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The tender father kindly smil'd

With fulness of content,
And fondly eyed his darling child,

Who, bashful, blush'd confent.

O then to paint the vast delight

That fill'd Sir ELDRED's heart, To tell the transports of the Knight,

Wou'd mock the Muse's art.

But every kind and gracious foul,

Where gentle passions dwell, Will better far conceive the whole, Than


Muse can tell.

The more the Knight his BirTHA knew,

The more he priz'd the maid ; Some worth each day produc'd to view, Some grace

cach hour betray'd.

The virgin too was fond to charm

The dear accomplish'd Youth ; His fingle breast she ftrove to warm,

And crown'd, with, love his truth,

Unlike the dames of modern days,

Who general homage claim, Who court the universal gaze,

And pant for public fame.

Then Beauty but on merit smild,

Nor were her chatte smiles sold ; No. venal father

his child For grandeur or for gold.


The ardour of young ELDRED's flame

But ill cou'd brook delay,
And oft he press’d the maid to name

A speedy nuptial day.

The fond impatience of his breast

'Twas all in vain to hide, But she his eager fuit represt

With modeft, maiden pride.

When oft Sir ELDRED press'd the day

Which was to crown his truth,
The thoughtful Sire would figh, and say,

“ O happy state of youth!

16 It little recks the woes which wait

6. To scare its dreams of joy, " Nor thinks to-morrow's alter'd fate

May all those dreams destroy.

6. And tho' the flatterer, Hope, deceives,

6. And painted prospects shews; " Yet man, still cheated, still believes

“ Till death the bright scene clofe.

« So look'd my bride, so sweetly mild,

" On me her beauty's llave ; " But whilft she look'd, and whilft she smild, 66 She sunk into the


“ Yet, О forgive an old man's care,

Forgive a father's zeal : 1. Who fondly loves muft greatly fear,

" Who fears muft greatly feel.

« Once more in soft and facred bands

" Shall Love and Hymen meet ;
To-morrow shall unite your hands,
“ And be your bliss complete !"

The rising sun inflam’d the fky,

The golden orient blush'd,
But Birtha's cheeks a sweeter die,

A brighter crimson Aush'd

The Priest, in milk-white vestments clad,

Perform'd the mystic rite ;
Love lit the hallow'd torch that led

To Hymen's chaste delight.

How feeble language were to speak

Th’immeasurable joy That fir'd Sir ELDRED's ardent cheek,

And triumph'd in his eye!

Sir ARDOLPH's pleasure stood confeft,

A pleasure all his own ;
The guarded rapture of a breast

many a grief had known.

'Twas such a sober sense of joy

As Angels well might keep; Ajoy chastis'd by piety,

Ajoy prepar'd to weep.

To recollect her scatter'd thought,

And sun the noon-tide hour, The lovely bride in secret fought

The coolness of her bower.

Long she remaind-th' enamour'd Knight,

Impatient at her stay,
And all unfit to taste delight

When BIRTHA was away.

Betakes him to the secret Bower ;

His footsteps foftly move ; Impellid by every tender power,

He steals upon his love.

0 horror ! horror! blafting fight!

He sees his Birtha's charms, Reclin'd with melting fond delight,

Within a stranger's arms.

Wild frenzy fires his frantic hand,

Distracted at the fight,
He Alies to where the lovers ftand,

And ftabs the stranger Knight.

“. Die traitor, die, thy guilty flames

“ Demand th' avenging íteel" “ It is my brother, the exclaims,

“ 'Tis EdwY-Oh farewell !

An aged peasant, Edwy's guide,

The good old ARDOLPH fought; He told him that his bofom's pride,

His Edwy, he had brought.

O how the father's feelings melt!

How faint and how revive !
Just so the Hebrew Patriarch felt,

To find his son alive.

“ Let me behold my darling's face,

“ And bless him ere I die! Then with a swift and vigorous pace,

He to the the Bower did hie.

O sad reverse !-funk on the ground

His Naughter'd son he view'd, And dying Birtha close he found

In brother's blood imbru'd.

Cold, fpeechless, senselefs ELDRED near

Gaz'd on the deed he'd done : Like the blank ftatue of Despair,

Or Madness grav'd in stone.

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The father faw-fo Jepthah ftoad,

So turn'd his woe-fraught eye,
When the dear, deftin'd child he view'd,

His zeal had doom'd to die.

He look'd the woe he could not speak,

And on the pale corse prelt
His wan, discolour'd, dying cheek,

And filent, sunk to reft.

Then Birtha faintly rais'd her eye,

Which long had ceas'd to stream, On Eldred fix'd with many a figh

Its dim, departing beam.

The cold, cold dews of haftening death

Upon her pale face stand;
And quick and short her failing breath,

And tremulous her hand.

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