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BELINDA. English, Air and Country Dance Tune (cut time). D Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). One part. The melody appears in all four editions of John Young's Second Volume of the Dancing Master [1] (1710-1728), and in Walsh & Hare's Second Book of the Compleat Country Dancing-Master (1719). It appeared in the farce Women Will Have Their Wills as the song "Belinda's pretty, pretty, pleasing form (does my happy, happy, happy, happy fancy charm)", sung in the original production by Mr. Gouge. The song, set to an air by John Eccles (d. 1735), was published in Thomas D'Urfey's sixth volume of Wit and Mirth, or Pills to Purge Melancholy (1719), and is probably the "Belinda" in John Watts' vol. 3 of The Musical Miscellany (1730). From Pills:

BELINDA'S pretty, pretty, pleasing Form,
Does my happy, happy, happy, happy Fancy charm:
Her prittle-prattle, tittle-tattle's all engaging, most obliging;
Whilst I'm pressing, clasping, kissing,
Oh ! oh ! how she does my Soul alarm:
There is such Magick in her Eyes,
Such Magick in her Eyes, in her Eyes,
Does my wond'ring Heart Surprise:
Her prinking, nimping, twinking, pinking,
Whilst I'm courting, for transporting,
How like an Angel, She panting lies, She panting lies.

Eccles was a popular composer of works for the theater, and contributed music for 46 different plays (although many of them were musical collaborations that he contributed only a few songs to) in the late 17th and early 18th century. In 1704 he became master of the king's band of music, succeeding Dr. Nicholas Staggins, an organization he had been a member of. He published a collection of his songs in 1710, and some of his ground basses are in Division Violin.

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