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If Liberty Lent not life its soul of light, Hope its iris of delight, Truth its prophet's robe to wear, Love its power to give and bear.
In the great morning of the world,
And all its banded anarchs fled,
Before an earthquake's tread.— So from Time's tempestuous dawn Freedom's splendour burst and shone:— Thermopylae and Marathon Caught, like mountains beacon-lighted,
The springing Fire.—The winged glory On Philippi half-alighted,
Like an eagle on a promontory.
It lived; and lit from land to land
Florence, Albion, Switzerland.
Against the course of heaven and doom, A second sun arrayed in flame,
To burn, to kindle, to illume.
Hid, but quenched it not; again
Through clouds its shafts of glory rain
From utmost Germany to Spain. As an eagle fed with morning Scorns the embattled tempest's warning, When she seeks her aerie hanging
In the mountain-cedar's hair,
Of her wings through the wild air,
Beneath the safety of her wings
And in the naked lightnings
Let the beautiful and the brave
Share her glory, or a grave.
Semichorus t. With the gifts of gladness Greece did thy cradle strew;
With the tears of sadness
With an orphan's affection
And at thy resurrection
Re-appeareth, like thou, sublime!
If Heaven should resume thee,
If Hell should entomb thee.
Dust let her glories be;
Be forgotten, Freedom, with thee!
His brow grows darker—breathe not—move not.
Mahmud (ttarting from hit sleep).
Your Sublime Highness Is strangely moved.
Of strange and secret and forgotten things.
A life of unconsunii'd thought, which pierces
With this old Jew.
I would talk
Thy will is even now Made known to him, where he dwells in a sea-cavern 'Mid the Demonesi, less accessible Than thon or God! He who would question him Must sail alone at sun-set, where the stream Of ocean sleeps around those foamless isles When the young moon is westering as now, And evening airs wander upon the wave; And when the pines of that bee-pasturing isle, Green Erebinthus, quench the fiery shadow Of his gilt prow within the sapphire water, Then must the lonely helmsman cry aloud, Ahasuerus ! and the caverns round Will answer, Ahasuerus! If his prayer Be granted, a faint meteor will arise, Lighting him over Marmora, and a wind Will rush out of the sighing pine-foreBt, And with the wind a storm of harmony Unutterably sweet, and pilot him Through the soft twilight to the Bosphorus: Thence, at the hour and place and circumstance Fit for the matter of their conference, The Jew appears. Few dare, and few who dare, Win the desired communion—but that shout
[A ihout iriMin.
Evil, doubtless; like all human sounds. Let me converse with spirits.
That shout again.
This Jew whom thou hast summoned
Will be here—
When the omnipotent hour, to which are yoked
From creation to decay,
Sparkling, bursting, borne away.
A power from the unknown God;
A Promethean conqueror came; Like a triumphal path he trod The thorns of death and ehame. A mortal shape to him Was like the vapour dim Which the orient planet animates with light; Hell, Sin, and Slavery came, Like blood-hounds mild and tame, Nor preyed until their lord had taken flight. The moon of Mahomet Arose, and it shall set: While blazoned as on heaven's immortal noon The cross leads generations on.
Swift as the radiant shapes of sleep
From one whose dreams are paradise, Fly, when the fond wretch wakes to weep, And day peers forth with her blank eyes;
So fleet, so faint, so fair,
Enter Mahmud, Hassan, Daood, and others.
More gold! our ancestors bought gold with victor)',
Then take this signet, Unlock the seventh chamber, in which lie The treasures of victorious Solyman. An empire's spoils stored for a day of ruin. O spirit of my sires! is it not come! The prey-birds and the wolves are gorged and sleep; But these, who spread their feast on the red earth, Hunger for gold, which fills not.—See them fed; Then lead them to the rivers of fresh death.
[Exit Daood. Oh! miserable dawn, after a night More glorious than the day which it usurped! O, faith in God ! 0, power on earth! O, word Of the great Prophet, whose overshadowing wings Darkened the thrones and idols of the west, Now bright!—For thy sake cursed be the hour, Even as a father by an evil child, When the orient moon of Islam rolled in triumph From Caucasus to white Ceraunia 1 Ruin above, and anarchy below; Terror without, and treachery within; The chalice of destruction full, and all Thirsting to drink; and who among us dares To dash it from his lips 1 and where is Hope 1
HASSAN. The lamp of our dominion still rides high; One God is God—Mahomet is his Prophet. Four hundred thousand Moslems, from the limits Of utmost Asia, irresistibly Throng, like full clouds at the Scirocco's cry, But not like them to weep their strength in tears; They have destroying lightning, and their step Wakes earthquake, to consume and overwhelm, And reign in ruin. Phrygian Olympus, Tmolus, and Latmos, and Mycale, roughen With horrent arms, and lofty ships, even now, Like vapours anchored to a mountain's edge, Freighted with fire and whirlwind, wait at Scala The convoy of the ever-veering wind. Samos is drunk with blood ;—the Greek has paid Brief victory with swift loss and long despair. The false Moldavian serfs fled fast and far When the fierce shout of Allah-ilia-Allah! Rose like the war-cry of the northern wind, Which kills the sluggish clouds, and leaves a flock Of wild swans struggling with the naked storm. So were the lost Greeks on the Danube's day! If night is mute, yet the returning sun Kindles the voices of the morning birds; Nor at thy bidding less exultingly Than birds rejoicing in the golden day, The Anarchies of Africa unleash Their tempest-winged cities of the sea, To speak in thunder to the rebel world. Like sulphureous clouds half-shattered by the storm, ■They sweep the pale JEgean, while the Queen Of Ocean, bound upon her island throne, Far in the West, sits mourning that her sons, Who frown on Freedom, spare a smile for thee: Russia still hovers, as an eagle might Within a cloud, near which a kite and crane Hang tangled in inextricable fight, To stoop upon the victor ; for she fears The name of Freedom, even as she hates thine: But recreant Austria loves thee as the Grave Loves Pestilence, and her slow dogs of war, Fleshed with the chase, come up from Italy,
And howl upon their limits ; for they see
mitre, Or bears the sword, or grasps the key of gold, Whose friends are not thy friends, whose foes thy
foesl Our arsenals and our armories are full; Our forts defy assaults; ten thousand cannon Lie ranged upon the beach, and hour by hour Their earth-convulsing wheels affright the city; The galloping of fiery steeds makes pale The Christian merchant, and the yellow Jew Hides his hoard deeper in the faithless earth. Like clouds, and like the shadows of the clouds, Over the hills of Anatolia, Swift in wide troops the Tartar chivalry Sweep ;—the far-flashing of their starry lances Reverberates the dying light of day. We have one God, one King, one Hope, one Law; But many-headed Insurrection stands Divided in itself, and soon must fall.
MAHMTTD. Proud words, when deeds come short, are seasonable; Look, Hassan, on yon crescent moon, emblazoned Upon that shattered flag of fiery cloud Which leads the rear of the departing day, Wan emblem of an empire fading now! See how it trembles in the blood-red air, And like a mighty lamp whose oil is spent, Shrinks on the horizon s edge, while, from above, One star with insolent and victorious light Hovers above its fall, and with keen beams, Like arrows through a fainting antelope, Strikes its weak form to death.
Even as that moon
Shall we be not renewed! Far other bark than ours were needed now To stem the torrent of descending time: The spirit that lifts the slave before its lord Stalks through the capitals of armed kings, And spreads his ensign in the wilderness; Exults in chains ; and when the rebel falls, Cries like the blood of Abel from the dust; And the inheritors of earth, like beasts When earthquake is unleashed, with idiot fear Cower in their kingly dens—as I do now. What were Defeat, when Victory must appal! Or Danger, when Security looks pale? How said the messenger—who from the fort Islanded in the Danube, saw the battle Of Bucharest!—that—
Ibrahim's cimeter Drew with its gleam swift victory from heaven, To burn before him in the night of battle— A light and a destruction.
The light Wallachians,
Thrice their keen wedge of battle pierced our lines.
harm, Shouldst thou pursue ; there we shall meet again." Then held his breath, and, after a brief spasm, The indignant spirit cast its mortal garment Among the slain—dead earth upon the earth! So these survivors, each by different ways, Some strange, all sudden, none dishonourable, Met in triumphant death; and when our army Closed in, while yet wonder, and awe, and shame Held back the base hyenas of the battle That feed upon the dead and fly the living, One rose out of the chaos of the slain; And if it were a corpse which some dread spirit Of the old saviours of the land we rule Had lifted in its anger, wandering by; Or if there burned within the dying man Unquenchable disdain of death, and faith Creating what it feigned ;—I cannot tell: But he cried, " Phantoms of the free, we come! Annies of the Eternal, ye who strike To dust the citadels of sanguine kings, And shake the souls throned on their stony hearts, And thaw their frost-work diadems like dew;— O ye who float around this clime, and weave The garment of the glory which it wears; Whose fame, though earth betray thedust it clasped, Lies sepulchred in monumental thought;— Progenitors of all that yet is great, Ascribe to your bright senate, 0 accept In your high ministrations, us, your sons— Us first, and the more glorious yet to come 1 And ye, weak conquerors! giants who look pale When the crushed worm rebels beneath your
The vultures, and the dogs, your pensioners tame,
Died—as thou shouldst ere thy lips had painted Their ruin in the hues of our success. A rebel's crime, gilt with a rebel's tongue 1 Your heart is Greek, Hassan.
It may be so: A spirit not my own wrenched me within, And I have spoken words I fear and hate; Yet would I die for—
Live! 0 live! outlive Me and this sinking empire:—but the fleet—
The fleet which, like a flock of clouds Chased by the wind, flies the insurgent banner. Our winged castles from their merchant ships 1 Our myriads before their weak pirate bands 1 Our arms before their chains! Our years of empire Before their centuries of servile fear! Death is awake! Repulsed on the waters, They own no more the thunder-bearing banner Of Mahmud; but like hounds of a base breed, Gorge from a stranger's hand, and rend their master.
Latmos, and Ampelos, and Phanae, saw
The caves of the Icarian isles Hold each to the other in loud mockery, And with the tongue as of a thousand echoes First of the sea-convulsing fight—and then— Thou darest to speak—senseless are the mountains, Interpret thou their voice I
My presence bore
First through the hail of our artillery
and perched Each on the weltering carcase that we loved, Like its ill angel or its damned soul. Riding upon the bosom of the sea, We saw the dog-fish hastening to their feast. Joy waked the voiceless people of the sea, And ravening famine left his ocean-cave To dwell with war, with us, and with despair. We met night three hours to the west of Patmos, As with night, tempest—
Your Sublime Highness, That Christian hound, the Muscovite ambassador, Has left the city. If the rebel fleet Had anchored hi the port, had victory Crowned the Greek legions in the Hippodrome, Panic were tamer.—Obedience and Mutiny, Like giants in contention planet-struck, Stand gazing on each other.—There is peace In Stamboul.—
Is the grave not calmer still! Its ruins shall be mine.
Fear not the Russian; The tiger leagues not with the stag at bay Against the hunter.—Cunning, base, and cruel, He crouches, watching till the spoil be won, And must be paid for his reserve in blood. After the war is fought, yield the sleek Russian That which thou canst not keep, his deserved portMi Of blood, which shall not flow through streets and
Rivers and seas, like that which we may win,
Enter Second Mcuenger.
Nauplia, Tripolizza, Mothon, Athens,
Navarin, Artas, Monembasia,
Corinth and Thebes, are carried by assault;
And every Islamite who made his dogs
Fat with the flesh of Galilean slaves,
Passed at the edge of the sword: the lust of blood,
Which made our warriors drunk, U quenched in
Enter a Third Metienger.
The Christian tribes Of Lebanon and the Syrian wilderness Are in revolt;—Damascus, Hems, Aleppo, Tremble ;—the Arab menaces Medina; The Ethiop has intrenched himself in Sennaar, And keeps the Egyptian rebel well employed, Who denies homage, claims investiture As price of tardy aid. Persia demands The cities on the Tigris, and the Georgians Refuse their living tribute. Crete and Cyprus, Like mountain-twins that from each other's veins