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They ceas'd: when on the tuneful stage
Advanc'd a bard, of aspect sage;
His silver tresses, thin besprent,
To age a graceful reverence lent;
His beard, all white as spangles frore
That clothe Plinlimmon's forests hoar,
Down to his harp descending flow'd;
With Time's faint rose his features glow'd;
His eyes diffus'd a soften'd fire,
And thus he wak'd the warbling wire.

“ Listen, Henry, to my read! “ Not from fairy realms I lead “ Bright-rob'd Tradition, to relate In forged colours Arthur's fate; “ Though much of old romantic lore On the high theme I keep in store: “ But boastful Fiction should be dumb, • Where Truth the strain might best become. “ If thine ear may still be won “ With songs of Uther's glorious son, “ Henry, I a tale unfold, “ Never yet in rhyme enroll’d, “ Nor sung nor harp'd in hall or bower ; “ Which in my youth's full early flower, 6 A minstrel, sprung of Cornish line, “ Who spoke of kings from old Locrine, “ Taught me to chant, one vernal dawn, “ Deep in a cliff-encircled lawn, “ What time the glistening vapours fled “ From cloud-envelop'd Clyder's head ;

“ And on its sides the torrents gray
“ Shone to the morning's orient ray,

“When Arthur bow'd his haughty crest, “ No princess, veil'd in azure vest, “ Snatch'd him, by Merlin's potent spell, “ In groves of golden bliss to dwell; “ Where, crown'd with wreaths of misletoe, “ Slaughter'd kings in glory go: “ But when he fell, with winged speed, “ His champions, on a milk-white steed, “ From the battle's hurricane, “ Bore him to Joseph's towered fane, “ In the fair vale of Avalon : “ There, with chanted orison, “ And the long blaze of tapers clear, “ The stoled fathers met the bier ; “ Through the dim aisles, in order dread “ Of martial woe, the chief they led, “ And deep entomb'd in holy ground, “ Before the altar's solemn bound. “ Around no dusky banners wave, “ No mouldering trophies mark the grave: . “ Away the ruthless Dane has torn “ Each trace that Time's slow touch had worn; “ And long, o'er the neglected stone, • Oblivion's veil its shade has thrown: “ The faded tomb, with honour due, “ 'Tis thine, O Henry, to renew! “ Thither, when Conquest has restor'd “ Yon recreant isle, and sheath'd the sword,

“ When peace with palm has crown'd thy brows,
“ Haste thee, to pay thy pilgrim vows.
« There, observant of my lore,
“ The pavement's hallow'd depth explore;
“ And thrice a fathom underneath
“ Dive into the vaults of death.
“ There shall thine eye, with wild amaze,
« On his gigantic stature gaze;
“ There shalt thou find the monarch laid,
“ All in warrior-weeds array'd;
“ Wearing in death his helmet-crown,
“ And weapons huge of old renown.
“ Martial prince, 'tis thine to save
“ From dark oblivion Arthur's grave!
“ So may thy ships securely stem
“ The western, frith : thy diadem
“ Shine victorious in the van,
“ Nor heed the slings of Ulster's clan :
“ Thy Norman pikemen win their way
“ Up the dun rocks of Harald's bay:
“ And from the steeps of rough Kildare
“ Thy prancing hoofs the falcon scare:
“ So may thy bow's unerring yew
“ Its shafts in Roderick's heart imbrue.”

Amid the pealing symphony
The spiced goblets mantled high;
With passions new the song impress'd
The listening king's impatient breast:
Flash the keen lightnings from his eyes ;
He scorns awhile his bold emprise ;

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E'en now he seems, with eager pace,
The consecrated floor to trace,
And ope, from its tremendous gloom,
The treasure of the wondrous tomb:
E’en now he burns in thought to rear,
From its dark bed, the ponderous spear,
Rough with the gore of Pictish kings:
E'en now fond hope his fancy wings,
To poise the monarch’s massy blade,
Of magic-temper'd metal made;
And drag to day the dinted shield
That felt the storm of Camlan's field.
O'er the sepulchre profound
E'en now, with arching sculpture crown'd,..
He plans the chantry's choral shrine,
The daily dirge, and rites divine.


BORN 1721.-DIED 1791.

Thomas BlackLOCK was born at Annan, in Dumfries-shire, where his father was a bricklayer. Before he was six months old, he was totally deprived of sight by the small-pox. From an early age he discovered a fondness for listening to books, especially to those in poetry;, and by the kindness of his friends and relations, he acquired a slight acquaintance with the Latin tongue, and with some of the popular English classics. He began also, when very young, to compose verses; and some of these having been shewn to Dr. Stevenson, an eminent physician of the Scottish capital, the doctor benevolently took him to Edinburgh, where Blacklock improved his knowledge of Latin, and completed his studies at the university. The publication of his poems excited a general interest in his favour, and Professor Spence, of Oxford, having prefixed to them an account of his life and character, a second edition of them was liberally encouraged in London. In 1759, he was licensed as a preacher of the Scottish church. He soon afterwards married a Miss Johnston, a very worthy, but homely woman; whose beauty, however, he was accustomed to extol with an ecstasy that made his friends regard his blindness as, in one in

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