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" Written in 1764, but never set to music, or even published by its author. It is here printed from the original manuscript, in Goldsmith's handwriting, in the possession of Mr. Murray, of Albemarle Street, compared with the copy printed by Messrs. Prior and Wright, in 1837. I have adopted the most poetical readings of both copies.
“ For this Oratorio Goldsmith received at least ten guineas. In Mr. Murray's collection is the following receipt in Goldsmith's handwriting:
* Received from Mr. Dodsley ten guineas for an Oratorio, which he and Mr. Newbery are to share.
OLIVER GOLDSMITH.' October 31st, 1764.
“Mr. Murray's MS. is the copy sold by Goldsmith to James Dodsley."
FIRST ISRAELITISH PROPHET.
SCENE.—The Banks of the Euphrates, near Babylon
1 The Dramatis Personce is not in the MS.
Scene I.-ISRAELITES sitting on the Banks of the Euphrates.
Recitative. YE captive tribes, that hourly work and weep, Where flows Euphrates, murmuring to the deepSuspend awhile the task, the tear suspend, And turn to God, your
friend : Insulted, chain'd, and all the world a foe, Our God alone is all we boast below.
Chorus of ISRAELITES.
To Him we turn our eyes ;
every added weight of woe
And though no temple richly drest,
Nor sacrifice is here;
And offer up a tear.
Recitative. That strain once more: it bids remembrance rise, And calls my long-lost country to mine eyes. Ye fields of Sharon, dress'd in flowery pride; Ye plains where Jordan rolls its glassy tide ; Ye hills of Lebanon, with cedars crown'd; Ye Gilead groves, that fling perfumes around : These hills how sweet! those plains how won-
drous fair! But sweeter still, when Heaven was with us there.
Still importunate and vain ;
And turning all the past to pain;
Hence, deceiver, most distressing,
Seek the happy and the free;
Ever want a friend in thee.1
Recitative. Yet, why repine? What, though by bonds confin'd, Should bonds enslave the vigour of the mind ?
1 Variation.--" Thou, like the world, opprest oppressing,
Thy smiles increase the wretch's woe;
In thee must ever find a foe."
Have we not cause for triumph, when we see
As aromatic plants bestow
Recitative. But hush, my sons ! our tyrant lords are near; The sound of barbarous mirth offends mine ear; Triumphant music floats along the vale ; Near, nearer still, it gathers on the gale; The growing note their near approach declares ; Desist, my sons, nor mix the strain with theirs.