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The other, deep and slow, exhausting thought,
And hiving wisdom with each studious year,
In meditation dwelt, with learning wrought,
And shaped his weapon with an edge severe,
Sapping a solemn creed with solemn sneer;
The lord of irony,-that master-spell,
Which stung his foes to wrath, which grew from fear, And doom'd him to the zealot's ready Hell, Which answers to all doubts so eloquently well.
Yet, peace be with their ashes, for by them,
If merited, the penalty is paid;
It is not ours to judge,-far less condemn; The hour must come when such things shall be made Known unto all,- —or hope and dread allay'd By slumber, on one pillow, in the dust, Which, thus much we are sure, must lie decay'd; And when it shall revive, as is our trust, 'Twill be to be forgiven, or suffer what is just.
I HAVE NOT LOVED THE WORLD
(CANTO III, cxiii, cxiv)
I have not loved the world, nor the world me;
I have not flatter'd its rank breath, nor bow'd
To its idolatries a patient knee,
Nor coin'd my cheek to smiles,-nor cried aloud
In worship of an echo; in the crowd
They could not deem me one of such; I stood
Among them, but not of them; in a shroud
Of thoughts which were not their thoughts, and still could,
Had I not filed my mind, which thus itself subdued.
I have not loved the world, nor the world me,- ΙΟ But let us part fair foes; I do believe,
Though I have found them not, that there may be Words which are things, — hopes which will not
And virtues which are merciful, nor weave Snares for the failing; I would also deem O'er others' griefs that some sincerely grieve; That two, or one, are almost what they seem,— That goodness is no name, and happiness no dream.
(CANTO IV, i-iv, xi-xviii)
I stood in Venice, on the Bridge of Sighs;
A palace and a prison on each hand :
I saw from out the wave her structures rise
As from the stroke of the enchanter's wand:
A thousand years their cloudy wings expand
Around me, and a dying Glory smiles
O'er the far times, when many a subject land
Look'd to the winged Lion's marble piles,
Where Venice sate in state, throned on her hundred isles !
She looks a sea Cybele, fresh from ocean, Rising with her tiara of proud towers At airy distance, with majestic motion, A ruler of the waters and their powers: And such she was ;-her daughters had their dowers From spoils of nations, and the exhaustless East Pour'd in her lap all gems in sparkling showers. In purple was she robed, and of her feast Monarchs partook, and deem'd their dignity increased.
In Venice Tasso's echoes are no more,
And silent rows the songless gondolier;
Her palaces are crumbling to the shore,
And music meets not always now the ear:
Those days are gone-but Beauty still is here.
States fall, arts fade-but Nature doth not die,
Nor yet forget how Venice once was dear,
The pleasant place of all festivity,
The revel of the earth, the masque of Italy!
But unto us she hath a spell beyond
Her name in story, and her long array
Of mighty shadows, whose dim forms despond
Above the dogeless city's vanish'd sway;
Ours is a trophy which will not decay
With the Rialto; Shylock and the Moor,
And Pierre, can not be swept or worn away—
The keystones of the arch! though all were o'er,
For us repeopled were the solitary shore.
The spouseless Adriatic mourns her lord; And, annual marriage now no more renew'd, The Bucentaur lies rotting unrestored, Neglected garment of her widowhood! St. Mark yet sees his lion where he stood Stand, but in mockery of his wither'd power, Over the proud Place where an Emperor sued, And monarchs gazed and envied in the hour When Venice was a queen with an unequall'd dower.
The Suabian sued, and now the Austrian reignsAn Emperor tramples where an Emperor knelt ; Kingdoms are shrunk to provinces, and chains Clank over sceptred cities; nations melt From power's high pinnacle, when they have felt The sunshine for a while, and downward go Like lauwine loosen'd from the mountain's belt; Oh for one hour of blind old Dandolo ! Th' octogenarian chief, Byzantium's conquering foe.
Before St. Mark still glow his steeds of brass,
Their gilded collars glittering in the sun;
But is not Doria's menace come to pass?
Are they not bridled?-Venice, lost and won,
Her thirteen hundred years of freedom done,
Sinks, like a sea-weed, into whence she rose !
Better be whelm'd beneath the waves, and shun,
Even in destruction's depth, her foreign foes,
From whom submission wrings an infamous repose.
In youth she was all glory, a new Tyre,-
Her very by-word sprung from victory,
The Planter of the Lion," which through fire
And blood she bore o'er subject earth and sea;
Though making many slaves, herself still free,
And Europe's bulwark 'gainst the Ottomite ;
Witness Troy's rival, Candia! Vouch it, ye
Immortal waves that saw Lepanto's fight!
For ye are names no time nor tyranny can blight.
When Athens' armies fell at Syracuse,
And fetter'd thousands bore the yoke of war,
Redemption rose up in the Attic Muse,
Her voice their only ransom from afar :
See! as they chant the tragic hymn, the car
Of the o'ermaster'd victor stops, the reins
Fall from his hands-his idle scimitar
Statues of glass—all shiver'd—the long file
Of her dead Doges are declined to dust;
But where they dwelt, the vast and sumptuous pile
Bespeaks the pageant of their splendid trust;
Their sceptre broken, and their sword in rust,
Have yielded to the stranger: empty halls,
Thin streets, and foreign aspects, such as must
Too oft remind her who and what enthrals,
Have flung a desolate cloud o'er Venice' lovely walls.
Thus, Venice, if no stronger claim were thine,
Were all thy proud historic deeds forgot,
Thy choral memory of the Bard divine,
Thy love of Tasso, should have cut the knot
Which ties thee to thy tyrants; and thy lot
Is shameful to the nations,-most of all,
Albion! to thee: the Ocean queen should not
Abandon Ocean's children; in the fall
Of Venice think of thine, despite thy watery wall
Starts from its belt-he rends his captive's chains, And bids him thank the bard for freedom and his
IINIVERSITY OF GALIPUARIA L'Unani, insL
I loved her from my boyhood-she to me
Was as a fairy city of the heart,
Rising like water-columns from the sea,
Of joy the sojourn, and of wealth the mart;
And Otway, Radcliffe, Schiller, Shakspeare's art,
Had stamp'd her image in me, and even so,
Although I found her thus, we did not part;
Perchance even dearer in her day of woe,
Than when she was a boast, a marvel, and a show.
AN AUGUST EVENING IN ITALY
(CANTO IV, xxvii-xxix)
The Moon is up, and yet it is not night-
Sunset divides the sky with her a sea
Of glory streams along the Alpine height
Of blue Friuli's mountains; Heaven is free
From clouds, but of all colours seems to be,—
Melted to one vast Iris of the West,-
Where the Day joins the past Eternity;
While, on the other hand, meek Dian's crest
Floats through the azure air-an island of the blest!
A single star is at her side, and reigns With her o'er half the lovely heaven; but still Yon sunny sea heaves brightly, and remains Roll'd o'er the peak of the far Rhaetian hill, As Day and Night contending were, until Nature reclaim'd her order :-gently flows The deep-dyed Brenta, where their hues instil The odorous purple of a new-born rose, Which streams upon her stream, and glass'd within it
Fill'd with the face of heaven, which, from afar,
Comes down upon the waters; all its hues,
From the rich sunset to the rising star,
Their magical variety diffuse :