[Page 354]



1 WHEN the British warrior queen,
2 Bleeding from the Roman rods,
3 Sought with an indignant mien,
4 Counsel of her country's gods,
5 Sage beneath a spreading oak
6 Sat the Druid, hoary chief,
7 Ev'ry burning word he spoke,
8 Full of rage and full of grief.
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9 Princess! if our aged eyes
10 Weep upon thy matchless wrongs,
11 'Tis because resentment ties
12 All the terrors of our tongues.
13 Rome shall perish write that word
14 In the blood that she has spilt;
15 Perish hopeless and abhorr'd,
16 Deep in ruin as in guilt.
17 Rome for empire far renown'd,
18 Tramples on a thousand states,
19 Soon her pride shall kiss the ground
20 Hark! the Gaul is at her gates.
21 Other Romans shall arise,
22 Heedless of a soldier's name,
23 Sounds, not arms, shall win the prize,
24 Harmony the path to fame.
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25 Then the progeny that springs
26 From the forests of our land,
27 Arm'd with thunder, clad with wings,
28 Shall a wider world command.
29 Regions Caesar never knew,
30 Thy posterity shall sway,
31 Where his eagles never flew,
32 None invincible as they.
33 Such the bards prophetic words,
34 Pregnant with celestial fire,
35 Bending as he swept the chords
36 Of his sweet but awful lyre.
37 She with all a monarch's pride,
38 Felt them in her bosom glow,
39 Rush'd to battle, fought and died,
40 Dying, hurl'd them at the foe.
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41 Ruffians, pittiless as proud,
42 Heav'n awards the vengeance due,
43 Empire is on us bestow'd,
44 Shame and ruin wait for you.


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Title (in Source Edition): BOADICEA, AN ODE.
Themes: patriotism; glory of the British nation
Genres: ode

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Source edition

Cowper, William, 1731-1800. Poems: by William Cowper, of the Inner Temple, Esq. London: printed for J. Johnson, 1782, pp. 354-357. [4],367,[1]p. ; 8⁰. (ESTC T14895; OTA K027775.000) (Page images digitized by the University of California Libraries.)

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The text has been typographically modernized, but without any silent modernization of spelling, capitalization, or punctuation. The source of the text is given and all editorial interventions have been recorded in textual notes. Based on the electronic text originally produced by the TCP project, this ECPA text has been edited to conform to the recommendations found in Level 5 of the Best Practices for TEI in Libraries version 4.0.0.

Other works by William Cowper