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And magnify thy name, Almighty God!

But Man is thy most awful instrument,
In working out a pure intent; 1

Thou cloth'st the wicked in their dazzling mail,
And for thy righteous purpose 2 they prevail;
Thine arm from peril guards the coasts
Of them who in thy laws delight:
Thy presence turns the scale of doubtful fight,
Tremendous God of battles, Lord of Hosts! *


Forbear :-to Thee—

Father and Judge of all, with fervent tongue
But in a gentler strain 3

Of contemplation, by no sense of wrong
(Too quick and keen) incited to disdain
Of pity pleading from the heart in vain-4

Just God of christianised Humanity

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Shall praises be poured forth, and thanks ascend,5

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With fervent thoughts, but in a gentler strain

4 The above six lines were added in 1837.


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Compare the Psalter, passim, e.g. xlvi., lxvi., cvi., and Shakespeare, Henry V. act IV. scene i."If these men have defeated the law and outrun native punishment, though they can outstrip men, they have no wings to fly from God: war is his beadle, war is his vengeance."-ED.

That thou hast brought our warfare to an end,
And that we need no second1 victory!

Blest, above measure blest,

If on thy love our Land her hopes shall rest,
And all the Nations labour to fulfil


Thy law, and live henceforth in peace, in pure good will. 2

In an early MS. copy of this Ode, it concludes thus, after the line "And that we need no further victory!"

Ha! what a ghastly sight for man to see;
And to the heavenly saints in peace who dwell,
For a brief moment, terrible;

But to thy sovereign penetration fair,
Before whom all things are that were,

All judgments that have been, or e'er shall be,
Links in the chain of thy tranquillity!
Along the bosom of this favoured nation,
Breathe thou, this day, a vital undulation!
Let all who do this land inherit

Be conscious of Thy moving spirit!

Oh, 'tis a goodly Ordinance,—the sight,

Though sprung from bleeding war, is one of pure delight;
Bless thou the hour, or ere the hour arrive,

When a whole people shall kneel down in prayer,

And, at one moment, in one spirit, strive
With lip and heart to tell their gratitude
For thy protecting care,

Their solemn joy-praising the Eternal Lord
For tyranny subdued,

And for the sway of equity renewed,

For liberty confirmed, and peace restored!





2 The last four lines were added in 1845, but another version of the last two lines was written by Wordsworth in MS. on his edition of 1837

And all the nations labouring to fulfil

Thy law shall live henceforth in peace and brotherly goodwill.



Composed 1816.-Published 1816

[Composed immediately after the Thanksgiving Ode, to which it may be considered as a second part.-I. F.]

One of the "Epitaphs and Elegiac Pieces."—Ed.


"REST, rest, perturbèd Earth! †

O rest, thou doleful Mother of Mankind!"

A Spirit sang in tones more plaintive than the wind: "From regions where no evil thing has birth

I come thy stains to wash away,

Thy cherished fetters to unbind,

And open 1 thy sad eyes upon a milder day.

The Heavens are thronged with martyrs that have risen

From out thy noisome prison;

The penal caverns groan

With tens of thousands rent from off the tree

Of hopeful life,‡-by battle's whirlwind blown
Into the deserts of Eternity.

Unpitied havoc ! Victims unlamented!

But not on high, where madness is resented,
And murder causes some sad tears to flow,
Though, from the widely-sweeping blow,

The choirs of Angels spread, triumphantly augmented.




1 1837.

To open



*The title which this Invocation to the Earth bore when first published in the Thanksgiving Ode, with other short pieces chiefly referring to recent public events, in 1816, was "Elegiac Verses, February 1816.""-ED. + Compare Hamlet, act 1. scene v., l. 183

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"The loss of human life, on the French side alone, in the wars consequent on the Revolution, was estimated (in 1815) to have been 4,556,000." (Blair's Chronological Tables, p. 724.)-ED.


"False Parent of Mankind!

Obdurate, proud, and blind,

I sprinkle thee with soft celestial dews,
Thy lost, maternal heart to re-infuse !

Scattering this far-fetched moisture from my wings,
Upon the act a blessing I implore,

Of which the rivers in their secret springs,

The rivers stained so oft with human gore,



Are conscious;—may the like return no more!
May Discord for a Seraph's care

Shall be attended with a bolder prayer

May she, who once disturbed the seats of bliss
These mortal spheres above,


Be chained for ever to the black abyss !
And thou, O rescued Earth, by peace and love,
And merciful desires, thy sanctity approve!"

The Spirit ended his mysterious rite,
And the pure vision closed in darkness infinite.


Composed January 1816.-Published 1816

Carmina possumus

Donare, et pretium dicere muneri.
Non incisa notis marmora publicis,
Per quæ spiritus et vita redit bonis
Post mortem ducibus


Laudes, quam

clarius indicant
Pierides; neque,

HOR. Car. 8, lib. 4.†

Si chartæ sileant quod bene feceris,

Mercedem tuleris.

*The title of this Ode, when first published along with the Thanksgiving Ode, was Ode, composed in January 1816. In 1845 the date 1814 was given; but there seems no reason to distrust the earlier one.-ED.

These lines were first inserted in the edition of 1827.—ED.

This was one of the "Poems of the Imagination," in 1820. In 1827 it was placed among the "Sonnets dedicated to Liberty."-ED.


WHEN the soft hand of sleep had closed the latch
On the tired household of corporeal sense,
And Fancy, keeping unreluctant watch,
Was free her choicest favours to dispense;1
I saw, in wondrous pérspective displayed,
A landscape more august than happiest skill 2
Of pencil ever clothed with light and shade;
An intermingled pomp of vale and hill,
City, and naval stream, suburban grove,”
And stately forest where the wild deer rove;
Nor wanted lurking hamlet, dusky towns,
And scattered rural farms of aspect bright;
And, here and there, between the pastoral downs,
The azure sea upswelled upon the sight.
Fair prospect, such as Britain only shows!
But not a living creature could be seen
Through its wide circuit, that, in deep repose,
And, even to sadness, lonely and serene,
Lay hushed; till—through a portal in the sky
Brighter than brightest loop-hole, in a storm,
Opening before the sun's triumphant eye—

1 1827.

And Fancy in her airy bower kept watch,

Free to exert some kindly influence;





I saw but little boots it that my verse

A shadowy visitation should rehearse,

For to our Shores such glory hath been brought,

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Tower, town, and city—and suburban grove,




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