Hymn To Woden by William Lisle Bowles

God of the battle, hear our prayer! By the lifted falchion’s glare; By the uncouth fane sublime, Marked with many a Runic rhyme; By the “weird sisters” dread, That, posting through the battle red, Choose the slain, and with them go To Valhalla’s halls below, Where the phantom-chiefs prolong Their echoing feast, a giant throng, […]

Distant View Of England From The Sea by William Lisle Bowles

Yes! from mine eyes the tears unbidden start, As thee, my country, and the long-lost sight Of thy own cliffs, that lift their summits white Above the wave, once more my beating heart With eager hope and filial transport hails! Scenes of my youth, reviving gales ye bring, As when erewhile the tuneful morn of […]

Battle Of Corruna by William Lisle Bowles

The tide of fate rolls on!–heart-pierced and pale, The gallant soldier lies, nor aught avail, The shield, the sword, the spirit of the brave, From rapine’s armed hand thy vales to save, Land of illustrious heroes, who, of yore, Drenched the same plains with the invader’s gore, Stood frowning, in the front of death, and […]

Avenue In Savernake Forest by William Lisle Bowles

How soothing sound the gentle airs that move The innumerable leaves, high overhead, When autumn first, from the long avenue, That lifts its arching height of ancient shade, Steals here and there a leaf! Within the gloom, In partial sunshine white, some trunks appear, Studding the glens of fern; in solemn shade Some mingle their […]

At Tynemouth Priory by William Lisle Bowles

AFTER A TEMPESTUOUS VOYAGE. As slow I climb the cliff’s ascending side, Much musing on the track of terror past, When o’er the dark wave rode the howling blast, Pleased I look back, and view the tranquil tide That laves the pebbled shore: and now the beam Of evening smiles on the gray battlement, And […]

At Oxford by William Lisle Bowles

Bereave me not of Fancy’s shadowy dreams, Which won my heart, or when the gay career Of life begun, or when at times a tear Sat sad on memory’s cheek–though loftier themes Await the awakened mind to the high prize Of wisdom, hardly earned with toil and pain, Aspiring patient; yet on life’s wide plain […]

At Malvern by William Lisle Bowles

I shall behold far off thy towering crest, Proud mountain! from thy heights as slow I stray Down through the distant vale my homeward way, I shall behold upon thy rugged breast, The parting sun sit smiling: me the while Escaped the crowd, thoughts full of heaviness May visit, as life’s bitter losses press Hard […]

Abba Thule’s Lament For His Son Prince Le Boo by William Lisle Bowles

I climb the highest cliff; I hear the sound Of dashing waves; I gaze intent around; I mark the gray cope, and the hollowness Of heaven, and the great sun, that comes to bless The isles again; but my long-straining eye, No speck, no shadow can, far off, descry, That I might weep tears of […]

A Rustic Seat Near The Sea by William Lisle Bowles

To him, who, many a night upon the main, At mid-watch, from the bounding vessel’s side, Shivering, has listened to the rocking tide, Oh, how delightful smile thy views again, Fair Land! the sheltered hut, and far-seen mill That safe sails round and round; the tripping rill That o’er the gray sand glitters; the clear […]

A Garden-Seat At Home by William Lisle Bowles

Oh, no; I would not leave thee, my sweet home, Decked with the mantling woodbine and the rose, And slender woods that the still scene inclose, For yon magnificent and ample dome That glitters in my sight! yet I can praise Thee, Arundel, who, shunning the thronged ways Of glittering vice, silently dost dispense The […]

To the Right Hon. Lady Anne Coventry by William Somervile

Upon viewing her fine Chimney piece of Shell-work. The greedy merchant ploughs the sea for gain, And rides exulting o’er the watery plain, While howling tempests, from their rocky bed, Indignant break around his careful head. The royal fleet the liquid waste explores, And speaks in thunder to the trembling shores; The voice of wrath […]

To the Author of the The Essay on Man by William Somervile

Was ever work to such perfection wrought? How elegant the diction! pure the thought! Not sparingly adorn’d with scatter’d rays, But one bright beauty, one collected blaze; So breaks the day upon the shades of night, Enlivening all with one unbounded light. To humble man’s proud heart thy great design; But who can read this […]

To Dr. MReading Mathmatics by William Somervile

Vain our pursuits of knowledge, vain our care; The cost and labour we may justly spare: Death from this coarse alloy refines the mind, Leaves us at large to’ expatiate unconfin’d; All science opens to our wondering eyes, And the good man is in a moment wise. ————— The End And that’s the End of […]

To a Lady, Who Made Me a Present of a Silver Pen by William Somervile

WHO MADE ME A PRESENT OF A SILVER PEN . F AIR-ONE ! accept the thanks I owe; ‘Tis all a grateful heart can do. If e’er my soul the muse inspire With raptures and poetic fire, Your kind munificence I’ll praise, To you a thousand altars raise; Jove shall descend in golden rain, Or […]

To a Gentleman, Who Married His Cast Mistress by William Somervile

WHO MARRIED HIS CAST MISTRESS . HOR. LIB. III. ODE IX . D. While I was yours, and yours alone, Proud, and transported with your charms, I envied not the Persian throne, But reign’d more glorious in your arms. B. While you were true, nor Sukey fair Had chas’d poor Bruny from your breast, Not […]

To a Discarded Toast by William Somervile

C ELIA , confess ’tis all in vain To patch the ruins of thy face; Nor of ill-natur’d Time complain, That robs it of each blooming grace. If Love no more shall bend his bow, Nor point his arrows from thine eye, If no lac’d fop nor feather’d beau Despairing at thy feet shall die; […]

The Wolf and the Dog by William Somervile

A PROWLING Wolf, that scour’d the plains To ease his hunger’s griping pains, Ragged as courtier in disgrace, Hide-bound, and lean, and out of case, By chance a well-fed dog espied, And being kin, and near allied, He civilly salutes the cur: — ” How do you, Cuz? ” ” Your servant, Sir! “ ” […]

The Wise Builder by William Somervile

Wise Socrates had built a farm, Little, convenient, snug, and warm, Secured from rain and wind: A gallant whispered in his ear, Shall the great Socrates live here, To this mean cell confined? The furniture’s my chiefest care, Replied the sage; here’s room to spare, Sweet sir! for I and you; When this with faithful […]

The Superannuated Lover by William Somervile

Dead to the soft delights of love, Spare me, O! spare me, cruel boy! Nor seek in vain that heart to move Which pants no more with amorous joy. Of old, thy faithful hardy swain, (When smit with fair Pastora’s charms) I serv’d thee many a long campaign, And wide I spread thy conquering arms. […]

The Sheep and the Bush by William Somervile

A SHEEP , well-meaning brute! one morn Retir’d beneath a spreading thorn, A pealing storm to shun; Escap’d indeed both rain and wind, But left, alas! his fleece behind: Was it not wisely done? MORAL . Beneath the blast while pliant osiers bend, The stubborn oak each furious wind shall rend. Discreetly yield, and patiently […]

The Incurious Bencher by William Somervile

At Jenny Mann’s, where heroes meet, And lay their laurels at her feet, The modern Pallas, at whose shrine They bow, and by whose aid they dine, Col’nel Brocade, among the rest, Was every day a welcome guest. One night, as carelessly he stood, Cheering his reins before the fire, (So every true-Briton should) Like […]

The Hip by William Somervile

TO WILLIAM COLMORE, ESQ . The Day after the great Meteor, in March 1715. This dismal morn, when east winds blow, And every languid pulse beats low, With face most sorrowfully grim, And head oppress’d with wind and whim, Grave as an owl, and just as witty, To thee I twang my doleful ditty, And […]

The Happy Lunatic by William Somervile

TO DR. — — When saints were cheap in good Nol’s reign, As sinners now in Drury-Lane, Wrapp’d up in mysteries profound, A saint perceiv’d his head turn round: Whether the sweet and savoury wind, That should have been discharg’d behind, For want of vent had upward fled, And seiz’d the fortress of his head, […]

The Frog’s Choice by William Somervile

In a wild state of nature long The Frogs at random liv’d, The weak a prey unto the strong, With anarchy oppress’d and griev’d. At length the lawless rout, Taught by their sufferings, grew devout; An embassy to Jove they sent, And begg’d his highness would bestow Some settled form of government, A king to […]

The Dog and the Bear by William Somervile

Towser , of right Hockleian sire, A dog of mettie and of fire, With Ursin grim, an errant Bear, Maintain’d a long and dubious war: Oft Ursin on his back was tost, And Towser many a collop lost; Capricious fortune would declare Now for the Dog, then for the Bear, Thus having tried their courage […]

The Coquette by William Somervile

When tortured by the cruel fair, And almost mad with wild despair, My fleeting spirits rove, One cordial glance restores her slave, Redeems me from the gaping grave, And soothes my soul to love. Thus in a sea of doubt, I’m tost, Now sunk, now thrown upon the coast: What wretch can long endure Such […]

The Captive Trumpeter by William Somervile

A PARTY of hussars, of late, For prog and plunder scour’d the plains, Some French gens d’ armes surpris’d and beat, And brought their trumpeter in chains. In doleful plight the unhappy bard For quarter begg’d on bended knee, ” Pity, Messieurs! in truth ’tis hard To kill a harmless enemy: These hands, of slaughter […]

The Bald-Pated Welshman and the Fly by William Somervile

A SQUIRE of Wales, whose blood ran higher Than that of any other squire Hasty and hot, whose peevish honor Revenged each slight was put upon her, Upon a mountain’s top one day Exposed to Soles meridian ray, He fumed, he raved, he cursed, he swore, Exhaled a sea at every pore; At last, such […]

Song by William Somervile

When o’er Asteria’s fields I rove, The blissful seat of peace and love, Ten thousand beauties round me rise, And mingle pleasure with surprise. By Nature blessed in every part, Adorned with every grace of art, This paradise of blooming joys Each raptured sense at once employs.” But when I view the radiant queen Who […]

Hudibras and Milton Reconciled by William Somervile

TO SIR ADOLPHUS OUGHTON . Dear Knight! how great a drudge is he Who would excel in poetry; And yet how few have learn’d the art To’ inform the head or touch the heart! Some with a dry and barren brain, Poor rogues! like costive lapdogs strain; While others with a flux of wit The […]

Hare-hunting by William Somervile

Hark! from yon covert, where those tow’ring oaks Above the humble copse aspiring rise, What glorious triumphs burst in ev’ry gale Upon our ravished ears! The hunters shout, The clanging horns swell their sweet-winding notes, The pack wide-op’ning load the trembling air With various melody; from tree to tree The propagated cry redoubling bounds, And […]

Chase, The – Book 1 by William Somervile

BOOK I. The Chase I sing, hounds, and their various breed, And no less various use. O thou great Prince! Whom Cambria’s towering hills proclaim their lord, Deign thou to hear my bold, instructive song. While grateful citizens with pompous show Rear the triumphal arch, rich with the’ exploits Of thy illustrious house; while virgins […]

Address to His Elbow-Chair, New Cloath’d, An by William Somervile

NEW-CLOTHED . M Y dear companion, and my faithful friend! If Orpheus taught the listening oaks to bend; If stones and rubbish, at Amphion’s call, Danc’d into form, and built the Theban wall, Why should’st not thou attend my humble lays, And hear my grateful harp resound thy praise? True, thou art spruce and fine, […]