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When fainting Nature called for aid,

And hovering death prepared the blow, His vigorous remedy displayed The power

of art without the show.

In misery's darkest caverns known,

His ready help was ever nigh, Where hopeless anguish poured his groan,

And lonely want retired to die.

No summons mocked by chill delay,

No petty gains disdained by pride: The modest wants of every day

The toil of every day supplied.

His virtues walked their narrow round,

Nor made a pause, nor left a void; And sure the eternal Master found

His single talent well employed.

The busy day, the peaceful night,

Unfelt, uncounted, glided by; His frame was firm, his powers were bright,

Though now his eightieth year was nigh.

Then, with no throbs of fiery pain,

No cold gradations of decay, Death broke at once the vital chain,

And freed his soul the nearest way.

XXV

CHEVY CHACE

THE HUNTING

God prosper long our noble king,

Our lives and safeties all;
A woeful hunting once there did

In Chevy-Chace befall;

To drive the deer with hound and horn

Erle Percy took his way;
The child may rue that is unborn,

The hunting of that day.

The stout Erle of Northumberland

A vow to God did make,
His pleasure in the Scottish woods

Three summer's days to take,

The chiefest harts in Chevy-Chace

To kill and bear away.
These tydings to Erle Douglas came,

In Scotland where he lay:

Who sent Erle Percy present word,

He wold prevent his sport.
The English Erle, not fearing that,

Did to the woods resort

With fifteen hundred bow-men bold,

All chosen men of might,
Who knew full well in time of neede

To ayme their shafts aright.
The gallant greyhounds swiftly ran,

To chase the fallow deere :
On Monday they began to hunt,

Ere daylight did appeare ;
And long before high noone they had

An hundred fat buckes slaine ;
Then having dined, the drovyers went

To rouse the deere againe.
The bow-men mustered on the hills,

Well able to endure;
Their backsides all, with special care

That day were guarded sure.
The hounds ran swiftly through the woods,

The nimble deere to take,
And with their cryes the hills and dales

An echo shrill did make.

Lord Percy to the quarry went,

To view the slaughtered deere :
Quoth he, 'Erle Douglas promised

This day to meet me here,
But if I thought he wold not come,

No longer wold I stay.'
With that, a brave younge gentleman

Thus to the Erle did say:

'Lo, yonder doth Erle Douglas come,

His men in armour bright;
Full twenty hundred Scottish speares

All marching in our sight;
All men of pleasant Tivydale,

Fast by the river Tweede': 'O, cease your sports,' Erle Percy said,

'And take your bowes with speede;

And now with me, my countrymen,

Your courage forth advance,
For there was never champion yet,

In Scotland or in France,

That ever did on horsebacke come,

But if my hap it were,
I durst encounter man for man,

And with him break a speare.'

THE CHALLENGE

Erle Douglas on his milke-white steede,

Most like a baron bold,
Rode foremost of his company,

Whose armour shone like gold. ‘Show me,' said he, 'whose men ye be,

That hunt so boldly here,
That, without my consent, do chase
And kill

my

fallow-deere.' The first man that did answer make,

Was noble Percy he;

Who sayd, 'We list not to declare,

Nor shew whose men we be,
Yet we will spend our dearest blood,

Thy chiefest harts to slay.'
Then Douglas swore a solemn oath,

And thus in rage did say:
'Ere thus I will out-bravèd be,

One of us two shall dye:
I know thee well, an erle thou art;

Lord Percy, so am I.
But trust me, Percy, pittye it were,

And great offence to kill
Any of these our guiltlesse men,

For they have done no ill.
Let thou and I the battell trye,

And set our men aside.' ‘Accurst be he,' Erle Percy said,

‘By whom this is denied.' Then stept a gallant squier forth,

Witherington was his name,
Who said, 'I wold not have it told

To Henry our king for shame,
That ere my captaine fought on foote,

And I stood looking on. Ye be two erles,' said Witherington,

'And I a squier alone: Ile do the best that do I may,

While I have power to stand:

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