Thyrsis, when we parted (John Wall Callcott)

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Editor: Christopher Shaw (submitted 2023-09-12).   Score information: A4, 7 pages, 274 kB   Copyright: CC BY SA
Edition notes: Includes a keyboard reduction of the a cappella choral score. Please click on the link for preview/playback/PDF download. Prepared from the primary source; lyrics as set by Callcott.
  • (Posted 2009-02-20)  CPDL #18944:        (Sibelius 5)
Editor: Jonathan Goodliffe (submitted 2009-02-20).   Score information: A4, 9 pages, 80 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: The wording of the lyrics has been brought into line with the version of the poem by Gray in the Thomas Gray Archive. Hence "Thyrsis, when we parted" rather than "Thyrsis, when he left me".

General Information

Title: Thyrsis, when we parted
Composer: John Wall Callcott
Lyricist: Thomas Gray (1716-1771)

Number of voices: 4vv   Voicing: SATB
Genre: SecularGlee

Language: English
Instruments: A cappella (originally). Piano accompaniment added by William Horsley (1774-1858).

First published: c.1790 (n/d), for the author
    2nd published: Horsley (memorial edition)


External websites:

Original text and translations

English.png English text

Thyrsis, when we parted, swore
Ere the spring he would return.
Ah, what means yon violet flower,
And the buds that deck the thorn?
'Twas the lark that upward sprung!
'Twas the nightingale that sung!

Idle notes, untimely green,
Why such unavailing haste?
Western gales and skies serene
Prove not always winter past.
Cease my doubts, my fears to move;
Spare the honour of my love.