Page images

Majestic Windsor lifts his princely brow.
In lovely contrast to this glorious view
Calmly magnificent, then will we turn
To where the silver Thames first rural grows.
There let the feasted eye unwearied stray:
Luxurious, there, rove through the pendent woods
That nodding hang o'er Harrington's retreat;
And, stooping thence to Ham's embowering walks,
Beneath whose shades, in spotless peace retired,
With Her the pleasing partner of his heart,
The worthy Queensbury yet laments his Gay,
And polish'd Cornbury woos the willing Muse,
Slow let us trace the matchless Vale of Thames;
Fair-winding up to where the Muses haunt
In Twit'nam's bowers, and for their Pope implore
The healing God *; to royal Hampton's pile,
To Clermont's terraced height, and Esher's groves,
Where in the sweetest solitude, embraced
By the soft windings of the silent Mole,
From courts and senates Pelham finds repose.
Enchanting vale! beyond whate'er the Muse
Has of Achaia or Hesperia sung! -
O vale of bliss! O softly swelling hills !
On which the Power of Cultivation lies,
And joys to see the wonders of his toil.

Heavens! what a goodly prospect spreads around,

[merged small][ocr errors]

Of hills, and dales, and woods, and lawns, and spires,
And glittering towns, and gilded streams, till all
The stretching landscape into smoke decays!
Happy Britannia! where the Queen of Arts,
Inspiring vigour, Liberty abroad
Walks, unconfined, even to thy farthest cots,
And scatters plenty with unsparing hand.

Rich is thy soil, and merciful thy clime;
Thy streams unfailing in the Summer's drought;
Unmatch'd thy guardian oaks; thy valleys float
With golden waves : and on thy mountains flocks
Bleat numberless! while, roving round their sides,
Bellow the blackening herds in lusty droves.
Beneath, thy meadows glow, and rise unquell’d
Against the mower's scythe. On every hand
Thy villas shine. Thy country teems with wealth;
And property assures it to the swain, .
Pleased, and unwearied, in his guarded toil.

Full are thy cities with the sons of Art; And trade and joy, in every busy street, Mingling are heard : e'en Drudgery himself, As at the car he sweats, or dusty hews The palace stone, looks gay. Thy crowded ports, Where rising masts an endless prospect yield, With labour burn, and echo to the shouts Of hurried sailor, as he hearty waves His last adieu, and loosening every sheet, Resigns the spreading vessel to the wind.

Bold, firm, and graceful are thy generous youth, By hardship sinew'd, and by danger fired, Scattering the nations where they go; and first Or on the listed plain, or stormy seas. Mild are thy glories too, as o'er the plans Of thriving peace thy thoughtful șires preside; In genius, and substantial learning, high; For every virtue, every worth, renown'd; Sincere, plain-hearted, hospitable, kind; Yet like the mustering thunder when provoked, The dread of tyrants, and the sole resource Of those that under grim oppression groan.

Thy sons of Glory many! Alfred thine, In whom the splendour of heroic war, And more heroic peace, when govern'd well,-. Combine; whose hallow'd name the Virtues saint, And his own Muses love; the best of kings! With him thy Edwards and thy Henries shine! Names dear to fame; the first who deep impress'd On haughty Gaul the terror of thy arms, That awes her genius still. In statesmen thou, . And patriots, fertile. Thine a steady More, Who, with a generous though mistaken zeal, Withstood a brutal tyrant's direful rage, Like Cato firm, like Aristides just,,? Like rigid Cincinnatus nobly poor, sro A dauntless soul erect, who smiled on death.

Frugal and wise, a Walsingham is thine; .

A Drake, who made thee mistress of the deep,
And bore thy name in thunder round the world.
Then flamed thy spirit high : but who can speak
The numerous worthies of the Maiden Reign?
In Raleigh mark their every glory mix'd;
Raleigh, the scourge of Spain! whose breast with all
The sage, the patriot, and the hero burn'd,
Nor sunk his vigour, when a coward reign
The warrior fetter'd, and at last resign'd,
To glut the vengeance of a vanquish'd foe.
Then, active still and unrestrain'd, his mind
Explored the vast extent of ages past,
And with his prison hours enrich'd the world;
Yet found no times, in all the long research,
So glorious, or so base, as those he proved,
In which he conquer'd, and- in which he bled.
Nor can the Muse the gallant Sidney pass,
The plume of war! with early laurels crown'd,
The lover's myrtle, and the poet's bay.
A Hampden too is thine, illustrious land,
Wise, strenuous, firm, of unsubmitting soul,
Who stemm'd the torrent of a downward age
To slavery prone, and bade thee rise again,
In all thy native pomp of freedom bold.
Bright, at his call, thy Age of Men effulged,
Of Men on whom late time a kindling eye
Shall turn, and tyrants tremble while they read.
Bring every sweetest flower, and let me strew

The grave where Russel lies; whose temper'd blood
With calmest cheerfulness for thee resign’d,
Stain’d the sad annals of a giddy reign; ,
Aiming at lawless power, though meanly sunk i'
In loose inglorious luxury. With him
His friend, the British Cassius *, fearless bled;
Of high determined spirit, roughly brave, .
By ancient learning to the enlighten'd love
Of ancient freedom warm’d. Fair thy renown
In awful sages and in noble bards;
Soon as the light of dawning Science spread
Her orient ray, and waked the Muses' song....!
Thine is a Bacon; hapless in his choice,
Unfit to stand the civil storm of state,
And through the smooth barbarity of courts,
With firm but pliant virtue, forward still
To urge his course : him for the studious shade
Kind Nature form'd, deep, comprehensive, clear,
Exact, and elegant: in one rich soul,
Plato, the Stagyrite, and Tully join'd.
The great deliverer he! who from the gloom.
Of cloister'd monks, and jargon-teaching schools,
Led forth the true Philosophy, there long
Held in the magic chain of words and forms, en
And definitions void! he led her forth, .. .
Daughter of Heaven! that slow-ascending still,' ;

[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »