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Literature & Theatre

Farewell address spoken by Mrs Siddons on leaving the stage, June 29, 1812

(51) Farewell address spoken by Mrs Siddons on leaving the stage, June 29, 1812

         Farewell Address

                  SPOKEN BY

        MRS. SIDDONS

  On leaving the Stage, June 29, 1812.

    Written by HORACE TWISS, Esq.

WHO has not felt, how growing use endears
The fond remembrance of our former years ?
Who has not sigh'd, when doom'd to leave at last
The hopes of youth, the habits of the past,
The thousand ties and interests, that impart
A second nature to the human heart,
And, wreathing round it close, like tendrils, climb,
Blooming in age, and sanctified by time ?

Yes ! at this moment, crowd upon my mind
Scenes of bright days for ever left behind ;
Bewildering visions of enraptured youth,
When hope and fancy wore the hues of truth ;
And long-forgotten years, that almost seem
The faded traces of a morning-dream !
Sweet are those mournful thoughts ; for they renew
The pleasing sense of all I owe to you ;
For each inspiring smile, and soothing tear —
For those full honours of my long career,
That cheer'd my earliest hope, and chas'd my latest fear !

And though, for me, those tears shall flow no more,
And the warm sunshine of your smile is o'er, —
Though the bright beams are fading fast away,
That shone unclouded through my summer-day, —
Yet grateful Memory shall reflect their light
O'er the dim shadows of the coming night,
And lend to later life a softer tone,
A moonlight tint, a lustre of her own.

Judges and Friends ! to whom the tragic strain
Of Nature's feeling never spoke in vain,
Perhaps your hearts, when years have glided by,
And past emotions wake a fleeting sigh,
May think on her whose lips have poured so long
The charmed sorrows of your Shakespear's song. —
On her, who, parting to return no more,
Is now the mourner she but seem'd before, —
Herself subdued, resigns the melting spell,
And breathes, with swelling heart, her long, her last farewell !

Bennett, Printer, Bookseller, and Stationer, 12 Fetter-lane, LOndon.

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