Fly Swiftly Ye Minutes

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FLY SWIFTLY YE MINUTES. English, Air (3/8 time). B Flat Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AB. The song appears in Amaryllis (1760), 2nd edition, although it was first heard in Dalton's masque Comus, music by Thomas Arne (1710-1778), first performed at Drury Lane Theatre on March 4th, 1738. The production was performed many times during Arne's lifetime and remained popular nearly a century after his death.

Fly swiftly ye minutes, till Comus receive
The names soft transports that beauty can give
The bowl's frolick joys let him teach her to prove,
And she in return yield the raptures of love.
Without love and wine, wit and beauty are vain,
All grandeur insipid and raptures a pain,
The most splendid palace growns dark as a grave;
Love and wine give ye gods or take back what ye gave.

Source for notated version:

Printed sources: Geoghegan (Compleat Tutor for the Pastoral or New Bagpipes), c. 1745-46; p. 30.

Recorded sources:




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