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Stand near the worthiest of Antiquity)
Fashioned his life; and many a long discourse,
With like persuasion honored, we maintained:
He, on his part, accoutred for the worst.
He perished fighting, in supreme command,
Upon the borders of the unhappy Loire,
For liberty, against deluded men,

His fellow-countrymen ; and yet most blessed
In this, that he the fate of later times

Lived not to see, nor what we now behold,
Who have as ardent hearts as he had then.

Along that very Loire, with festal mirth Resounding at all hours, and innocent yet Of civil slaughter, was our frequent walk; Or in wide forests of continuous shade, Lofty and over-arched, with open space Beneath the trees, clear footing many a mile, A solemn region. Oft amid those haunts, From earnest dialogues I slipped in thought, And let remembrance steal to other times, When o'er those interwoven roots, moss-clad, And smooth as marble or a waveless sea, Some Hermit, from his cell forth strayed, might


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In sylvan meditation undisturbed;

As on the pavement of a Gothic church

Walks a lone Monk, when service hath expired,
But if e'er was heard-
a devious traveller,

In peace and silence.
Heard though unseen

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Retiring or approaching from afar

With speed, and echoes loud of trampling hoofs
From the hard floor reverberated, then
It was Angelica thundering through the woods
Upon her palfrey, or that gentle maid
Erminia, fugitive as fair as she.

Sometimes methought I saw a pair of knights
Joust underneath the trees, that as in storm
Rocked high above their heads; anon, the din
Of boisterous merriment, and music's roar,
In sudden proclamation, burst from haunt
Of Satyrs in some viewless glade, with dance
Rejoicing o'er a female in the midst,
A mortal beauty, their unhappy thrall.
The width of those huge forests, unto me
A novel scene, did often in this way
Master my fancy while I wandered on
With that revered companion. And sometimes, —
When to a convent in a meadow green,
By a brook-side, we came, a roofless pile,
And not by reverential touch of Time
Dismantled, but by violence abrupt,
In spite of those heart-bracing colloquies,
In spite of real fervor, and of that

Less genuine and wrought up within myself, -
I could not but bewail a wrong so harsh,
And for the Matin-bell to sound no more
Grieved, and the twilight taper, and the cross
High on the topmost pinnacle, a sign
(How welcome to the weary traveller's eyes!)

Of hospitality and peaceful rest.

And when the partner of those varied walks
Pointed upon occasion to the site

Of Romorentin, home of ancient kings,
To the imperial edifice of Blois,

Or to that rural castle, name now slipped
From my remembrance, where a lady lodged,
By the first Francis wooed, and bound to him
In chains of mutual passion, from the tower,
As a tradition of the country tells,
Practised to commune with her royal knight
By cressets and love-beacons, intercourse
'Twixt her high-seated residence and his
Far off at Chambord on the plain beneath;
Even here, though less than with the peaceful

Religious, 'mid those frequent monuments

Of Kings, their vices and their better deeds,
Imagination, potent to inflame

At times with virtuous wrath and noble scorn,
Did also often mitigate the force

Of civic prejudice, the bigotry,

So call it, of a youthful patriot's mind;

And on these spots with many gleams I looked
Of chivalrous delight. Yet not the less,
Hatred of absolute rule, where will of one
Is law for all, and of that barren pride
In them who, by immunities unjust,
Between the sovereign and the people stand,
His helper and not theirs, laid stronger hold

Daily upon me, mixed with pity too

And love; for where hope is, there love will be For the abject multitude. And when we chanced One day to meet a hunger-bitten girl,

Who crept along fitting her languid gait

Unto a heifer's motion, by a cord

Tied to her arm, and picking thus from the lane
Its sustenance, while the girl with pallid hands
Was busy knitting in a heartless mood

Of solitude, and at the sight my friend
In agitation said, ""T is against that
That we are fighting," I with him believed
That a benignant spirit was abroad

Which might not be withstood, that poverty
Abject as this would in a little time

Be found no more, that we should see the earth
Unthwarted in her wish to recompense

The meek, the lowly, patient child of toil,
All institutes for ever blotted out
That legalized exclusion, empty pomp
Abolished, sensual state and cruel power,
Whether by edict of the one or few;
And finally, as sum and crown of all,
Should see the people having a strong hand
In framing their own laws; whence better days
To all mankind. But, these things set apart,
Was not this single confidence enough

To animate the mind that ever turned
A thought to human welfare? that henceforth
Captivity by mandate without law

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Should cease; and open accusation lead
To sentence in the hearing of the world,
And open punishment, if not the air
Be free to breathe in, and the heart of man
Dread nothing. From this height I shall not stoop
To humbler matter that detained us oft
In thought or conversation, public acts,
And public persons, and emotions wrought
Within the breast, as ever-varying winds
Of record or report swept over us;
But I might here, instead, repeat a tale,*
Told by my Patriot friend, of sad events,
That prove to what low depth had struck the roots,
How widely spread the boughs, of that old tree,
Which, as a deadly mischief, and a foul
And black dishonor, France was weary of.

O happy time of youthful lovers! (thus
The story might begin). O balmy time,
In which a love-knot, on a lady's brow,
Is fairer than the fairest star in Heaven!
So might and with that prelude did begin
The record; and, in faithful verse, was given
The doleful sequel.

But our little bark
On a strong river boldly hath been launched;
And from the driving current should we turn
To loiter wilfully within a creek,

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