« PreviousContinue »
DE EP is the lamentation l Not alone
From Sages justly honoured by mankind,
But from the ghostly Tenants of the wind,
Demons and Spirits, many a dolorous groan
Issues for that dominion overthrown:
Proud Tiber grieves, and far-off Ganges, blind
As his own worshippers; and Nile, reclined
Upon his monstrous urn, the farewell moan
Renews.-Through every forest, cave, and den,
Where frauds were hatched of old, hath sorrow past—
Ilangs o'er the Arabian Prophet's native Waste
Where once his airy helpers schemed and planned,
"Mid phantom lakes bemocking thirsty men,
And stalking pillars built of fiery sand.
GaANT, that by this unsparing Hurricane
Green leaves with yellow mixed are torn away,
And goodly fruitage with the mother spray,
'T were madness—wished we, therefore, to detain,
With hands stretched forth in mollified disdain,
The “trumpery” that ascends in bare display,+
Bulls, pardons, relics, cowls black, white, and grey,
topwhirled—and flying o'er the ethereal plain
Fast bound for Limbo Lake.—And yet not choice
But habit rules the unreflecting herd,
And aify bonds are hardest to disown;
Hence, with the spiritual sovereignty transferred
Unto itself, the Crown assumes a voice
Of reckless mastery, hitherto unknown.
th ANSI, ATION OF THE BIBLE.
Brr, to outweigh all harm, the sacred Book,
lu dusty sequestration wrapt too long,
Assumes the accents of our native tongue;
And he who guides the plough, or wields the crook,
With understanding spirit now may look
Upon her records, listen to her song,
And sift her laws—much wondering that the wrong,
which Faith has suffered, Heaven could calmly brook.
Transcendant Boon noblest that earthly King
Ever bestowed to equalize and bless
Under the weight of mortal wretchedness'
But passions spread like plagues, and thousands wild
with bigotry shall tread the Offering
Beneath their feet—detcsted and defiled.
Fon what contend the wise for nothing less Titan that pure Faith dissolve the bonds of Sense; The Soul restored to God by evidence of tilings not seen—drawn forth from their recess, Root there, and not in forms, her holiness; That Faith which to the Patriarchs did dispense sure guidance, ere a ceremonial fence was needful round men thirsting to transgress; That Faith, more perfect still, with which the Lord of all, himself a Spirit, in the youth
Of Christian aspiration, deigned to fill
The temples of their hearts—who, with his word
Informed, were resolute to do his will,
And worship him in spirit and in truth.
“Sweet is the holiness of Youth»—so felt
Time-honoured Chaucer when he framed the lay
By which the Prioress beguiled the way,
And many a Pilgrim's rugged heart did melt.
Hadst thou, loved Bard ' whose spirit often dwelt
In the clear land of vision, but foreseen
King, Child, and Seraph, blended in the mien
Of pious Edward kneeling as he knelt
In meek and simple Infancy, what joy
For universal Christendon had thrilled
Thy heart! what hopes inspired thy genius, skilled
(O great Precursor, genuine morning Star)
The lucid shafts of reason to employ,
Piercing the Papal darkness from afar !
EDWARD SIGNING THE WARRANT FOR THE EXECUTION OF JOAN OF KENT.
The tears of man in various measure gush
From various sources; gently overflow
From blissful transport some—from clefts of woe
Some with ungovernable impulse rush;
And some, coeval with the earliest blush
Of infant passion, scarcely dare to show
Their pearly lustre—coming but to go ;
And some break forth when others' sorrows crush
The sympathising heart. Nor these, nor yet
The noblest drops to admiration known,
To gratitude, to injuries forgiven,
Claim Heaven's regard like waters that have wet
The innocent eyes of youthful monarchs driven
To pen the mandates, nature doth disown.
Melts into silent shades the Youth, discrowned
By unrelenting Death. O People keen
For change, to whom the new looks always green!
They cast, they cast with joy upon the ground
Their Gods of wood and stone; and, at the sound
Of counter-proclamation, now are seen,
(Proud triumph is it for a sullen Queen!)
Lifting them up, the worship to confound
of the Most High. Again do they invoke
The Creature, to the Creature glory give;
Again with frankincense the altars smoke
Like those the Heathen served; and mass is sung;
And prayer, man's rational prerogative,
Runs through blind channels of an unknown tongue.
How fast the Marian death-list is unrolled! Sec Latimer and Ridley' in the might
* . M. Latimer very quietly suffered his keeper to pull oft lais hose, and his other aray, which to looke unto was very simple: *
Of Faith stand coupled for a common slight!
One (like those Prophets whom God sent of old)
Transfigured, from this kindling hath foretold
A torch of inextinguishable light;
The other gains a confidence as bold;
And thus they foil their enemy's despite.
The penal instruments, the shows of crime,
Are glorified while this once-mitred pair
Of saintly Friends, “the Murtherer's chain partake,
Corded, and burning at the social stake:w
Earth never witnessed object more sublime
In constancy, in fellowship more fair!
Outstaetching flame-ward his upbraided hand
(O God of mercy, may no earthly Seat
Of judgment such presumptuous doom repeat!)
Amid the shuddering throng doth Cranmer stand;
Firm as the stake to which with iron band
Ilis frame is tied; firm from the naked feet
To the bare head, the victory complete;
The shrouded Body, to the Soul's command,
Answering with more than Indian fortitude,
Through all her nerves with finer sense endued,
Till breath departs in blissful aspiration:
Then, 'mid the ghastly ruins of the fire,
Behold the unalterable heart entire,
Emblem of faith untouched, miraculous attestation!"
GENERAL VIEW OF THE TROUBLES OF THE REFORMATION.
Aid, glorious Martyrs, from your fields of light
Our mortal ken! Inspire a perfect trust
(While we look round) that Heaven's decrees are just:
Which few can hold committed to a fight
That shews, ev'n on its better side, the might
Of proud Self-will, Rapacity, and Lust,
"Mid clouds enveloped of polemic dust,
Which showers of blood seem rather to incite
Than to allay.—Anathemas are hurled
From both sides; veteran thunders (the brute test
Of Truth) are met by fulminations new—
Tartarian flags are caught at, and unfurled—
Friends strike at Friends—the flying shall pursue—
And Victory sickens, ignorant where to rest!
ENGLISH REFORMERS IN EXILE.
ScArteai Ng, like Birds escaped the Fowler's net, Some seek with timely slight a foreign strand;
!eing stripped into his shrowd, he seemed as comely a person to them that were present, as one should lightly see: and whereas in his clothes bee appeared a withered and crooked sillie (weak) olde man, he now stood bolt upright, as comely a father as one might lightly behold. " " ' " Then they brought a fast;otte, kindled with fire, and laid the same downe at doctor Ridley's feete. To whome Mi. Latimer spake in this manner, Bee of good comfort, master Ridley, and play the man : wee shall this day light such a candle by God's grace in England, as I trust shall never bee put out.’” –Fox's Acts, etc. Similar alterations in the outward figure and deportment of persons brought to like trial were not uncommon. See note to the above passage in Dr Wordsworth's Ecclesiastical Biography, sor an example in a humbie Welsh fishermon. ' For the belief in this fact see the contemporary Ilistorians.
Most happy, re-assembled in a land
ły dauntless Luther freed, could they forget
Their Country's woes. But scarcely have they met,
Partners in faith, and Brothers in distress,
Free to pour forth their common thankfulness,
Ere hope declines; their union is beset
With speculative notions rashly sown,
Whence thickly-sprouting growth of poisonous weed,
Their forms are broken staves; their passions steeds
That master them. How enviably blest
Is he who can, by help of grace, enthrone
The peace of God within his single breast !
IIAil, Virgin Queen! o'er many an envious bar
Triumphant—snatched from many a treacherous wile
All hail, Sage Lady, whom a grateful Isle
Hath blest, respiring from that dismal war
Stilled by thy voice! But quickly from afar
Desiance breathes with more malignant aim ;
And alien storms with home-bred ferments claim
Portentous fellowship. Her silver car
By sleepless prudence ruled, glides slowly on;
Unhurt by violence, from menaced taint
Emerging pure, and seemingly more bright!
For, wheresoe'er she moves, the clouds anon
Disperse; or, under a divine constraint,
Reflect some portion of her glorious light!
METhinks that I could trip o'er heaviest soil,
Light as a buoyant Bark from wave to wave,
Were mine the trusty Staff that Jewel, gave
To youthful Hooken, in familiar style
The gift exalting, and with playful smile:"
For thus equipped, and bearing on his head
The Donor's farewell blessing, can he dread
Tempest, or length of way, or weight of toil?
More sweet than odours caught by him who sails
Near spicy shores of Araby the blest,
A thousand times more exquisitely sweet,
The freight of holy feeling which we meet,
In thoughtful moments, wafted by the gales
From fields where good men walk, or bowers wherein
" - on foot they went, and took Salisbury in their way, purposeo
to see the good Bishop, who made Mr Hooker sit at bis owe tallowhich Mr Hooker boasted of with much joy and gratitude who be saw his mother and friends; and at the Bishop's parting with him.
the Bishop gave him good counsel, and his benediction, but feroes
to give him money; which when the Bishop had considered, to sent a Servant in all haste to call Richard back to him, and st Richard's return, the Bishop said to him, “Richard, I sent for ove back to lend you a horse which hath carried me many a mile, aro. I thank God, with much ease, and presently delivered into his brea a walking-staff, with which he professed he had travelled thrust many parts of Germany , and he said, ‘Richard, I do not give. i-t lend you my horse; be sure you be honest, and bring my horse bark to me at your return this way to Oxford. And I do now give see tes t;roats to bear your charges to Exeter; and here is ten oroats more, which I charge you to deliver to vour mother, and tell her. I -ad her a Bishop's benediction with it, and beg the continuance of her prayers for me. And if you bring my horse back to me. I will give you ten broats more to carry you on foot to the college; and we Red bless you, tood Richard. 's-See W. ivox's Life of RickarIsoaker.
IIoly and heavenly Spirits as they are,
Spotless in life, and eloquent as wise,
with what entire affection do they prize
Their new-born Church! labouring with earnest care
To baffle all that may her strength impair;
That Church—the unperverted Gospel's seat;
In their aflictions a divine retreat;
Source of their liveliest hope, and tenderest prayer!
The Truth exploring with an equal mind,
In doctrine and communion they have sought
Firmly between the two extremes to steer;
łut theirs the wise man's ordinary lot,
To trace right courses for the stubborn blind,
And prophesy to ears that will not hear.
MeN, who have ceased to reverence, soon defy
Their Forefathers; lo! Sects are formed—and split
With morbid restlessness, the ecstatic fit
Spreads wide; though special mysteries multiply,
The Saints must govern, is their common cry;
And so they labour, deeming Iloly Writ
Distraced by aught that seems content to sit
Leneath the roof of settled Modesty.
The Romanist exults; fresh hope he draws
From the confusion—craftily incites
The overweening—personates the mad :
To heap disgust upon the worthier Cause:
Totters the Throne; the new-born Church is sad,
For every wave against her peace unites.
Fear hath a hundred eyes that all agree
To plague her beating heart; and there is one
Nor idlest that') which holds communion
With things that were not, yet were meant to be.
Aghast within its toioomy cavity
That eye (which sees as if fulfilled and done
Crimes that might stop the motion of the sun)
Beholds the horrible catastrophe
Of an assembled Senate unredeemed
From subterraneous Treason's darkling power:
Merciless act of sorrow infinite!
worse than the product of that dismal night,
When tushing, copious as a thunder-slower,
The blood of Huguenots through Paris streamed.
Tms Virgin Mountain *, wearing like a Queen
A brilliant crown of everlasting Snow,
Shed- ruin from her sides; and men below
Wonder that aught of aspect so serene
• A common device in religious and political conflicts. – Sce *** * r * in support of this instance. • The Jung-frau.
* * * ~ *--— Can link with desolation. Smooth and green, And seeming, at a little distance, slow, The waters of the Rhine; but on they go Fretting and whitening, keener and more keen, Till madness seizes on the whole wide Flood, Turned to a fearful Thing whose nostrils breathe Blasts of tempestuous smoke—wherewith he tries To hide himself, but only magnifies; And doth in more conspicuous torment writhe, Deafening the region in his ireful mood.
TROUBLES OF CHARLES THE FIRST.
Such is the contrast, which, where'er we move,
To the mind's eye Religion doth present;
Now with her own deep quietness content;
Then, like the mountain, thundering from above
Against the ancient Pine-trees of the grove
And the Land's humblest comforts. Now her mood
Recals the transformation of the flood,
Whose rage the gentle skies in vain reprove,
Earth cannot check. O terrible excess
Of headstrong will! Can this be Piety
No-some fierce Maniac hath usurped her name;
And scourges England struggling to be free:
Iler peace destroyed! her hopes a wilderness :
Her blessings cursed—her glory turned to shame!
Prejudged by foes determined not to spare,
An old weak Man for vengeance thrown aside,
Laud « in the painful art of dying a tried,
(Like a poor Bird entangled in a Snare
Whose heart still slutters, though his wings forbear
To stir in useless struggle) hath relied
On hope that conscious Innocence supplied,
And in his prison breathes celestial air.
Why tarries then thy Chariott wherefore stay,
O Death! the ensanguined yet triumphant wheels,
Which thou prepar'st, full often to convey,
(What time a State with madding faction reels)
The Saint or Patriot to the world that heals
All wounds, all perturbations doth allay? *
" In this age a word cannot be said in praise of Laud, or even in compassion for his fate, without incurring a charge of bigotry; but scarless of such imputation, I concur with Hume, - that it is sufticient for his vindication to observe, that his errors were the most excusable of all thos which prevailed during that zealous period.A key to the right understanding of those parts of his conduct that brought the most odium upon him in his own time, may be found in the following passage of his speech before the bar of the House of Peers. - Ever since I came in place, I have laboured nothing more, than that the external publick worship of God, so much slighted in divers parts of this kingdom, might be preserved, and that with as much decency and uniformity as might be. For I evidently saw, that the publick neglect of God's service in the outward face of it, and the nasty lying of many places dedicated to that service, had almost cast a damp upon the true and intrard worship of God, which, white we live in the body, needs external helps, and all little enough to keep it in any rigour."
HARP 1 couldst thou venture, on thy boldest string,
The faintest note to echo which the blast
Caught from the hand of Moses as it past
O'er Sinai's top, or from the Shepherd King,
Early awake, by Siloa's brook, to sing
Of dread Jehovah ; then, should wood and waste
Hear also of that name, and mercy cast
Off to the mountains, like a covering
Of which the Lord was weary. Weep, oh! weep,
Weep with the good, beholding King and Priest
Despised by that stern God to whom they raise
Their suppliant hands; but holy is the feast
He keepeth; like the firmament his ways,
His statutes like the chambers of the deep. .
FROM THE RESTORATION TO THE PRESENT TiMEs.
I saw the figure of a lovely Maid
Seated alone beneath a darksome Tree,
Whose fondly overhanging canopy
Set off her brightness with a pleasing shade.
Substance she seemed (and that my heart betrayed,
For she was one I loved exceedingly);
But while I gazed in tender reverie
(Or was it sleep that with my Fancy played 1)
The bright corporeal presence, form, and face,
Remaining still distinct, grew thin and rare,
Like sunny mist; at length the golden hair,
Shape, limbs, and heavenly features, keeping pace
Each, with the other, in a lingering race
Of dissolution, melted into air.
Last night, without a voice, this Vision spake
Fear to my Spirit—passion that might seem
Wholly dissevered from our present theme;
Yet do I love my Country—and partake
Of kindred agitations for her sake;
She visits oftentimes my midnight dream;
Her glory meets me with the earliest beam
Of light, which tells that morning is awake.
If aught impair her beauty or destroy,
Or but forebode destruction, I deplore
With filial love the sad vicissitude;
If she hath fallen and righteous Heaven restore
The prostrate, then my spring-time is renewed,
And sorrow bartered for exceeding joy.
Who comes with rapture greeted, and caress'd
With frantic love—his kingdom to regain:
Him Virtue's Nurse, Adversity, in vain
Received, and fostered in her iron breast:
For all she taught of hardiest and of best,
Or would have taught, by discipline of pain
And long privation, now dissolves amain,
Or is remembered only to give rest
To wantonness.-Away, Circean revels!
Already stands our Country on the brink
Of bigotrage, that all distinction levels
Of truth and falsehood, swallowing the good name,
And, with that draught, the life-blood: misery, sham.
By Poets loathed; from which Historians shrink'
Yet Truth is keenly sought for, and the wind
Charged with rich words poured out in Though:
Whether the Church inspire that eloquence,
Or a Platonic Piety contined
To the sole temple of the inward mind ;
And One there is who builds immortal lays,
Though doomed to tread in solitary ways,
Darkness before, and danger's voice behind!
Yet not alone, nor helpless to repel
Sad thoughts; for from above the starry sphere
Come secrets, whispered nightly to his ear;
And the pure spirit of celestial light
Shines through his soul—" that he may see and tell
Of things invisible to mortal sight.”—
Non shall the eternal roll of praise reject
Those Unconforming; whom one rigorous day
Drives from their Cures, a voluntary prey
To poverty and grief, and disrespect,
And some to want—as if by tempest wrecked
On a wild coast; how destitute did They
Feel not that Conscience never can betray,
That peace of mind is Virtue's sure effect.
Their Altars they forego, their homes they quit.
Fields which they love, and paths they daily trod,
And cast the future upon Providence;
As men the dictate of whose inward sense
Outweighs the world; whom self-deceiving wit
Lures not from what they deem the cause of God.
PERSECUTION OF THE SCOTTISH COvt. Nav-
When Alpine Wales threw forth a suppliant cry,
The majesty of England interposed
And the sword stopped; the bleeding wounds were closed
And Faith preserved her ancient purity.
How little boots that precedent of good,
Scorned or forgotten, Thou canst testify,
For England's shame, O Sister Realm from wood.
Mountain, and moor, and crowded street, where ite
The headless martyrs of the Covenant,
Slain by compatriot-protestants that draw
From councils senseless as intolerant
Their warrant. Bodies fall by wild sword-inw:
But who would force the Soul, tilts with a straw
Against a Champion cased in adamant.
Acquittal, OF THE Bishops.
A voice, from long-expecting thousands sent,
Shatters the air and troubles tower and spire–
For Justice hath absolved the Innocent,
And Tyranny is balked of her desire:
Up, down, the busy Thames—rapid as fire
Coursing a train of gunpowder—it went,
And transport finds in every street a vent,
Till the whole City rings like one vast quire.
The Fathers urge the People to be still
With outstretched hands and earnest speech—in vain'
Yea, many, haply wont to entertain
Small reverence for the Mitre's offices,
And to Religion's self no friendly will,
A Prelate's blessing ask on bended knees.
Calw as an under current—strong to draw
Millious of waves into itself, and run,
From sea to sea, impervious to the sun
And ploughing storm—the spirit of Nassau
(By constant impulse of religious awe
Swayed, and thereby enabled to contend
With the wide world's commotions) from its end
Swerves not—diverted by a casual law.
Had mortal action e'er a nobler scope?
The Hero comes to liberate, not defy ;
And, while he marches on with righteous hope,
Conqueror beloved expected anxiously
The vacillating Bondman of the Pope,
Shrinks from the verdict of his steadfast eye.
OBLIGATIONS OF CIVIL TO RELIGIOUS LlBERTY.
Uxas a torul Country, if thou eer forget
The sons who for thy civil rights have bled !
How, like a Roman, Sidney bowed his head,
And Russel's milder blood the scaffold wet;
But These had fallen for profitless regret
11ad not thy holy Church her Champions bred;
And claims from other worlds inspirited
The Star of Liberty to rise. Nor yet
(Grave this within thy heart') if spiritual things
He lost, through apathy, or scorn, or fear,
Shalt thou thy humbler franchises support,
However hardly won or justly dear;
what came from Heaven to Heaven by nature clings,
And, if dissevered thence, its course is short.
Down a swift Stream, thus far, a bold design have we pursued, with livelier stir of heart Than his who sees, borne forward by the Rhine, The living landscapes greet him, and depart; sees spires fast sinking–up again to start And strives the towers to number, that recline o “r the dark steeps, or on the horizon line Striding with shattered crests the eye athwart;so have we hurried on with troubled pleasure :
Henceforth, as on the bosom of a stream
That slackens, and spreads wide a watery gleam,
We, nothing loth a lingering course to measure,
May gather up our thoughts, and mark at leisure
Features that else had vanished like a dream.
Thear are no colours in the fairest sky
So fair as these. The feather whence the pen
Was shaped that traced the lives of these good men
Dropped from an Angel's wing. With moistened eye
We read of Faith and purest Charity
In Statesman, Priest, and humble Citizen.
0 could we copy their mild virtues, then
What joy to live, what blessedness to die!
Methinks their very names shine still and bright;
Apart, like glow-worms on a summer night;
Or lonely tapers when from far they fling
A guiding ray; or seen, like stars on high,
Satellites burning in a lucid ring
Around meek Walton's heavenly memory.
A sudden conflict rises from the swell
Of a proud slavery met by tenets strained !
In Liberty's behalf. Fears, true or feigned, -
Spread through all ranks; and lo! the Sentinel
Who loudest rang his pulpit larum bell,
Stands at the Bar—absolved by female eyes,
Mingling their Light with graver flatteries,
Lavished on Him that England may rebel
Against her ancient virtue. High and Low, |
Watch-words of Party, on all tongues are rife; t
As if a Church, though sprung from heaven, must owe
To opposites and fierce extremes her life,
Not to the golden mean, and quiet flow
Of truths that soften hatred, temper strife.
As star that shines dependent upon star
Is to the sky while we look up in love;
As to the deep fair ships which though they move
Seem fixed, to eyes that watch them from afar :
As to the sandy desert fountains are,
With palm groves shaded at wide intervals,
Whose fruit around the sun-burnt Native falls
Of roving tired or desultory war;
Such to this British Isle her Christian Fanes,
Each linked to each for kindred services;
Her Spires, her Steeple-towers with glittering vane".
Far-kenned, her Chapels lurking among trees,
Where a few villagers on bended knees
Find solace which a busy world disdains.