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SIR WILLIAM JONES. 1746-1794.
A PERSIAN SONG OF HAFIZ.
Sweet maid, if thou wouldst charm my sight,
Boy, let yon liquid ruby flow,
Oh! when these fair perfidious maids,
Beauty has such resistless power,
What cruel answer have I heard !
Go boldly forth, my simple lay,
AN ODE, IN IMITATION OF ALCÆUS.
What constitutes a State ?
Thick wall or moated gate;
Not bays and broad-arm'd ports,
Not starr'd and spangled courts,
No: men, high-minded men,
In forest, brake, or den,
Men who their duties know,
Prevent the long-aim'd blow,
These constitute a state,
O'er thrones and globes elate
Smit by her sacred frown,
And e'en th' all-dazzling crown
Such was this heaven-loved isle,
No more shall Freedom smile?
Since all must lise resign,
'Tis folly to decline,
SAMUEL BISHOP. 1731-1795.
TO HIS WIFE.
“Thee, Mary, with this ring I wed”—
With that first ring I married youth,
If she, by merit since disclosed,
Here then to-day (with faith as sure,
And why? They show me every hour Honour's high thought, Affection's power, Discretion's deed, sound Judgment's sentenceAnd teach me all things but-repentance.
WILLIAM MASON. 1725-1797.
EPITAPH ON MRS. MASON.
Take, holy earth! all that my soul holds dear :
Take that best gift which Heav'n so lately gave : To Bristol's fount I bore with trembling care
Her faded form ; she bow'd to taste the wave, And died. Does youth, does beauty read the line?
Does sympathetic Fear their breasts alarm? Speak, dead Maria! breathe a strain divine: Ev'n from the grave thou shalt have power to
Bid them be chaste, be innocent, like thee;
Bid them in duty's sphere as meekly move ; And if as fair, from vanity as free ;
As firm in friendship, and as fond in love. Tell them, though 'tis an awful thing to die
('Twas ev'n to thee), yet the dread path once trod, Heav'n lists its everlasting portals high,
And bids “the pure in heart behold their God."
ERASMUS DARWIN. 1732-1802.
FROM "THE BOTANIC GARDEN.” Thus when the Plague, upborne on Belgian air, Look'd through the mist, and shook his clotted hair; O'er shrinking nations steer'd malignant clouds, And rain'd destruction on the gasping crowds, The beauteous Ægle felt the venom'd dart, Slow roll'd her eye, and feebly 'throbb’d her heart ; Each fervid sigh seem'd shorter than the last, And starting Friendship shunn'd her as she pass'd. With weak, unsteady step the fainting maid Seeks the cold garden's solitary shade, Sinks on the pillowy moss her drooping head, And prints with lifeless limbs her leafy bed. On wings of love her plighted swain pursues, Shades her from winds, and shelters her from dews, Extends on tapering poles the canvass roof, Spreads o'er the straw-wove mat the flaxen woof, Sweet buds and blossoms on her bolster strows, And binds his kerchief round her aching brows ; Sooths with soft kiss, with tender accents charms, And clasps the bright infection in his arms. With pale and languid smiles, the grateful fair Applauds his virtues and rewards his care ; Mourns with wet cheek her fair companions fled On timorous step, or number'd with the dead ;