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* That owned the virtuous ring and glass,

And of the wondrous horse of brass U5 On which the Tartar king did ride; And if aught else great bards beside In sage and solemn tunes have sung, Of tourneys, and of trophies hung, ^ Of forests, and enchantments drear, 120 Where more is meant then meets the ear. Thus, Nighty oft see me in thy pale career, Till^ivn^sliifearSorn appear, Not mckedand frounced, as she was wont "With the Attic boy to hunt, ———~ 125 But kerchieft in a comely cloud, — While rocking winds are piping loud, Or ushered with a shower still, /When the gust hath blown his fill,I Ending _C£4he ^^^fjdf^A^ 130 With minute-drops from on the ea ^And, when the sun begins to fling His flaring beams, me, Goddess, bring To arched walks of twilight groves, id shadows brown, that Sylvan loves, pine, or monumental oak, \ here the rude axe with heaved stroke VWas never heard the nymphs to daunt, K)r fright them from their hallowed hauntu «. There in close covert, by some brook, 140 Where no profaner eye may look, p. Hide me from day's garish eye,

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While the bee with honeyed thigh,
That at her flowery work doth sing,
And the waters murmuring,
With such consort as they keep,

intice the dewy-feathered Sleep.
And let some strange mysterious dream
\ Wave at his wings, in airy stream"
Of lively portraiture displac ed,
Softly on my eyelids laid;
And, as I wake, sweet music breathe
Above, about, or underneath,

ent by some Spirit to mortals good,
Or the unseen Genius of the wood.
pBut let my due feet never fail
To walk the studious cloister's pale,
And love the high emrjo^TCcfroof,
Wit^an^icuio^ jpil^arsmassy-proof,
Anotstonea windows richly dight,

asting a dim religious light.
There let the pealing organ blow,
To the full-voiced quire below,
In service high and anthems clear,
As may with sweetness, through mine ear,
Dissolve me into ecstasies,
L. And bring all Heaven before mine eyes.
j-And may at last my weary age
Find out^the^ peacefulJ^erpnitage.
The hairy aawnana mossycetfp*
Where I may sit and rightly spell

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every star that heaven doth shew, And every herb that sips the dew, Till old experience do attain To something like prophetic strain, iw These pleasures, Melancholy, give: .And I with thee will choose to live.

IT

COMUS

A Masque Presented At Ludlow Castle, 1634, Before The Earl Of Bridgewater, Then President Of Wales

The Persons

The Attendant Spirit, afterwards in the habit of

Thyrsis.
Comus, with his crew.
The Lady.
First Brother.
Second Brother.
Sabrina, the Nymph.

The Chief Persons which presented were
The Lord Brackley;
Mr. Thomas Egerton, his brother;
The Lady Alice Egerton.

The First Scene Discovers a Wild Wood
The Attendant Spirit descends or enters

Before the starry threshold of Jove's court

My mansion is, where those immortal shapes

Of bright aerial spirits live insphered

In regions mild of calm and serene air,

Above the smoke and stir of this dim spot v

66

Which men call Earth, and, with low-thoughted care,

Confined and pestered in this pinfold here,
Strive to keep up a frail and feverish being,
Unmindful of the crown that Virtue gives,

10 After this mortal change, to her true servants
Amongst the enthron'd gods on sainted seats.
Yet some there be that by due steps aspire
To lay their just hands on that golden key
That opes the palace of eternity.

is To such my errand is; and, but for such,
I would not soil these pure ambrosial weeds
With the rank vapours of this sin-worn mould.

But to my task. Neptune, besides the sway
Of every salt flood and each ebbing stream, •

20 Took in by lot, 'twixt high and neffier Jow, L
Imperial rule of all the sea-girt isles
That, like to rich and various gems, inlay
The unadorned bosom of the deep;
Which he, to grace his tributary gods,

25 By course commits to several government,
And gives them leave to wear their sapphire
crowns

And wield their little tridents. But this Isle, The greatest and the best of all the main, He quarters to his blue-haired deities; s0 And all this tract that fronts the falling sun ^^ioble Peer of mickle trust and power —" Has in his charge, with tempered awe to guide

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