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“ That an invisible instinct should frame them
“ To Loyalty unlearn'd * ; Honour untaught;
“ Civility not seen from other ; Valour,
" That wildly grows in them, but yields a crop
As if it had been sow'd !"
He vanquish'd Prince, for safety forc'd to fly,
Amidst those mountains shunn'd each searching eye ;
No threat of terror, or no splendid bribe,
warp to treachery the generous tribe :
For pleas'd with little, and in hardships try'd,
Their wants were all by simple means supplied ;
Exertion bold, and feeling strong combin'd,
Here nurse the noble independent mind.
None here fair loyalty or honour sold,
To purchase pleasure with unhallow'd gold ;
Fearless of pain, yet dreading sore disgrace,
Whose sable blot might sully all their race:
When CHARLES an outlaw shrunk in wilds unknown,
Where long his fathers filld an awful throne;
Though wealth and pow'r combin'd their forces led,
To point the axe at his devoted head,
Safe in the truth of his devoted train,
See ! wealth and pow'r combine their force in vain :
Unhurt he slumbers in his sea-beat cave,
While round his bed the guiltless billows rave *.
Tho' gloomy guards protect the Monarch's gate,
Distrust and fear around his table wait :
And anxious doubts disturb his secret soul,
Of hidden daggers, or the poison'd bowl.
But far from courts, and their delusive arts,
How blest the PRINCE who rules o'er honest hearts !
Unblasted he by treachery's poisonous breath,
And safely smiling 'midst the snares of death.
Oh! say, what gentle heart, what pitying muse,
Can the sad tribute of a tear refuse,
To that brave Youth, who in life's early bloom
Hid all his opening virtues in the tomb;
Forsook the region of tumultuous strife,
And clos’d with pious fraud a blameless life.
Could mildest worth and gentlest graces save,
No weeping muses had adorn'd his grave:
But noble force and dignity of mind,
Despis'd a life in honour's cause resign'd;
Let traitors ashes sleep in sculptur’d urns,
While thee, blest Youth ! thy country's Genius mourns*,
Forgive, ye valiant dead ! ye kindred shades !
That glide with heroes thro' Elysian glades,
The muse whose trembling hands entwine the wreath,
Whose mournful eyes retrace the paths of death :
So fast ye crowd upon her dazzld view,
Like sun-beams on a cypress wet with dew :
She sinks, o'ercome, unequal to relate
Your loyal zeal, or your disastrous fate.
Yet e'er oblivion's leaden gates be clos'd
On humble worth, in life's low vale repos’d,
She'd touch the callous mind, unus'd to feel,
With savage virtue, and the lawless zeal
Of the bold Brothers in their darksome
licentious wont at ease to rove;
Who live like Nature's commoners at large,
Obey no master, and attend no charge,
But wander thro' the grassy glens at will,
Nor ask what owner rear'd the beeves they kill,
Then drag their prey home to their ample cave,
O’er whose dark entrance trembling aspins wave :
* See note No. 28.
And in whose deep recess to soothe repose,
A weeping rill, with tinkling murmur flows :
Returning from the chace or prosp’rous spoil,
'Twas here they hid the fruits of all their toil ;
Yet aw'd by jealous fear, no stranger guest,
E'er view'd their secret haunt, or shar’d their feast.
On every side the deathful ambush lay,
When fate propitious led the Prince that way;
His guide,-a native of the mountains near,
Who often with those Outlaws chac'd the deer,
And knew their minds, by avarice unstain’d,
The price of treachery and blood disdain'd,-
Now forc'd o'er trackless mountains to explore,
The way by which his Lord should gain the shore ;
Once more adventures thro' the snares of death,
And trusts his precious charge to savage hunters faith.
Oh faith unstain'd! and truth beyond compare !
With him the produce of the chace they share,
With furry spoils they deck'd their cave around,
With wholesome cups their liberal board they crown'd,
The hostile camp thro' danger's paths they sought,
And to their Royal Guest unwonted dainties brought * :
For hiin the sanguine paths of death they tread,
And scorn the mighty price that buys the Wand'rer's head.
One brother daily ranges thro' the woods,
Or snares the finny tenants of the floods ;
And one with watchful care attends to
The hostile troops, with scrutinizing eye ;
The third with prompt obedience mark'd his look,
And from his eyes commands in silence took.
Now twenty summer morns beheld renew'd
The rage of rapine, and the waste of blood;
The moon as oft, with want and anguish pale
Saw hopeless wanderers trace each dreary vale;
The plaints of orphan woe, and infant's cries,
With doleful clamour pierce the pitying skies :
The slaughter'd herds bespread th' ensanguin'd ground,
And smoking hamlets lay in ruins round:
In dreary wilds, from human dwelling far,
The wretched remnants of unsparing war,
Precarious life with gather'd herbs sustain,
Or chace the deer and tim'rous fawns in vain ;
For none dare now the levellid tube let fly,
Whose thund'ring sound might wake some danger nigli
No voice of joy is heard, no smile is seen,
No rural pastime sports along the green;
But sad solicitude, and shuddering fear,
And patient sufferance dwell in silence there ;
No hopes of mercy to th' offending train,-
Thy worth and wisdom, Forbes, plead in vain ! *
The royal Exile hears the tale of woe,
And tears unwonted now began to flow :
See note No. 30.