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ODE ON ST. CECILIA'S DAY.
[This saint is said to have suffered martyrdom in 230 A.D. to sacrifice to idols, and was therefore condemned to death. Much legendary matter is mixed up with her history. She is regarded as the inventor of the organ, and the patroness of music generally.
Descend, ye Nine! descend and sing;
The shrill echoes rebound:
While in more lengthened notes and slow,
Now louder, and yet louder rise,
And fill with spreading sounds the skies;
The strains decay,
And melt away,
In a dying, dying fall.
By music, minds an equal temper show,
Warriors she fires with animated sounds;
Melancholy lifts her head,
But when our country's cause provokes to arms,
But when through all the infernal bounds,
What scenes appeared,
Shrieks of woe,
And cries of tortured ghosts!
But hark! he strikes the golden lyre;
Thy stone, O Sisyphus, stand still,
And the pale spectres dance!
The fairies sink upon their iron beds,
And snakes uncurled hang listening round their heads.
By the streams that ever flow,
To hear the poet's prayer:
O'er death and o'er hell,
A conquest how hard and how glorious!
But soon, too soon, the lover turns his eyes:
Or where Hebrus wanders,
Amidst Rhodope's snows;
See, wild as the winds, o'er the desert he flies;
Yet even in death Eurydice he sung,
Eurydice the floods,
Eurydice the rocks and hollow mountains rung.
Music the fiercest grief can charm,
And fate's severest pang disarm:
Music can soften pain to ease,
And make despair and madness please:
And antedate the bliss above.
And to her Maker's praise confined the sound.
EXECUTION OF LADY JANE GRAY.
This excellent personage was descended from the royal line of England by both her parents.
She was carefully educated in the principles of the Reformation, and her wisdom and virtue rendered her a shining example to her sex. But it was her lot to continue only a short period on this stage of being; for, in early life, she fell a sacrifice to the wild ambition of the Duke of Northumberland, who promoted a marriage between her and his son, Lord Guilford Dudley, and raised her to the throne of England, in opposition to the rights of Mary and Elizabeth. At the time of their marriage she was only about eighteen years of age, and her husband was also very young; a season of life very unequal to oppose the interested views of artful and aspiring men, who, instead of exposing them to danger, should have been the protectors of their innocence and youth.
This extraordinary young person, besides the solid endowments of piety and virtue, possessed the most engaging disposition, the most accomplished parts; and being of an equal age with King Edward VI., she had received all her education with him, and seemed even to possess a greater facility in acquiring every part of manly and classical literature.
She had attained a knowledge of the Roman and Greek languages, as well as of several modern tongues; had passed most of her time in an application to learning, and expressed a great indifference for other occupations and amusements usual with her sex and station. Roger Ascham, tutor to the Lady Elizabeth, having at one time paid her a visit, found her employed in reading Plato, while the rest of the family were engaged in a party of hunting in the park; and upon his admiring the singularity of her choice, she told him that she "received more pleasure from that author than others could reap from all their sport and gaiety."
Her heart, replete with this love of literature and serious studies, and with tenderness towards her husband, who was deserving of her affection, had never opened itself to