Posts tagged ‘1842’

Saturday, 2 March 2019

The Perversion of Letters by Aubrey de Vere

Time was when books, sent forth without pretence,
Elaborately wrought with studious zeal,
Were true exponents of the heart. To feel
Strongly came first; then speech, pure from offence,
Yet vigilantly fearless. Handmaid to Sense,
Wit wrought for Reason; Satire probed to heal;
And Raillery, chafed spirits to anneal:
Thus, genuine instincts to fulfil, and thence
Good ends secure, the purpose was of all.
Men fight for triumph now; transforming words
To stings; and poisoning Wisdom’s fount with gall.
Books have cloaked meanings: a light tale affords
A mask for sour Polemicks; and the curse
Of Passion desecrates immortal verse!

From: de Vere, Aubrey, Sonnets: A New Edition,1875, Basil Montagu Pickering: London, p. 6.

Date: 1842

By: Aubrey de Vere (1788-1846)

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

The Mother by Caroline Meysey-Wigley Clive

I feel within myself a life
That holds ’gainst death a feeble strife;
They say ’tis destined that the womb
Shall be its birthplace and its tomb.
O child! if it be so, and thou
Thy native world must never know,
Thy Mother’s tears will mourn the day
When she must kiss thy Death‐born face.
But oh! how lightly thou wilt pay
The forfeit due from Adam’s race!
Thou wilt have lived, but not have wept,
Have died, and yet have known no pain;
And sin’s dark presence will have swept
Across thy soul, yet left no stain.
Mine is thy life; my breath thy breath:
I only feel the dread, the woe;
And in thy sickness or thy death,
Thy Mother bears the pain, not thou.

Life nothing means for thee, but still
It is a living thing, I feel;
A sex, a shape, a growth are thine,
A form and human face divine;
A heart with passions wrapp’d therein,
A nature doom’d, alas! to sin;
A mind endow’d with latent fire,
To glow, unfold, expand, aspire;
Some likeness from thy father caught,
Or by remoter kindred taught;
Some faultiness of mind or frame,
To wake the bitter sense of shame;
Some noble passions to unroll,
The generous deed, the human tear;
Some feelings which thy Mother’s soul
Has pour’d on thine, while dwelling near.
All this must past unbloom’d away
To worlds remote from earthly day;
Worlds whither we by paths less brief,
Are journeying on through joy and grief,
And where thy Mother, now forlorn,
May learn to known her child unborn;
Oh, yes! created thing, I trust
Thou too wilt rise with Adams’s dust.

Nov. 1842.

From: Clive, Caroline, Poems, 1872, Longmans, Green and Co: London, pp. 46-47.

Date: 1842

By: Caroline Meysey-Wigley Clive (1801-1872)

Monday, 22 June 2015

Robin Hood by George Daniel

Robin Hood! Robin Hood! a lawgiver good,
Kept his High Court of Justice in merry Sherwood.
No furr’d gown, or fee, wig, or bauble had he;
But his bench was a verdant bank under a tree!

And there sat my Lord of his own good accord,
With his Peers of the forest to keep watch and ward;
To arbitrate sure between rich and poor,
The lowly oppress’d and the proud evil doer.

His nobles they are without riband or star,
No ‘scutcheon have they with a sinister bar;
But Flora with leaves them a coronet weaves,
And their music is — hark! when the horn winds afar.

The chaplain to shrive this frolicsome hive
Is a fat curtail Friar, the merriest alive!
His quarter-staff, whack! greets a crown with a crack!
And, ‘stead of rough sackcloth, his penance is sack!

The peerless in beauty receives their fond duty,
Her throne is the greensward, her canopy flowers!
What huntress so gay as the Lady of May?
The Queen of the Woodlands, King Robin’s, and ours!

His subjects are we, and ’tis centuries three
Since his name first re-echo’d beneath this roof-tree!
With Robin our King let the old rafters ring!
They have heard their last shout! they have seen their last spring!

And though we may sigh for blythe moments gone by,
Yet why should we sorrow, bold foresters, why?
Since those who come after their full share of laughter
Shall have, when death’s sables have veil’d you and I.


Date: 1842

By: George Daniel (1789-1864)

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Raising the Devil: A Legend of Cornelius Agrippa by Richard Harris Barham (Thomas Ingoldsby)

‘And hast thou nerve enough?’ he said,
That Grey old Man, above whose head
Unnumber’d years had roll’d,—
‘And hast thou nerve to view,’ he cried,
‘The incarnate Fiend that Heaven defied!
— Art thou indeed so bold?’

‘Say, canst Thou, with unshrinking gaze,
Sustain, rash youth, the withering blaze
Of that unearthly eye,
That blasts where’er it lights,— the breath
That, like the Simoom, scatters death
On all that yet can die!

—‘Darest thou confront that fearful form,
That rides the whirlwind, and the storm,
In wild unholy revel!
The terrors of that blasted brow,
Archangel’s once,— though ruin’d now —
— Ay,— dar’st thou face THE DEVIL?’—

‘I dare!’ the desperate Youth replied,
And placed him by that Old Man’s side,
In fierce and frantic glee,
Unblench’d his cheek, and firm his limb
—‘No paltry juggling Fiend, but HIM!
— THE DEVIL!— I fain would see!—

‘In all his Gorgon terrors clad,
His worst, his fellest shape!’ the Lad
Rejoined in reckless tone.—
—‘Have then thy wish!’ Agrippa said,
And sigh’d and shook his hoary head,
With many a bitter groan.

He drew the mystic circle’s bound,
With skull and cross-bones fenc’d around;
He traced full many a sigil there;
He mutter’d many a backward pray’r,
That sounded like a curse—
‘He comes!’— he cried with wild grimace,
‘The fellest of Apollyon’s race!’—
— Then in his startled pupil’s face
He dash’d — an EMPTY PURSE!!


Date: 1842

By: Richard Harris Barham (Thomas Ingoldsby) (1788-1845)

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Beyond by John Gibson Lockhart

When youthful faith hath fled,
Of loving take thy leave;
Be constant to the dead—
The dead cannot deceive.

Sweet modest flowers of Spring,
How fleet your balmy day!
And Man’s brief life can bring
No secondary May:

No earthly burst again
Of gladness out of gloom,
Fond hope and vision vain,
Ungrateful to the tomb.

But ’tis an old belief
That on some solemn shore
Beyond the sphere of grief
Dear friends shall meet once more:

Beyond the sphere of Time
And Sin and Fate’s control,
Serene in endless prime
Of body and of soul.

That creed I fain would keep,
That hope I’ll not forgo—
Eternal be the sleep
Unless to waken so!


Date: 1842

By: John Gibson Lockhart (1794-1854)

Tuesday, 4 February 2014

Willie Winkie by William Miller

Wee Willie Winkie rins through the toun,
Up stairs and doon stairs in his nicht-gown,
Tirlin’ at the window, cryin’ at the lock,
“Are the weans in their bed, for it’s noo ten o’clock?”

“Hey, Willie Winkie, are ye comin’ ben?
The cat’s singin’ grey thrums to the sleepin’ hen,
The dog’s spelder’d on the floor, and disna gi’e a cheep,
But here’s a waukrife laddie that winna fa’ asleep!”

Onything but sleep, you rogue! glow’rin’ like the mune,
Rattlin’ in an airn jug wi’ an airn spune,
Rumblin’, tumblin’ round about, crawin’ like a cock,
Skirlin’ like a kenna-what, wauk’nin’ sleeping fock.

“Hey, Willie Winkie — the wean’s in a creel!
Wambling aff a bodie’s knee like a very eel,
Ruggin’ at the cat’s lug, and ravelin’ a’ her thrums–
Hey, Willie Winkie — see, there he comes!”

Wearit is the mither that has a stoorie wean,
A wee stumpie stoussie, that canna rin his lane,
That has a battle aye wi’ sleep before he’ll close an ee —
But a kiss frae aff his rosy lips gies strength anew to me.


Date: 1842

By: William Miller (1810-1872)

Monday, 5 December 2011

My Last Duchess by Robert Browning


That’s my last Duchess painted on the wall,
Looking as if she were alive. I call
That piece a wonder, now: Frà Pandolf’s hands
Worked busily a day, and there she stands.
Will’t please you sit and look at her? I said
“Frà Pandolf” by design, for never read
Strangers like you that pictured countenance,
The depth and passion of its earnest glance,
But to myself they turned (since none puts by
The curtain I have drawn for you, but I)
And seemed as they would ask me, if they durst,
How such a glance came there; so, not the first
Are you to turn and ask thus. Sir, ’twas not
Her husband’s presence only, called that spot
Of joy into the Duchess’ cheek: perhaps
Frà Pandolf chanced to say “Her mantle laps
Over my Lady’s wrist too much,” or “Paint
Must never hope to reproduce the faint
Half-flush that dies along her throat”: such stuff
Was courtesy, she thought, and cause enough
For calling up that spot of joy. She had
A heart — how shall I say? — too soon made glad,
Too easily impressed; she liked whate’er
She looked on, and her looks went everywhere.
Sir, ’twas all one! My favour at her breast,
The dropping of the daylight in the West,
The bough of cherries some officious fool
Broke in the orchard for her, the white mule
She rode with round the terrace — all and each
Would draw from her alike the approving speech,
Or blush, at least. She thanked men, — good! but thanked
Somehow — I know not how — as if she ranked
My gift of a nine-hundred-years-old name
With anybody’s gift. Who’d stoop to blame
This sort of trifling? Even had you skill
In speech — (which I have not) — to make your will
Quite clear to such an one, and say, “Just this
Or that in you disgusts me; here you miss,
Or there exceed the mark” — and if she let
Herself be lessoned so, nor plainly set
Her wits to yours, forsooth, and made excuse,
–E’en then would be some stooping, and I choose
Never to stoop. Oh sir, she smiled, no doubt,
Whene’er I passed her; but who passed without
Much the same smile? This grew; I gave commands;
Then all smiles stopped together. There she stands
As if alive. Will’t please you rise? We’ll meet
The company below, then. I repeat,
The Count your master’s known munificence
Is ample warrant that no just pretence
Of mine for dowry will be disallowed;
Though his fair daughter’s self, as I avowed
At starting, is my object. Nay, we’ll go
Together down, sir. Notice Neptune, though,
Taming a sea-horse, thought a rarity,
Which Claus of Innsbruck cast in bronze for me!


Date: 1842

By: Robert Browning (1812-1889)

Alternative Title: I. Italy