The Nightingale (Peter Philips)

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Editor: Mick Swithinbank (submitted 2021-02-13).   Score information: A4, 10 pages, 111 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: Transposed down a minor third.

General Information

Title: The Nightingale
Composer: Peter Philips

Number of voices: 5vv   Voicing: SATTB
Genre: SecularMadrigal

Language: English
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 1598 in Madrigals to five voices

Description: Source: Madrigals to five voices, selected out of the best approved Italian authors by Thomas Morley, pub. Thomas East, 1598

External websites:

Original text and translations

English.png English text

The nightingale that sweetly doth complain
his young once lost or for his loving mate
to fill the heavens and fields himself doth frame
with sweet and doleful tunes to show his state:

So all the night to do I am full fain
remembering my hard hap and cruel fate,
for I alone am cause of all my pain:
that gods might die I learned to know too late.

O false deceit, who can himself assure
those two fair lights ay clearer than the sun
who ever thought to see made so obscure?

Well now I see, Fortune doth me procure
to learn by proof in this case that I run,
that nothing long doth please, one can endure.