Thomas Arne
(1710 - 1778)

Arne : My bliss too long my bride denies : illustration

My bliss too long my bride denies
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The serenade inserted into an updated production of The Merchant of Venice, c.1750. The text has been co-opted from a love-song purportedly translated from the Lapp, and printed by Steele in the Spectator in 1712.
Lyrics: Richard Steele

My bliss too long my bride denies,
Apace the wafting summer flies;
Nor yet the wint'ry blast I fear,
Nor storms or night shall keep me here.

What may for strength with steel compare?
Oh, love has fetters stronger far;
By bolts of steel are limbs confin'd,
But cruel love enchains the mind.

No longer then perplex thy breast;
When thoughts torment the first are best;
'Tis mad to go, 'tis death to stay;
Away my Jessie, haste away.