To play the media you will need to either update your browser to a recent version or update your Flash plugin.
Welcome to Hyperion Records, an independent British classical label devoted to presenting high-quality recordings of music of all styles and from all periods from the twelfth century to the twenty-first.
Hyperion offers both CDs, and downloads in a number of formats. The site is also available in several languages.
Please use the dropdown buttons to set your preferred options, or use the checkbox to accept the defaults.
The Saint Turned Sinner, or The Dissenting Parson's Text Under the Quaker's Petticoats
During the seventeenth century the Quakers were subjected to much abuse and suffering at the hands of authority, the Church of England, and an ignorant public. This ballad (from the Bagford Collection) reflects the attitudes of the times and in this respect is a bigoted and unpleasant piece. As a vigorous and descriptive example of balladry, however, it is unsurpassed. It is set to the magnificent tune of ‘A Soldier and a Sailor’.
You friends to reformation Give ear to my relation, For I shall now declare, Sir, Before you are aware, Sir, The matter very plain. A Gospel Cushion thumper, Who dearly loved a bumper, And something else beside, Sir, If he is not bely’d, Sir, This was a holy Guide, Sir, For the dissenting train.
And for to tell you truly, His flesh was so unruly, He could not for his life, Sir, Pass by the Draper’s Wife, Sir, The spirit was so faint. This jolly handsome Quaker, As he did overtake her. She made his mouth to water, And thought long to be at her. Such, Sir, is no great matter, Accounted by a Saint.
Says he, ‘My pretty Creature, Your charming handsome feature Has set me all on fire, You know what I desire, There is no harm in love.’ Quoth she, ‘If that’s your Notion, To preach up such Devotion, Such hopeful Guides as you, Sir, Will half the World undo, Sir, A halter is your due, Sir, If you such tricks approve.’
The Parson still more eager, Than lustful Turk of Neger, Took up her lower Garment, And saw there was no harm in’t. According to the Text. For Solomon more Wiser, Than any dull Adviser, Had many Hundred Misses And why should such as this is Make you so sadly vext.
The frightened female Quaker Perceived what he would make her, Was forced to call the Watch in, And stop what he was hatching, To spoil the light within. They came to her Assistance, As she did make Resistance, Against the Priest and Devil, The Actors of all Evil, Who were so grand Uncivil, To tempt a Saint to Sin.
The Parson then confounded, To see himself surrounded With mob and sturdy Watch-men, Whose business ’tis to catch men, In Lewdness with a Punk. He made some faint Excuses, And all to hide Abuses, In taking up the Linen, Against the Saint’s opinion, Within her soft Dominion, Alledging he was Drunk.
But tho’ he feigned reeling, They made him pay for feeling, And Lugg’d him to a Prison, To bring him to his Reason, Which he had lost before. And thus we see how Preachers That should be Gospel Teachers How they are strangely blinded, And are so fleshly minded Like Carnal Men inclined To lie with any Whore.