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LXXX.

LXXXV.
The Goth, the Christian, Time, War, Flood, and Fire, Sylla was first of victors; but our own
Have dealt upon the seven-hill'd city's pride;

The sagest of usurpers, Cromwell; he
She saw her glories star by star expire,

Too swept off senates while he hew'd the throne And up the steep barbarian monarchs ride,

Down to a block - immortal rebel ! See Where the car climbid the Capitol; far and wide What crimes it costs to be a moment free Temple and tower went down, nor left a site : And famous through all ages! but beneath Chaos of ruins! who shall trace the void,

His fate the moral lurks of destiny; O'er the dim fragments cast a lunar light,

His day of double victory and death (breath. And say, “ here was, or is,” where all is doubly night? Beheld him win two realms, and, happier, yield his

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Orosius gives 320 for the number of triumphs. He is followed by Panvinius; and Panvinius by Mr. Gibbon and the modern writers.

? Certainly, were it not for these two traits in the life of Sylla, alluded to in this stanza, we should regard him as a Monster woredeemed by any admirable quality. The alone. ment of his voluntary resignation of empire may perhaps be accepted by us, as it seems to have satisfied the Romans, who I they had not respected must have destroyed him. There could be no mean. no division of opinion ; they must have all thought, like Eucrates, that what had appeared ambition was a love of glory, and that what had been mistaken for pride #a a real grandeur of soul, -("Scigneur, vous changez

toutes mes idées de la façon dont je vous vois agir. Je croyais que vous aviez de l'ainbition, mais aucune amour pour la gloire : je voyais bien que votre ime était haute ; mais je ne soupçonnais pas qu'elle fut grande." - Dialogues de Sylla et d'Eucrate.)

3 On the 3d of September Cromwell gained the victory of Dunbar: a year afterwards he obtained “his crowning mercy" of Worcester; and a few years after, on the sadne day, which he had ever esteemed the most furtumuite for him, died.

4,' See Appendix, “ Historical Notes," Nos. XXIV. XXV.

The edict of Earth's rulers, who are grown The apes of him who humbled once the proud,

And shook them from their slumbers on the throne: Too glorious, were this all his mighty arm had done.

XC.
The fool of false dominion - and a kind
Of bastard Cesar, following him of oldi
With steps unequal; for the Roman's mind
Was modell'd in a less terrestrial moald,
With passions fiercer, yet a judgment cold,
And an immortal instinct which redeem'd
The frailties of a heart so soit, yet bold,

Alcides with the distaff now he seem'd
At Cleopatra's feet, — and now himself he beam ,

XCVI.

.
Can tyrants but by tyrants conquer'd be,
And Freedom find no champion and no child
Such as Columbia saw arise when she
Sprung forth a Pallas, arm'd and undefiled ?
Or must such minds be nourish'd in the wild,
Deep in the unpruned forest, 'midst the roar
Of cataracts, where nursing Nature smiled

On infant Washington ? Has Earth no more Such seeds within her breast, or Europe no such

shore ?

XCI. And came –and saw-and conquer'd! But the man Who would have tamed his eagles down to flee, Like a traind falcon, in the Gallic van, Which he. in sooth, long led to victory, With a deaf heart which never seem'ů to be A listener to itself, was strangely framed; With but one weakest weakness - vanity,

Coquettish in ambition — still he aim'd At what ? can he arouch - or answer what he claim'd ?

XCII. And would be all or nothing - nor could wait For the sure grave to level him ; few years Had fix'd him with the Cæsars in his fate, On whom we tread : For this the conqueror rears The arch of triumph ! and for this the tears And blood of earth flow on as they have flow'd, An universal deluge, which appears

Without an ark for wretched man's abode, And ebbs but to reflow ! – Renew thy rainbow, God !

XCVII. But France got drunk with blood to vomit crint.e, And fatal have her Saturnalia been To Freedom's cause, in every age and clime; Because the deadly days which we have seen, And vile Ambition, that built up between Man and his hopes an adamantine wall, And the base pageant last upon the scene,

Are grown the pretext for the eternal thrall Which nips life's tree, and dooms man's worst — his

second fall.

XCIII. What from this barren being do we reap ? Our senses narrow, and our reason frail, 2 Life short, and truth a gem which loves the deep, And all things weigh'd in custom's falsest scale ; Opinion an omnipotence, — whose veil Mantles the earth with darkness, until right And wrong are accidents, and men grow pale

Lest their own judgments should become too bright, And their free thoughts Le crimes, and earth wave

too much light.

XCVIII. Yet, Freedom ! yet thy banner, torn, but aying, Streams like the thunder-storm against the wind ; Thy trumpet voice, though broken now and dying, The loudest still the tempest leaves behind ; Thy tree hath lost its blossoms, and the rind, Chopp'd by the axe, looks rough and little worth, But the sap lasts, - and still the sced we find

Sown deep, even in the bosom of the North ; So shall a better spring less bitter fruit bring forth.

XCIV.
And thus they plod in sluggish misery,
Rotting from sire to son, and age to age,
Proud of their trampled nature, and so die,
Bequeathing their hereditary rage
To the new race of inborn slaves, who wage
War for their chains, and rather than be free,
Bleed gladiator-like, and still engage

Within the same arena where they see
Their fellows fall before, like leaves of the same tree.

XCIX. There is a stern round tower of other days, 3 Firm as a fortress, with its fence of stone, Such as an army's baffled strength delays, Standing with half its battlements alone, And with two thousand years of ivy grown, The garland of eternity, where ware The green leaves over all by time o'erthrown ;What was this tower of strength ? within its cave What treasure lay so lock'd, so hid? – A woman's

grave.

XCV. I speak not of men's creeds -- they rest between Man and his Maker - but of things allow'd, Averr'd, and known, - and daily, hourly seen The yoke that is upon us doubly bow'd, And the intent of tyranny avow'd,

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CI.
Was she as those who love their lords, or they
Who love the lords of others ? such have been
Even in the olden time, Rome's annals say.
Was she a matron of Cornelia's mien,
Or the light air of Egypt's graceful queen,
Profuse of joy - or 'gainst it did she war
Inveterate in virtue ? Did she lean

To the soft side of the heart, or wisely bar Love from amongst her griefs ? - for such the affections are.

CII. Perchance she died in youth: it may be, bow'd With woes far heavier than the ponderous tomb That weigh'd upon her gentle dust, a cloud Might gather o'er her beauty, and a gloom In her dark eye, prophetic of the doom Heaven gives its favourites — early death ; yet A sunset charm around her, and illume

With hectic light, the Hesperus of the dead, Of her consuming check the autumnal leaf-like red.

Where all lies founder'd that was ever dear :
But could I gather from the wave-worn store

Enough for my rude boat, where should I steer ? There woos no horje, nor hope, nor life, save what is here.

CVI. Then let the winds howl on! their harmony Shall henceforth be my music, and the niglit The sound shall temper with the owlets' cry, As I now hear them, in the fading light Dim o'er the bird of darkness' native site, Answering cach other on the Palatine, (bright, With their large eyes, all glistening gray and

And sailing pinions. — Upon such a shrine What are our petty griefs?-let me not number mine.

(shed !

CIII. Perchance she died in age — surviving all, Charms, kindred, children - with the silver gray On her long tresses, which might yet recall,

may be, still a something of the day When they were braided, and her proud array And lovely form were envied, praised, and eyed By Rome – But whither would Conjecture stray ?

Thus much alone we know-Metella died, The wealthiest Roman's wife: Behold his love or pride!

CIV.
I know not why—but standing thus by thee
It seems as if I had thine inmate known,
Thou Tomb! and other days come back on me
With recollected music, though the tone
I changed and solemn, like the cloudy groan
Of dying thunder on the distant wind;
Yet could I seat me by this ivied stone

Till I had bodied forth the heated mind Forms from the floating wreck which Ruin leaves behind ;2

CV. And from the planks, far shatter'd o'er the rocks, Built me a little bark of hope, once more To battle with the ocean and the shocks Of the loud breakers, and the ceaseless roar Which rushes on the solitary shore

CVII. Cypress and ivy, weed and wallflower grown Matted and mass'd together, hillocks heap'd On what were chambers, arch crush'd, column strown In fragments, choked up vauits, and frescos steep'd In subterranean damps, where the owl peep'd, Deeming it midnight :- Temples, baths, or halls ? Pronounce who can; for all that Learning reap'd

From her research hath been, that these are walls Behold the Imperial Mount! 'tis thus the mighty falls. 3

CVIII. There is the moral of all human tales ; "Tis but the same rehearsal of the past, First Freedom, and then Glory — when that fails, Wealth, vice, corruption, - barbarism at last. And History, with all her volumes vast, Hath but one page, - 't is better written here Wiere gorgeous Tyranny hath thus amass'd

All treasures, all delights, that eye or ear, Heart, soul could seek, tongue ask — Away with

words ! draw near,

CLX. Admire, exult-despise — laugh, weep, — for here There is such matter for all feeling :- Man ! 'Thou pendulum betwixt a smile and tear, Ages and realms are crowded in this span, This mountain, whose obliterated plan The pyramid of empires pinnacled, Of Glory's gewgaws shining in the van

Till the sun's rays with added flame were fill'd! Where are its golden roofs ? where those who dared

to build ?

10, οι θεοί φιλουσιν, άτοθνήσκει νέος

Το γιο ταγέιν ουκ αισχρών, αλλ' αισχρώς θαν:in. Rich. Franc. Phil. Brunck. Poetæ Gnomici, p. 231. ed. 1784. ? Pour words, and two initials, compose the whole of the Inscription which, whatever was its ancient position, is now placed in front of this towering sepulchre: CECILIÆ. Q. CreTICI. F. METELLE . CRASSI. It is more likely to have been the pride than the love of Crassus, which raised so superb a norial to a wise, whose name is not mentioned in history, less she be supposed to be that lady whose intimacy with Dolabella pas so offensive to Tullia, the daughter of Cicero ; or she who w33 divorced by Lentulus Spinther; or she, per. haps the same person, from whose ear the son of Æsopus ansferred a precious jewel to enrich his daughter. – HOB

broken shrines and fallen statues of her subduer." — Sir Walter Scott.]

4 The author of the Life of Cicero, speaking of the opinion entertained of Britain by that orator and his cotemporary Romans, has the following eloquent passage: -" From their railleries of this kind, on the barbarity and misery of our island, one cannot help reflecting on the surprising fate and revolutions of kingdoms; how Rome, once the mistress of the world, the seat of arts, empire, and glory, now lies sunk in sloth, ignorance, and poverty, enslaved to the most cruel as well as to the most contemptible of tyrants, superstition and religious imposture: while this remote country, anciently the jest and contempt of the polite Romans, is become the happy seat of liberty, plenty, and letters; flourishing in all the arts and refinernents of civil life; yet running perhaps the same course which Roine itself had run before it, from virtuous industry to wealth ; from wealth to luxury; from luxury to an impatience of discipline, and corruption of morals: till, hy a total degeneracy and loss of virtue, being grown ripe for destruction, it fail a prey at last to some hardy oppressor, and, with the loss of liberty, losing every thing that is valuable, sinks gradually again into its original barbarism." (See History of the Life of M. Tullius Cicero, sect. vi. vol.ii. p. 102)

Bour]

The Palatine is one mass of ruins, particularly on the side towards the Circus Maximus. The very soil is formed of critabled brickwork. Nothing has been told, nothing can he told, to satisfy the belief of any but a Roman antiquary. See - Historical Illustrations," p. 266. — [" The voice of Marius could not sound more deep and solemn among the ruined attes of Carthage, than the strains of the Pilgrin amid the

сх. .

CXV. Tully was not so eloquent as thou,

Egeria ! sweet creation of so ne heart Thou nameless column with the buried base ! Which found no mortal resting-place so fair What are the laurels of the Cæsar's brow ?

As thine ideal breast; whate'er thou art Crown me with ivy from his dwelling-place.

Or wert, - a young Aurora of the air, Whose arch or pillar meets me in the face,

The nympholepsy of some fond despair ; Titus or Trajan's ? No— 't is that of Time :

Or, it might be, a beauty of the earth, Triumph, arch, pillar, all he doth displace

Who found a more than common votary there Scoffing; and apostolic statues climb

Too much adoring; whatsoe'er thy birth, To crush tie imperial urn, whose ashes slept sub- Thou wert a beautiful thought, and softly died

forth.

lime,

CXI. .
Buried in air, the deep blue sky of Rome,
And looking to the stars : they had contain'd
A spirit which with these would find a home,
The last of those who o'er the whole earth reign'd,
The Roman globe, for after none sustain'd,
But yielded back his conquests :- he was more
Than a mere Alexander, and, unstain'd

With household blood and wine, serenely wore
His sovereign virtues — still we Trajan's name adore. 2

CXII.
Where is the rock of Triumph, the high place
Where Rome embraced her heroes? where the

steep
Tarpeian ? fittest goal of Treason's race,
The promontory whence the Traitor's Leap
Cured all ambition. Did the conquerors heap
Their spoils here ? Yes; and in yon field below,
A thousand years of silenced factions sleep-

The Forum, where the immortal accents glow,
And still the eloquent air breathes - burns with

Cicero !

CXVI.
The mosses of thy fountair. still are sprinkled
With thine Elysian water-drops; the face
Of thy cave-guarded spring, with years unwrinkled,
Reflects the mcek-eyed genius of the place,
Whose green, wild margin now no more erase
Art's works; nor must the delicate waters sleep,
Prison'd in marble, bubbling from the base

Of the cleft statue, with a gentle leap
The rill runs o'er, and round fern, flowers, and ivy
creep,

CXVII.
Fantastically tangled: the green hills
Are clothed with early blossoms, through the grass
The quick-eyed lizard rustles, ar the bills
Of summer-birds sing welcome 6 ve pass;
Flowers fresh in hue, and many in their class,
Implore the pausing step, and with their dyes
Dance in the soft breeze in a fairy mass;

The sweetness of the violet's deep blue eyes
Kiss'd by the breath of heaven, seems colour'd by its
skies.

CXVIII.
Here didst thou dwell, in this enchanted cover,
Egeria! thy all heavenly bosom beating
For the far footsteps of thy mortal lover;
The purple Midnight veil'd that mystic meeting
With her most starry canopy, and seating
Thyself by thine adorer, what befel ?
This cave was surely shaped out for the grecting

Of an enamour'd Goddess, and the cell
Haunted by holy Love - the earliest oracle !

CXIII.
The field of freedom, faction, fame, and blood:
Here a proud people's passions were exhaled,
From the first hour of empire in the bud
To that when further worlds to conquer fail'd ;
But long before had Freedom's face been veild,
And Anarchy assumed her attributes ;
Till every lawless soldier who assail'd

Trod on the trembling senate's slavish mutes,
Or raised the venal voice of baser prostitutes.

CXIV.
Then turn we to her latest tribune's name,
From her ten thousand tyrants turn to thee,
Redeemer of dark centuries of shame
The friend of Petrarch - hope of Italy –
Rienzi ! last of Romans !3 While the tree
Of freedom's wither'd trunk puts forth a leaf,
Even for thy tomb a garland let it be —

The forum's champion, and the people's chief-
Her new-born Numa thou—with reign, alas ! too brief.

CXIX.
And didst thou not, thy breast to his replying,
Blend a celestial with a human heart;
And Love, which dies as it was born, in sighing,
Share with immortal transports ? could thine art
Make them indeed immortal, and impart
The purity of heaven to earthly joys,
Expel the venom and not blunt the dart -

The dull satiety which all destroy's -
And root from out the soul the deadly weed which

cloys ?

P. 214.

The column of Trajan is surmounted by St. Peter; that objects of his fear, or of his hate; he never listened to it of Aurelius by St. Paul. See “Historical Illustrations," sormers ; he gave not way to his anger; he abstained equally

from unfair exactions and unjust punishments, he had rather

be loved as a man than bonoured as a sovereign : le *** 2. Trajan was proverbially the best of the Roman princes affable with his people, respectful to the senate, and univer. (Eutrop. I. viii. c. 5.); and it would be easier to find a sovereign uniting exactly the opposite characteristics, than one

sally beloved by both ; be inspired none with dread but the possessed of all the happy qualities ascribed to this emperor.

enemies of his country." — Hist. Rom. I. Ixiii. c. 6., 7. * When he mounted the throne," says the historian Dion, 3 The name and exploits of Ricnzi must be familiar to the * he was strong in body, he was vigorous in mind ; age bid

reader of Gibbon. Some details and Daedited manuscripts, impaired none of his faculties; he was altogether free from relative to this mhappy hero, will be seen in the " Historical envy and from detraction ; he honoured all the good, and he

Illustrations of the Fourth Canto," p. 248. advanced them; and on this account they could not be the * See Appendix, “ Historical Soces," No. XXVII.

CXX.

Envenom'd with irrevocable wrong ; Alas ! our young affections run to waste,

And Circumstance, that unspiritual god Or water but the desert; whence arise

And miscreator, makes and helps along But weeds of dark luxuriance, tares of haste,

Our coming evils with a crutch-like rod, Rank at the core, though tempting to the eyes, Whose touch turns Hope to dust, -- the dust we all Flowers whose wild odours breathe but agonies,

have trod. And trees whose gums are poisons; such the plants

CXXVI.
Which spring beneath her steps as Passion flies Our life is a false nature - 't is not in
O'er the world's wilderness, and vainly pants

The harmony of things, — this hard decree,
For some celestial fruit forbidden to our wants.

This uneradicable taint of sin,

This boundless upas, this all-blasting tree,
CXXI.

Whose root is earth, whose leaves and branches be Oh Love! no habitant of earth thou art

The skies which rain their plagues on men like dew An unseen seraph, we believe in thee,

Disease, death, bondage. all the woes we see, A faith whose martyrs are the broken heart,

And worse, the woes we see not which throb But never yet hath seen, nor e'er shall see

through The naked eye, thy form, as it should be ;

The immedicable soul, with heart-aches ever new.
The mind hath made thee, as it peopled heaven,
Even with its own desiring phantasy,

CXXVII.
And to a thought such shape and image given, Yet let us ponder boldly 't is a base 1
As haunts the unquench'd soul - parch'd — wearied Abandopment of reason to resign
- wrung - and riven.

Our right of thought - our last and only place

Of refuge; this, at least, shall still be mine :
CXXII.

Though from our birth the faculty divine of its own beauty is the mind diseased,

Is chain'd and tortured cabin'd, cribb'd, confined, And fevers into false creation :- where,

And bred in darkness, lest the truth should shine Where are the forms the sculptor's soul hath seized ?

Too brightly on the unprepared mind, (blind. In him alone. Can Nature show so fair ?

The beam pours in, for time and skill will couch the Where are the charms and virtues which we dare Conceive in boyhood and pursue as men,

CXXVIII. The unreach'd Paradise of our despair,

Arches on arches ! as it were that Rome, Which o'er-informs the pencil and the pen,

Collecting the chief trophies of her line, And overpowers the page where it would bloom again?

Would build up all her triumphs in one dome,

Her Coliseum stands; the moonbeams shine
CXXIII.

As 't were its natural torches, for divine
Wholoves, raves-- 't is youth's frenzy - but the cure

Should be the light which streams here, to illume Is bitterer still, as charm by charm unwinds

This long-explored but still exhaustless mine Which robed our idols, and we see too sure

Of contemplation; and the azure gloom For worth nor beauty dwells from out the mind's

Of an Italian night, where the deep skies assume Ideal shape of such ; yet still it binds The fatal spell, and still it draws us on,

CXXIX. Reaping the whirlwind from the oft-sown winds; Hues which have words, and speak to ye of heaven,

The stubborn heart, its alchemy begun, (undone. Floats o'er this vast and wondrous monument, Seems ever near the prize, — wealthiest when most And shadows forth its glory. There is given

Unto the things of earth, which Time hath bent, CXXIV.

A spirit's feeling, and where he hath leant We wither from our youth, we gasp away — [thirst,

His hand, but broke his scythe, there is a power Sick - sick; unfound the boon unslaked the

And magic in the ruin'd battlement, Though to the last, in verge of our decay,

For which the palace of the present hour Some phantom lures, such as we sought at first

Must yield its pomp, and wait till ages are its dower.
But all too late, — 80 are we doubly curst.
Love, fame, ambition, avarice- 't is the same,

CXXX.
Each idle -- and all ill — and none the worst - Oh Time! the beautifier of the dead,
For all are meteors with a different name,

Adorner of the ruin, comforter
And Death the sable smoke where vanishes the flame. And only healer when the heart hath bled

Time ! the corrector where our judgments err,
CXXV.

(loved, The test of truth, love, - sole philosopher, Few - none find what they love or could have For all beside are sophists, from thy thrift, Though accident, blind contact, and the strong Which never loses though it doth defer Necessity of loving, have removed

Time, the avenger! unto thee I lift

[gift : Antipathies — but to recur, ere long,

My hands, and eyes, and heart, and crave of thee a i" At all events,” says the author of the Academical prejudices ? This is not the way to defend the cause of Questions, “ I trust, wbåtever may be the fate of my own truth. It was not thus that our fathers maintained it in the bacalations, that philosophy will regain that estimation brilliant periods of our history. Prejudice may be trusted to which it ought to possess. The free and philosophic spirit guard the outworks for a short space of time, while reason of our pation has been the theme of admiration to the world, slumbers in the citadel; but if the latter'sink into a lethargy, This was the proud distioction of Englishmen, and the lu. the former will quickly erect a standard for herself. Philo. minous source of all their glory. Shall we then forget the sophy, wisdom, and liberty support each other: he who will maaly and dignified sentiments or our ancestors, to prate in not reason is a bigot; he who cannot, is a fool; and he who the language of the mother or the nurse about our good old dares not, is a slave.' Vol. i. pref. p. 14, 15.

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