« PreviousContinue »
“The tokens on his helmet tell
Of Hereford's high blood he came,
The partridge may the falcon mock,
But swerving from the knight's career,
High in bis stirrups stood the King,
1. The Monarch, Robert Bruce, King , 5. Basinet, helmet. of Scotland.
6. Truncheon, here refers to a mar. 2. The van, the front of the army.
shal's baton. 3. The foe, the English army led by Selle, saddle. King Edward.
8. Tourney rules, regulations for con4. Wight, powerful.
ducting a tournament.
THE DEATH OF KING RICHARD I.
In the tent-door Stood Isabel, and saw the dying King. He, on his couch, an arrow in his breast, Kept down his pain as though it were his foe, And gazed, unshaken, in the eyes of Death. She heard him speak. There stood an archer
At his bed-foot, defiant, in the gripe
They dragg’d him forth. Then was the place
made calm Except for grief; and the King smiled, and
waved His strong hand feebly, and, with steady voice, 15 Slow dying into silence like a horn, Said : “Farewell, England ! farewell, all my
knights! Remember me in battle, as a man Who never turn'd his back, nor broke his faith, Nor fail'd to spare the weak. I have not
A law to keep my name for after-times,
sumed More softly : “Do not weep. Oh, die with me, But do not hold me back! I cannot die
With all this weight of tears about my heart.” And low sobs answer'd through the stillness, yet You could not see who wept. Then stretch'd
the King His arms, and cried : "I see, I see a cross Beneath the palms. Oh, weary waste of sand ! 35 O Cross, my home! let me lie down and sleep At thy dear foot, and dream of deeds to come, Forgetting all the feeble, sinful past !
Father, forgive me ! Is my brother there?
To horse !” Erect he sate, and
shook His sword, cried : “God for England !” and