Mulligan's words to the old woman (“Ask nothing more of me, sweet. All I can give you I give”) and the “tender chant” that follows (“Heart of my heart, were it more, / More would be laid at your feet") quote the first four lines of a short poem by Swinburne. The Oblation (1871) is sung by a man who has “love and no more.” It advances this one flaccid theme and no more.

JH 2011

Photograph of Algernon Charles Swinburne taken by the London Stereoscopic & Photographic Company, held in the National Portrait Gallery, London. Source: Wikimedia Commons.