To Anacreon in Heaven (Ralph Tomlinson, John Stafford Smith) To Anacreon in Heav'n, where he sat in full glee A few sons of Harmony seny a petition, That he their inspirer and patron would be, When this answer arrived from the jolly old Grecian: Voice, fiddle and flute, No longer be mute. I'll lend you my name, and inspire you to boot... And, besides, I'll intruct you, like me, to entwine The myrtle of Venus with Bacchus' vine. The news to Olympus immediately flew, Where Old Thunder decided to give himself airs. "If we suffer these mortals their schemes to pursue, There's Devil a goddess will stay above stairs." Hark! Already they cry In transports of joy, "A fig for Parnassus, to Rowley's we'll fly! And there, my good fellows, we'll learn to entwine The myrtle of Venus with Bacchus' vine." The yellow-hair'd god, and his nine fusty maids, To the hill of old Lud will incontinent flee. Idalia will boast but of tenantless shades And the biforked hill a mere desert will be. My thunder, no fear on't Will soon do its errand, And damme!, I'll swinge the ringleaders I warrant, I'll trim the young dogs, for thus daring to twine, The myrtle of Venus with Bacchus' cine. Apollo rose up; and said prithee ne'er quarrel Good king of the gods with thy vot'ries below! Your thunder is useless---then, shewing his laurel Cry'd "Sic evitable fulmen, you know. Then over each head My laurels I'll spread, So my sons from your crackers no mischief shall dread, Whilst snug in their club-room, they jovially twine The myrtle of Venus with Bacchus' vine." Next Momus got up, with his risible phiz And swore with Apollo he'd cheerfully join. The full tide of harmony still shall be his But the song, and the catch and the laugh shall be mine. Then, Jove be not jealous Of these honest fellows, Cry'd ove, "We relent, since the truth you now tell us And swear, by old Styx, that they long shall entwine The myrtle of Venus with Bacchus' vine. Ye sons of Anacreon, then join hand in hand Preserve unanimity, friends and love. 'Tis your's to support what's so happily plann'd You've the sanction of gods, and the fiat of love. While thus we agree Our toast, let it be May our club flourish happy, united and free! And long may the sons of Anacreon entwine The myrtle of Venus with Bacchus' vine. Note: words 1770, set to music by Smith 1771. Recorded on Musical Heritage CD MHS512315X JB
Thanks to Mudcat for the Digital Tradition!