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And now, O Victory, blush! and Empire tremble
1000 When ye desert the free
If Greece must be A wreck, yet shall its fragments re-assemble, And build themselves again impregnably
In a diviner clime, To Amphionic music on some Cape sublime, Which frowns above the idle foam of Time.
SEMICHORUS I. Let the tyrants rule the desert they have made;
Let the free possess the paradise they claim; Be the fortune of our fierce oppressors weighed With our ruin, our resistance, and our
Our survivors be the shadow of their pride, Our adversity a dream to pass away
Their dishonour a remembrance to abide!
On the noon of time:
From the hungry clime.
Let Freedom and Peace flee far
To a sunnier strand,
To the Evening land !
With the sunset's fire:
But the night is not born; And, like loveliness panting with wild desire
While it trembles with fear and delight,
Hesperus flies from awakening night, And pants in its beauty and speed with light Fast flashing, soft, and bright.
1040 Thou beacon of love! thou lamp of the free!
* Guide us far, far away, To climes where now veiled by the ardour of day
Thou art hidden
Beneath Heaven's cope,
Burst, like morning on dream, or like Heaven
on death Through the walls of our prison; And Greece, which was dead, is arisen!
The golden years return,
Her winter weeds outworn :
A brighter Hellas rears its mountains
From waves serener far ;
Against the morning-star.
A loftier Argo cleaves the main,
Fraught with a later prize; Another Orpheus sings again,
And loves, and weeps, and dies. A new Ulysses leaves once more. Calypso for his native shore.
O, write no more the tale of Troy,
If earth Death's scroll must be ! Nor mix with Laian rage the joy
Which dawns upon the free: Although a subtler Sphinx renew Riddles of death Thebes never knew.
Another Athens shall arise,
And to remoter time
Bequeath, like sunset to the skies,
The splendour of its prime;
Saturn and Love their long repose
Shall burst, more bright and good
Than many unsubdued :
O cease! must hate and death return?
Cease! must men kill and die ?
Of bitter prophecy.
(1) The quenchless ashes of Milan [line 60). Milan was the centre of the resistance of the Lombard league against the Austrian tyrant. Frederic Barbarossa burnt the city to the ground, but liberty lived in its ashes, and it rose like an exhalation from its ruin. See Sismondi's Histoire des Républiques Italiennes, a book which has done much towards awakening the Italians to an imitation of their great ancestors.
(2) The Chorus [line 197 et seq.). The popular notions of Christianity are represented in this chorus as true in their relation to the worship they superseded, and that which in all probability they will supersede, without considering their merits in a relation more universal. The first stanza contrasts the immortality of the living and thinking beings which inhabit the planets, and to use a common and inadequate phrase, clothe themselves in matter, with the transience of the noblest manifestations of the external world.
The concluding verses indicate a progressive state of niore or less exalted existence, according to the degree of perfection which every distinct intelligence may have attained. Let it not be supposed that I mean to dogmatize upon a subject, concerning which all men are equally ignorant, or that I think the Gordian knot of the origin of evil can be disentangled by that or any similar assertions. The received hypothesis of a Being resembling men in the moral attributes of his nature, having called us out of non-existence, and after inflicting on us the misery