Tales eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 238 pages of information about Tales.
Oft he the clergy join’d, and not a cause
Pertain’d to them but he could quote the laws;
He upon tithes and residence display’d
A fund of knowledge for the hearer’s aid;
And could on glebe and farming, wool and grains
A long discourse, without a pause, maintain. 
   To his experience and his native sense
He join’d a bold imperious eloquence;
The grave, stern look of men inform’d and wise,
A full command of feature, heart, and eyes,
An awe-compelling frown, and fear-inspiring size. 
When at the table, not a guest was seen
With appetite so lingering, or so keen;
But when the outer man no more required,
The inner waked, and he was man inspired. 
His subjects then were those, a subject true
Presents in fairest form to public view;
Of church and state, of law, with mighty strength
Of words he spoke, in speech of mighty length: 
And now, into the vale of years declined,
He hides too little of the monarch-mind: 
He kindles anger by untimely jokes,
And opposition by contempt provokes;
Mirth he suppresses by his awful frown,
And humble spirits, by disdain, keeps down;
Blamed by the mild, approved by the severe,
The prudent fly him, and the valiant fear. 
   For overbearing is his proud discourse,
And overwhelming of his voice the force;
And overpowering is he when he shows
What floats upon a mind that always overflows. 
   This ready man at every meeting rose,
Something to hint, determine, or propose;
And grew so fond of teaching, that he taught
Those who instruction needed not or sought: 
Happy our hero, when he could excite
Some thoughtless talker to the wordy fight: 
Let him a subject at his pleasure choose,
Physic or law, religion or the muse;
On all such themes he was prepared to shine, —
Physician, poet, lawyer, and divine. 
Hemm’d in by some tough argument, borne down
By press of language and the awful frown,
In vain for mercy shall the culprit plead;
His crime is past, and sentence must proceed: 
Ah! suffering man, have patience, bear thy woes —
   For lo! the clock—­at ten the Justice goes. 
This powerful man, on business, or to please
A curious taste, or weary grown of ease,
On a long journey travelled many a mile
Westward, and halted midway in our isle;
Content to view a city large and fair,
Though none had notice—­what a man was there! 
   Silent two days, he then began to long
Again to try a voice so loud and strong;
To give his favourite topics some new grace,
And gain some glory in such distant place;
To reap some present pleasure, and to sow
Seeds of fair fame, in after-time to grow: 
Here will men say, “We heard, at such an hour,
The best of speakers—­wonderful his power.” 
   Inquiry made, he found that day would meet
A learned club, and in the very street: 
Knowledge to gain and give, was the design;
Copyrights
Project Gutenberg
Tales from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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