Delia

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DELIA, OR THE AMOROUS GODDESS. English, Country Dance Tune (4/4 time). D Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). ABC. Composed by Samuel Howard (1710–1782), a chorister of the Chapel Royal and organist at two London churches; he was a student of Johann Pepusch. He composed an opera, The Amorous Goddess, premiered at Drury Lane in 1744, in which the song "Delia" appears, beginning: "Delia, in whose form we trace..." London publisher I. Walsh published the opera in 1744. The song melody was also printed in John Simpson's Calliope, or English Harmony, vol. 2 (London, 1746), John Sadler's The Muses Delight (Liverpool, 1754), John Johnson's Compleat Tutor for the Hautboy (London, 1750) his Compleat Tutor for the German Flute (London, 1760). Simpson gives "Mr. Howard" as the composer of the tune, and indicates it is "Mr. Howard's Favorite Musette."

Howard's lyrics to the tune begin:

Delia, in whose form we trace,
All that can a virgin grace,
Hark where pleasure blithe as May,
Bids us to Vaux-hall away.
Verdant vistas, melting sounds,
Magic echo, fairy rounds:
Beauties ev'ry wehere surprise;
Sure that place dropt from the skies.

The mention of Vauxhall Gardens in the fourth line is perhaps a self-advertisement, for Howard was a prolific song composer whose work could frequently be heard at concerts in the London pleasure gardens.

Source for notated version:

Printed sources: Barnes (English Country Dance Tunes, vol. 2), 2005; p. 29.

Recorded sources:




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