Page images
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors][ocr errors]

SELECTIONS

FROM THE

BRITISH PO E T S.

VOL. I.

FROM SPENSER TO GRAY.

[ocr errors]

FROM

ENGLISH POETRY.

EDMUND SPENSER.

1553-1598.

FAËRY QUEEN.

A GENTLE knight was pricking o'er the plain,
Yclad in mighty arms and silver shield,
Wherein old dints of deep wounds did remain,
The cruel marks of many a bloody field;
Yet arms till that time did he never wield:
His angry steed did chide his foaming bit,
As much disdaining to the curb to yield :
Full jolly knight he seem'd, and fair did sit,
As one for knightly jousts and fierce encounters fit.
But on his breast a bloody cross he bore,
The dear remembrance of his dying Lord,
For whose sweet sake that glorious badge he wore,
And dead (as living) ever him adored :
Upon his shield the like was also scored,
For sovereign hope, which in his help he had ::
Right faithful true he was in deed and word;
But of his cheer did seem too solemn sad :
Yet nothing did he dread; but ever was ydrad.
Upon a great adventure he was bound,
That greatest Gloriana to hím gave,
That greatest glorious queen of fairy land,
To win him worship, and her grace to have,
Which of all earthly things he most did crave
And ever as he rode, his heart did yearn
To prove his puissance in battle brave
Upon his foe, and his new force to learn;
Upon his foe, a dragon horrible and stern,
Vol. I.-B

« PreviousContinue »