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trary, I still maintain to be a fictitious personage,) |
TO IANTHE. it has been stated, that, besides the anachronism, he is very unknightly, as the times of the Knights Not in those climes where I have late been were times of love, honor, and so forth. Now it so straying, happens that the good old times, when “ l'amour Though Beauty long hath there been matchless du bon vieux tems l'amour antique" flourished,
deem'd; were the most profligate of all possible centuries. Not in those visions to the heart displaying Those who have any doubts on this subject may Forms which it sighs but to have only dream'd, consult St. Palaye, passim, and more particularly Hath aught like thee in truth or fancy seem'd: vol. ii., page 69. The vows of chivalry were no Nor, having seen thee, shall I vainly seek better kept than any other vows whatsoever; and To paint those charms which varied as they beam'd: the songs of the Troubadours were not more decent, To such as see thee not my words were weak; and certainly were much less refined, than those of To those who gaze on thee what language could Ovid. The “Cours d'amour, parlemens d'amour ou they speak? de courtesie et de gentilesse" had much more of love than of courtesy or gentleness. See Rolland
Ah! may'st thou ever be what now thou art, on the same subject with St. Palaye. Whatever
Nor unbeseem the promise of thy spring, other objection may be urged to that most unamia
As fair in form, as warm yet pure in heart, ble personage, Childe Harold, he was so far perfectly
Love's image upon earth without his wing, knightly in his attributes"No waiter, but a
And guileless beyond Hope's imagining ! knight templar." * By the by, I fear that Sir
And surely she who now so fondly rears Tristrem and Sir Lancelot were no better than they! Thy youth, in thee, thus hourly brightening, should be, although very poetical personages and Beholds the rainbow of her future years, true knights “sans peur," though not “sans re- Before whose heavenly hues all sorrow disappears. proche.” If the story of the institution of the “Garter” be not a fable, the knights of that order
Young Peri of the West !-'tis well for me have for several centuries borne the badge of a Countess of Salisbury of indifferent memory. So
My years already doubly number thine ;
My loveless eye umoved may gaze on thee, much for chivalry. Burke need not have regretted
And safely view thy ripening beauties shine ; that its days are over, though Maria Antoinette was
Happy, I ne'er shall see them in decline; quite as chaste as most of those in whose honors
Happier, that while all younger hearts shall bleed, lances were shivered, and knights unhorsed.
Mine shall escape the doom thine eyes assign Before the days of Bayard, and down to those of
To those whose admiration shall succeed, Sir Joseph Banks, (the most chaste and celebrated But mix'd with pangs to Love's even loveliest hours of ancient and modern times,) few exceptions will
decreed. be found to this statement, and I fear a little investigation will teach us not to regret these monstrous mummeries of the middle ages.
Oh! let that eye, which, wilů as tue Gazelle's, I now leave “Childe Harold," to live his day,
Now brightly bold or beautifully shy, such as he is ; it had been more agreeable, and cer
Wins as it wanders, dazzles where it dwells, tainly more easy, to have drawn an amiable charac
Glance o'er this page, nor to my verse deny ter. It had been easy to varnish over his faults, to
That smile for which my breast might vainly sigh, make him do more and express less, but he never
Could I to thee be ever more than friend: was intended as an example, further than to show
This much, dear maid, accord: nor question why that early perversion of mind and morals leads to
To one so young my strain I would commend, satiety of past pleasures and disappointment in But bid me with my wreath one matchless lily blend. new ones, and that even the beauties of nature, and the stimulus of travel (except ambition, the most
Such is thy name with this my verse entwined ; powerful of all excitements) are lost on a soul so
And long as kinder eyes a look shall cast constituted, or rather misdirected. Had I pro
On Harold's page, Ianthe's here enshrined ceeded with the poem, this character would have
Shall thus be first beheld, forgotten last: deepened as he drew to the close; for the outline
My days once number'd, should this homage past which I once meant to fill up for him was, with
Attract thy fairy fingers near the lyre some exceptions, the sketch of a modern Timon,
Of him who hail'd thee, loveliest as thou wast, perhaps a poetical Zeluco.
Such is the most my memory may desire ;
Though more than Hope can claim, eould Friend • Tine Roren. Antijacobin.
ship less require
CHILDE HAROLD'S PILGRIMAGE
I. On, thou ! in Hellas deem'd of heavenly birth, For he through Sin's long labyrinth had run, Muse! formd or fabled at the minstrel's will! Nor made atonement when he did amiss, Since shamed full oft by later lyres on earth, Had sigh'd to many though he loved but onę, Mine dares not call thee from thy sacred hill: And that loved one, alas! could ne'er be his. Yet there I've wander'd by thy vaunted rill; Ah, bappy sheto 'scape from him whose kiss Yes! sig h'd o'er Delphi's long deserted shrine,' Had been pollution unto aught so chaste; Where, save that feeble fountain, all is still ; Who soon had left her charms for vulgar bliss, Nor mote my shell awake the weary Nine And spoil'd her goodly lands to gild his waste, To grace so plain a tale-this lowly lay of mine. Nor calın domestic peace had ever deign'd to taste II.
VI. Whilome in Albion's isle there dwelt a youth And now Childe Harold was sore sick at heart, Who ne in virtue's ways did take delight; And from his fellow bacchanals would fiee; But spent his days in riot most uncouth, "Tis said, at times the sullen tear would start, And vez’d with mirth the drowsy ear of Night, But Pride congeal'd the drop within his ee: Ah,
me! in sooth he was a shameless wight, Apart he stalk'd in joyless reverie, Sore given to revel and ungodly glee;
And from his native land resolv'd to go, Few earthly things found favor in his sight And visit scorching climes beyond the sea; Save concubines and carnal companie,
With pleasure drugg'd he almost long'd for wo, And wassailers of high and low degree. And e'en for change of scene would seek the shades
It was a vast and venerable pile;
Yet strength was pillar'd in each massy aisle. But one sad losel soils a same for aye,
Monastic dome! condemn'd to uses vile! However mighty in the o'den time:
Where Superstition once had made her den, Nor 211 that eralds rake from coffin'd clay, Now Paphian girls were known to sing and smile; Nor forid prcse, nor horied lies of rhyme,
And monks might deem their time was come agen, Can blazon evil deeds, or consecrate a crime. If ancient tales say true, nor wrong these holy men. IV.
VIII. Childe Harold bask'd him in the noontide sun,
Yet ofttimes in his maddest mirthful mood Disporting there like any other fly;
Strange pangs would flash along Childe Harold's Nor deem'd before his little day was done
As if the memory of some deadly feud [brow, One blast might chill him into misery.
Or disappointed passion lurk'd below: Worse than adversity the Childe befell; ere scarce a third of his pass'd by, But this none knew, nor haply cared to know;
For his was not that open, artless soul He felt the fulness of satiety:
That feels relief by bidding sorrow flow, Then loathed he in sis native land to dwell, Nor sought he friend to counsel or condole, Whica seem'd to air mure lone that Eremite's sad Whate'er his grief mote be, which he could not
2. And none did love him—though to hall and bower “A few short hours, and He will rise He gather'd revellers from far and near,
To give the Morrow birth ; He knew them flatt'rers of the festal hour;
And I shall hail the main and skies, The heartless parasites of present cheer.
But not my mother Earth. Yea! none did love him-not his lemans dear- Deserted is my own good hall, But pomp and power alone are woman's care,
Its hearth is desolate; And where these are light Eros finds a fere; Wild weeds are gathering on the wall; Maidens, like moths, are ever caught by glare, My dog howls at the gate. And Mammon wins his way where Seraphs might despair.
“Come hither, hither, my little page! X.
Why dost thou weep and wail ?
Or dost thou dread the billows' rage,
But dash the tear-drop from thine eye , Before his weary pilgrimage begun :
Our ship is swift and strong:
Our fleetest falcon scarce could fly
4. Such partings break the heart they fondly hope to
Let winds be shrill, let waves roll high, heal.
I fear not wave nor wind;
Yet marvel not, Sir Childe, that I
Am sorrowful in mind;
A mother whom I love,
But thee-and one above.
5. And all that mote to luxury invite,
*My father bless'd me fervently, Without a sigh he left, to cross the brine,
Yet did not much complain ; And traverse Paynim shores, and pass Earth's cen- But sorely will my mother sigh tral line.
Till I come back again.'
“Enough, enough, my little lad! XII.
Such tears become thine eye;
Mine own would not be dry.
6. And then, it may be, of his wish to roam
“Come hither, hither, my staunch yeoman Repented he, but in his bosom slept
Why dost thou look so pale ? The silent thought, nor from his lips did come Or dost thou dread a French foeman ? One word of wail, whilst others sat and wept,
Or shiver at the gale?” And to the reckless gales unmanly moaning kept.
• Deem'st thou I tremble for my life?
Sir Childe, I'm not so weak;
But thinking on an absent wife
Will blanch a faithful cheek.
7. And strike, albeit with untaught melody,
• My spouse and boys dwell near thy hall, When deem'd he no strange ear was listening: Along the bordering lake; And now his fingers o'er it he did fling,
And when they on their father call, And tuned his farewell in the deep twilight.
What answer shall she make?'While flew the vessel on her snowy wing,
“Enough, enough, my yeoman good, And fleeting shores receded from his sight,
Thy grief let none gainsay; Thus to the elements he pour'd his last “Good But I, who am of lighter mood, Night."
Will laugh to flee away. 1.
8. “Adieu, adieu! my native shore
“For who would trust the seeming sighs Fades o'er the waters blue;
Of wife or paramour? The Night-winds sigh, the breakers roar, Fresh feres will dry the bright blue eyes And shrieks the wild sea-mew.
We late saw streaming o'er. Yon Sun that sets upon the sea
For pleasures past I do not grieve, We follow in his flight;
Nor perils gathering near; Farewell awhile to him and thee,
My greatest grief is that I leave My native Land-Good Night!
No thing that claims a tear.
XVIII. “And now I'm in the world alone,
Poor, paltry slaves ! yet born ʼmidst noblest scenes, Upon the wide, wide sea :
Why, Nature, waste thy wonders on such men? But why should I for others groan,
Lo! Cintra's glorious Eden intervenes When none will sigh for me?
In variegated maze of mount and glen. Perchance my dog will whine in vain
Ah, me! what hand can pencil guide, or ren, Till fed by stranger hands;
To follow half on which the eye dilates, But long ere I come back again,
Through views more dazzling unto mortal ken He'd tear me where he stands.
Than those whereof such things the bard relates,
Who to the awe-struck world unlock'd Elysium's 10.
XIX. "With thee, my bark, I'll swiftly go Athwart the foaming brine;
The horrid crags, by toppling convent crown'd, Nor care what land thou bear'st me tuo, The cork-trees hoar that clothe the shaggy steep, So not again to mine.
The mountain-moss by scorching skies imbrown'd, Welcome, welcome, ye dark blue waves! The sunken glen, whose sunless shrubs must weep, And when you fail my sight,
The tender azure of the unruffled deep, Welcome, ye deserts, and ye caves !
The orange tints that gild the greenest bough, My native Land-Good Night!”
The torrents that from cliff to valley leap,
The vine on high, the willow branch below,
Mix'd in one mighty scene, with varied beauty glow. On, on the vessel flies, the land is gone,
xx. And winds are rude in Biscay's sleepless bay. Four days are sped, but with the fifth, anon,
Then slowly climb the many-winding way, New shores descried make every bosom gay;
And frequent turn to linger as you go, And Cintra's mountain greets them on their way,
From loftier rocks new loveliness survey, And Tagus dashing onward to the deep,
And rest yet at our “ Lady's house of wo;”? His fabled golden tribute bent to pay;
Where frugal monks their little relics show, And soon on board the Lusian pilots leap,
And sundry legends to the stranger tell : And steer 'twixt fertile shores where yet few rustics
Here impious men have punish'd been, and lo! reap. .
Deep in yon cave Honorious long did dwell, XV.
In hope to merit heaven by making earth a Hell. Oh, Christ! it is a goodly sight to see
XXI. What Heaven hath done for this delicious land!
And here and there, as up the crags you spring, What fruits of fragrance blush on every tree ! What goodly prospects o'er the hills expand !
Mark many rude-carved crosses near the path:
Yet deem not these devotion's offeringBut man would mar them with an impious hand
These are memorials frail of murderous wrath: And when the Almighty lifts his fiercest scourge 'Gainst those who most transgress his high Pour'd forth his blood beneath the assassin's knife,
For wheresoe'er the shrieking victim hath command,
Some hand erects a cross of mouldering lath; With treble vengeance will his hot shafts urge Gaul's locust host, and earth from fellest foemen Throughout this parple land where law secures not
And grove and glen with thousand such are rife purge.
XXII. What beauties doth Lisboa first unfold !
On sloping mounds, or in the vale beneath, Her image floating on that noble tide,
Are domes where whilome kings did make repair ; Which poets vainly pave with sands of gold,
But now the wild flowers round them only breathe; But now whereon a thousand keels did ride
Yet ruin'd splendor still is lingering there. Of mighty strength, since Albion was allied,
And yonder towers the Prince's palace fair ; And to the Lusians did her aid afford:
There thou too, Vathek ! England's wealthiest son, A nation swoln with ignorance and pride,
Once form’d thy Paradise, as not aware [done, Who lick yet loathe the hand that waves the sword
When wanton Wealth her mightiest deeds hath so save them from the wrath of Gaul's unsparing Meck Peace voluptuous lures was ever wont to sun. lord. XVII.
XXIII. But whoso entereth within this town,
Here didst thou dwell, here schemes of pleasure That, sheening far, celestial seems to be,
plan, Disconsolate will wander up and down,
Beneath yon mountain's ever beauteous brow: 'Mid many things unsightly to strange ee; But now, as if a thing unblest by Man, For hut and palace show like filthily:
Thy fairy dwelling is as lone as thou ! The dingy denizens are rear'd in dirt;
Here giant weeds a passage scarce allow Ne personage of high or mean degree
To halls deserted, portals gaping wide; Doth care for cleanness of surtout or shirt, Fresh lessons to the thinking bosom, how Though shent with Egypt's plague, unkempt, Vain are the pleasaunces on earth supplied; unwash'd, unhurt.
Swept into wrecks anon by Time's ungentle tide
XXX. Behold the hall where chiefs were late convened ! 4 O'er vales that teem with fruits, romantic hills, Oh! dome displeasing unto British eye!
(Oh, that such hills upheld a freeborn race !) With diadem hight foolscap, lo! a fiend,
Whereon to gaze the eye with joyance fills, [place, A little fiend that scoffs incessantly,
Childe Harold wends through many a pleasant There sits in parchment robe array'd, and by Though sluggards deem it but a foolish chase His side is ng a seal and sable scroll,
And marvel men should quit their easy chair, Where blazon'd glare names known to chivalry, The toilsome way, and long, long league to trace, Andeundry signatures adorn the roll,
Oh! there is sweetness in the mountaip air, Whereat the Urchin points and laughs with all his And life, that bloated Ease can never hope to stare. soul.
More bleak to view the hills at length recede, Convention is the dwarfish demon styled
And, less luxuriant, smoother vales extend: That foil'd the knights in Marialva's dome:
Immense horizon-bounded plains succeed !
Far as the eye discerns, withouten end,
Spain's realms appear whereon her shepherds tend Here Folly dash'd to earth the victor's plume,
Flocks, whose rich fleece right well the trader And Policy regained what arms had lost;
knows For chiefs like ours in vain may laurels bloom!
Now must the pastor's arm his lambs defend Wo to the conqu’ring, not the conquer'd host,
For Spain is compass'd by unyielding foes, Since baffled Triumph droops on Lusitania's coast. And all must shield their all, or share Subjection's XXVI.
XXXII. And ever since that martial synod met,
Where Lusitania and her sister meet, Britannia sickens, Cintra! at thy name;
Deem ye what bounds the rival realms divide ? And folks in office at the mention fret,
Or ere the jealous queens of nations greet,
By foes in fight o’erthrown, yet victors here, Ne horrid crags, nor mountains dark and tall, Where Scorn her finger points through many a com- Rise like the rocks that part Hispania's land from ing year?
XXXIII. So deem'd the Childe, as o'er the mountains he
But these between a silver streamlet glides, Did take his way in solitary guise:
And scarce a name distinguisheth the brook, Sweet was the scene, yet soon he thought to flee,
Though rival kingdoms press its verdant sides. More restless than the swallow in the skies:
Here leans the idle shepherd on his crook, Though here a while he learned to moralize,
And vacant on the rippling waves doth look, For meditation fix'd at times on him;
That peaceful still 'twixt bitterest foemen flow; And conscious Reason whisper'd to despise
For proud each peasant as the noblest duke: His early youth misspent in maddest whim;
Well doth the Spanish hind the difference know But as he gazed on truth his aching eyes grew dim. "Twixt him and Lusian slave, the lowest of the low XXVIII.
XXXIV. To horse! to horse! he quits, for ever quits
But ere the mingling bounds have far been pass’d,
Dark Guadiana rolls his power along A scene of peace, though soothing to his soul;
In sullen billows, murmuring and vast,
So noted ancient roundelays among.
Whilome upon his banks did legions throng Where he shall rest him on his pilgrimage;
Of Moor and knight, in mailed splendor drest:
Here ceased the swift their race, here sunk the And o'er him many changing scenes must roll Ere toil his thirst for travel can assuage,
The Paynim turban and the Christian crest (strong; Or he shall calm his breast, or learn experience
Mix'd on the bleeding stream, by floating hosts opsage.
Oh, lovely Spain ! renown'd romantic land! Yet Mafra shall one moment claim delay,5
Where is that standard which Pelagio bore, Where dwelt of yore the Lusians' luckless queen; When Cava's traitor-sire first call'd the band And church and court did mingle their array, That dyed thy mountain streams with Gothic And mass and revel were alternate seen ; Lordlings and freres-ill-sorted fry I ween! Where are those bloody banners which of yore But here the Babylonian whore hath built Waved o'er thy sons, victorious to the gale, A dome, where flaunts she in such glorious sheen, And drove at last the sppilers to their shore? (pale, That men forget the blood which she hath spilt, Red gleam'd the cross, and waned the crescent And bow the knee to Pomp that loves to varnish While Afric's echoes thrill'd with Moorish matrons' guilt