Epitaph on Sally Salisbury (John Stafford Smith)

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  • (Posted 2021-10-04)  CPDL #66063:  Network.png
Editor: Christopher Shaw (submitted 2021-10-04).   Score information: A4, 5 pages, 249 kB   Copyright: CC BY SA
Edition notes: Please click on the link for preview/playback/PDF download. This edition comprises a modern realisation, and a statement of the piece in its original specialised format.

General Information

Title: Epitaph on Sally Salisbury
Composer: John Stafford Smith
Number of voices: 4vv   Voicing: TTTT
Genre: SecularGlee

Language: English
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 1773
Description: This catch gained a Catch Club prize medal in 1773. Sally Salisbury was a renowned prostitute in the first two decades of the eighteenth century; the revealed text adds to the risqué nature of the text.

External websites:

Original text and translations

English.png English text

Here, on her back but unactive at last,
Poor Sally lies under grim death;
Thro' the course of her vices she gallop'd so fast;
No wonder she's now out of breath.
To the goal of her pleasure she drove very hard,
But was tripp'd up e'er half-way she ran.
And tho' ev'ryone fancied her life was a yard,
Yet it prov'd to be less than a span.