The Lyrics of Henry VIII/Downbery down, Daggere
|← Aboffe all thynge||Hey now now →|
now am I exild my lady fro
and no cause geuyn ther to
wherfor to her. I me complayn
hey now 5
trustyng that dysdayn
sone shal be slayne
and never more to remayne.
“Downbery down” is a lyric of a lover’s exile from his lady with no known reason (ll. 3–4). The “dysdayn” (l. 6) mentioned shares a similar quality to that of the nearly-allegorized entity of disdain noted in Henry’s own lyrics, that of a force which keeps true lovers apart.
- 5 hey now A common refrain; see Farthing’s “Hey now now” (H 16) and Kempe’s “Hey nowe nowe” (H 10) both present in H as incipits; “hey now now now” is the burden to “Swet Iesu is cum to vs / this good tym of crystmas” (OxEP ff. 45v–47v; Greene #93), which is stated to be “A song in the tune of / And y were a mayden” (“And I war a maydyn” [H 67]); see also Skelton’s “Agaynste a Comely Coystrowne”: “Rumbyll downe, tumbyll downe, hey go, now, now” (l. 30). Also an exclamation, as in “hey now I howte” (Castle of Perseverance 61).
- 6 dysdayn Cf. Henry’s “Whoso that wyll all feattes optayne” (H 28.2,4,8,11,14) and elsewhere; see the note to line 2 of the aforementioned lyric.
“Downbery down” is in the form of a round, transcribed exactly here.
“Downbery down” is indexed in Robbins Index & Suppl. 688.8, Boffey, Ringler MS TM367, and Crum D451. It is reprinted in Flügel Anglia 260, 232, Stevens MCH8 18, and Stevens M&P 391.
Texts Collated: H1 (f. 25r), LR58 (f. 4v).
- 1 down] down down down hay down LR58
- 5 now] now hey now hey now LR58
- 6 that dysdayn] this day LR58
- 7 sone] sum LR58
- 8 never more] neuer LR58
- 9 substitute hey now downbery down. LR58