Beauty Is But A Painted Hell
by Thomas Campion

Beauty is but a painted hell :
        Aye me, aye me,
Shee wounds them that admire it,
Shee kils them that desire it.
        Giue her pride but fuell,
        No fire is more cruell.

Pittie from eu'ry heart is fled :
        Aye me, aye me,
Since false desire could borrow
Teares of dissembled sorrow,
        Constant vowes turn truthlesse,
        Loue cruele, Beauty ruthlesse.

Sorrow can laugh, and Fury sing :
        Aye me, aye me,
My rauing griefes discouer
I liu'd too true a louer :
        The first step to madnesse
        Is the excesse of sadnesse.

"Beauty Is But A Painted Hell" by Campion, Thomas (1567-1620).
Sequenced by Allan Alexander. Used with permission.

Campion, Thomas. Campion's Works. Percival Vivian, Ed.
Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1909. 182.

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Created by Anniina Jokinen on February 25, 1998.   Last updated June 26, 2010.

Titian.  Venus with a Mirror. 1555
Titian. Venus with a Mirror. 1555.
A recording of this song is 
available in the collections:

album cover
Campion: Elizabethan Songs

album cover
Campion: English Ayres

album cover
Campion: Ayres