Garvan (John Wall Callcott)

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  • (Posted 2006-04-01)  CPDL #11368:        (Sibelius 2)
Editor: Jonathan Goodliffe (submitted 2006-04-01).   Score information: A4, 13 pages, 94 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: New edition 2009-03-13 brings lyrics more closely into line with established text of Southey's poem, including using "Gavran" rather than "Garvan".

General Information

Title: Gavran (or Garvan)
Composer: John Wall Callcott
Lyricist: Robert Southey (1774-1843), from "Madoc", Canto XI

Number of voices: 3vv   Voicings: ATB or TTB
Genre: SecularGlee

Language: English
Instruments: A cappella originally, piano accompaniment added by William Horsley (1774-1858)

First published:
Description: A 3 part glee.

External websites:

Original text and translations

English.png English text

Where are the sons of Gavran? where his tribe
The faithful? Following their beloved Chief,
They the Green Islands of the Ocean sought;

[Nor human tongue hath told, nor human ear,
Since from the silver shores they went their way,
Hath heard, their fortunes. In his crystal Ark,
Whither sailed Merlin with his band of Bards,
Old Merlin, master of the mystic lore?]
Belike his crystal Ark, instinct with life,
Obedient to the mighty Master, reach'd
The Land of the Departed; there, belike,
They in the clime of immortality,
Themselves immortal, drink the gales of bliss,
Which o'er Flathinnis breathe eternal spring,
Blending whatever odours make the gale
Of evening sweet, whatever melody
Charms the wood-traveller.
[In their high-roofed halls,
There, with the Chiefs of other days, feel they
The mingled joy pervade them? .. Or beneath
The mid-sea waters, did that crystal Ark
Down to the secret depths of Ocean plunge
Its fated crew? Dwell they in coral bowers
With Mermaid loves, teaching their paramours
The songs that stir the sea, or make the winds
Hush, and the waves be still?] In fields of joy
Have they their home, where central fires maintain
Perpetual summer, where one emerald light
Through the green element for ever flows?