« PreviousContinue »
Or if upon earth's darksome breast
They find some spirit rare,
Gives back Thine Image fair ;
'Tis theirs to look and muse
If such the twilight hues.
That scan the heaven's height,
And count the speed of light,
Meek souled humility;
To Love is given to win and wear
The poet's crown of bays;
Their unintended praise.
Since Thou hast claimed Thy right,
By touch of gospel light.'
These allusions are now merely touched on in the stanza,
• The olive wreath, the ivied wand,
The sword in myrtles drest,
Now wakes a vision blest :
Perhaps they were altered because authority for the application of the ivy to astronomers of old, and to humility now, is not easy to trace, and the verse on it is evidently imperfect; perhaps, also, the whole construction of the poem was recast in consequence of Hurrell Froude's criticism (see a letter in his Remains) on some of the poetry being 'Sternholdy and Hopkinsy,' an imputation to which its present form certainly is not liable. The final verse
• There's not a strain to memory dear,
There's not a flower in classic grove,
But minds us of Thy love.
O Lord, our Lord, and spoiler of our foes,
A very different note is struck in the poem in the Lyra, on “Ill Temper. It is a meditation for the benefit of those concerned with children, on the two 'evil spirits' that form the special torment and temptation of their otherwise happy age. Sullenness and Passion, compared in the two first verses to the hard, sunless, pitiless, grey frost, and to the wild and furious storm. In each case the sun is there, and one change of wind would render all bright and cheery; and
* So waits the Lord behind the reil.' To Him then should the dumb deaf sullen spirit of the child be borne by urgent intercessions, remembering how He cast out such from the possessed on earth. And in like manner, the passionate temper is likened to the frenzied boy, whose father waited at the foot of the Mount of Transfiguration.
Raffaelle's conception of that scene was dear to the author; and there is a striking sentence in his Prelections, in which he vindicates the poetical propriety of the juxtaposition of the Transfiguration above, and the ravings below, as showing the true calm of the Kingdom of Heaven close to the wild distresses of earth. Here the same idea is present, and is brought forward for the encouragement and comfort of such as feel anger an absolute overmastering force, so driving out all power of resistance for the moment, as to bring them to despair. He bids them ‘wait untired' in prayer and patience and resolution. "Believe and all may be.' The same Hand that tamed the lunatic youth will drive back the fierce spirit of wrath, and give the victory at last. Has not Baptism hoon the pledge of grace to conquer ? and
• Within thee, if thou wilt, be sure
That happy hours strong spells endure,
(To be continued.)
MEDIEVAL SEQUENCES AND HYMNS
No. XIV.--ON THE CROWN OF THORNS.
(Si vis vere gloriari)
If thou wouldst win the prize
On those who heavenward rise;
Learn in His steps to tread,
On His most sacred Head.
The Monarch of Creation
To sanctify and wear it
At His life's bitter end.
With this in battle stood
Triumphant on the wood.
This then the Warrior's helmet,
The Victor's laurel this,
The Pontiff's mitre is.
To shame and pain untold,
Hath touched and made it gold.
The virtue of Christ's Passion
Hath mightily gone forth, And shed on that rude circlet
Its gift of countless worth ; That Passion which enduring
The hard and thorny wood, Those doomed to death eternal,
Hath satisfied with good.
Of evil it is platted
To us who slight His Word; The thorny points deep wound us,
Which wounded once our Lord; But when our sins are purged,
And we in grace abide, Behold, the crown is golden,
The points are turned aside.
O kind, O righteous Jesu,
Grant to us all Thy power, That we may be victorious
In death's approaching hour; So fashion Thou our conduct
In this our mortal strife, That we the crown may merit Of everlasting life.
DEEP are the depths, O Lord,
From which I cry to Thee;
To hearken, not to see.
That searching gaze to stand ?
My pardon in Thy hand.
Look not, O Holy Eyes,
Too closely on my pain;
I fear to sin again.
And dark my weary breast;
As I for love and rest.
I will not cease to wait,
I will not cease to hope,
The sun comes up the slope.
Who died that you might live,
Still whispered, 'I forgive.'
Forgive Thy servants too;
With silver gleam the moon's soft beams
Fell on the sleeping wave,
The stillness of the grave;
Each fishing-boat seem'd scarce afloat,
Dark ships were anchored nigh,
Whose flag was half-mast high.
And then I knew while stars were few,
The Angel had come down,
Had held the immortal crown.
I could not choose but sigh,
That flag was half-mast high.
Shine on, fair moon, and set not soon,
Look down, ye golden stars,
That feel their prison bars ;
The heavenly Heaven nigh,
SKETCHES FROM HUNGARIAN HISTORY.
BY THE AUTHOR OF COURAGE AND COWARDS;' 'zvon,' &c.
THE GOLDEN BULL.
A.D. 1196 TO A.D. 1235.
QUARRELS between the brothers ensued on the death of Béla, and the money which he had left András to fit out a Crusade, was employed by the latter in raising an army wherewith to attack Imre.
Even the gift of the dukedom of Dalmatia and Croatia,* when the novelty had worn off, did but encourage him to believe he might have a better chance of winning the crown itself. An engagement between his own and the royal troops, however, convinced him of his mistake, and he fled to Leopold of Austria. A war between Hungary and Austria must have ensued, had not the Pope and the Princes of Germany interposed, with a proposition that both brothers should join the crusading army then assembling, that the government of Hungary should be left during their absence to the Duke of Austria, and that whichever of the
* This Imre bestowed on him by the recommendation of the Pope, Innocent III.