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Outshines our fairy-land; in shape and hues
More beautiful than our fantastic sky,

And the strange constellations which the Muse O'er her wild universe is skilful to diffuse:



I saw or dream'd of such, - but let them go,
They came like truth, and disappear'd like

And whatsoe'er they were are now but so.
I could replace them if I would ; still teems
My mind with many a form which aptly seems
Such as I sought for, and at moments found :
Let these too go, for waking Reason deems

Such over-weening phantasies unsound,
And other voices speak and other sights surround.

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I've taught me other tongues, and in strange eyes
Have made me not a stranger — to the mind
Which is itself, no changes bring surprise;
Nor is it harsh to make, nor hard to find
A country with — ay, or without mankind;
Yet was I born where men are proud to be,
Not without cause; and should I leave behind

The inviolate island of the sage and free,
And seek me out a home by a remoter sea,




Perhaps I loved it well; and should I lay
My ashes in a soil which is not mine,
My spirit shall resume it - if we may
Unbodied choose a sanctuary. I twine
My hopes of being remember'd in my line

With my land's language : if too fond and far
These aspirations in their scope incline,

If my fame should be, as my fortunes are,
Of hasty growth and blight, and dull Oblivion bar




My name from out the temple where the dead
Are honour'd by the nations — let it be,
And light the laurels on a loftier head !
And be the Spartan's epitaph on me,
Sparta hath many a worthier son than he.'
Meantime I seek no sympathies, nor need;
The thorns which I have reap'd are of the tree

I planted,- they have torn me - and I bleed: 90 I should have known what fruit would spring from

such a seed.



The spouseless Adriatic mourns her lord ;
And annual marriage now no more renew'd,
The Bucentaur lies rotting unrestored,
Neglected garment of her widowhood!
St. Mark yet sees his lion where he stood
Stand, but in mockery of his wither'd power,
Over the proud Place where an Emperor sued,

And monarchs gazed and envied in the hour When Venice was a queen with an unequall'd




The Suabian sued, and now the Austrian reigns --
An Emperor tramples where an Emperor knelt;
Kingdoms are shrunk to provinces, and chains
Clank over sceptred cities; nations melt
From power's high pinnacle, when they have felt


The sunshine for a while, and downward go
Like lauwine loosen'd from the mountain's


Oh, for one hour of blind old Dandolo, Th’octogenarian chief, Byzantium's conquering foe!



Before St. Mark still glow his steeds of brass,
Their gilded collars glittering in the sun ;
But is not Doria's menace come to pass ?
Are they not bridled ? Venice lost and won,
Her thirteen hundred years of freedom done,
Sinks, like a sea-weed, into whence she rose !
Better be whelm'd beneath the waves, and shun,

Even in destruction's depth, her foreign foes, From whom submission wrings an infamous repose.




In youth she was all glory, a new Tyre,
Her very by-word sprung from victory,
The · Planter of the Lion,' which through fire
And blood she bore o'er subject earth and sea ;
Though making many slaves, herself still free,
And Europe's bulwark 'gainst the Ottomite; -
Witness Troy's rival, Candia! Vouch it, ye

Immortal waves that saw Lepanto's fight!
For ye are names no time nor tyranny can blight.



Statues of glass - all shiver'd - the long file
Of her dead Doges are declined to dust;
But where they dwelt, the vast and sumptuous

Bespeaks the pageant of their splendid trust;


Their sceptre broken, and their sword in rust,
Have yielded to the stranger : empty halls,
Thin streets, and foreign aspects, such as must

Too oft remind her who and what enthralls, 135 Have flung a desolate cloud o'er Venice' lovely




When Athens' armies fell at Syracuse,
And fetter'd thousands bore the yoke of war,
Redemption rose up in the Attic Muse,
Her voice their only ransom from afar:
See! as they chant the tragic hymn, the car
Of the o'ermaster'd victor stops, the reins
Fall from his hands his idle scimitar

Starts from its belt — he rends his captive's chains, And bids him thank the bard for freedom and his




Thus, Venice, if no stronger claim were thine,
Were all thy proud historic deeds forgot,
Thy choral memory of the Bard divine,
Thy love of Tasso, should have cut the knot
Which ties thee to thy tyrants; and thy lot
Is shameful to the nations, most of all,
Albion, to thee: the Ocean queen should not

Abandon Ocean's children; in the fall
Of Venice think of thine, despite thy watery wall.




I loved her from my boyhood; she to me
Was as a fairy city of the heart,
Rising like water-columns from the sea,

Of joy the sojourn, and of wealth the mart:
And Otway, Radcliffe, Schiller, Shakespeare's art,
Had stamp'd her image in me; and even so,
Although I found her thus, we did not part,

Perchance even dearer in her day of woe
Than when she was a boast, a marvel, and a show.




I can repeople with the past — and of
The present there is still for eye and thought,
And meditation chasten'd down, enough,
And more, it may be, than I hoped or sought;
And of the happiest moments which were wrought
Within the web of my existence, some
From thee, fair Venice, have their colours caught:

There are some feelings Time cannot benumb, Nor torture shake, or mine would now be cold and





But from their nature will the tannen grow
Loftiest on loftiest and least shelter'd rocks,
Rooted in barrenness, where nought below
Of soil supports them 'gainst the Alpine shocks
Of eddying storms; yet springs the trunk, and

The howling tempest, till its height and frame
Are worthy of the mountains from whose blocks

Of bleak, gray granite into life it came, 180 And grew a giant tree; - the mind may grow the



Existence may be borne, and the deep root
Of lifa and sufferance make its firm abode

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