Farewell to America
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Or The Negroes Farewell to America This remarkable piece of sheet music highlights the hypocrisy of slaveholding patriots, makes none-too-subtle digs at the primitive conditions of American life, and seems to anticipate the exile of freed African Americans.
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None of this implies that British Tories were free from the stain of racism, any more than their Abolitionist brethren in 19 th -century America. Many ultimately accepted a British offer of transport to Africa, where they were settled in the new colony of Sierra Leone. It is worth noting that, despite the similarity of title, the tune on this song sheet bears no relation to that of the Yankee Doodle made famous during the American Revolution.
The broadside is undated, but the partnership of Charles and Samuel Thompson was active between and or The content certainly suggests that it was issued during the Revolution. It is also extremely rare: Though I find numerous references in the literature on the African-American experience during the Revolution , all illustrate the same example, from the collections of the Boston Public Library.
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The only other impression I have been able to locate is held by the British Library. In fairness, some number of impressions are likely bound in volumes of sheet music and unremarked by cataloguers.
Old folds, minor soiling at edges, paginated in ms at upper right corner and on verso. Thanks for signing up! The Words and Music by T.
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Not regarding can I see Her soul with grief opprest But let no sighs, no groans for me Steal from her pensive breast. In vain the feather'd warblers sing In vain the garden blooms And on the bosom of the spring Breathes out her sweet perfumes. While for Britannia's distant shore We weep the liquid plain, And with astonish'd eyes explore The wide-extended main. Health appears!
Complacent and serene, With Hebe's mantle oe'r her frame, With soul-delighting mien. To mark the vale where London lies With misty vapors crown'd Which cloud Aurora's thousand dyes, And veil her charms around. Why, Phoebus, moves thy car so slow? So slow thy rising ray? Give us the famous town to view, Thou glorious King of day!
For thee, Britannia, I resign New-England's smiling fields; To view again her charms divine, What joy the prospect yields!
Farewell to America
But thou! Temptation hence away, With all thy fatal train, Nor once seduce my soul away, By thine enchanting strain. Thrice happy they, whose heavenly shield Secures their souls from harm, And fell Temptation on the field Of all its pow'r disarms. To the Right Honourable William, Earl of Dartmouth HAIL, happy day, when, smiling like the morn, Fair Freedom rose New-England to adorn: The northern clime beneath her genial ray, Dartmouth, congratulates thy blissful sway: Elate with hope her race no longer mourns, Each soul expands, each grateful bosom burns, While in thine hand with pleasure we behold The silken reins, and Freedom's charms unfold.
Long lost to realms beneath the northern skies She shines supreme, while hated faction dies: Soon as appear'd the Goddess long desir'd, Sick at the view, she languish'd and expir'd; Thus from the splendors of the morning light The owl in sadness seeks the caves of night. No more, America, in mournful strain Of wrongs, and grievance unredress'd complain, No longer shalt thou dread the iron chain, Which wanton Tyranny with lawless hand Had made, and with it meant t' enslave the land.
Should you, my lord, while you peruse my song, Wonder from whence my love of Freedom sprung, Whence flow these wishes for the common good, By feeling hearts alone best understood, I, young in life, by seeming cruel fate Was snatch'd from Afric's fancy'd happy seat: What pangs excruciating must molest, What sorrows labour in my parent's breast?
A Farewell To America To Mrs. S. W. Poem by Phillis Wheatley - Poem Hunter Comments
Steel'd was that soul and by no misery mov'd That from a father seiz'd his babe belov'd: Such, such my case. And can I then but pray Others may never feel tyrannic sway?
For favours past, great Sir, our thanks are due, And thee we ask thy favours to renew, Since in thy pow'r, as in thy will before, To sooth the griefs, which thou did'st once deplore. May heav'nly grace the sacred sanction give To all thy works, and thou for ever live Not only on the wings of fleeting Fame, Though praise immortal crowns the patriot's name, But to conduct to heav'ns refulgent fane, May fiery coursers sweep th' ethereal plain, And bear thee upwards to that blest abode, Where, like the prophet, thou shalt find thy God.
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