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270 The National Music of America.
which Payne wrote in England in 1823. The music was partly composed, partly arranged, by Henry R. Bishop, afterwards Sir Henry Bishop. The play circled around the central point of a song which brings the betrayed and forsaken heroine back to her kindred, — " Home, Sweet Home." In the early printed editions of this work, the tune is distinctly marked "A Sicilian Air," and it is hardly probable that Bishop would not have acknowledged it, had he composed the now world-famous melody. He lived thirty-three years after the performance of " Clari," yet never proved his composership of this particular tune, which had meanwhile become celebrated beyond any work that he had written. The play containing the song was first performed at Covent Garden, May 8, 1823, and November 12th of the same year it was first heard in New York, Mrs. Holman being the first to sing the melody in America. It may be thought necessary, in speaking