Thomas Babbington Macaulay

(25 October 1800 – 28 December 1859 / Leicestershire)

Epitaph on a Jacobite


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,
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 fevered 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.
Oh 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.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

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  • Touhid Barkat (4/22/2011 6:04:00 AM)

    I came across this poem when I was really young and since have never read it without a sweet crushing pain gripping my heart! The emotions of a man unfortunately placed when seen in context of the poem setting really moves me. (Report) Reply

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