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Whilst in the beauty of those goodly dames,
Wherein wise nature her own skill admires, He feeds those secret and unpiercing flames,
Nursed in fresh youth and gotten in desires :
Won with this man, this princely priest to dwell,
For greater hire than bounty could devise ; For her whose praise, makes praise itself excel,
Fairer than fairness, and as wisdom wise :
In her, her sisters severally were seen,
Of every one she was the rarest part, Who in her presence any time had been,
Her angel eye transpierced, not her heart.
For Zipporah, a shepherd's life he leads,
And in her sight deceives the subtil hours ; And for her sake oft roves the flowery meads
With those sweet spoils to enrich her rural bowers.
Up to Mount Horeb with his flock he took,
The flock wise Jethro willed him to keep; Which well he guarded with his shepherd's crook,
Goodly the shepherd, goodly were the sheep:
To feed and fold full warily he knew,
From fox and wolf his wandering flocks to free. The goodliest flowers that in the meadows grew,
Were not more fresh and beautiful than he.
Gently his fair flocks lessowed he along,
Through the trim pastures freely at his leisure, Now on the hills, the valleys then among,
Which seem themselves to offer to his pleasure ;
Whilst feathered sylvans from each blooming spray,
With murmuring waters whistling as they creep, Make him such music to abridge the way,
As fits a shepherd company to keep.
When, lo! that great and fearful God of might
To that fair Hebrew strangely doth appear, In a bush, burning visible and bright,
Yet unconsuming, as no fire there were :
With hair erected, and upturned eyes,
Whilst he, with great astonishment admires, Lo! that Eternal Rector of the skies
Thus breathes to Moses from those quickening fires :
“ Shake off thy sandals,” saith the thundering God,
“ With humbled feet my wondrous power to see ; For that the soil where thou hast boldly trod,
Is most select and hallowed unto me :
“ The righteous Abraham for his God me knew,
Isaac and Jacob trusted in my name, And did believe my covenant was true,
Which to their seed shall propagate the same.
“ My folk that long in Egypt had been barred,
Whose cries have entered heaven's eternal gate, Our zealous mercy openly hath heard,
Kneeling in tears at our Eternal State ;
“ And am come down, then, in the land to see,
Where streams of milk through fruitful valleys flow, And luscious honey dropping from the tree,
Load the full flowers that in their shadows grow:
“By thee my power am purposed to try,
That from rough bondage shalt the Hebrews bring, Bearing that great and fearful embassy
To that monarchaic and imperious king.
“And on this mountain, standing in thy sight,
When thou returnest from that conquered land, Thou hallowed altars unto me shalt light,
This for a token certainly shall stand.”
VIRTUE NOT HEREDITARY.
That height and godlike purity of mind
Resteth not still where titles most adorn; With any, not peculiarly confined
To names, and to be limited doth scorn:
Richest and poorest, both alike are born ;
Pity it is, that to one virtuous man
That mark him lent, to gentry to advance, Which, first by noble industry he wan,
His baser issue after should enhance ; And the rude slave not any good that can
Such should thrust down by what is his by chance. As had not he been first that him did raise, Ne'er had his great heir wrought his grandsire's praise.
You that but boast your ancestor's proud style,
And the large stem whence your vain greatness grew: When you yourselves are ignorant and vile,
Nor glorious thing dare actually pursue,
Doubting their worth should else discover you,
Virtue, but poor, God in this earth doth place, 'Gainst this rude world to stand
his right; To suffer sad affliction and disgrace,
Not ceasing to pursue her with despite: Yet when of all she is accounted base,
And seeming in most miserable plight, Out of her power new life to her doth take: Least then dismayed, when all do her forsake.
That is the man of an undaunted spirit,
For her dear sake that offereth him to die ;
Looketh upon it with a pleased eye;
Daring the proudest menaces defy;
SIR HENRY WOTTON.
This elegant writer was born in Kent, in 1568. He was appointeå to several public offices in the reign of Elizabeth ; but after a while he fell into disgrace, and then he lived abroad, till the accession of James I., when he was appointed ambassador to Venice. He was the author of a variety of works, chiefly upon political subjects; of some of a religious character, and of a few poetical pieces of great beauty. He died in 1640.
FAREWELL TO THE VANITIES OF THE WORLD.
FAREWELL, ye gilded follies, pleasing troubles ;
Fame, honor, beauty, state, train, blood, and birth,
I would be great, but that the sun doth still
I have wished all; but now I wish for neither-
Would the world now adopt me for her heir,
And hold one minute of this holy leisure,
Welcome, pure thoughts, welcome, ye silent groves,