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FROM THE INTRODUCTION OF CHRISTIANITY INTO BRITAIN, TO THE CONSUMMMATION OF THE PAPAL DOMINION.
"A verse may catch a wandering Soul, that flies
I, WHO accompanied with faithful pace
Now seek upon the heights of Time the source
Full oft the unworthy brow of lawless force;
If there be prophets on whose spirits rest
And with dread signs the nascent Stream invest?
Or some of humbler name, to these wild shores Storm-driven, who, having seen the cup of woe Pass from their Master, sojourned here to guard The precious Current they had taught to flow?
* See Note.
TREPIDATION OF THE DRUIDS.
SCREAMS round the Arch-druid's brow the sea
As Menai's foam; and toward the mystic ring
That, in the lapse of ages, hath crept o'er
Haughty the Bard: can these meek doctrines blight
A way first opened; and, with Roman chains,
they spread, the weak, the suffer
Receive the faith, and in the hope abide.
MERCY and Love have met thee on thy road,
*This water-fowl was, among the Druids, an emblem of those traditions connected with the deluge that made an important part of their mysteries. The Cormorant was a bird of bad
And food cut off by sacerdotal ire,
From every sympathy that Man bestowed!
As to the one sole fount whence wisdom flowed,
DARKNESS surrounds us; seeking, we are lost
nor monuments of eldest name,
Nor Taliesin's unforgotten lays,
Nor characters of Greek or Roman fame,
unquestionable Source have led;
Enough, if eyes, that sought the fountain-head In vain, upon the growing Rill may gaze.
LAMENT! for Diocletian's fiery sword
Works busy as the lightning; but instinct
Some pierced to the heart through the ineffectual
Of sacred home;
with pomp are others gored,
And dreadful respite. Thus was Alban tried, England's first Martyr, whom no threats could shake;
Self-offered victim, for his friend he died,
And for the faith; nor shall his name forsake That Hill, whose flowery platform seems to rise By Nature decked for holiest sacrifice.*
As, when a storm hath ceased, the birds regain
Their nests, or chant a gratulating hymn