Category: Notes

Canzonet for Three Friends

The Society’s attention has been drawn to an earlier publication of two poems that appear in Vardill’s Poems and Translations from the Minor Greek Poets etc., published in 1809.

Canzonet for Three Friends appears on page 47 of La Belle Assemblée or, Bell’s Court and Fashionable Magazine for July, 1807, under the title An Original Air, by a Casmerian Indian. On the same page is The Hungarian Gipsy’s Song, another of Vardill’s poems that subsequently appeared in Poems and Translations. La Belle Assemblée credits both poems to “A. V—LL”, and Clipstone-street is given as the address of the poet. This confirms Vardill’s authorship, as she was known to have been living there at this time.

In 1817 The Canzonet for Three Friends was set to music by William Horsley and published as a music score by G. Graupner (Boston, Mass.), though no credit is given to the author of the lyrics.

In 1873 The Canzonet made its way into The Voice of Praise: A Collection of Hymns for the Use of the Methodist Church (James Robison, Pittsburgh, Penn.), in which it appears on page 353 as Hymn No. 521, where it is categorised as a “Parting Hymn”. No tune is given but the words are incorrectly attributed to A. A. Watts.

Editing Guidelines

The online anthology of Vardill’s poetry and prose has been edited and formatted for readability. Consequently documentation of column, paragraph, and page breaks has been omitted. Erratic punctuation such as unmatched quotation marks and missing full stops has been corrected. Spelling has been adjusted where appropriate. For example, the first instalment of the Annals of Public Justice contains the following variants: gipsy, gipsey, gypsy, gypsey. On the assumption that Vardill would have paid particular attention to the accuracy of her footnotes, ‘gypsy’ has been used throughout.

The European Magazine often uses apostrophised possessive pronouns such as ‘her’s’ and ‘our’s’, but this usage is by no means universal. An examination of Vardill’s published work reveals use of both forms (‘hers’ and ‘her’s’, ‘ours’ and ‘our’s’, etc.).  This online anthology has standardised on current usage.

Where Vardill has consistently used spelling now considered obsolete, this has been preserved. For example, ‘controul’ instead of ‘control’, and ‘groupe’ instead of ‘group’.

Separators are often used by the European Magazine printer to adjust the height of text blocks. Such indiscriminate separators have been removed.

Major errors in the typesetting of Vardill’s early contributions to the European Magazine were duly noted in subsequent numbers, and the online text has been amended accordingly. Unfortunately notifications of errata all but disappear from later numbers of the magazine, perhaps an indication of changing editorial policy.