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LXXXI.

The double night of ages, and of her,
Night's daughter, Ignorance, hath wrapt and wrap
All round us; we but feel our way to err:
The ocean hath his chart, the stars their map,
And Knowledge spreads them on her ample lap;
But Rome is as the desert, where we steer
Stumbling o'er recollections; now we clap

Our hands, and cry “ Eureka !" it is clear-
When but some false mirage of ruin rises near.

LXXXII.

Alas! the lofty city! and alas !
The trebly hundred triumphs ! 52 and the day
When Brutus made the dagger's edge surpass
The conqueror's sword in bearing fame away!
Alas, for Tully's voice, and Virgil's lay,
And Livy's pictured page !—but these shall be
Her resurrection; all beside-decay.

Alas, for Earth, for never shall w
That brightness in her eye she bore when Rome was

free!

see

LXXXIII.

Oh thou, whose chariot rolld on Fortune's wheel,
Triumphant Sylla! Thou, who didst subdue
Thy country's foes ere thou wouldst pause to feel
The wrath of thy own wrongs, or reap the due
Of hoarded vengeance till thine eagles flew
O’er prostrate Asia ;—thou, who with thy frown
Annihilated senates—Roman, too,

With all thy vices, for thou didst lay down
With an atoning smile a more than earthly crown-

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LXXXIV.

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The dictatorial wreath 53—couldst thou divine
To what would one day dwindle that which made
Thee more than mortal ? and that so supine
By aught than Romans Rome should thus be laid ?
She who was named Eternal, and array'd
Her warriors but to conquer-she who veild
Earth with her haughty shadow, and display'd,

Until the o'er-canopied horizon fail'd,
Her rushing wings-Oh! she who was Almighty hail'd!

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LXXXV.

Sylla was first of victors; but our own,
The sagest of usurpers, Cromwell —he
Too swept off senates while he hew'd the throne
Down to a block_immortal rebel! See
What crimes it costs to be a moment free,
And famous through all ages! but beneath
His fate the moral lurks of destiny ;

His day of double victory and death
Beheld him win two realms, and, happier, yield his

breath.54

LXXXVI.

The third of the same moon whose former course
Had all but crown'd him, on the selfsame day
Deposed him gently from his throne of force,
And laid him with the earth's preceding clay.
And show'd not Fortune thus how fame and sway,
And all we deem delightful, and consume
Our souls to compass through each arduous way,

Are in her eyes less happy than the tomb ?
Were they but so in man's, how different were his doom!

LXXXVII.

And thou, dread statue ! yet existent in 55
The austerest form of naked majesty,
Thou who beheldest, ’mid the assassins' din,
At thy bathed base the bloody Cæsar lie,
Folding his robe in dying dignity,
An offering to thine altar from the queen
Of gods and men, great Nemesis ! did he die,

And thou, too, perish, Pompey ? have ye been
Victors of countless kings, or puppets of a scene ?

LXXXVIII.

And thou, the thunder-stricken nurse of Rome ! 56
She-wolf! whose brazen-imaged dugs impart
The milk of conquest yet within the dome
Where, as a monument of antique art,
Thou standest :-Mother of the mighty heart,
Which the great founder suck'd from thy wild teat,
Scorch'd by the Roman Jove's ethereal dart,

And thy limbs black with lightning-dost thou yet Guard thine immortal cubs, nor thy fond charge forget ?

LXXXIX.

Thou dost ; but all thy foster-babes are dead-
The men of iron; and the world hath rear'd
Cities from out their sepulchres : men bled
In imitation of the things they fear'd,
And fought and conquer'd, and the same course steerd,
At apish distance; but as yet none have,
Nor could, the same supremacy have neard,

Save one vain man, who is not in the grave,
But, vanquish'd by himself, to his own slaves a slave-

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LXXXVII.

At apish distance; but as yet none have,
Nor could, the same supremacy have near'd,

Save one vain man, who is not in the grave,
But, vanquish'd by himself, to his own slaves a slave-

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