François-Hippolyte Barthélemon
(1741 - 1808)

Durandarte and Belerma
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Barthélemon's setting of "Monk" Lewis's "pathetic Scotch ballad", arranged as a three-part glee by Joseph Corfe.
Lyrics: Matthew Gregory Lewis

Sad and fearful is the story
Of the Roncevalles fight;
On those fatal plains of glory
Perished many a valiant knight.
There fell Durandarte, never
Verse a nobler chieftain named;
He, before his lips for ever
Closed in silence, thus exclaimed:

Oh, Belerma, Oh my dear one,
For my pain and pleasure born,
Sev'n long years I served thee, fair one,
Sev'n long years my fee was scorn.
And when now thy heart replying
To my wishes burns like mine,
Cruel fate, my bliss denying,
Bids me ev'ry hope resign.

Ah, though young I fall, believe me
Death would never claim a sigh;
'Tis to lose thee, 'tis to leave thee,
Makes me think it hard to die,
Say I of my lands possessor,
Named her with my dying breath,
Say my lips I op'd to bless her
Ere they closed for aye in death.

Sad was Montesino's heart,
He felt distress his bosom rend;
Oh, my cousin Durandarte
Woe is me to view thy end!
Sweet in manners, fair in favour,
Mild in temper, fierce in fight,
Warrior, nobler, gentler, braver
Never shall behold the light.