Hail! Happy Albion! (John Wall Callcott)

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Editor: Christopher Shaw (submitted 2023-09-12).   Score information: A4, 6 pages, 293 kB   Copyright: CC BY NC SA
Edition notes: Please click on the link for preview/playback/PDF download. Prepared from the primary source.
  • (Posted 2009-02-21)  CPDL #18950:        (Sibelius 5)
Editor: Jonathan Goodliffe (submitted 2009-02-21).   Score information: A4, 10 pages, 99 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes:

General Information

Title: Hail! Happy Albion!
Composer: John Wall Callcott
Lyricist: Thomas Gray (1716-1771)

Number of voices: 5vv   Voicings: AATTB or ATTTB
Genre: SecularGlee

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

First published: 1792 Warren's twenty-ninth collection
    2nd published: 1824 Horsley (memorial edition)
Description: Early printings prescribe AATTB, ATTTB or ATTBB. Each presents a different set of range problems. Of the three, ATTTB inflicts least violence on the work's written pitches. "The star of Brunswick" refers generally to the dynasty of the king of England, from George II onwards, but (in this item) more specifically to George, Prince of Wales (latterly Prince Regent and George IV), who became a member and patron of the Catch Club in 1786. It could perhaps be replaced in modern performance by "the star of Windsor", or how about "the Star of "Suits"", if you are a contrarian supporter of Meghan Markle "Duchess of Sussex"?.

External websites:

Original text and translations

English.png English text

Opening two lines adapted from "Annus Mirabilis" (1789) ll. 56-57 by Thomas Cowper (1731-1800).
Remaining lyrics (with minor changes) from "Ode for Music" (1769) ll.71-74 and 89-94 by Thomas Gray (1716-1771).

Hail! Happy Albion! Queen of isles
Peaceful freedom o'er thee smiles :
Thy liberal heart, thy judging eye,
The flower unheeded can descry,
And bid it round heaven's altars shed
The fragrance of its blushing head.

Through the wild waves as they roar,
With watchful eye and dauntless mien,
Thy steady course of honour keep ;
Nor fear the rocks, nor seek the shore,
The star of Brunswick shines serene,
And gilds the horrors of the deep.