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I saw--yes, as plain as could be,

I saw the banker's daughter;
She saw nie, too, and called for sal-

Volatile and water.
She said that she had just espoused

A rich old man, conceiving
That I was dead or gone to gaol :

Oh! seeing's not believing !
I saw a friend, and freely spoke

My mind on the transaction;
Her brother heard it, and he called,

Demanding satisfaction.
We met—I fell—that brother's ball

In my left leg receiving ;.
I have two legs, true—one is cork !
Oh! seeing's not believing !

Thomas Haynes Bayley.

VIRGINIA.

(By permission of Messrs. Longman, Greens, de Co.) YE good men of the Commons, with loving hearts and true, Who stand by the bold Tribunes that still have stood

by you,. Come, make a circle round me, and mark my tale with care, A tale of what Rome once hath borne, of what Rome yet

may bear. This is no Grecian fable, of fountains running wine, Of maids with snaky tresses, or sailors turned to swine. Here, in this very Forum, under the noonday sun, In sight of all the people, the bloody deed was done. Old men still creep among us who saw that fearful day, Just seventy years and seven ago, when the wicked Ten

bare sway. Of all the wicked Ten still the names are held accursed, And of all the wicked Ten Appius Claudius was the worst. He stalked along the Forum like King Tarquin in his

pride:

Twelve axes waited on him, six marching on a side.

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The townsmen shrank to right and left, and eyed askance

with fear His lowering brow, his curling mouth, which alway seemed

to sneer ; That brow of hate, that mouth of scorn, marks all the

kindred still, For never was there Claudius yet but wished the Com

mons ill. Nor lacks he fit attendance ; for close behind his heels, With outstretched chin and crouching pace, the client

Marcus steals, His loins girt up to run with speed, be the errand what

it may, And the smile flickering on his cheek, for aught his lord

may say. Just then, as through one cloudless chink in a black

stormy sky Shines out the dewy morning star, a fair young girl

came by, With her small tablets in her hand, and her satchel on

her arm, Home she went bounding from the school, nor dreamed of

shame or harm ; And past those dreaded axes she innocently ran, With bright, frank brow that had not learned to blush at

gaze of man ; And up the sacred street she turned, and, as she danced

along, She warbled gaily to herself lines of the good old song, How for a sport the princes came spurring from the camp, And found Lucrece, combing the fleece, under the midnight

lamp. The maiden sang as sings the lark, when up he darts his

flight, From his nest in the green April corn, to meet the morning

light; And Appius heard her sweet young voice, and saw her

sweet young face, And loved her with the accursed love of his accursed race ; And all along the Forum, and up the sacred street, His vulture eye pursued the trip of those small glancing

feet.

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Over the Alban mountains the light of morning broke; From all the roofs of the Seven Hills curled the thin

wreaths of smoke; The city gates were opened, the Forum all alive, With buyers and with sellers, was humming like a hive; Blithely on brass and timber the craftsman's stroke was

ringing,

And blithely o’er her panniers the market girl was singing, And blithely young Virginia camo smiling from her homeAh! woe for young Virginia, the sweetest maid in RomeWith her small tablets in her hand, and her satchel on

her arm, For she went bounding to the school, nor dreamed of

shame or harm. She crossed the Forum shining with stalls in alleys gay, And just had reached the very spot whereon I stand this

day,

while

smile :

When up the varlet Marcus came; not such as when ereHe crouched behind his patron's heels with the true client He came with lowering forehead, swollen features, and

clenched fist, And strode across Virginia's path, and caught her by the

wrist. Hard strove the frighted maiden, and screamed with look

aghast ; And at her scream from right and left the folk came run

ning fast; The money-changer Crispus, with his thin silver hairs, And Hanno from the stately booth glittering with Punic

wares, And the strong smith, Muræna, grasping a half-forged

brand, And Volero the flesher, his cleaver in his handAll came in wrath and wonder, for all knew that fair child ; And as she passed them twice a day all kissed their hands

and smiled ; And the strong smith, Muræna, gave Marcus such a blow, The caitiff reeled three paces back, and let the maiden go. Yet ere the varlet Marcus again might seize the maid, Who clung tight to Muræna's skirt, and sobbed, and

shrieked for aid,

VIRGINIA.

251 Forth through the throng of gazers the young Icilius

pressed, And stamped his foot, and rent his gown, and smote upor

his breast, And sprang upon that column, by many a minstrel sung, Whereon three mouldering helmets, three rusting swords

are hung, And beckoned to the people, and in bold voice and clear Poured thick and fast the burning words which tyrants

quake to hear : “Now, by your children's cradles, now, by your father's

graves, Be men to-day, Quirites, or be for ever slaves ! For this did Servius give us laws ? For this did Lucrece

bleed ? For this was the great vengeance wrought on Tarquin's

evil seed? For this did those false sons make red the axes of their

sire ? For this did Scavola's right hand hiss in the Tuscan fire! Shall the vile fox-earth awe the race that stormed the lion's

den ? Shall we, who could not brook one lord, crouch to the

wicked Ten ? Oh! for that ancient spirit which curbed the Senate's will; Oh! for the tents which in old time whitened the Sacred

Hill! In those brave days our fathers stood firmly side by side ; They faced the Marcian fury; they tamed the Fabian

pride ; They drove the fiercest Quinctius an outcast forth from

Rome; They sent the haughtiest Claudius with shivered fasces

home. But what their care bequeathed us, our madness flung

away : All the ripe fruit of threescore years was blighted in a day. Exult, ye proud patricians! The hard-fought fight is o'er. We strove for honours--'twas in vain: for freedom-'tis

no more, No crier to the polling summons the eager throng ; No Tribune breathes the word of might that guards the

weak from wrong.

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Our very hearts that were so high sink down beneath your

will. Riches, and lands, and power, and state--ye have them :

keep them still. Still keep the holy fillets; still keep the purple gown, The axes, and the curule chair, the car and laurel crown, Still press us for your cohorts, and when the fight is done, Still fill your garners from the soil which our good swords

have won ; Still, like a spreading ulcer, which leech-craft may not cure, Let your foul usance eat away the substance of the poor ; Still let your haggard debtors bear all their fathers bore ; Still let your dens of torment be noisome as of yore ; No fire when Tiber freezes; no air in dog-star heat ; And store of rods for freeborn backs, and holes for free

born feet. Heap heavier still the fetters; bar closer still the grate; Patient as sheep we yield us up unto your cruel hate. But, by the shades beneath us, and by the gods above, Add not unto your cruel hate your yet more cruel love! Have ye not graceful ladies, whose spotless lineage springs From consuls, and high pontiffs, and ancient Alban kings? Ladies who deign not on our paths to set their tender feet, Who from their cars look down with scorn upon the

wondering street; Who in Corinthian mirrors their own proud smiles behold, And breathe of Capuan odours and shine with Spanish gold Then leave the poor plebeian his single tie to lifeThe sweet, sweet love of daughter, of sister, and of wife, The gentle speech, the balm for all that his vexed soul

endures, The kiss in which he half forgets e'en such a yoke as yours. Still let the maiden's beauty swell the father's breast with

pride ; Still let the bridegroom's arms enfold an unpolluted bride. Spare us the inexpiable wrong, the unutterable shame, That turns the coward's heart to steel, the sluggard's blood

to flame, Lest, when our latest hope is fled, ye taste of our despair, And learn by proof, in some wild hour, how much the

wretched dare."

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