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DEATH ON THE FIELD OF BATTLE.
BIRTH AND DEATH.
SIR W. JONES.-From the Persian of Hafiz. CAUTION: The antithesis in these lines requires to be carefully brought out by the reader. It exists in the second and fourth lines.
THE EVENING STAR.
Home* to the weary, to the hungry cheer,2
The welcome stall to the o'er-laboured steer ;3
Whate'er our household gods protect of dear,
BYRON. CAUTIONS : a. The pause after home will enable the reader to avoid the, to. b. Put a gentle emphasis on thy, and slur over the by.
MEANINGS: 1. Hesperus was the Greek and Latin name for the evening star, which appears in the west above the sunken sun. Hence, Italy, as the land of the west, was called Hesperia by the Greeks; and Spain was called Hesperia by the Romans. 2. Cheer, pleasant food and refreshment. 3. Steer, ox. 4. Whate'er of dear, is a French idiom. It means, all that is dear.
DEATH ON THE FIELD OF BATTLE.
hath burst his bloody girth ;
Byron. CAUTIONS : a. The first line must be read with great slowness and distinctness. b. Avoid the verse-accent upon the on. c. Read“ with what life remained.”
MEANINGS : 1. Helmless, without a helmet. 2. A wound produces the most utense thirst; and this is the source of the greatest pain to wounded soldiers.
THE LAST MAN. The following are two verses from a poem by Thomas CAMPBELL, who lived and wrote in the beginning of this century (died 1844). The idea of the poem is that the whole human race may die gradually out-till at last only one man survives; and an attempt is made in the other parts of the poem to depict his feelings.
All worldly shapes shall melt in gloom,
The sun himself must die,
the last of human mould,
As Adam saw her prime!
The earth with age was wan,
Around that lonely man!
In plague and famine some!
was dumb! CAUTIONS : a. This poem must be read with extreme slowness, with fulness of voice, and with a certain pomp of solemnity. b. Around that lonely man should be read very slowly, and as if each word were a separate statement. c. All-was dumb. The two words all and dumb can take a great weight of accent.
MEANINGS: 1. As Adam saw her prime. Adam was the first man to see the beginnings of God's works.
TO A CHILD. These verses are from a longer poem, called “Casa Wappy," by Dr. Moir, a Scottish poet and writer in Blackwood's Magazine. The name was that given by the poor child to himself. He died early, but was never forgotten. He died suddenly, of croup. Always in the highest animal spirits, the sun of his life went down in its earliest morning.
Thy bright brief day knew no decline, a
'Twas cloudless joy;
THE LABOURER'S NOON-DAY HYMN.
Gem of our hearth, our household pride,
Our dear, sweet child !
To glad, to grieve-
On summer's eve;
But like the rainbow thou didst fade.b CAUTIONS : a. Thy bright brief day knew no decline. This line has the emphasis on no; but this emphasis is not at all a strong one-it is mild, quiet, and sorrowful. b. The last line should be read with great slowness.
MEANINGS : 1. Prostrate, struck down. 2. Had we hoped, a poetical transposition of the words, for we had hoped. 3. In outward beauty undecayed. There is an emphasis on outward ; but it should be made very slight.
THE LABOURER'S NOON-DAY HYMN. This hymn, by WORDSWORTH, is written for out-of-door labourers; and the sun is taken as the example to be followed.
Up to the throne of God is borne
let us raise
Look up to heaven! th' industrious sun
immortal spirits may.
CAUTIONS : a. Slur over up to the. b. This line should be read very slowly. C. A slight emphasis on have.
MEANINGS : 1. Offerings, offerings of prayer and praise. 2. Respite, interval. 3. Ready heart, heart that is eager and willing. 4. Hallowed, made sacred. 5. Living roof, in contradistinction to an ordinary roof. 6. Faltered, been unsteady in the right way. 7. Transgressed, left the right way. 8. Glorify, light up with hopes and rays from another world. 9. Final rest, our last rest.
PEACE. These lines are adapted from VAUGHAN, an exquisite poet of the 17th century. He wrote chiefly religious poems.
THERE is a peaceful country,
Beyond the farthest sky,
finds no entry,
Sweet Peace sits crowned with song
Walks with the saintly throng.
the flower of peace
that cannot wither, The love that cannot cease.
: a. Avoid the verse-accent upon is, and dwell a little on the word peaceful. b. The emphasis-a quiet one-is on ever.
THE DEAD INDIAN. The Indians provide the dead with weapons and provisions for their last long journey to the other world.
On the mat he's sitting there
See! he sits pright-
When he saw the light.
Where the breath he drew,
Forth the pipe-smoke blew ?
Marked the reindeer pass,
Bounded through the snow,
Like the mountain roe !
Did the bow-string twang!
See how loose they hang !
Chant the death lament;
That can him content.3
That he swung so strong;
For the way is long;
That from foeman's crown,
Skin and tuft brought down.
Set within his hand,
SCHILLER. CAUTION : The danger in reading this poem is sing-song. The greatest care must be taken to read clearly, slowly, and with the proper grouping of words.
MEANINGS: 1. Twenty-tined, with twenty branches to its antlers. 2. Tense, well-strung muscles. 3. These two lines mean : Bury everything together with him that can please him. 4. With dexterous cuts but three, with only three dexterous or skilful cuts.