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So in this differing key though I could well
106. William HABINGTON. 1605–1654. (Manual, p. 171.)
My God! if 'tis thy great decree
Wherein I breathe this air;
And treachery of the fair.
When thou shalt please this soul tenthrone
What should I grieve or fear,
And ne'er again appear.
For in the fire when ore is tried,
Do we deplore the loss?
Shall I grieve for the dross?
107. EDMUND WALLER. 1605–1687. (Manual, p. 171.)
Go, lovely rose!
Tell her that wastes her time and me,
When I resemble her to thee,
Tell her that's young,
And shuns to have her graces spied,
Small is the worth
Of beauty from the light retired:
Suffer herself to be desired,
Then die! that she
The common fate of all things rare
How small a part of time they share
ON A GIRDLE.
That which her slender waist confined
It was my heaven's extremest sphere,
A narrow compass! and yet there
108. SIR WILLIAM DAVENANT. 1605-1668. (Manual,
From “ Gondibert.”
CHARACTER OF BIRTHA.
One only pledge, and Birtha was her name;
And she succeeded her in face and fame.
She ne'er saw courts, yet courts could have undone
With untaught looks and an unpractised heart;
For nature spread them in the scorn of art.
She never had in busy cities been,
Ne'er warmed with hopes, nor e'er allayed with fears;
And sin not seeing, ne'er had use of tears,
But here her father's precepts gave her skill,
Which with incessant business filled the hours;
In Autumn, berries; and in Summer, flowers.
And as kind nature with calm diligence
Her own free virtue silently employs,
So were her virtues busy without noise.
Whilst her great mistress, Nature, thus she tends,
The busy household waits no less on her;
Though all her lowly mind to that prefer.
109. Sir John DENHAM. 1615-1668. (Manual, p. 173.)
From “ Cooper's Hill.”
Cities in deserts, woods in cities, plants.
ABRAHAM COWLEY. 1618-1667. (Manual, p. 174.)
110. HYMN TO Light.
Hail! active Nature's watchful life and health!
Say, from what golden quivers of the sky
Thou in the moon's bright chariot, proud and gay,
Thou, Scythian-like, dost round thy lands above
111. CHARACTER OF CROMWELL. What can be more extraordinary than that a person of mean birth, no fortune, no eminent qualities of body, which have sometimes, or of mind, which have often, raised men to the highest dignities, should have the courage to attempt, and the happiness to succeed in, so improbable a design as the destruction of one of the most ancient and most solidly-founded monarchies upon the earth? That he should have the power or boldness to put his prince and master to an open and infamous death; to banish that numerous and strongly-allied family; to do all this under the name and wages of a parliament; to trample upon them too as he pleased, and spurn them out of doors when he grew weary of them; to raise up a new and unheard-of monster out of their ashes; to stifle that in the very infancy, and set up
himself above all things that ever were called sovereign in England; to oppress all his enemies by arms, and all his friends afterwards by artifice; to serve all parties patiently for a while, and to command them victoriously at last; to overrun each corner of the three nations, and overcome with equal facility both the riches of the south and the poverty of the north; to be feared and courted by all foreign princes, and adopted a brother to the gods of the earth; to call together parliaments with a word of his pen, and scatter them again with the breath of his mouth; to be humbly and daily petitioned that he would please to be hired, at the rate of two millions a year, to be the master of those who had hired him before to be their servant; to have the estates and lives of three kingdoms as much at his disposal as was the little inheritance of his father, and to be as noble and liberal in the spending of them; and lastly (for there is no end of all the particulars of his glory), to bequeath all this with one word to his posterity; to die with peace at home, and triumph abroad; to be buried among kings, and with more than regal solemnity; and to leave a name behind him, not to be extinguished, but with the whole world; which, as it is now too little for his praises, so might have been too for his conquests, if the short line of his human life could have been stretched out to the extent of his immortal designs?