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Prying into the darksome rent;
Nor can it be with good intent:
So thinks that Dame of haughty air,
Who hath a Page her book to hold,
And wears a frontlet edged with gold.
Harsh thoughts with her high mood agree
Who counts among her ancestry1
Earl Pembroke, slain so impiously!

That slender Youth, a scholar pale,
From Oxford come to his native vale,
He also hath his own conceit:

It is, thinks he, the gracious Fairy,
Who loved the Shepherd-lord to meet*



Well may her thoughts be harsh; for she
Numbers among her ancestry

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"In the second volume of Poems published by the author, will be found one, entitled, Song at the Feast of Brougham Castle, upon the Restoration of Lord Clifford the Shepherd to the Estates and Honours of his Ancestors.' To that Poem is annexed an account of this personage, chiefly extracted from Burn's and Nicholson's History of Cumberland and Westmoreland. It gives me pleasure to add these further particulars concerning him from Dr Whitaker, who says, 'he retired to the solitude of Barden, where he seems to have enlarged the tower out of a common keeper's lodge, and where he found a retreat equally favourable to taste, to instruction, and to devotion. The narrow limits of his residence shew that he had learned to despise the pomp of greatness, and that a small train of servants could suffice him, who had lived to the age of thirty a servant himself. I think this nobleman resided here almost entirely when in Yorkshire, for all his charters which I have seen are dated at Barden.

"His early habits, and the want of those artificial measures of time which even shepherds now possess, had given him a turn for observing the motions of the heavenly bodies, and, having purchased such an apparatus as could then be procured, he amused and informed himself by those pursuits, with the aid of the Canons of Bolton, some of whom are said to have been well versed in what was then known of the science.

"I suspect this nobleman to have been sometimes occupied in a more visionary pursuit, and probably in the same company.

"For, from the family evidences, I have met with two MSS. on the

In his wanderings solitary:

Wild notes she in his hearing sang,
A song of Nature's hidden powers;
That whistled like the wind, and rang
Among the rocks and holly bowers.

"Twas said that She all shapes could wear;

And oftentimes before him stood,

Amid the trees of some thick wood,

In semblance of a lady fair;

And taught him signs, and showed him sights,
In Craven's dens, on Cumbrian heights;1
When under cloud of fear he lay,

A shepherd clad in homely grey;

Nor left him at his later day.

And hence, when he, with spear and shield,
Rode full of years to Flodden-field,

1 1827.

on Cumbria's heights;


subject of Alchemy, which, from the character, spelling, &c., may almost certainly be referred to the reign of Henry the Seventh. If these were originally deposited with the MSS. of the Cliffords, it might have been for the use of this nobleman. If they were brought from Bolton at the Dissolution, they must have been the work of those Canons whom he almost exclusively conversed with.

"In these peaceful employments Lord Clifford spent the whole reign of Henry the Seventh, and the first years of his son. But in the year 1513, when almost sixty years old, he was appointed to a principal command over the army which fought at Flodden, and shewed that the military genius of the family had neither been chilled in him by age, nor extinguished by habits of peace.

“He survived the battle of Flodden ten years, and died April 23rd, 1523, aged about 70. I shall endeavour to appropriate to him a tomb, vault, and chantry, in the choir of the church of Bolton, as I should be sorry to believe that he was deposited when dead at a distance from the place which in his life-time he loved so well.

"By his last will he appointed his body to be interred at Shap if he died in Westmoreland; or at Bolton if he died in Yorkshire.'

"With respect to the Canons of Bolton, Dr Whitaker shews from MSS. that not only alchemy but astronomy was a favourite pursuit with them."W. W., 1815.

His eye could see the hidden spring,
And how the current was to flow;

The fatal end of Scotland's King,
And all that hopeless overthrow.

But not in wars did he delight,

This Clifford wished for worthier might;
Nor in broad pomp, or courtly state;
Him his own thoughts did elevate,-
Most happy in the shy recess.
Of Barden's lowly quietness.1

And choice of studious friends had he
Of Bolton's dear fraternity;

Who, standing on this old church tower,
In many a calm propitious hour,
Perused, with him, the starry sky;
Or, in their cells, with him did pry
For other lore,-by keen desire
Urged to close toil with chemic fire;2
In quest belike of transmutations
Rich as the mine's most bright creations.3
But they and their good works are fled,
And all is now disquieted—

And peace is none, for living or dead!

Ah, pensive Scholar, think not so,

But look again at the radiant Doe!
What quiet watch she seems to keep,
Alone, beside that grassy heap!

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Searching the earth with chemic fire.

3 These two lines added in 1836.

Why mention other thoughts unmeet
For vision so composed and sweet?
While stand the people in a ring,
Gazing, doubting, questioning;
Yea, many overcome in spite
Of recollections clear and bright;
Which yet do unto some impart
An undisturbed repose of heart.
And all the assembly own a law
Of orderly respect and awe;
But see-they vanish one by one,
And last, the Doe herself is gone.

Harp! we have been full long beguiled
By vague thoughts, lured by fancies wild;1
To which, with no reluctant strings,
Thou hast attuned thy murmurings;
And now before this Pile we stand
In solitude, and utter peace:

But, Harp! thy murmurs may not cease-
A Spirit, with his angelic wings,
In soft and breeze-like visitings,2

Has touched thee-and a Spirit's hand:
A voice is with us-a command

To chant, in strains of heavenly glory,

A tale of tears, a mortal story!

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Canto Second.

THE Harp in lowliness obeyed;

And first we sang of the green-wood shade
And a solitary Maid;

Beginning, where the song must end,

With her, and with her sylvan Friend;
The Friend who stood before her sight,
Her only unextinguished light;

Her last companion in a dearth

Of love, upon a hopeless earth.

For She it was this Maid, who wrought1 Meekly, with foreboding thought,

In vermeil colours and in gold

An unblest work; which, standing by,

Her Father did with joy behold,—

Exulting in its imagery; 2

A Banner, fashioned to fulfil3
Too perfectly his headstrong will:
For on this Banner had her hand


Embroidered (such her Sire's command) *
The sacred Cross; and figured there
The five dear wounds our Lord did bear;
Full soon to be uplifted high,

And float in rueful company!

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