1782
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

The Village of Hampstead. A Song.

Gazetteer and New Daily Advertiser (3 July 1782).

J. B.


A pastoral ballad signed "J. B." in three double-quatrain stanzas celebrating the pleasures of suburban life: "No rural delight here is wanting; | The meadows with cattle about, Each landscape appears most enchanting, With far-varied prospects around." A generation later Hampstead, north of London, would become home to Leigh Hunt and his literary coterie.



How charming the Village of Hampstead,
Which does rich plenty afford;
Here's mutton as good as at Banstead,
Here's dainties to grace out the board.
No rural delight here is wanting;
The meadows with cattle about,
Each landscape appears most enchanting,
With far-varied prospects around.

The fair have alluring fine faces,
Each gazing admirer to charm;
They're surely the offspring of Graces,
With love ev'ry bosom to warm.
Here harmony banishes Variance,
To dwell here how happy's my lot;
A pleasure supreme I experience,
When friends come to visit my cot.

My garden has choice fruits and flowers,
With beautiful shrubs and high trees,
I pass here my peaceable hours,
In calmest contentment and ease.
When bliss can a mortal have greater,
When blest with so sweet a retreat;
Enjoying the beauties of nature,
While health makes my rapture complete.

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