Joseph Corfe (arr.)
(1740 - 1820)

The Braes of Ballenden
(S.A.T.B. + reduction)
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Corfe, organist of Salisbury Cathedral, 1792 - 1804, issued two sets of "Twelve glees.... composed from ancient Scotch melodies" in the early 1790s, to satisfy two contemporary enthusiasms: that for mixed sex social music, and that for all things North-British. The current arrangement comes from the first set.

These glees were selected from a repertoire of well-known Scottish songs that had been anthologised in the previous seventy years. Corfe appears to have been particularly indebted for source material to James Johnson's "Scots Musical Museum", Edinburgh 1787, which included texts edited and improved by Robert Burns. Verses that are not underlaid were not included by Corfe, and have been imported from external sources (most especially the aforementioned "Scots Musical Museum").
Lyrics: Thomas Blacklock

Beneath a green shade, a lovely young swain
One evening reclined to discover his pain;
So sad yet so sweetly he warbled his woe;
The wind ceased to breathe and the fountains to flow;
Rude winds, with compassion, could hear him complain,
Yet Chloe, less gentle, was deaf to his strain.

How happy, he cried, my moments once flew,
Ere Chloe's bright charms first flashed in my view.
These eyes then with pleasure the dawn could survey,
Nor smiled the fair morning more cheerful than they:
Now scenes of distress please only my sight;
I'm tortured in pleasure, and languish in light.

Through changes, in vain, relief I pursue,
All, all but conspire my griefs to renew;
From sunshine to zephyrs and shades we repair,
To sunshine we fly from too piercing an air;
But love's ardent fever burns always the same,
No winter can cool it, no summer inflame.

But see, the pale moon, all clouded, retires,
The breezes grow cool: not Strephon's desires:;
I fly from the dangers of tempest and wind,
Yet nourish the madness that preys on my mind.
Ah, wretch! How can life thus merit thy care,
Since lengthening moments but lengthens despair.