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THE CAPTIVITY.

AN ORATORIO.

IN THREE ACTS.

" 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."

P. c.

DRAMATIS PERSONÆ.1

FIRST ISRAELITISH PROPHET.
SECOND ISRAELITISH PROPHET.
ISRAELITISH WOMAN.
FIRST CHALDEAN PRIEST.
SECOND CHALDEAN PRIEST.
CHALDEAN WOMAN.
CHORUS OF YOUTHS AND VIRGINS.

SCENE.—The Banks of the Euphrates, near Babylon

| The Dramatis Personæ is not in the MS.

THE CAPTIVITY.

ACT I. Scene I.—ISRAELITES sitting on the Banks of the Euphrates.

First PROPHET.

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 father and your friend : Insulted, chain'd, and all the world a foe, Our God alone is all we boast below.

Chorus of ISRAELITES.
Our God is all we boast below,

To Him we turn our eyes;
And every added weight of woe

Shall make our homage rise.

And though no temple richly drest,

Nor sacrifice is here;
We'll make His temple in our breast,

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 Aing perfumes around : These hills how sweet! those plains how won-

drous fair! But sweeter still, when Heaven was with us there.

Air.
O Memory, thou fond deceiver !

Still importunate and vain ;
To former joys recurring ever,

And turning all the past to pain;

Hence, deceiver, most distressing,

Seek the happy and the free;
They who want each other blessing,

Ever want a friend in thee."

First PROPHET.

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;
And he who wants each other blessing,

In thee must ever find a foe.”

Have we not cause for triumph, when we see
Ourselves alone from idol-worship free?
Are not this very day those rites begun,
Where prostrate folly hails the rising sun ?
Do not our tyrant lords this day ordain
For superstitious rites and mirth profane?
And should we mourn? Should coward Virtue fly,
When impious Folly rears her front on high ?
No; rather let us triumph still the more,
And as our fortune sinks, our wishes soar.

Air.

The triumphs that on vice attend
Shall ever in confusion end;
The good man suffers but to gain,
And every virtue springs from pain:

As aromatic plants bestow
No spicy fragrance while they grow,
But crush'd or trodden to the ground,
Diffuse their balmy sweets around.

Second PROPHET.

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.

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