Who is it that this dark night (Thomas Morley)

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  • (Posted 2017-04-11)  CPDL #43996:         
Editor: James Gibb (submitted 2017-04-11).   Score information: A4, 2 pages, 48 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: Reformatting of #16200, with minor corrections to underlay.
  • (Posted 2008-02-19)  CPDL #16200:         
Editor: Brian Russell (submitted 2008-02-19).   Score information: A4, 3 pages, 35 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: NoteWorthy Composer file may be viewed and printed with NoteWorthy Composer Viewer.
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General Information

Title: Who is it that this dark night
Composer: Thomas Morley
Lyricist: Philip Sidney

Number of voices: 1v   Voicing: T
Genre: SecularLute song

Language: English
Instruments: Lute

First published: 1600 in First Book of Ayres, no. 7

External websites:

Original text and translations

English.png English text

1  Who is it that this dark night,
Under my window plaineth?
It is one that from thy sight
Being, ah, exil'd, disdaineth
Ev'ry other vulgar light.

2  Why, alas, and are you he?
Be not those fond fancies changed?
Dear, when you find change in me
Though from me you be estranged
Let my change to ruin be.

3  Well, in absence this will die;
Leave to see, and leave to wonder.
Absence sure will help, if I
Can learn now myself to sunder
From what in my heart doth lie.

4  But time will these thoughts remove;
Time doth work what no man knoweth.
Time doth as the subject prove;
With time still th'affection groweth
In the faithful turtledove.

5  What if you new beauties see?
Will not they stir new affection?
I will think they pictures be,
Image like of Saint's perfection
Poorly counterfeiting thee.

6  But the reason's purest light
Bids you leave such minds to nourish;
Dear, do Reason no such spite;
Never doth thy beauty flourish
More than in my reason's sight.

7  But the wrongs love bears will make,
Love at length leave undertaking.
No, the more fools it doth shake
In a ground of so firm making
Deeper still they drive the stake.

8  Peace! I think that some give ear,
Come no more lest I get anger.
Bliss! I will my bliss forbear
Fearing, sweet, you to endanger;
But my soul shall harbour there.

9  Well, be gone, be gone, I say,
Lest that Argus' eyes perceive you.
O unjustest Fortune's sway,
Which can make me thus to leave you
And from louts to run away.