William Byrd Poems

Poems » william byrd

William Byrd
William Byrd (between 1534 and 1543 4 July 1623) was an English composer of the Renaissance. He lived until well into the seventeenth century without writing music in the new Baroque fashion, but his keyboard works are said to have marked the beginning of the Baroque organ and harpsichord style. William Byrd was born in 1543, probably in Lincoln. The date 1543 comes from his will, in which he describes himself as being in his eightieth year of life. The will is dated 15 November 1622, which would mean he was born between 14 November 1542 and 14 November 1543. However the statement about his age refers only to when he started writing his will. At this time in history, it might have taken several months, to several years to complete a will. Therefore he may have been eighty in 1619 and taken 3 years to complete his will. Byrd drafted a deposition on or near 15 November 1598. In the deposition he is described (in someone else's handwriting) as "58 yeares or ther abouts". This would give a date of birth near the end of 1539 or in 1540. In that he case he could not possibly have been the "Wyllyam Byrd" who became a chorister in Westminster Abbey in 1543, though some sources have decided that Byrd must have been born even earlier, in 1534, in order to make this possible. The idea that he was born in Lincoln derives from the fact that the name "Byrd" is rare, and is found in that area. If he really was the "Wyllyam Byrd" at Westminster in 1543, then he is likely to have been born in London, not Lincoln. He must have been born sometime between 1534 and 1543, in Lincoln or London.

childe harold's pilgrimage: canto the third
 
 
Is thy face like thy mother's, my fair child!
Ada! sole daughter of my house and heart?... [read poem]
don juan: canto the first
 
 
I want a hero: an uncommon want,
When every year and month sends forth a new one,
Til... [read poem]
the destruction of sennacherib
 
 
The Assyrian came down like the wolf on the fold,
And his cohorts were gleaming in purple and g... [read poem]
she walks in beauty
 
 
She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all th... [read poem]
the vision of judgment
 
 
"A Daniel come to judgment! yea a Daniel!
I thank thee, Jew, for teaching me that wor... [read poem]
lara: canto the first
 
 
In him inexplicably mix'd appear'd
Much to be lov'd and hated, sought and fear'd.
Opinion ... [read poem]
childe harold's pilgrimage: canto the fourth
 
 
I stood in Venice, on the Bridge of Sighs;
A palace and a prison on each hand:
I... [read poem]
don juan: dedication
 
 
Difficile est proprie communia dicere
HOR. Epist. ad Pison... [read poem]
don juan: canto the twelfth
 
 
But now I will begin my poem. 'Tis
Perhaps a little strange, if not quite new,
That f... [read poem]
manfred: incantation
 
 
When the moon is on the wave,
And the glow-worm in the grass,
And the meteor on the ... [read poem]
darkness
 
 
I had a dream, which was not all a dream.
The bright sun was extinguish'd, and the stars
D... [read poem]
care for thy soul as thing of greatest price
 
 
Care for thy soul as thing of greatest price,
Made to the end to taste of power divine,... [read poem]
so we'll go no more a roving
 
 
So we'll go no more a roving
So late into the night,
Though the heart be still as lo... [read poem]
don juan: canto the second
 
 
The ship, call'd the most holy "Trinidada,"
Was steering duly for the port Leghorn;
F... [read poem]
don juan: canto the eleventh
 
 
When Bishop Berkeley said "there was no matter,"
And proved it--'twas no matter what he sa... [read poem]
on this day i complete my thirty-sixth year
 
 
'Tis time the heart should be unmoved,
Since others it hath ceased to move:
Yet, thou... [read poem]
english bards and scotch reviewers
 
 
...

Time was, ere yet in these degenerate days
Ignoble themes obtain'd mistaken ... [read poem]
prometheus
 
 
Titan! to whose immortal eyes
The sufferings of mortality,
Seen in their sad r... [read poem]
dear doctor, i have read your play
 
 
Dear Doctor, I have read your play,
Which is a good one in its way,
Purges the eyes, and m... [read poem]
the prisoner of chillon
 
 
My hair is grey, but not with years,
Nor grew it white
In a single night,... [read poem]
don juan: canto the fourth
 
 
But let me change this theme, which grows too sad,
And lay this sheet of sorrows on the sh... [read poem]
stanzas for music
 
 
There be none of Beauty's daughters
With a magic like thee;
And like music on the wat... [read poem]
don juan: canto the eighth
 
 
The town was taken--whether he might yield
Himself or bastion, little matter'd now:
H... [read poem]
epistle to augusta
 
 
My sister! my sweet sister! if a name
Dearer and purer were, it should be thine.
M... [read poem]
lines to mr. hodgson written on board the lisbon packet
 
 
Huzza! Hodgson, we are going,
Our embargo's off at last;
Favourable breezes blowing... [read poem]
impromptus
 
 
Strahan, Tonson, Lintot of the times,
Patron and publisher of rhymes,
For thee the bard up... [read poem]
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