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'Mid many things most new to ear and eye
The pilgrim rested here his weary feet,
And gazed around on Moslem luxury,
Till quickly wearied with that spacious seat
Of Wealth and Wantonness, the choice retreat
Of sated Grandeur from the City's noise :
And were it humbler it in sooth were sweet;
But Peace abhorreth artificial joys,
And Pleasure, leagued with Pomp, the zest of both destroys.
Fierce are Albania's children, yet they lack
Not virtues, were those virtues more mature.
Where is the foe that ever saw their back ?
Who can so well the toil of war endure ?
Their native fastnesses not more secure
Than they in doubtful time of troublous need :
Their wrath how deadly! but their friendship sure,
When Gratitude or Valour bids them bleed,
Unshaken rushing on where’er their chief may lead.
Chllde Harold saw them in their chieftain's tower
Thronging to war in splendour and success ;
And after viewed them, when, within their power,
Himself awhile the victim of distress ;
That saddening hour when bad men hotlier press :
But these did shelter him beneath their roof,
When less barbarians would have cheered him less,
And fellow-countrymen have stood aloof—(27)
In aught that tries the heart how few withstand the proof!
It chanced that adverse winds once drove his bark
Full on the coast of Suli's shaggy shore,
When all around was desolate and dark;
To land was perilous, to sojourn more;
Yet for awhile the mariners forbore,
Dubious to trust where treachery might lurk:
At length they ventured forth, though doubting sore
That those who loathe alike the Frank and Turk
Might once again renew their ancient butcher-work.
Vain fear! the Suliote3 stretched the welcome hand,
Led them o'er rocks and past the dangerous swamp,
Kinder than polished slaves, though not so bland,
And piled the hearth, and wrung their garments damp,
And filled the bowl, and trimmed the cheerful lamp,
And spread their fare; though homely, all they had :
Such conduct bears Philanthropy's rare stamp-
To rest the weary and to soothe the sad,
Doth lesson happier men, and shames at least the bad.
It came to pass, that when he did address
Himself to quit at length this mountain-land,
Combined marauders half-way barred egress,
And wasted far and near with glaive and brand;
And therefore did he take a trusty band
To traverse Acarnania's forest wide,
In war well seasoned, and with labours tanned,
Till he did greet white Achelous' tide,
And from his further bank Ætolia's wolds espied.
Where lone Utraikey forms its circling cove,
And weary waves retire to gleam at rest,
How brown the foliage of the green hill's grove,
Nodding at midnight o’er the calm hay's breast,
As winds come lightly whispering from the west,
Kissing, not ruffling, the blue deep's serene :-
Here Harold was received a welcome guest;
Nor did he pass unmove the gentle scene,
For many a joy could he from Night's soft presence glean.
On the smooth shore the night-fires brightly blazed,
The feast was done, the red wine circling fast,(28)
And he that unawares had there ygazed
With gaping wonderment had stared aghast;
For ere night's midmost, stillest hour was past,
The native revels of the troop began ;
Each Palikar (29) his sabre from him cast,
And bounding hand in hand, man linked to man,
Yelling their uncouth dirge, long daunced the kirtled clan.
Childe Harold at a little distance stood
And viewed, but not displeased, the revelrie,
Nor hated harmless mirth, however rude :
In sooth, it was no vulgar sight to see
Their barbarous, yet their not indecent, glee;
And, as the flames along their faces gleamed,
Their gestures nimble, dark eyes flashing free,
The long wild locks that to their girdles streamed,
While thus in concert they this lay half sang, half
(31) TAMBOURGI! Tambourgi!* thy 'larum afar
Gives hope to the valiant, and promise of war;
All the sons of the mountains arise at the note,
Chimariot, Illyrian, and dark Suliote!
Oh! who is more brave than a dark Suliote,
In his snowy camese and his shaggy capote ?
To the wolf and the vulture he leaves his wild flock,
And descends to the plain like the stream from the rock.
Shall the sons of Chimari, who never forgive
The fault of a friend, bid an enemy live?
Let those guns so unerring such vengeance forego ?
What mark is so fair as the breast of a foe?
Macedonia sends forth her invincible race;
For a time they abandon the cave and the chase :
But those scarfs of blood-red shall be redder, before
The sabre is sheathed and the battle is o'er.
Then the pirates of Parga that dwell by the waves,
And teach the pale Franks what it is to be slaves,
Shall leave on the beach the long galley and oar,
And track to his covert the captive on shore.
I ask not the pleasures that riches supply,
My sabre shall win what the feeble must buy;
Shall win the young bride with her long flowing hair,
And many a maid from her mother shall tear.
I love the fair face of the maid in her youth,
Her caresses shall lull me, her music shall sooth;
Let her bring from the chamber her many-toned lyre,
And sing us a song on the fall of her sire.
Remember the moment when Previsa fell, (32)
The shrieks of the conquered, the conquerors' yell;
The roofs that we fired, and the plunder we shared,
The wealthy we slaughtered, the lovely we spared.
I talk not of mercy, I talk not of fear;
He neither must know who would serve the Vizier ;
Since the days of our prophet the Crescent ne'er saw
A chief ever glorious like Ali Pashaw.,
10. Dark Muchtar his son to the Danube is sped, Let the yellow-haired* Giaourst view his horse-tailt with
dread; When his Delhis g come dashing in blood o'er the banks, How few shall escape from the Muscovite ranks !
Selictar! || unsheath then our chief's scimitar;
Tambourgi! thy 'larum gives promise of war.
Ye mountains, that see us descend to the shore,
Shall view us as victors, or view us no more!
• Yellow is the epithet given by the Russians. + Infidel.
Dorse-tails are the insignia of a Pacha.
Horsemen, answering to our forlorn hoje. 1 Sword-bearer.
Fair Greece! sad relic of departed worth! (33)
Immortal, though no more; though fallen, great!
Who now shall lead thy scattered children forth,
And long accustomed bondage uncreate ?
Not such thy sons who whilome did await,
The hopeless warriors of a willing doom,
In bleak Thermopylæ’s sepulchral strait-
Oh! who that gallant spirit shall resume,
Leap from Eurotas' banks, and call thee from the tomb ?
Spirit of freedom! when on Phyle's brow (34)
Thou sat’st with Thrasybulus and his train,
Couldst thou forebode the dismal hour which now
Dims the green beauties of thine Attic plain ?
Not thirty tyrants now enforce the chain,
But every carle can lord it o'er thy land;
Nor rise i ty sons, but idly rail in vain,
Trembling beneath the scourge of Turkish hand,
From birth till death enslaved; in word, in deed unmanned.
In all save form alone, how changed ! and who
That marks the fire still sparkling in each eye,
Who but would deem their bosoms burned anew
With thy unquenched beam, lost Liberty!
And many dream withal the hour is nigh
That gives them back their fathers' heritage :
For foreign arms and aid they fondly sigh,
Nor solely dare encounter hostile rage,
Or tear their name defiled from Slavery's mournful page.
LXXVI. Hereditary bondsmen! know ye not Who would be free themselves must strike the blow : By their right arms the conquest must be wrought ? Will Gaul or Muscovite redress ye? no! True, they may lay your proud despoilers low, But not for you will Freedom's altars flame. Shades of the Helots ! triumph o'er your foe!
Greece! change thy lords, thy state is still the same; Thy glorious day is o'er, but not thine years of shame.