Anon
(c.1760)

Anon : Sylvia, wilt thou waste thy prime : illustration

Sylvia, wilt thou waste thy prime
(S./T.Fl.Continuo)
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Published without attribution in Amaryllis, a collection "of such songs as are most esteemed for composition and delicacy, and sung at the publick theatres or gardens". The piece looks very like the work of James Oswald.

The source quotes only verse 1; the two latter verses have been imported editorially from other similar song collections.
Lyrics: Torquato Tasso (trans. Wm. Ayre)

Sylvia, wilt thou waste thy prime,
Stranger to the joys of love?
Thou hast youth, and that's the time
Ev'ry minute to improve.
Round thee wilt thou never hear
Little wanton girls and boys,
Sweetly sounding in thy ear
Infant prate and mother's joys.

Only view that little dove,
Softly cooing to its mate;
As a further proof of love,
See her for his kisses wait.
Hark! that charming nightingale,
As it flies from spray to spray,
Sweetly tune an am'rous tale,
"I love, I love", it strives to say.

Could I to thy soul reveal
But the least, the thousandth part,
Of those pleasures lovers feel,
In a mutual change of heart.
Then repenting, would'st thou say:
"Virgins' fears from hence remove;
All the time is thrown away
That we cannot spend in love".