070115.Bath, The Tragic Treasury-5

January 15, 2007 at 12:20 AM | Posted in Bath, Bath Abbey, somerset | 3 Comments

This photo was taken a long time ago. Why is there a statue of Mozart in the Parade Gardens? Dunno. It might have to do with the fact that Beckford of yesterday’s Beckford’s Tower claimed to have written some of Mozart’s Marriage to Figaro in his early years. He was very wealthy, so perhaps he commissioned the statue. Also, the Linleys (not nearly as rich) lived accross the street in the 1770s had a son who went to Italy as a child prodigy and there won the friendship of the famous musician. But that son died at 22. The gardens date to the 1730s but there present state was much altered in the early 20th century. Back to William Beckford, who wrote the gothic novel “Varreck,” which didn’t translate well into English (despite the fact that he was English and only began writing it in Arabic but then continued it in English), had he played the violin it sounded like this:



I have known little civility, sir—
few have been kind, fewer truthful—
and, though within my ability, sir,
I remain dutifully youthful,
I go gray, then bald, with chagrin
when you play the violin
How I pray for death to begin
when you play the violin

True, there’s been trouble and trickery, sir,
trembling and tribulations;
twitches from switches of hickory, sir,
you, sir, and your usurpations;
but my patience wears very thin
when you play the violin.
How I stay I can’t imagine
when you play the violin.


I’ve endured struggling and thuggery, sir,
physical ed and psychosis,
sculleries, skulls, and skullduggery, sir
haplessness, hype and hypnosis.
But oy vey! the horrible din
when you play the violin.
You betray an ear made of tin
when you play—when you slay—the violin!


–“When You Play the Violin” by the Gothic Archies.

Hey, I won’t be checking this very often for a week or two but will get back to everyone after that.

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