humour, say what mak'st thou here
 In the presence of a queen?

2nd Voice:
 Princes hold conceit most dear,
 All conceit in humour seen.

1st Voice:
 Thou art a heavy laden mood.

2nd Voice:
 Humour is Invention's food.

 But never humour yet was true,
 But that which only pleaseth you.

1st Voice:
 O I am as heavy as earth,
 Say then, who is Humour now?

2nd Voice:
 I am now inclined to mirth,
 Humour I as well as thou.

1st Voice:
 Why then 'tis I am drowned in woe.

2nd Voice:
 No, no. Wit is cherished so.

 But never humour yet was true,
 But that which only pleaseth you.

1st Voice:
 Mirth then is drowned in sorrow's brim.
 O in sorrow all things sleep.

2nd Voice:
 No, no, fool, the light'st things swim.
 Heavy things sink to the deep.

1st Voice:
 In her presence all things smile.

2nd Voice:
 Humour frolic then awhile.

 But never humour yet was true,
 But that which only pleaseth you.