The University of Mississippi

Music 502: Baroque Music

Dido and Aeneas

An Opera
Performed at Mr. Josias Priest's Boarding School at Chelsea
By Young Gentlewomen.
The Words Made by Mr. Nahum Tate.
The Musick Compos'd by Mr. Henry Purcell.

                                 THE PROLOGUE [Music lost]

                               Phoebus Rises in the Chariot.
                         Over the Sea, The Nereids out of the Sea.

        PHOEB.    From Aurora's Spicy Bed,
                  Phoebus rears his Sacred Head.
                  His Coursers Advancing,
                  Curvetting and Prancing.

        1st NER.  Phoebus strives in vain to Tame'em,
                  With Ambrosia Fed too high.

	2d NER.   Phoebus ought not now to blame'em,
                  Wild and eager to Survey
                  The fairest Pageant of the Sea.

        PHOEB.    Tritons and Nereids come pay your Devotion
        CHO.      To the New rising Star of the Ocean.
                  Venus Descends in her Chariot,
                  The Tritons out of the Sea.

                                  The Tritons Dance

        NEREID    Look down ye Orbs and See
                  A New Divinity.
        PHOEB.    Whose Lustre does Out-Shine
                  Your fainter Beams, and half Eclipses mine,
                  Give Phoebus leave to Prophecy.
                  Phoebus all Events can see.
                  Ten Thousand Thousand Harmes.
                  From such prevailing Charmes,
                  To Gods and Men must instantly Ensue.

        CHO.      And if the Deity's above,
                  Are Victims of the powers of Love,
                  What must wretched Mortals do.

        VENUS     Fear not Phoebus, fear not me,
                  A harmless Deity.
                  These are all my Guards ye View,
                  What can these blind Archers do.

        PHOEB.    Blind they are, but strike the Heart,
        VENUS     What Phoebus say's is alwayes true.
                  They Wound indeed, but 'tis a pleasing smart.

        PHOEB.    Earth and Skies address their Duty,
                  To the Sovereign Queen of Beauty.
                     All Resigning,
                     None Repining.
                  At her undisputed Sway.

        CHO.      To Phoebus and Venus our Homage wee'l pay,
                  Her Charmes blest the Night, as his Beams blest the day.

                                     The Nereids Dance.

                              The Spring Enters with her Nymphs.

                                          SCENE I
                                         The Grove.

        VENUS     See the Spring in all her Glory,
        CHO.      Welcomes Venus to the Shore.
        VENUS     Smiling Hours are now before you,
                  Hours that may return no more.

                                                            Exit, Soft Musick.

        SPRING    Our Youth and Form declare,
                  For what we were designed.
                  'Twas Nature made us Fair,
                  And you must make us kind.
                  He that fails of Addressing,
                  'Tis but Just he shou'd fail of Possessing.

                               The Spring and Nymphs Dance.

        SHEPH'S   Jolly Shepherds come away,
                  To Celebrate this Genial Day,
                  And take the Friendly Hours you vow to pay.
                     Now make Trial,
                     And take no Denial.
                  Now carry your Game, or for ever give o're.

                           The Shepherds and Shepherdesses Dance.

        CHO.      Let us Love and happy Live,
                  Possess those smiling Hours,
                  The more auspicious Powers, 
                  And gentle Planets give.
                  Prepare those soft returns to Meet,
                  That makes Loves Torments Sweet.

                                    The Nymphs Dance.

                    Enter the Country Shepherds and Shepherdesses.

        HE        Tell, Tell me, prithee Dolly,
                  And leave thy Melancholy.
                     Why on the Plaines, 
                     the Nymphs and Swaines,
                  This Morning are so Jolly.

        SHE       By Zephires gentle Blowing.
                  And Venus Graces Flowing.
                     The Sun has bin 
                     to Court our Queen,
                  And Tired the Spring with wooing.

        HE        The Sun does guild our Bowers,
        SHE       The Spring does yield us Flowers.
                     She sends the Vine,
        HE           He makes the Wine,
                  To Charm our happy Hours.

        SHE       She gives our Flocks their Feeding,
        HE        He makes'em fit for Breeding.
        SHE          She decks the Plain,
        HE           He fills the Grain,
                  And makes it worth the Weeding.

        CHO.      But the Jolly Nymph Thitis that long his Love sought,
                  Has Flustred him now with a large Mornings draught,
                  Let's go and divert him, whilst he is Mellow,
                  You know in his Cups he's a Hot-Headed Fellow.

                              The Countreys Maids Dance.

                                      ACT the First,


                                     Scene the Palace.
                            Enter Dido and Belinda, and Train.
        BEL.      Shake the cloud from off your brow,
                  Fate your wishes does allow;
                       Empire growing,
                       Pleasures flowing,
                  Fortune smiles and so should you.
                  Shake the cloud from off your brow.
        CHO.      Banish sorrow, banish care,
                  Grief should ne'er approach the fair.
        DIDO      Ah! Belinda, I am press'd
                  With torment not to be confess'd.
                  Peace and I are strangers grown,
                  I languish till my grief is known,
                       Yet would not have it guess'd.
        BEL       Grief increases by concealing;
        DIDO      Mine admits of no revealing.
        BEL       Then let me speak; the Trojan guest
                  Into your tender thoughts has press'd.
                  The greatest blessing Fate can give,
                  Our Carthage to secure, and Troy revive.
        CHO       When monarchs unite, how happy their state;
                  They triumph at once o'er their foes and their fate.
        DIDO      Whence could so much virtue spring?
                  What storms, what battles did he sing?
                  Anchises' valour mix'd with Venus' charms,
                  How soft in peace, and yet how fierce in arms!
        BEL       A tale so strong and full of wo
                  Might melt the rocks, as well as you.
                  What stubborn heart unmov'd could see
                       Such distress, such piety?

        DIDO      Mine with storms of care oppress'd
                  Is taught to pity the distress'd;
                  Mean wretches grief can touch,
                  So soft, so sensible my breast,
                  but ah! I fear I pity his too much.
        BEL &     Fear no danger to ensue,
        2d WOMAN, The hero loves as well as you.
        then CHO       Ever gentle, ever smiling,
                       And the cares of life beguiling,
                  Fear no danger to ensue,
                  The hero loves as well as you.
                       Cupids strew your path with flowers
                       Gather'd from Elysian bowers.
                  Fear no danger to ensue,
                  The hero loves as well as you.
                                    Dance this Chorus.
                               Aeneas enters with his train.
        BEL       See, your royal guest appears;
                  How godlike is the form he bears!
        AEN       When, royal fair, shall I be bless'd,
                  With cares of love and state distress'd?
        DIDO      Fate forbids what you pursue.
        AEN       Aeneas has no fate but you!
                  Let Dido smile, and I'll defy
                  The feeble stroke of Destiny.
        CHO       Cupid only throws the dart
                  That's dreadful to a warrior's heart,
                  And she that wounds can only cure the smart.
        AEN       If not for mine, for empire's sake
                  Some pity on your lover take;
                  Ah! make not in a hopeless fire
                  A hero fall, and Troy once more expire.
        BEL       Pursue thy conquest, Love--her eyes
                  Confess the flame her tongue denies.
                                 A Dance: Guitars Chacony.
        CHO       To the hills and the vales, to the rocks and the mountains,
                  To the musical groves and the cool shady fountains
                  Let the triumphs of Love and of beauty be shown;
                  Go revel ye Cupids, the day is your own.
                                   The Triumphing Dance.

                                      ACT the Second,
                                      Scene the Cave.
                                     Enter Sorceress.
                                [Prelude for the Witches.]
        SORC      Wayward sisters, you that fright
                  The lonely traveller by night,
                  Who like dismal ravens crying
                  Beat the windows of the dying,
                  Appear at my call, and share in the fame
                  Of a mischief shall make all Carthage flame.
                       Appear, appear!
                                   Enter Enchantresses.
        ENCHA     Say, Beldame, what's thy will?
        CHO       Harm's our delight and mischief all our skill.
        SORC      The Queen of Carthage, whom we hate,
                  As we do all in prosp'rous state,
                  Ere sunset shall most wretched prove,
                  Depriv'd of fame, of life and love.
        CHO       Ho, ho, ho, ho, ho, ho, &c.
        ENCHA     Ruin'd ere the set of sun?
                  Tell us, how shall this be done?
        SORC      The Trojan Prince you know is bound
                  By Fate to seek Italian ground;
                  The Queen and he are now in chase,
        ENCHA     Hark! hark! the cry comes on apace!
        SORC      But when they've done, my trusty elf,
                  In form of Mercury himself,
                  As sent from Jove, shall chide his stay,
                  And charge him sail tonight with all his fleet away!
        CHO       Ho, ho, ho, ho, ho, ho, &c.
        ENCHA     But ere we this perform,
                  We'll conjure for a storm,
                  To mar their hunting sport,
                  And drive 'em back to court.
        CHO       In our deep vaulted cell, the charm we'll prepare,
                  Too dreadful a practice for this open air.
                                        Echo Dance.

                                     Scene the Grove.
               [Ritornelle] Enter Aeneas, Dido and Belinda, and their Train.
        BEL,      Thanks to these lonesome vales,
        then CHO  These desert hills and dales,
                  So fair the game, so rich the sport,
                  Diana's self might to these woods resort.
                                  Guitar Ground--A Dance.
        2d WOMAN  Oft she visits this lone mountain,
                  Oft she bathes her in this fountain,
                       Here Acteon met his fate,
                  Pursued by his own hounds;
                  And after mortal wounds
                       Discovered too late.
                       A Dance to entertain Aeneas, by Dido's Women.
        AEN       Behold, upon my bending spear
                  A monster's head stands bleeding,
                  With tushes far exceeding
                  Those did Venus' huntsman tear!
        DIDO      The skies are clouded: hark! how thunder
                  Rends the mountain oaks asunder!
        BEL,      Haste, haste to town! this open field
        then CHO  No shelter from the storm can yield.                [Exit.
          The Spirit of the Sorceress descends to Aeneas in likeness of Mercury.
        SPIR      Stay, Prince, and hear great Jove's command:
                  He summons thee this night away.
        AEN       Tonight?
        SPIR               Tonight thou must forsake this land;
                  The angry god will brook no longer stay.
                  Jove commands thee, waste no more
                  In love's delights those precious hours
                  Allow'd by th'almighty powers
                  To gain th'Hesperian shore
                  And ruin'd Troy restore.
        AEN       Jove's commands shall be obey'd;
                  Tonight our anchors shall be weigh'd.
                  But ah! what language can I try,
                  My injur'd Queen to pacify?
                  No sooner she resigns her heart
                  But from her arms I'm forc'd to part.
                  How can so hard a fate be took?
                  One night enjoy'd the next forsook.
                  Yours be the blame, ye gods! for I
                  Obey your will; but with more ease could die.

                               Witches Chorus [music lost].
                                 The Groves Dance [lost].
                                      ACT the Third,
                                     Scene the Ships.
                               [Prelude] Enter the Sailors.
        SAILOR,   Come away, fellow sailors, your anchors be weighing,
        then CHO  Time and tide will admit no delaying;
                  Take a bouzy short leave of your nymphs on the shore,
                       And silence their mourning
                       With vows of returning,
                  But never intending to visit them more.
                                    The Sailors Dance.
                        Enter the Sorceress and her Enchantresses.
        SORC      See the flags and streamers curling,
                  Anchors weighing, sails unfurling!
        ENCHA     Phoebus' pale deluding beams
                  Gilding o'er deceitful streams.
                       Our plot has took,
                       The Queen's forsook, ho, ho, ho!
                  Elissa's ruin'd, ho, ho, ho!
        SORC                                    Our next motion
                  Must be to storm her lover on the ocean.
                  From the ruin of others our pleasures we borrow;
                  Elissa bleeds tonight, and Carthage flames tomorrow!
        CHO       Destruction's our delight, delight our greatest sorrow;
                  Elissa dies tonight, and Carthage flames tomorrow!
                                    The Witches Dance.
                  Jack of the Lantern leads the Sailors out of their way
                                 among the Enchantresses.
                                    [Scene the Palace.]
                              Enter Dido, Belinda, and Train.
        DIDO      Your counsel all is urg'd in vain,
                  To earth and heaven I will complain;
                  To earth and heaven why do I call?
                  Earth and heaven conspire my fall.
                  To Fate I sue, of other means bereft,
                  The only refuge for the wretched left.         [Enter Aeneas.
        BEL       See, madam, where the Prince appears!
                  Such sorrow in his look he bears
                  As would convince you still he's true.

        AEN       What shall lost Aeneas do?
                  How, royal fair, shall I impart
                  The gods' decree, and tell you we must part?
        DIDO      Thus on the fatal banks of Nile
                  Weeps the deceitful Crocodile;
                  Thus hypocrites that murder act
                  Make heav'n and gods the authors of the fact!
        AEN       By all that's good...
        DIDO                            By all that's good, no more!
                  All that's good you have forswore.
                  To your promis'd empire fly,
                  And let forsaken Dido die.
        AEN       In spite of Jove's command I'll stay,
                  Offend the gods, and Love obey.
        DIDO      No, faithless man, thy course pursue;
                  I'm now resolv'd as well as you.
                  No repentance shall reclaim
                  The injur'd Dido's slighted flame;
                  For 'tis enough, whate'er you now decree,
                  That you had once a thought of leaving me.
        AEN       Let Jove say what he will, I'll stay!
                  No, no, I'll stay, and Love obey!
        DIDO      Away, away! No, no, away!
                  To death I'll fly if longer you delay.
                       Away, away!                                 [Exit Aeneas.
                  But Death, alas! I cannot shun;
                  Death must come when he is gone.
        CHO       Great minds against themselves conspire,
                  And shun the cure they most desire.
        DIDO      Thy hand, Belinda; darkness shades me,
                       On thy bosom let me rest;
                  More I would, but Death invades me;
                       Death is now a welcome guest.
                  When I am laid in earth, may my wrongs create
                       No trouble in thy breast.
                  Remember me! but ah! forget my fate.
                        Cupids appear in the clouds o'er her tomb.
        CHO       With drooping wings ye Cupids come,
                  And scatter roses o'er her tomb,
                  Soft and gentle as her heart;
                  Keep here your watch, and never part.       [Cupids Dance.