Fortune my foe, why dost thou frown on me?
And will thy favors never lighter be?
Will thou, I say, forever breed my pain?
And will thou not restore my joys again?
Die not in fear, not live in discontent.
Be thou not slain, where blood was never meant.
Revive again, to faint thou hast no need.
The less afraid, the better thou shalt speed.
John Dowland was an english Renaissance composer. He wrote mainly songs with lute accompaniment.
The ballad Fortune my foe (also called Complaint by Dowland) started out as a “Lover’s complaint” but soon became the tune to which condemned people sang their last words before going to their death at the gallows. The popularity of Dowland’s setting is illustrated by the fact that William Byrd adapted it for keyboard.
(Quotation from the Naxos website).
Go to the next song on the Album Land of oblivion!