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The triumph, and the vanity,

The rapture of the strife— (1)
The earthquake voice of Victory,

To thee the breath of life;
The sword, the sceptre, and that sway
Which man seem'd made but to obey,

Wherewith renown was rife-
All quellid !-Dark Spirit! what must be
The madness of thy memory!


The Desolator desolate!

The Victor overthrown!

The Arbiter of others' fate

A Suppliant for his own! Is it some yet imperial hope That with such change can calmly cope?

Or dread of death alone ?

To die a prince—or live a slave-
Thy choice is most ignobly brave!

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He (2) who of old would rend the oak,

Dream'd not of the rebound; Chain'd by the trunk he vainly broke

Alone-how look'd he round?
Thou in the sternness of thy strength
An equal deed hast done at length,

And darker fate hast found :
He fell, the forest-prowlers prey;
But thou must eat thy heart away!


The Roman, (3) when his burning heart

Was slaked with blood of Rome, Threw down the dagger-dared depart,

In savage grandeur, home.-
He dared depart in utter scorn
Of men that such a yoke had borne,

Yet left him such a doom !
His only glory was that hour
Of self-upheld abandon’d power.


The Spaniard, 4) when the lust of sway

Had lost its quickening spell,
Cast crowns for rosaries away,

An empire for a cell;
A strict accountant of his beads,
A subtle disputant on creeds,

His dotage trifled well :
Yet better had he neither known
A bigot's shrine, nor despot's throne.


But thou—from thy reluctant hand

The thunderbolt is wrung-
Too late thou leav'st the high command

To which thy weakness clung ;
All Evil Spirit as thou art,
It is enough to grieve the heart,

To see thine own unstrung;
To think that God's fair world hath been
The footstool of a thing so mean;


And Earth hath spilt her blood for him,

Who thus can hoard his own! And Monarchs bow'd the trembling limb,

And thank'd him for a throne ! Fair Freedom! we may hold thee dear, When thus thy mightiest foes their fear

In humblest guise have shown. Oh! ne'er may tyrant leave behind A brighter name to lure mankind!


Thine evil deeds are writ in

gore, Nor written thus in vain

Thy triumphs tell of fame no more,

Or deepen every stain-
If thou hadst died as honour dies,
Some new Napoleon might arise,

To shame the world again-
But who would soar the solar height,
To set in such a starless night?


Weigh'd in the balance, hero dust

Is vile as vulgar clay;
Thy scales, Mortality! are just

To all that pass away;
But yet methought the living great
Some higher sparks should animate,

To dazzle and dismay;
Nor deein'd Contempt could thus make mirth
Of these, the Conquerors of the earth.


And she, proud Austria's mournful flower,

Thy still imperial bride;
How bears her breast the torturing hour?

Still clings she to thy side?
Must she too bend, must she too share
Thy late repentance, long despair,

Thou throneless Homicide?
If still she loves thee, hoard that gem,
'Tis worth thy vanish'd diadem!

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