« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »
Gallia's proud standards, to Bavaria's join'd, In joys of conquest he resigns his breath,
And, fillid with England's glory, smiles in death The daring prince his blasted hopes renews,
The rout begins, the Gallic squadrons run, And, while the thick embattled host he views Compell'd in crowds to meet the fate they shus; Stretcht out in deep array, and dreadful length, Thousands of fiery steeds with wounds transfield, His heart dilates, and glories in his strength. Floating in gore, with their dead masters mixt, The fatal day its mighty course began,
'Midst heaps of spears and standards driven around, That the griev'd world
had long desir'd in vain ; Lie in the Danube's bloody whirlpools drown'd. States that their new captivity bemoan'd,
Troops of bold youths, born on the distant Svane, Armies of martyrs that in exile groan'd,
Or sounding borders of the rapid Rhône, Sighs from the depth of gloomy dungeons heard, Or where the Seine her flowery fields divides, And prayers in bitterness of soul preferr'd, Or where the Loire through winding vineyards Europe's loud cries, that Providence assail'd,
glides, And Anna's ardent vows at length prevail'd; In heaps the rolling billows sweep away, The day was come when Heaven design'd to show And into Scythian seas their bloated corps conte”, His care and conduct of the world below.
From Blenheim's towers the Gaul, with wild affright, Behold in awful march and dread array
Beholds the various havoc of the fight; The long-extended squadrons shape their way! His waving banners, that so oft had stood Death, in approaching, terrible, imparts
Planted in fields of death, and streams of blood, An anxious horrour to the bravest hearts;
So wont the guarded enemy to reach, Yet do their beating breasts demand the strife, And rise triumphant in the fatal breach, And thirst of glory quells the love of life.
Or pierce the broken foe's remotest lines, No vulgar fears can British minds control : The hardy veteran with tears resigns. Heat of revenge, and noble pride of soul,
Unfortunate Tallard! Oh, who can name O'erlook the foe, advantag'd by his post,
The pangs of rage, of sorrow, and of shame, Lessen his numbers, and contract his host ;
That with mixt tumult in thy bosom swellid, Though fens and foods possest the middle space, When first thou saw'st thy bravest troops repelled, That unprovok'd they would have fear’d to pass ; Thine only son pierc'd with a deadly wound, Nur fens nor floods can stop Britannia's bands,
Chok'd in his blood, and gasping on the ground, When her proud foe rang'd on their borders stands. Thyself in bondage by the victor kept!
But O, my Muse, what numbers wilt thou find The chief, the father, and the captive, wept. To sing the furious troops in battle join'd!
An English Muse is touch'd with generous woe, Methinks I hear the drums tumultuous sound And in th' unhappy man forgets the foe! The victors' shouts and dying groans confound, Greatly distrest! thy loud complaints forbear, The dreadful burst of cannon rend the skies, Blame not the turns of fate, and chance of war; And all the thunder of the battle rise. (prov'd, Give thy brave foes their due, nor blush to own 'Twas then great Marlborough's mighty soul was The fatal field by such great leaders won, That, in the shock of charging hosts unmov'd, The field whence fam'd Eugenio bore away Amidst confusion, horrour, and despair,
Only the second honours of the day. Examin'd all the dreadful scenes of war :
With floods of gore, that from the vanquish'd fel, In peaceful thought the field of death survey'd, The marshes stagnate, and the rivers swell. To fainting squadrons sent the timely aid, Mountains of slain lie heap'd upon the ground, Inspir'd repuls'd battalions to engage,
Or 'midst the roarings of the Danube drown'd; And taught the doubtful battle where to rage. Whole captive hosts the conqueror detains So when an angel by divine command
In painful bondage, and inglorious chains ; With rising tempests shakes a guilty land,
Evin those who 'scape the fetters and the sword, Such as of late o'er pale Britannia past,
Nor seek the fortunes of a happier lord, Calm and serene he drives the furious blast; Their raging king dishonours, to complete And, pleas'd th' Almighty orders to perform, Marlborough's great work, and finish the defeat. Rides in the whirlwind, and directs the storm. From Memminghen's high domes, and Augs But see the haughty household troops advance !
burg's walls, The dread of Europe, and the pride of France. The distant battle drives th' insulting Gauls; The war's whole art each private soldier knows, Freed by the terrour of the victor's name And with a general's love of conquest glows; The rescu'd states his great protection claim; Proudly he marches on, and void of fear
Whilst Ulme th' approach of her deliverer waits, Laughs at the shaking of the British spear : And longs to open her obsequious gates. Vain insolence! with native freedom brave,
The hero's breast still swells with great desigas The meanest Briton scorns the highest slave : In every thought the towering genius shines : Contempt and fury fire their souls by turns, If to the foe his dreadful course he bends, Each nation's glory in each warrior burns;
O'er the wide continent his march extends; Each fights, as in his arm th' important day If sieges in his labouring thoughts are form'd, And all the fate of his great monarch lay: Camps are assaulted, and an army storm'd; A thousand glorious' actions, that might claim If to the fight his active soul is bent, Triumphant laurels, and immortal fame,
The fate of Europe turns on its event. Confus'd in crowds of glorious actions lie,
What distant land, what region, can afford And troops of heroes undistinguish'd die.
An action worthy his victorious sword ? O Dormer, how can I behold thy fate,
Where will he next the flying Gaul defeat,
To make the series of his toils complete ?
Where the swoln Rhine, rushing with all its foren
ON HIS PICTURE OF THE KING.
While each contracts its bounds, or wider grows, Such are th' effects of Anna's royal cares :
By her, Britannia, great in foreign wars,
Whilst in diffusive showers her bounties fall Hence future triumphs from the war expects ;
Like Heaven's indulgence, and descend on all, And though the dog star had its course begun, Secure the happy, succour the distrest, Carries his arms still nearer to the Sun :
Make every subject glad, and a wholc people blest. Fixt on the glorious action, he forgets
Thus would I fain Britannia's wars rehearse, The change of seasons, and increase of heats; In the smooth records of a faithful verse; No toils are painful that can danger show,
That, if such numbers can o'er time prevail, No climes unlovely, that contain a foe.
May tell posterity the wondrous tale. The roving Gaul, to his own bounds restrain'd, Wlien actions, unadorn’d, are faint and weak, Learns to incamp within his native land,
Cities and countries must be taught to speak; But soon as the victorious host he spies,
Gods may descend in factions from the skies, From hill to hill, from stream to stream he flies : And rivers from their oozy beds arise ; Such dire impressions in his heart remain
Fiction may deck the truth with spurious rays, Of Marlborough's sword and Hochtste's fatal plain: And round the hero cast a borrow'd blaze. In vain Britannia's mighty chief besets
Marlborough's exploits appear divinely bright, Their shady coverts, and obscure retreats;
And proudly shine in their own native light, They fly the conqueror's approaching fame, Rais'd of themselves their genuine charms they That bears the force of armies in his name.
boast, Austria's young monarch, whose imperial sway And those who paint them truest praise them most. Sceptres and thrones are destin’d to obey, Whose boasted ancestry so high extends That in the pagan gods his lineage ends, Comes from afar, in gratitude to own The great supporter of his father's throne :
TO SIR GODFREY KNELLER, What tides of glory to his bosom ran, Clasp'd in th' embraces of the godlike man! How were his eyes with pleasing wonder fixt
KNELLER, with silence and surprise To see such fire with so much sweetness mixt,
We see Britannia's monarch rise, Such easy greatness, such a graceful port,
A godlike form, by thee display'd So turn d and finish'd for the camp or court!
In all the force of light and shade; Achilles thus was form'd with ev'ry grace,
And, aw'd by thy delusive hand, And Nireus shone but in the second place;
As in the presencc-chamber stand. Thus the great father of almighty Rome
The magic of thy art calls forth (Divinely Ausht with an immortal bloom,
His secret soul and hidden worth, That Cytherea's fragrant breath bestow'd)
His probity and mildness shows, In all the charms of his bright mother glow'd.
His care of friends, and scorn of foes ; The royal youth by Marlborough's presence In every stroke, in every line, charm'd,
Does some exalted virtue shine, Taught by his counsels, by his actions warm’d,
And Albion's happiness we trace On Landau with redoubled fury falls,
Through all the features of his face. Discharges all the thunder on its walls,
O may I live to hail the day, O'er mines and caves of death provokes the fight, When the glad nation shall survey And learns to conquer in the hero's sight.
Their sovereign, through his wide command, The British chief, for mighty toils renown'd, Passing in progress o'er the land ! Increas'd in titles, and with conquests crown’d, Each heart shall bend, and every voice To Belgian coasts his tedious march renews,
In loud applauding shouts rejoice, And the long windings of the Rhine pursues,
Whilst all his gracious aspect praise, Clearing its borders from usurping foes,
And crowds grow loyal as they gaze. And blest by rescued nations as he goes.
The image on the medal plac'd, Treves fears no more, freed from its dire alarms; With its bright round of titles grac'd, And Traerbach feels the terrour of his arms:
And stampt on British coins shall live, Seated on rocks her proud foundations shake,
To richest ores the value give, While Marlborough presses to the bold attack.
Or, wrought within the curious mold, Plants all his batteries, bids his cannon roar,
Shape and adorn the running gold. And shows how Landau might have fall'n before. To bear this form, the genial Sun Sear'd at his near approach, great Louis fears
Has daily since his course begun Vengeance reserv'd for his declining years,
Rejoic'd the metal to refine, Forgets his thirst of universal sway,
And ripen'd the Peruvian mine. And scarce can teach his subjects to obey ;
Thou, Kneller, long with noble pride, His arms he finds on vain attempts employ'd,
The foremost of thy art, hast vy'd Th' ambitious projects for his rac destroy'd,
With nature in a generous strife, The works of ages sunk in or. gn,
And touch'd the canvas into life.
Thy pencil has, by monarchs sought,
This wonder of the sculptor's hand From reign to reign in ermine wrought,
Produc'd, his art was at a stand : And, in the robes of state array'd,
For who would hope new fame to raise, The kings of half an age display'd.
Or risk his well-establish'd praise, Here swarthy Charles appears, and there That, his high genius to approve, His brother with dejected air :
Had drawn a George, or carv'd a Jove? Triumphant Nassau here we find, And with him bright Maria join'd; There Anna, great as when she sent Her armies through the continent, Ere yet her hero was disgrac'd :
PARAPHRASE ON PSALM XXIII O may fam'd Brunswick be the last, (Though Heaven should with my wish agree,
The Lord my pasture shall prepare, And long preserve thy art in thee)
And feed me with a shepherd's care; The last, the happiest British king,
His presence shall my wants supply, Whom thou shalt paint, or I shall sing!
And guard me with a watchful eye: Wise Phidias thus, his skill to prove,
My noon-day walks he shall attend,
And all my midnight hours defend.
When in the sultry glebe I faint,
Or on the thirsty mountain pant; Th'assembled deities survey'd.
To fertile vales and dewy meads Great Pan, who wont to chase the fair,
My weary wandering steps he leads : And lov'd the spreading oak, was there ;
Where peaceful rivers, soft and slow, Old Saturn too with upcast eyes
Amid the verdant landscape flow.
Though in the paths of death I tread, In adamantine armour frown'd;
With gloomy horrours overspread, By him the childless goddess rose,
My stedfast heart shall fear no ill, Minerva, studious to compose
For thou, O Lord, art with me still ; Her twisted threads; the web she strung,
Thy friendly crook shall give me aid, And o'er a loom of marble hung:
And guide me through the dreadful shade. Thetis, the troubled ocean's queen, Match'd with a mortal, next was seen,
Though in a bare and rugged way, Reclining on a funeral urn,
Through devious lonely wilds I stray, Her short-liv'd darling son to mourn.
Thy bounty shall my wants beguile : The last was he, whose thunder slew
The barren wilderness shall smile, The Titan-race, a rebel crew,
With sudden greens and herbage crownd, That from a hundred hills ally'd
And streams shall murmur all around. In impious leagues their king defy'd.
ATTHEW Prior, a distinguished poet, was born It will not be worth while here to take notice of all n 1664, in London according to one account, his changes in the political world, except to mention ccording to another at Winborne, in Dorsetshire. the disgraces which followed the famous congress Iis father dying when he was young, an uncle, of Utrecht, in which he was deeply engaged. For who was a vintner, or tavern-keeper, at Charing the completion of that business he was left in Cross, took him under his care, and sent him to France, with the appointments and authority of an Westminster-school, of which Dr. Busby was ambassador, though without the title, the proud hen master, Before he had passed through the Duke of Shrewsbury having refused to be joined in chool, his uncle took him home, for the pur-commission with a man so meanly born. Prior, ose of bringing him into his own business ; but however, publicly assumed the character till he he Earl of Dorset, a great patron of letters, having was superseded by the Earl of Stair, on the accesound him one day reading Horace, and being sion of George I. The Whigs being now in power, leased with his conversation, determined to give he was welcomed, on his return, by a warrant from im an university education. He was accordingly the House of Commons, under which he was comdmitted of St. John's College, Cambridge, in mitted to the custody of a messenger. He was ex682, proceeded bachelor of arts in 1686, and was amined before the Privy Council respecting liis oon after elected to a fellowship. After having share in the peace of Utrecht, was treated with roved his poetic talents by some college exercises, rigour, and Walpole moved an impeachment e was introduced at court by the Earl of Dorset, against him, on a charge of high treason, for holdnd was so effectually recommended, that, in 1690, ing clandestine conferences with the French plenie was appointed secretary to the English pleni- potentiary. His name was excepted from an act of otentiaries who attended the congress at the grace passed in 1717: at length, however, he was lague. Being now enlisted in the service of the discharged, without being brought to trial, to end ourt, his productions were, for some years, chiefly his days in retirement. irected to courtly topics, of which one of the most We are now to consider Prior among the poetical onsiderable was an Ode presented to King William characters of the time. In his writings is found 1 1695, on the death of Queen Mary. In 1697, that incongruous mixture of light and rather ine was nominated secretary to the commissioners decent topics with grave and even religious ones, or the treaty of Ryswick; and, on his return, was which was not uncommon at that period. In the ade secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland. faculty of telling a story with ease and vivacity, he le went to France in the following year, as secre- yields only to Swift, compared to whom his humour ury, first to the Earl of Portland, and then to the is occasionally strained and quaint. His songs arl of Jersey; and being now regarded as one and amatory pieces are generally elegant and clasonversant in public affairs, he was summoned by sical. The most popular of his serious compoing William to Loo, where he had a confidential sitions are “ Henry and Emma," or the Nut-brown udience. In the beginning of 1701 he sat in Par- Maid, modernised from an antique original ; and ament for East Grinstead.
“ Solomon," the idea of which is taken from the Prior had hitherto been promoted and acted with book of Ecclesiastes. These are harmonious in le Whigs: but the Tories now having become the their versification, splendid and correct in their revalent party, he turned about, and ever after ad- diction, and copious in poetical imagery ; but they ered to them. He even voted for the impeach- exert no powerful effect on the feelings or the ient of those lords who advised that partition fancy, and are enfeebled by prolixity. His “ Alma,” reaty in which he had been officially employed. a piece of philosophical pleasantry, was written to ike most converts, he embraced his new friends console himself when under confinement, and disrith much zeal, and from that time almost all his plays a considerable share of reading. As to his ocial connections were confined within the limits of elaborate effusions of loyalty and patriotism, they
seem to have sunk into total neglect. The successes in the beginning of Queen Anne's The life of Prior was cut short by a lingering eign were celebrated by the poets on both sides ; illness, which closed his days at Wimpole, the seat ind Prior sung the victories of Blenheim and of Lord Oxford, in September, 1721, in the 58th Ramilies : he afterwards, however, joined in the year of his age. ittack of the great general who had been his theme.
One child he had, a daughter chaste and fair,
1 They call'd her Emma; for the beauteous dame, I A POEM,
Who gave the virgin birth, had borne the name :
The name th' indulgent father doubly lor'd:
Yet as, when little, round his knees she play'd,
He call’d her oft, in sport, his Nut-brown Maid,
The friends and tenants took the fondling word, TH00, to whose eyes I bend, at whose command (As still they please, who imitate their lord): (Though low my voice, though artless be my hand), Usage confirm'd what fancy had begun; I take the sprightly reed, and sing, and play, The mutual terms around the land were known : Careless of what the censuring world may say: And Emma and the Nut-brown Maid were one. Bright Cloe, object of my constant vow,
As with her stature, still her charms increas'd; Wilt thou awhile unbend thy serious brow? Through all the isle her beauty was confessid. Wilt thou with pleasure hear thy lover's strains, Oh! what perfections must that virgin share, And with one heavenly smile o'erpay his pains ? Who fairest is esteemid, where all are fair ! No longer shall the Nut-brown Maid be old; From distant shires repair the noble youth, Though since her youth three hundred years have And find report, for once, had lessen'd truth. rollid :
By wonder first, and then by passion mov'd, At thy desire, she shall again be rais'd;
They came; they saw; they marvellid; and they And her reviving charms in lasting verse be prais'd.
lov'd. No longer man of woman shall complain, By public praises, and by secret sighs, That he may love, and not be lov'd again : Each own'd the general power of Emma's eyes That we in vain the fickle sex pursue,
In tilts and tournaments the valiant strore, Who change the constant lover for the new. By glorious deeds, to purchase Emma's love. Whatever has been writ, whatever said,
In gentle verse the witty told their flame, Of female passion feign'd, or faith decay'ı, And grac'd their choicest songs with Emina's name. Henceforth shall in my verse refuted stand, In vain they combated, in vain they writ: Be said to winds, or writ upon the sand.
Useless their strength, and impotent their wit. And, while my notes to future times proclaim Great Venus only must direct the dart, Unconquer'd love, and ever-during flame,
Which else will never reach the fair-one's heart, O fairest of the sex! be thou my Muse:
Spite of th' attempts of force, and soft effects of art. Deign on my work thy influence to diffuse. Great Venus must prefer the happy one : Let me partake the blessings I rehearse,
In Henry's cause her favour must be shown; And grant me, love, the just reward of verse ! And Emma, of mankind, must love but him alone.
As beauty's potent queen, with every grace, While these in public to the castle came, That once was Emma's, has adorn'd thy face; And by their grandeur justified their flame; And, as her son has to my bosom dealt
More secret ways the careful Henry takes; That constant flame, which faithful Henry felt : His squires, his arms, and equipage forsakes : O let the story with thy life agree:
In borrow'd name, and false attire array'd, Let men once more the bright example see ; Oft he finds means to see the beauteous maid. What Emma was to him, be thou to me.
When Emma hunts, in huntsman's habit drest, Nor send me by thy frown from her I love, Henry on foot pursues the bounding beast. Distant and sad, a banish'd man to rove.
In his right-hand his beechen pole he bears;
And graceful at his side his horn he wears
Bids her decline the hill, and shun the brake;
Pleas'd in his toils to have her triumph crown'd, Great gifts bestow'd, and great respect receiv'd. And blows her praises in no common sound.
When dreadful Edward, with successful care, A falconer Henry is, when, Emma hawks: Led his free Britons to the Gallic war;
With her of tarsels and of lures he talks. This lord bad headed his appointed bands,
Upon his wrist the towering merlin stands, In firm allegiance to his king's commands ; Practis'd to rise, and stoop at her commands And (all due honours faithfully discharg'd) And when superior now the bird has flown, Had brought back his paternal coat, enlarg'd And headlong brought the tumbling quarry dows; With a new mark, the witness of his toil,
With humble reverence he accosts the fair, And no inglorious part of foreign spoil.
And with the honour'd feather decks her hair. From the loud camp retir'd, and noisy court, Yet still, as from the sportive field she goes, In honourable ease and rural sport,
His down-cast eye reveals his inward woes;
And by his look and sorrow is exprest,
A shepherd now along the plain he roves;
And, with his jolly pipe, delights the groves.