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Bayly, Thomas Haynes

BAYLY, THOMAS HAYNES (1797-1839), English songwriter and dramatist, was born at Bath on the 13th of October 1797. He was educated at Winchester and at St Mary Hall, Oxford, with a view to entering the church. While on a visit to Dublin, however, he discovered his ability to write ballads, and on his return to England in 1824 he quickly gained a wide reputation with "I'd be a butterfly," following this up with "We met - 'twas in a crowd," "She wore a wreath of roses," "Oh, no, we never mention her," and other light and graceful songs for which his name is still remembered. He set some of his songs to music himself; a well-known example is "Gaily the troubadour." Bayly also wrote two novels, The Aylmers and A Legend of Killarney, and numerous plays. His most successful dramatic piece was Perfection, which was produced by Madame Vestris and received high praise from Lord Chesterfield. Bayly had married in 1826 an Irish heiress, but her estates were mismanaged and the anxiety caused by financial difficulties undermined his health. He died on the 22nd of April 1839.

His Collected Works (1844) contain a memoir by his wife.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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