Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Wi' A' Its Virtues Rare

The Siller Croun
By Susanna Blamire

And ye shall walk in silk attire,
And siller hae to spare,
Gin ye’ll consent to be his bride,
Nor think o’ Donald mair.
O wha wad buy a silken goun
Wi’ a poor broken heart!
Or what’s to me a siller croun,
Gin frae my love I part!

The mind wha’s every wish is pure
Far dearer is to me;
And ere I’m forc’d to break my faith,
I’ll lay me down an’ dee!
For I hae pledg’d my virgin troth
Brave Donald’s fate to share;
And he has gi’en to me his heart,
Wi’ a’ its virtues rare.

His gentle manners wan my heart,
He gratefu’ took the gift;
Could I but think to seek it back,
It wad be waur than theft!
For langest life can ne’er repay
The love he bears to me;
And ere I’m forc’d to break my troth,
I’ll lay me doun an’ dee.

Blamire, sometimes called the Muse of Cumberland, is best known for her Scottish-dialect lyrics describing Cumbrian life; several of them, including this one, were set to music by Haydn. You can listen to it here at the 30:45 minute mark. If you prefer baritone to soprano, you can listen to a Thomas L. Thomas singing a version of the song here, at the 2:30 mark.

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