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Hail! Bright Cecilia!


Poem by Nicholas Brady


Hail! Bright Cecilia

Hail! bright Cecilia, Hail!
Fill ev'ry Heart With Love of thee and thy Celestial Art;
That thine and Musick's Sacred Love
May make the British Forest prove
As Famous as Dodona's Vocal Grove.

Hark, each Tree its silence breaks

Hark, each Tree its silence breaks,
The Box and Fir to talk begin.
This is the sprightly Violin,
That in the Flute distinctly speaks.
‘Twas Sympathy their list'ning Brethren drew
When to the Thracian Lyre with leafy Wings they flew.

‘Tis Nature's Voice

'Tis Nature's Voice; thro' all the moving Wood
Of Creatures understood:
The Universal Tongue to none
Of all her num'rous Race unknown.
From her it learnt the mighty Art
To court the Ear or strike the Heart:
At once the Passions to express and move;
We hear, and straight we grieve or hate, rejoiced or love;
In unseen Chains it does the Fancy bind;
At once it charms the Sense and captivates the Mind.

Soul of the World

Soul of the World!
Inspired by thee,
The jarring Seeds of Matter did agree.
Thou did'st the scatter'd Atoms bind,
Which, by the Laws of true proportion join'd,
Made up of various Parts one perfect Harmony.

Thou tun’st this World below

Thou tun'st this World below, the Spheres above,
Who in the Heavenly Round to their own Music move.

With that sublime Celestial Lay

With that sublime Celestial Lay
Can any Earthly Sounds compare?
lf any Earthly Music dare, The noble Organ may.
From Heav'n its wondrous Notes were giv'n,
(Cecilia oft convers'd with Heaven).
Some Angel of the Sacred Choir
Did with his Breath the Pipes inspire;
And of their Notes above the just Resemblance gave,
Brisk without Lightness, without dulness Grave.

Wondrous machine!

Wond'rous Machine!
To thee the Warbling Lute,
Tho' us'd to Conquest, must be forc'd to yield:
With thee unable to dispute.

The Airy Violin

The Airy Violin
And lofty Viol quit the Field;
In vain they tune their speaking Strings
To court the cruel Fair, or praise Victorious Kings.
Whilst all thy consecrated Lays
Are to more noble Uses bent;
And every grateful Note to Heav'n repays
The melody it lent.

In vain the Am’rous flute

In vain the Am'rous flute and soft Guitar,
Jointly labour to inspire
Wanton Heat and loose Desire;
Whilst thy chaste Airs do gently move
Seraphic Flames and Heav'nly Love.

The Fife and all the Harmony of War

The Fife and all the Harmony of War,
In vain attempt the Passions to alarm,
Which thy commanding Sounds compose and charm.

Let these amongst themselves contest

Let these amongst themselves contest,
Which can discharge its single Duty best.
Thou summ'st their diff'ring Graces up in One,
And art a Consort of them All within thy Self alone.

Hall! Bright Cecilia

Hail! Bright Cecilia, Hail to thee!
Great Patroness of Us and Harmony!
Who, whilst among the Choir above
Thou dost thy former Skill improve,
With Rapture of delight dost see
Thy Favourite Art
Make up a Part
Of infinite Felicity.
Hail, bright Cecilia, Hail to thee!
Great Patroness of Us and Harmony!


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