Richard Bellamy
(?1743 - 1813)

O balmy sleep
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From Bellamy's collection of glees published in 1789.

Bellamy was one of the most prominent basses of his day, appointed a Gentleman of the Chapel Royal (1771), a lay vicar of Westminster Abbey (1773), and a vicar choral of St Paul's Cathedral (1777), where he was also Master of the Choristers. He was dismissed from all his posts in 1800 for "great indecency" with some of the choirboys. "Drunkenness, I suppose, brought on a temporary insanity, foolishness! and beastliness!" according to R.J.S. Stevens.
Lyrics: John Wolcot

O balmy sleep, beneath thy wing,
When busy care no longer toils,
Where hopeless love forgets his sting,
And wan despair in visions smiles:
Soft let me lay my pensive head,
My languid eye in silence close;
And, blest beneath its friendly shade,
Steal from the world and from my woes.

Tired with the lengthened day, I view
With sacred joy the minutes past;
And, glad to bid the world adieu,
The coming moments with the last.
But to my arms the nymph divine
Would sleep in nightly visions give,
Pleased e'en in dreams to think her mine,
For ages would I wish to live.