William Wordsworth

Emperors And Kings

How Often Have Temples Rung

EMPERORS and Kings, how oft have temples rung With impious thanksgiving, the Almighty's scorn! How oft above their altars have been hung Trophies that led the good and wise to mourn Triumphant wrong, battle of battle born, And sorrow that to fruitless sorrow clung! Now, from Heaven-sanctioned victory, Peace is sprung; In this firm hour Salvation lifts her horn. Glory to arms! But, conscious that the nerve Of popular reason, long mistrusted, freed Your thrones, ye Powers, from duty fear to swerve! Be just, be grateful; nor, the oppressor's creed Reviving, heavier chastisement deserve Than ever forced unpitied hearts to bleed.

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