This beautifully executed drawing, which I might guess dates to the earlyish 19th century, takes its inspiration from the poem by Alexander Pope reproduced below. It seems the nine descendants from heaven, who have come to sing, have gained some earthly company, as I count thirteen altogether here, seven I think for sure with the wings of angels, and it does look like nine with instruments in hand. It seems quite appropriate that it should have been drawn in Nightengale Vale (such a wonderful, poetic name for a place, now known as Nightengale Valley I believe) on the Avon, in Bristol, England. Right about the note of place at bottom left is the note: "When mus [music?] you see, just think of me."
It seems at some point a previous (San Francisco-based) owner of this drawing pasted a blessing and inscribed a (biblical?) quotation on the reverse side.
9 1/8" t x 7 1/16" w. There is one stain running diagonally near the top, which appears to be an ink smear, but the drawing remains very clear and otherwise in very good condition.
Descend, ye Nine! descend and sing;
The breathing instruments inspire,
Wake into voice each silent string,
And sweep the sounding lyre;
In a sadly-pleasing strain
Let the warbling lute complain:
Let the loud trumpet sound,
Till the roofs all around
The shrill echoes rebound:
While in more lengthen'd notes and slow,
The deep, majestic, solemn organs blow.
Hark! the numbers soft and clear,
Gently steal upon the ear;
Now louder, and yet louder rise,
And fill with spreading sounds the skies;
Exulting in triumph now swell the bold notes,
In broken air, trembling, the wild music floats;
Till, by degrees, remote and small,
The strains decay, And melt away, In a dying, dying fall.