Gustavus Vasa eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 181 pages of information about Gustavus Vasa.
power bereft,
    Expell’d from Sweden, and by Denmark left,
    The chief whose barks once hid the Baltic wave,
    In Russian fetters pined a haughty slave. 
    From lord to lord by envious fortune toss’d,
    He join’d at last imperial Charles’s host. 
    An exile, doom’d to waste in joyless strife
    The poor remainder of an ill-spent life,
    There long he mourns—­and adverse fates deny,
    His last remaining wish, with fame to die;
    Condemn’d amidst the vulgar dead to fall,
    And sink obscure beneath a foreign wall. 
    So perish all, impell’d by thirst of fame
    To seek in crimes the lustre of a name;
    Who the bright path of genuine greatness seek,
    But, having found it, take a course oblique,
    Where glittering rainbows rise from far, to cheat
    Their wondering eyes, and tempt their eager feet;
    And lead them forward o’er forbidden ground, }
    Where pleasures still decrease, and pains abound, }
    Till in a miry lake, or whelming torrent, drown’d. }
    Thus form’d by art, a fancied meteor flies
    On glowing wings, and sails along the skies,
    Shoots to the stars with imitative blaze
    Of feeble splendor, rivalling their rays;
    With many a glittering track indents its way,
    Wastes as it shines, and sparkling fades away;
    ’Till having spent at length its noisy fires,
    The mimic glory drops, and in a flash expires.



Ernestus enters Dalecarlia—­View of the scene round Mora—­Transition to Gustavus Vasa, who it represented as reclining under a tree near his friend, the pastor’s house, and retracing past events in his mind—­His soliloquy—­After briefly recounting the late disasters of Sweden, and the arguments which induced him to resolve to quit his country, he concludes with a prayer—­Ernestus then appears, and delivers his message from the Genius of Sweden—­Gustavus treats his mission as a fiction, upbraids him as a traitor, and attempts his life, but is prevented by apparent prodigies, which, however, do not entirely convince him or alter his resolution.


    Auspicious Spirit, whosoe’er thou art,
    Who warm, exalt, and fill, the Poet’s heart: 
    Who bade young Homer pour the martial strain,
    And led the Tuscan bard thro’ hell’s profound domain: 
    By whom unequal Camoeens, borne along
    A torrent-stream, majestic, wild, and strong,
    Sung India’s clime disclosed, and fiery showers
    Bursting on Calicut’s perfidious towers: 
    By whom soft Maro caught Maeonian fire,
    And plaintive Ossian tuned his Celtic lyre:—­
    If still ’tis thine o’er Morven’s heaths to rove,
    Tago’s green banks, or Meles’ hallow’d grove,
    Assist me thence—­command

Project Gutenberg
Gustavus Vasa from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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