[Page 16]

NANCY of the VALE.


Nerine Galatea! thymo mihi dulcior Hyblae!
Candidior cygnis, hederâ formosior albâ!
[ed.] Virgil, Eclogues 7.37-8. (AH)
1 THE western sky was purpled o'er
2 With every pleasing ray:
3 And flocks reviving felt no more
4 The sultry heats of day:
5 When from an hazle's artless bower
6 Soft-warbled Strephon's tongue;
7 He blest the scene, he blest the hour,
8 While Nancy's praise he sung.
9 "Let fops with fickle falshood range
10 The paths of wanton love,
11 Whilst weeping maids lament their change,
12 And sadden every grove:
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13 But endless blessings crown the day,
14 I saw fair Esham's dale!
15 And every blessing find its way
16 To Nancy of the Vale.
17 'Twas from Avona's banks the maid
18 Diffus'd her lovely beams;
19 And every shining glance display'd
20 The Naïd of the streams.
21 Soft as the wild-duck's tender young,
22 That float on Avon's tide;
23 Bright as the water-lily, sprung,
24 And glittering near its side.
25 Fresh as the bordering flowers, her bloom:
26 Her eye, all mild to view;
27 The little halcyon's azure plume
28 Was never half so blue.
29 Her shape was like the reed so sleek,
30 So taper, strait, and fair;
31 Her dimpled smile, her blushing cheek,
32 How charming sweet they were!
33 Far in the winding Vale retir'd,
34 This peerless bud I found;
35 And shadowing rocks, and woods conspir'd
36 To fence her beauties round.
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37 That Nature in so lone a dell
38 Should form a Nymph so sweet!
39 Or Fortune to her secret cell
40 Conduct my wandering feet!
41 Gay lordlings sought her for their bride,
42 But she would ne'er incline:
43 "Prove to your equals true, she cry'd,
44 "As I will prove to mine.
45 "'Tis Strephon, on the mountain's brow,
46 "Has won my right good will;
47 "To him I gave my plighted vow,
48 "With him I'll climb the hill. "
49 Struck with her charms and gentle truth,
50 I clasp'd the constant fair;
51 To her alone I gave my youth,
52 And vow my future care.
53 And when this vow shall faithless prove,
54 Or I those charms forego;
55 The stream that saw our tender love,
56 That stream shall cease to flow.


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About this text

Title (in Source Edition): NANCY of the VALE. A BALLAD.
Themes: rural life; mythology
Genres: ballad metre; Chevy Chase stanza
References: DMI 27209

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Source edition

Dodsley, Robert, 1703-1764. A Collection of Poems in Six Volumes. By Several Hands. Vol. V. London: printed by J. Hughs, for R. and J. Dodsley, 1763 [1st ed. 1758], pp. 16-18. 6v.: music; 8⁰. (ESTC T131163; OTA K104099.005) (Page images digitized by the Eighteenth-Century Poetry Archive from a copy in the archive's library.)

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The text has been typographically modernized, but without any silent modernization of spelling, capitalization, or punctuation. The source of the text is given and all editorial interventions have been recorded in textual notes. Based on the electronic text originally produced by the TCP project, this ECPA text has been edited to conform to the recommendations found in Level 5 of the Best Practices for TEI in Libraries version 4.0.0.

Other works by William Shenstone