Virginia, See, Thy Governor Appears!

Norborne Berkeley, 4th Baron Botetourt (c. 1717 – 15 October 1770), courtier, member of parliament, and royal governor of the colony of Virginia from 1768 until his death in 1770.
Norborne Berkeley, 4th Baron Botetourt (c. 1717 – 15 October 1770), courtier, member of parliament, and royal governor of the colony of Virginia from 1768 until his death in 1770.

Recitative.

VIRGINIA, see, thy GOVERNOR appears!
The peaceful olive in his brow he wears!
Sound the shrill trumpets, beat the rattling drums;
From Great Britannia’s isle his Lordship comes.
Bid Echo from the waving woods arise.
And joyful acclamations reach the skies;
Let the loud organs join their tuneful roar,
And bellowing cannons rend the pebbled shore :
Bid smooth James River catch the cheerful sound,
And roll it to Virginia’s utmost bound;
While Rappahannock and York’s gliding stream,
Swift shall convey the sweetly pleasing theme
To distant plains, where pond’rous mountains rise,
Whose cloud-capp’d verges meet the bending skies.
The Lordly prize the Atlantic waves resign,
And now, Virginia, now the blessing’s thine:
His listening ears will to your trust attend,
And be your Guardian, Governor, and Friend.

Air.

He comes: his Excellency comes,
To cheer Virginian plains!
Fill your brisk bowls, ye loyal sons,
And sing your loftiest strains.
Be this your glory, this your boast,
Lord Botetourt’s the favorite toast;
Triumphant wreaths entwine;
Fill full your bumpers swiftly round,
And make your spacious rooms rebound
With music, joy, and wine.

Recitative.

Search every garden, strip the shrubby bowers,
And strew his path with sweet autumnal flowers!
Ye virgins, haste, prepare the fragrant rose.
And with triumphant laurels crown his brows.

Duet.

Enter Virgins with flowers, laurels, &c.
See, we’ve stript each flowery bed;
Here’s laurels for his Lordly Head;
And while Virginia is his care.
May he protect the virtuous fair.

Air.

Long may he live in health and peace.
And ev’ry hour his joys increase.
To this let ev’ry swain and lass
Take the sparkling, flowing glass;
Then join the sprightly dance, and sing.
Health to our Governor, and God save the King.

Virgins.

Health to our Governor.

Bass Solo.

Health to our Governor.

Chorus.

Health to our Governor, and GOD save the KING!

— published in The Virginia Gazette, November, 1768.

Author: Christian Clay Columba Campbell

Christian Clay Columba Campbell is a Roman Catholic of the Anglican Use. As Senior Warden of the Cathedral of the Incarnation (Orlando, FL), he organised the process by which the parish accepted the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum coetibus, petitioning to join the Catholic Church. The Anglican Cathedral is now the Church of the Incarnation in the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter. Personal queries should be directed to me at eccentricbliss dot com.

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