Stonington (Daniel Read)

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  • (Posted 2015-05-16)   CPDL #35439:       
Editor: Barry Johnston (submitted 2015-05-16).   Score information: Letter, 1 page, 57 kB   Copyright: Public Domain
Edition notes: Oval note edition. Watts' poem has an irregular meter; there aren't other lines in it that would fit Read's music. MusicXML source file is in compressed .mxl format.
  • (Posted 2015-05-16)   CPDL #35438:   
Editor: Barry Johnston (submitted 2015-05-16).   Score information: 7 x 10 in (landscape), 1 page, 60 kB   Copyright: Public Domain
Edition notes: Note shapes added (4-shape). Watts' poem has an irregular meter; there aren't other lines in it that would fit Read's music.

General Information

Title: Stonington
First Line: Let a broad stream with golden sands
Composer: Daniel Read
Lyricist: Isaac Watts

Number of voices: 4vv   Voicing: SATB
Genre: Sacred

Language: English
Instruments: A cappella

Published: 1786 in The American Musical Magazine No. 1.

Description: Words by Isaac Watts, 1706, Lyric Poems, four lines from False Greatness, with an irregular meter.

External websites:

Original text and translations

English.png English text

I.
My Lord, forbear to call him blessed
That only boasts a large estate,
Should all the treasures of the west
Meet, and conspire to make him great.
I know thy better thoughts; I know
Thy reason can't descend so low.
Let a broad stream with golden sands
Through all his meadows roll,
He's but a wretch, with all his lands,
That wears a narrow soul.

II.
He swells amidst his wealthy store,
And, proudly posing what he weighs,
In his own scale he fondly lays
Huge heaps of shining ore.
He spreads the balance wide, to hold
His manors and his farms,
And cheats the beam with loads of gold
He hugs between his arms.
So might the plow-boy climb a tree,
When Croesus mounts his throne,
And both stand up, and smile to see
How long their shadow's grown.
Alas! How vain their fancies be,
To think that shape their own!

III.
Thus, mingled still with wealth and state,
Croesus himself can never know;
His true dimensions and his weight
Are far inferior to their show.
Were I so tall to reach the pole,
Or grasp the ocean with my span,
I must be measured by my soul:
The mind's the standard of the man.

False Greatness by Isaac Watts