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Th' Avenger had borne off the Child, his steed That though ungentle and unfeminine touch, First drew his breath before Igerna's tent,

Exquisite, in mid-air his rugged mace With her soft face npon the dust she lay,

Suspended; but fierce Horsa on the Boy, Struggling to hush her own lament, in hope

Just on his neck let fall the fatal spikes, From the fierce din of war might haply come And him the affrighted steeds bore off. But then Some sound of cheer and comfort; but when full Began a combat over which Death seem'd It rush'd upon her hearing, loud she shriek'd To hover, as of one assured, in hope To drown the very noise she strove to hear.

or both for victims at his godless shrine. But when her Child's voice sounded, she look'd up

Then wounded and bareheaded Malwyn urged With a cold glance which said, “That sound I've

On Hengist his remaster'd steeds the scythe, heard

Rased his majestic war-horse. But aside Every sad moment since he went, my soul

He sprung, and Nank'd the chariot; long the strife, Is sick of self-deception, will not trust

Long though unequal, like a serpents tongue Again, to be again beguiled.” She saw,

Vibrated Malwyn's battle axe, twice bow'd And forced a sportive look to her sad face

The Monarch to his saddle-bow.—'T was fame To lure him to her snowy arms. While he

More splendid, thus with Hengist to have fought Back to the battle, as a scene of joy,

Than to have conquer'd hosts of meaner men. Look'd waywardly, she clasp'd him to her breast

Heavy at length and fatal glided in With a fond anger, and both smiled and wept.

The wily Chief's eluding falchion stroke; A moment Samor gazed on her, and—“ All,

Fast few the steeds, the Master lay behind, All have their hopes, and all those hopes fulfillid,

Dragging with his face downward. still the reins But I, this side the grave, no hope for me

Cling in his cold and failing fingers, trail And no fulfilment.”-Fast as sight could track

His neck and spread locks in the humid dust, The battle felt him in its thousand folds.

His sharp arms character the yielding sand. But the undistinguish'd and chance-mingled fight

On fly they, him at length deserting mute Brook'd not young Malwyn; he his virgin shield

And gasping on the bank, their hot hoofs plunge Disdain'd mean blood should stain: where Hengist Rove on. It chanced erewhile that thither came

Into the limpid Dune, and to the wond
fought

To freshen with the water his spent steeds,
He swept, the Saxon saw the eagle plume
And turn'd aloof, and on some other head

And lave the clogging carnage from his wheels,

Caswallon, he his huge and weary length
Discharged the blow for him uprear'd. But he
Next plunged where lorsa's star-like weapon shone, Cast for brief rest upon the bank; a groan

Came from a helmless head that in the grass
Disastrous, shaking ruin, yet even that
Glanced aside from the eagle plume. The Boy

Lay undistinguish'd. “'Tis a Briton," cried Utter'd a wrathful disappointed cry,

Caswallon, “cast the carrion off to feed And 'gainst Argantyr drove his car. He paused,

The dogs and kites, that thus irreverent breaks And cried aloud, “ The eagle plume," and plunged

Upon its monarch's rest." Even as a flower, Elsewhere for victims. That Pendragon heard,

Poppy or hyacinth, on its broken siem, Even as he toil'd the third time to make way

Languidly raises its encumber'd head,

And turns it to the genıle evening sun,
Amid the circling slain to the Anglian crest,
And taunting thus,—“ Methinks the eagle plume

So seebly rose, so turnd that Poy his face
Hath some few feathers of the dove, so soft

Unto the well-known voice; twire maised his head, Spreads its peace-breathing influence.” But the Youth, Even at that moment from the dark woud rame,

Twire it fell back in mwerless heaviness; “Ha, Father! thus, thus gnilest thou to a faint And infamous security thy son ?

Lured by their partners in the stall and field, Thus enviest thou a noble foe? thus guardst

His chariot coursers, heavily behind With a base privilege from peril? Off.

Dragging the vacant car, loose hung the reins, Coward distinction! off, faint-hearted sign !"

And mournfulness, and dull disorder slack'd And helm and plume away he rent, his hair

The spirit of their cread. Caswallon knew, Curl'd down his shoulders, radiant on his brow

And he leap d up; the Roy his bloodless lips

With a long effort opened. Was it well, The beauty of his anger shone, the pride

Father, at this my first. my earliest fight Of winning this a right to glorions death.

To mock me with a bailled hope of fame!
Then set he forth on his hold quest again

Well was it to defraud me of my right
Impatient. Him Prince Vortimer beheld
Sweeping between himself and Horsa, met

To noble death ?”—and speaking thus he died. Their sea-shore light by Thanel to renew;

Above him his con vulsed unconscious hands But something of his sister in his face,

Horribly with his mongh black beard at play, Something of Lilian harden'd and grown fierce, Wrenching and twisting off the moted locks, As that ungodly creed were true, and she

Yet senseless of the pain, the Father lean d. Familiar to rude deeds of blood had come

Then leap'd he up, with col and jealous rare One of Valhalla's airy sisters bence

Within his chariot placed the lifeless corpse, To summon bim she loved. That gleam of her, And with his lash fierce rent the half-unynked

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Half-harness'd steeds; disorderly and swift

Stood from his wounded steed dismounted, stood As with their master's ire instinct they flew,

Amid an area of dead men, bimself Making a wide road through the huriling fray. About to die, none daring an assault, Briton or Saxon, friend or foe alike,

He powerless of assailing. But the crown Kinsman or stranger, one wide enmity

That on the flag-staff gleam'd, he wrench'd away, 'Gainst general humankind, one infinite

And on his crest with calm solicitude And undistinguishing lust of carnage fillid

Placed it, then planting 'mid the high-heap'd slain The Master and the Horses; so wild groans

The standard, to o'ercanopy his sleep,
Follow'd where'er he moved, 't was all to him, As one upon his nightly couch of down
So slaughter dripp'd and reek'd from the choked Composes quietly his weary head,
scythes.

So royally he laid him down to die.-
The low lay mow'd like the spring grass, down swept
On th' eminent, like lightning on the oaks,

But now was every fight broke off, a pause

Seized all the battle, one vast silence quench'd His battle-axe, each time it fell, each time A life was gone, each time a hideous laugh

All tumult; slain and slayer, life and death Shone on the Slayer's cheek and writhing lip;

Possess'd one swoon of corpor, droop'd and sail'd

All passions, pride, wrath, vengeance, hate, dismay, As in the Oriental wars where meet

All was one wide astonishment: alone
Sultan and Omrah, under his broad tower

Two undistracted on each other gazed,
Moves stately the huge Elephant, a shaft
Haply casts down his friendly rider, wont

Where helpless in their death-blood they lay steep'd, To lead him to the tank, whose children shared

The ebbing of each other's life, the stiff With him their feast of fruits : awhile he droops

Damp growing on of death ; till in a groan

Horsa exhausted his fierce soul; then came
Affectionate his loose and moaning trunk;
Then in his grief and vengeance bursts, and bears

A momentary tinge, soft and subdued
In his feet's trampling rout and disarray

As of affections busy at his heart, To either army, ranks give way, and ironps

On Vortimer's expiring brow, his lip

Wore something of the curl men's use, when names Seatter, while, swaying on his heaving back

Beloved are floating o'er the thought, the Powers His tottering tower, he shakes the sandy plain. Meanwhile had risen a conflict high and fierce

On that lone grave made fragrant his sick sense, For Britain's royal banner; Hengist here,

And Eamont murmur'd on his closing ear. Arganlyr, the Vikinger, Hermingard,

But he, whose coming cast this silence on And other Chiefs. But there th' Armoric King,

Before it, as the night its widening shade, Emrys and Uther, with the Avenger stood,

Curtaining nature in its soundless pall, An iron wall against their inroad; lurn'd

An atmosphere of dying breath where'er Samor 'gainst him at distance heard and seen,

He moved, his drear envelopment, his path The car-borne Mountaineer, then Uther met

An element of blood: so fleet, so fast Argantyr, lengist and King Emrys fought,

The power to fly seem d wither'd, ere he came, The rest o'erbore King Hoel; one had slain

Men laid them down and said their prayers and look'd The standard-bearer, and all arms at once

For the quick plunging hoofs and rushing scythes : Seized as it sell, all foreign and all foes.

As when the palsied Universt aghast When lo, that sable Warrior, that retired

Lay, all its tenants, even Man, restless Man, And careless had look'd on, upon his steed

In all his busy workings mute and still, And in the batile, like a thundercloud

When drove, so poets sing, the Sun-born youth He came, and like a thundercloud he burst,

Devious through heaven's affrighted signs, his Sire's Black, cold and sullen, conquering without pride Ill-granted chariot, him the Thunderer hurld And slaying without triumph; three that grasp'd From th' empyrean headlong to the gulf The standard came at once to earth, while he Of the half-parch'd Eridanus, where weep Over his head with kingly motion sway'd

Even now the Sister Trees their amber tears The bright redeemed ensign, and as fell

O'er Phaëton untimely dead. And now The shaken sunlight radiant o'er his brow,

Had the Avenger reach'd the path of death, Pride came about him, and with voice like joy And stood in arms before the steeds, they came He cried aloud, “Arles! Arles !"--and shook his sword, Rearing their ireful hoofs to dash him down; * Thou 'st won me once a royal crown, and now But with both hands he seized their foaming curbs, Shalt win a roval sepulchre.”—The sword

Holding them in their spring with outstretch'd arm Perform'd its fatal duty, down they fell

Aloft, and made their lifted crests a shield Before him, Jule and Saxon, nameless men

Against their driver. He with baffled lash And Chieftains; what though wounds he scorn'd to Goaded their quivering Nanks, but that strong arm ward,

Held them above avoiding, their fore-hoofs Nor seem'd to feel, shower'd on him, and his blood Beat th' unhurt air, and overspread his breast, Oozed manifest. still he slew, stilleried, “Arles! Arles!" Like a thick snow-shower, the fast falling foam, Still in the splendour the waved standard spread Then leap'd Caswallon down, back Samor hurlid Suod glorying the arm d darkness of his form; Coursers and chariot, and, " Now," cried aloud,

“ Now, King of Britain, in the name of God

The fountains of their infant nourishment, I tender thee a throne, two yards of earth

Now ready to be plough'd with murtherous swords. To rot on, and a diadem, a wreath

Some knelt before their cold deaf Gods, some scoff of death-drops for thy haught aspiring brow.” With imprecation blasphemous and shrill

Their stony and unwakening thunders. Noise “There, there, look there," Caswallon cried, his hand Not fiercer on Citharon side, th' affright Stretch'd low'rd his son, and in a frantic laugh

Not drearier, when the Theban Bacchic rout, Broke out, and echoed, -"Diadems and thrones !"

Their dashing cymbals white with moonshine, loose With rigid finger pointing at the dead.

Their tresses bursting from their ivy crowns, A moment, and the fury burst again;

And purple with enwoven vine-leaves, led Down came the ponderous battle-axe, from edge

Their orgies dangerous. In the midst the Queen To edge it rived the temper'd brass, as swift

Agave shook the misdeem'd Lion's head As shoi-stars the thin ether; but the glaive

Aloft, and laugh'd and danced and sung, nor knew Of Samor right into his bosom smole.

That lion suckled at her own white breast. Like some old turret, under whose broad shade

But Elfelin the Propheless her seat At summer noon the shepherd oft his flock

Changed not, nor the near horror could recall Hash driven, and in the friendly cool rejoiced,

Her eye from its strange commerce with th' unseen ; Suddenly, violently, from its base

There had she been, there had she been in smiles Push'd by the winter floods, he fell; his look

All the long baule; just before the spear Yet had its savage blasphemy: he felt

Or falchion drank a warrior's life-blood, she More than the blow, the deadly blow, the cries

Audible, as a high-tribunal'd judge, Of joy and triumph from each army sent,

Spake out his name, and aye her speech was doom. Vaunting and loud ; to him to die was nought, He could not brook the shame of being slain.

Nor long the o'erhearing flight enwrapt thy strength But other thoughts arose; hardly he crept

Argantyr! thou amid the shattering wreck To where dead Malwyn from the car hung down,

Didst rise as in some ruinous city old, Felt on his face the cold depending hand,

Babylon or Palmyra, magic built, And with a smile, half joy half anguish, died. A single pillar yet with upright shaft

Stands, 'mid the wide prostration mossy and flat, Th' Avenger knelt, his heart 100 full for prayer,

Showing more eminent. Past the Saxon by, Knelt, and held up his conquering sword to heaven,

And look'd and wonder'd, even that he delay'd ; Yet spake not. But the ballle, as set free,

Cried his own Anglians-—" King, away, a way." Its rugged game renew'd, nor equal now

First came King Bloel on, whose falchion clove Nor now unbroken, Flight and shameful Rout

His buckler, with a wrest he burst in iwain Here scatter'd, Victory there and Pride array'd,

The shivering steel; came Emrys next, aside And mass'd in comely files and full square troops His misaim'd blow he shook ; last Uiher, him Bore onward. Mountaineer and German break

His war-horse, by Argantyr's beam-like spear
Around the hill foot, and like ebbing waves

Then first appall’d, bore in vain anger past.
Disperse away. Argantyr, Hengist move
In the recoiling nood reluctant. Them

From his late victory in proud breathlessness
Nought more resembled, than two mountain bulls Slow came the Avenger, but Argantyr raised
Driven by the horse and dog and hunter's spear, A cry of furious joy : "Long sought, late found,
Suill turning with huge brow and learing up I charge thee, by our last impeded fight,
The deep earth with their wrathful stooping horns. I charge thee, give me back mine own, my sword

Is weary of its bathes of vulgar blood, But as the hill was open'd, from the top

And longs in nobler streams to plunge; with thine Even to the base arose a shriek and scream,

I'll gild and hang it on my Father's grave, As when some populous Capital besieged,

And his helm'd ghost in Woden's hall shall vauns Sees yawning her wide-breach'd wall, and all

The glories of his son." "Generous and brave, Her shalter'd bulwarks on the earth, so wild,

When last we met, I shrunk to see my sword So dissonant the female rout appear'd

Bright with God's sunlight, now with dauntless hand Hanging with fierce disturbance the hill side.

I lift it, and cry On, in the name of God.”
Some with rent hair ran to and fro, some stood
With silent mocking lip, some sofily prest

They met, they strove, as with a cloud enwrapt
Their infants to their heart, some held them forth In their own majesty; their motions gave
As to invite the foe, and for them sued

Terror oven to their shadows: round them spread The mercy of immediate slaughter. Some

Attention like a sleep. Flight paused, Pursuit Spake fiercely of past deeds of fame, some sang Caught up its loose rein, Death his furious work In taunting tone old songs of victory. Wives, Ceased, and a dreary respite gave to souls With eye imploring and quick-heaving breast, Half parled; on their elbows reard them up Look'd sad allusions 10 endearinents past;

The dying, with faint effort holding ope Mothers, all bashfulness cast down, rent down Their dropping eyelids, homage of delight Their garmenis, to their sons displaying bare War from its victims thus exacting. Mind

And body engross'd the conflict. Men were seen So those illustrious rivals with the light
At distance, for in their peculiar sphere,

of their high language and heroic act
Within the wind and rush of their quick arms Cast a nobility o'er all the war.
None ventured, following with nnconscious limbs That capture took a host, none scorn'd to yield,
Their blows, and shrinking as themselves were struck. So loftily Argantyr wore the garb
Like scatter'd shiverings of a scathed oak, lay Of stern surrender, none inclined to slay,
Fragments of armour round them, the hard brass When Samor held the signal up to spare.
Gave way, and broke the fiery temper'd steel,
The stronger metal of the human soul,

But where the Lord of that dire falchion named Valour, endured, and power thrice purified

The Widower of Women? He, the Chief In danger's furnace fail'd not. Victory, tired Whose arms were squadrons, whose assault the shock or wavering, to those passive instruments,

or hosts advancing? Hath the cream-blanched sleed. Look'd to decide her long suspense. Behold Whom the outstripp'd winds pant after, borne away Argantyr's falchion, magic-wrought, his sires

His master, yet with hope uncheck’d, and craft So fabled, by the Asgard dwarfs, nor hewn

Unbaffled, th' equal conflict to renew? From earthly mines, nor dipp'd in earthly fires,

Fast flew the horse, and fierce the rider spurrid, Broke short. Th' ancestral steel the Angliang saw, That horse that all the day remorseless went Sign of their Kings, and worship of their race, O'er dead and dying, all that Hengist slew Give way, and wail'd and shriek'd aloud. The King All he cast down before him. Lo. he checks Collected all his glory as a pall

Suddenly, startingly, with ears erect, To perish in, and scorn'd his sworded foe

Thick tremor oozing out from every pore, To mock with vain desence of unarm'd hand. His broad chest palpitating, the thick foam The exultation and fierce throb of hope

Lazily gathering on his dropping lip: Yet had not pass'd away, but look'd to death The pawing of his uplift forefoot chillid As it had look'd to conquest, death so well,

To a loose hanging quiver. Nor his Lord So bravely earn'd to warrior fair as life:

Less horror seized : slack Trembled in his left Stern welcoming, bold invitation lured

The bridle, with his right hand dropt his sword. To its last work the Conqueror's sword. Him Aush'd Dripp'd slowly from its point the flaking blood The pride of Conquest, vengeance long delay'd,

or hundreds, this day fall'n beneath its edge. Th' exalted shame of victory won so slow, So toilsomely; all fiery passions, all

For lo, descended the hill side, stond up Tumultuous sense-intoxicating powers

Right in his path the Propheters, and held Conspired with their wild anarchy beset

With a severe compassion both her arms His despot soul. But he—“Ah, faithless sword,

Over her head, and thus—“It cannot be, To me as to thy master faithless, bim

I've cried unto the eagle, air hath none; Naked at his extreme to leave, and me

I've sued unto the feet and bounding deer, To guile of this occasion fair to win

I've sought unto the sly and mining snake;
Honour or death from great Argantyr's arm."

There's none above the earth, beneath the earth,
No fight, no way, no narrow' obscure way.

I've call d unto the lightning, as it leap'd “Christian, thy God is mightiest, scorn not thou

Along heaven's verge, it cannot guide thee forth ; His bounty, nor with dalliance mock thy hour

I've beckond to the dun and pitchy gloom, Strike and consummate !"_“Anglian, yes; my God,

It cannot shroud thee; to the caves of earth Th' Almighty, is the mightiest now and ever,

I've waild and shriek’d, they cannot chamber thee." Because I scorn him not, I will not strike."So saving, he his sword cast down. • Thus, thus

He spoke not, moved not, strove not: man and steed, Warrist thou?" the Anglian cried, “then thou hast won. Like some equestrian marble in the courts I, I Argantyr yield me, other hand

Or Emperors: that fierce eye whose wisdom keen Had tempted me in vain with that base boon

Pierced the dark depths of counsel, hawk-like roved, Which peasants prize and women weep for, life :

Seizing the unutter'd thoughts from out men's souls, To lord o'er dead Argantyr fate might grant,

Wrought order in the battle's turbulent fray He only grants to vanquish him alive,

By its command, on the aged Woman's face Only to thee, well named Avenger!" Then

Fix'd like a moonstruck idiot. She upright The Captive and the Conqueror th' armies saw

With strength beyond her bow'd and shrivell’d limbs Gazing upon each other with the brow

Still stood, and murmur'd low. "Why comest thou not, Or high arch'd admiration; o'er the field

Thou of the Vale? thou fated, come! come! come! From that example flow'd a noble scorn Of slaughtering the defenceless, merry slaked

The foes o'erlook, he look'd not round, their tramp The ardour of the fight. As the speck'd birch Was round him, still he moved not; violent hands After a shower, with th' odour of its bark

Seized on him, still the enchanted falchion hung Freshens the circuit of the rain-bright grove; Innocent as a feather by his side. Or as the tender argent of Love's star

They tore him from his steed, still clung his eyes Smiles to a lucid quiet the wild sky:

On her disastrous face; she fiercely shriek'd

Half pride at her accomplish'd prophecy,

Without the walls, close by the marge of Thames,
Half sorrow at Erle Hengist's fall, then down The synod of the Conquerors met; a place
Upon the stone that bore her, she fell dead.

Solemn and to the soul discoursing high.
Here broad the bridgeless Thames, even like them

selves

Thus at their flush and high tide of renown,
BOOK XII.

Swelld his exulting waters. There all waste
The royal cemetery of Britain lay,

The monuments, like their cold tenantry,
On Freedom, of our social Universe

Mouldering, above all ruin as beneath, The Sun, that feedest from thy urn of light

A wide profound, drear sameness of decay. The starry commonwealth, from those mean lamps

Upon the Church of Christ had heavily fallen Modestly glimmering in their sphere retired

The Pagan desolation, hung the doors Even to the plenar and patrician orbs,

Loose on their broken and disused hinge, That in their rich nobility of light,

And grass amid the chequer'd pavement squares Or golden royally endiadem'd.

Was springing. and along the vacant choir
Their mystic cirele undisturb'd round thee

The shrill wind was God's only worshipper.
Move musical; but thou thy central state
Preserving, equably the fair-rank'd whole

Even where they met, through the long years have In dutiful magnificence maintain'st,

sate And stately splendour of obedience. Earth

In Parliament our nation's high and wise. Wonders, th' approval of th' Almighty beams

There have deep thoughts been ponder’d, strong deManifest in the glory of the work.

signs Though sometimes drown'd within the red eclipse

On which the fate of the round world hath hung. Of tyranny, or brief while by the base

Thence have the emanating rays of truth, And marshy exhalations of low vice

Freedom, and constancy, and holiness And popular license maddend thou hast flash'd

Flow'd in their broad beneficence, no bound Disastrous and intolerable fire;

Owning but that which limits this brief earth, Yet ever mounting hast thou still march'd on

Brightening this misty state of man; the winds To thy meridian throne. My waxen wing

That thence bear mandates to th' inconstant thrones Oh, quenchless luminary! may not soar

Of Europe, to the realms of th'orient Sun, To that thy dazzling and o'erpowering noon;

Or to the new and ocean-sever'd earth, Rather the broken glimpses of thy dawn

Or to the Southern cocoa-feather'd isles, Visiteth, when thy orient overcast

Are welcome, as pure gales of health and joy. A promise and faint foretaste of its light

Still that deep dwelling underneath the earth Beam'd forth, then plunged its cloud-slaked front in Its high and ancient privilege maintains, gloom.

Dark palace of our island's parted Kings. Even with such promise dost thou now adorn

Earth-ceil'd pavilion of our brave and wise, Thy chosen city by the Thames, where holds

Whose glory ere it swept them off, hath cast Victorious Emrys his high Judgment court.

A radiance on the scythe of Death. Disused Thither the long ovation harh he led,

For two long heathen ages, it became Amid the solemn music of rent chains,

The pavement of our sumpluous minster fair, The rapture of deliverance; where he past

That ever and anon yet gathers in Earth brightening, and the face of man but now

King, Conqu’ror, Poet, Orator, or Sage Brow-seard with the deep brand of servitude,

To her stone chambers, there to sleep the sleep To its old upright privilege restored

That wakens only at the Archangel's trump.
Of gazing on its kindred heaven. The towns
Gladden'd amid their ruins, churches shook

First in the synod rose King Emrys; he
With throngs of thankful votaries,* till 't was fear

The royal sword of justice from his side Transport might finish Desolation's work,

Ungirding, placed it in the Avenger's hand, And bliss precipitale the half moulder'd walis.

And led him to the judgmeni-seat. He shrunk, "Tis famed, men died for joy, untimely births

And ofler'd back the solemn steel_“Oh! King, Were frequent, as the eager mothers prest

Judge and Avenger! who shall reconcile To show their infants to the brightening world.

The discoril of those titles, private wmngs They that but now beheld the bier-horne dead Will load my partial arm, and drag to earth With miserable envy, past them by

The unsteady balance. Only God can join Contemptuously pitying, as too soon

And blend in one the Injured and the Judge." Departed from this highly gifted earth.

But as a wave lifts up and hears along So they the Trinobantine City reach'd.

A stately bark, so the acclamation swell

Floated into the high Tribunal throne * Then did Aurelius Ambrosius put the Sasons out of all Reluctant Samur: on his right the King other pnrts of the land, and repnired such cities, towns, and Sate sceptred, royal Ciber on the left, also churches, as by them had been destroyed or delaced, etc. Holl. Book 6, Chap. 8.

While all around the assembled Nation bask'd

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