England from a distance

Anyone associated with England cannot help but be dismayed by recent events. There is beauty and strength in the hearts of the majority of British people and we are all diminished by the chaos in English Cities.

Macaulay wrote a stirring epitaph from the perspective of an exiled Jacobite (supporter of King James II) The language, love of country and people and yearning to return to homeland is a tonic in these grubby times. I defy your audience not to raise a sigh of appreciation when you read this stirring call for peace.

A Jacobite’s Epitaph

To my true king I offered, free from stain
Courage and faith; vain faith, and courage vain.
For him I threw lands, honours, wealth, away,
And one dear hope, that was more prized than they.
For him I languished in a foreign clime, 5
Grey-haired with sorrow in my manhood’s prime;
Heard on Lavernia Scargill’s whispering trees,
And pined by Arno for my lovelier Tees;
Beheld each night my home in fever’d sleep,
Each morning started from the dream to weep;
Till God, who saw me tried too sorely, gave
The resting-place I asked, an early grave.
O thou, whom chance leads to this nameless stone
From that proud country which was once mine own.
By those white cliffs I never more must see,
By that dear language which I spake like thee,
Forget all feuds, and shed one English tear
O’er English dust. A broken heart lies here.

Thomas Babington, Lord Macaulay (1800 – 59)

A rememberence of glorious sentiment and a call for calm and peace in a world which is increasingly becoming full of the bellows of self-serving louts!


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