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the Royalists and Yorkists, the defeatof Richard's perfidious attempt, is well known. The castle of Ludlow, says Hall, "was spoyled." The king's troops seized on whatever was valuable in it; and, according to the same chronicler, hither "the king sent the dutchess of Yorke with her two younger sons to be kept in ward, with the dutchess of Buckingham her sister, where she continued a certain space."

á chimney excellently wrought in the best cham ber, is St. Andrewes Crosse joyned to prince Arthurs armes in the hall windowe." The poet also notices the "Chappell most trim and costly sure:" about which are armes in colours of sondrie kings, but chiefly noblemen." He then specifies in prose, "that sir Harry Sidney being lord president, buylt twelve roumes in the sayd castle, which goodly buildings doth shewe a great beautie to the same. He made also a goodly wardrobe underneath the new parlor, and repayrd an old tower, called Mortymer's Tower, to keepe the auncient records in the same; and he repayred a fayre roune under the court house, to the same entent and purpose, and made a great wall about the woodyard, and built a most brave condit within the inner court: and all the newe buildings over the gate sir Harry Sidney (in his daies and government there) made and set out to the honour of the queene, and glorie of the castle. There are in a goodly or stately place set out my lord earle of Warwicks armes, the earle of Darbie, the earle of Worcester, the earle of Pembroke, and sir Harry Sidarmes in like maner: al these stand on the left hand of the chamber. On the other side are the arms of Northwales and Southwales, two red lyons and two golden lyons, prince Arthurs. At the end of the dyning chamber, there is a pretie device how the hedgehog brake the chayne, and came from Ireland to Ludloe." The device is probably an allusion to sir Henry's armorial bearings, of which two porcupines were the crest. Sir Henry Sidney caused also many salutary regulations to be made in the court. See Sidney State Papers, vol. i. p. 143 and p. 170, in which are stated the great sums of money he had expended, and the indefatigable diligence he had exerted in the discharge of his office.

The castle was soon afterwards put into the possession of Edward duke of York, afterwards king Edward IV., who at that time resided in the neighbouring castle of Wigmore, and who, in order to revenge the death of his father, had collected some troops in the Marches, and had | attached the garrison to his cause. On his accession to the throne the castle was repaired by him, and a few years after was made the court of his son, the prince of Wales; who was sent hither by him, as Hall relates, "for justice to be doen in the Marches of Wales, to the end that by the authoritie of bis presence, the wild Welshmenne and evill disposed personnes should refraine from their accustomed murthers and outrages." Sir Henry Sidney, some years afterwards, observed,neys that, since the establishment of the lord president and council, the whole country of Wales have been brought from their disobedient and barbarous incivility, to a civil and obedient condition; and the bordering English counties had been freed from those spoils and felonies, with which the Welsh, before this institution, had annoyed them. See Sidney State-Papers, vol. i. p. 1. On the death of Edward, his eldest son was here first proclaimed king by the name of Edward V.

In the reign of Henry VII. his eldest son, Arthur, prince of Wales, inhabited the castle; in which great festivity was observed upon his marriage with Catherine of Arragon; an event that was soon followed, within the same walls, by the untimely and lamented death of that accomplished prince.

In 1616, the creation of prince Charles (afterwards king Charles I.) to the principality of Wales, and earldom of Chester, was celebrated here with uncommon magnificence. It became next distinguished by "one of the most memorable and honourable circumstances in the course of its history," THE REPRESENTATION OF COMUS in 1634, when the earl of Bridgewater was lord president, and inhabited it. A scene in the Mask presented both the castle and the town of Ludlow. Afterwards, as I have been informed, Charles the first, going to pay a visit at Powis castle, was here splendidly received and entertained, on his journey.

But " pomp, and feast,'

and revelry, with mask, and antique pageantry,' were soon succeeded in Ludlow castle by the din of arms. During the unhappy civil war it was garrisoned for the king; who, in his flight from Wales, staid a night it. See Iter Carolinum in, "Wednesday

The castle had now long been the palace of the prince of Wales annexed to the principality, and was the habitation appointed for his deputies the lords presidents of Wales, who held in it the court of the Marches. It would therefore hardly have been supposed, that its external splendour should have suffered neglect, if Powel, the Welsh historian, had not related, that " sir Henry Sidney, who was made lord president in 1564, repaired the castle of Ludlowe which is the cheefest house within the Marches, being in great decaie, as the chape!l, the court-house, and a faire fountaine." Sée Mr. Warton's second edit. p. 124, where he quotes D. Powell's Hist. of Cambria, edit. 1580. 4to. p. 401. Sir H. Sidney, however, was made lord president in the second year of Eli-Gutch's Collect. Cur. vol. ii. 443. zabeth, which was in 1559. See Sidney StatePapers, vol. i. Mémoirs prefixed, p. 86. Sir Henry's munificence to this stately fabric is more particularly recorded by T. Churchyard, in his poem called, The Worthines of Wales, 4to. Lond., 1578. The chapter is entitled the Castle of Ludloe," in which it is related, that A few years after this event, the goods of the "Sir Harry built many things here worthie castle were inventoried and sold. The rev. Mr praise and memorie." From the same informa-Ayscough, of the British Museum, has obligtion we learn the following particulars. "Over ingly directed me to a priced catalogue of the VOL. VII.

Aug.st 6.th 1645, at Old Radnor, supper, a yeoman's house; the court dispersed. Thursday the 7.th to LUDLOW CASTLE, no dinner, Col. Wodehouse. Friday the 8th to Bridgnorth, &c." The castle was at length delivered up to the parliament in June 1646.

I i

"In the Princes Chamber. One standing beddstead, covered with watchet damaske, with all the furniture suitable thereunto belonging, &c. Sold Mr Bass ye 11.th of March 1650 for 36€ 10s.

"One suit of old tapistry hangings cont.


all 120 ells at 2 per ell; Sold Mr Cleam.t ye 18.th January 1650 for 15£.

"In the Governour's Quarter. Two pictures, ye one of the late king, and the other of his queen,


10. Sold to Mr Bass.

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furniture, with the names of the purchasers, in | Buck's Antiquities, published in 1774, which must Harl. MSS. No. 4898, and No. 7352: from have been written many years before, it is said which I select a few curious articles. and the sword, with the velvet hangings, and Many of the royal apartments are yet entire; some of the furniture are still preserved." Grose in his Antiquities, published about the same time, extracting from the Tour through Great Britain what he pronounces a very just and accurate account of this castle, represents the chapel having abundance of coats of arms upon the pannels, and the hall decorated with the same ornaments, together with lances, spears, firelocks, and old armour. Of these curious appendages to the grandeur of both, little perhaps is now known. Of the chapel, a circular building within the inner court is now all that remains. Over several of the stable doors, however, are still the arms of queen Elizabeth, and the earl of Pembroke. Over the inner gate of the castle, are also some remains of the arms of the Sidney family, with an inscription denoting the date of the queen's reign, and of sir Henry Sidney's residence, in 1581, together with the following words, Hominibus ingratis lothis remarkable address. Perhaps sir Henry quimini lapides. No reason has been assigned for Sidney might intend it as an allusion to his predecessors, who had suffered the stately fabric to decay; as a memorial also, which no successor might behold without determining to avoid its application: Nonne IPSAM DOMUM metuel, ne quam voČEM ELICIAT, nonne PARIETES CONCIOS?1


"One large old Bible, 6. Sold to Mr Bass. "One old surplice of holland, 5. Sold to Mr Bass.

"Qne dammaske table-cloth in length tenn yards, 2. Sold to Mr Rog." Humphrey. "A cupp & cover of plate, weighing 35 03.

£ 8

at 5 per 03. 8. 15. Sold to Mr Brown.
"A pulpitt cloth & a carpett of old crimson
velvett & 7 old cushions, val. at 8. Sold to

Mr Brown.


"In the Shovell-board Room. Nine peeces of green kersey hangings paned wth gilt leather, 8 window curtaines, 5 window peeces, a chimney peece, and curtaine rodds, and three other small peeces in a presse in ye wardrobe val. togeather 25.£. WITH Y PROTECTOR.

"In ye Hall. Two long tables, two square tables with formes, one fire-grate, one side table, a court cuppboard, two wooden figures of beasts, 3 candlesticks, & racks for armour, 1.£. Sold to Mr Bass."

Mr. Dovaston, of the Nursery, near Oswestry, who visited the castle in 1768, has acquainted me, that the floors of the great council chamber were then pretty entire, as was the stair-case. The covered steps leading to the chapel were remaining, but the covering of the chapel was fallen: yet the arms of some of the lords presiNo other remarkable circumstances distinguish dents, painted on the walls, were visible. In the history of this castle, till the court of the the great council chamber was inscribed on the Marches was abolished, and the lords presidents wall a sentence from 1 Sam. xii. 3. All of which were discontinued, in 1688. From that period are now wholly gone. The person, who showed its decay commenced. It has since been gradu- this gentleman the castle, informed him that, by ally stript of its curious and valuable ornaments. tradition, the Mask of Comus was performed in No longer inhabited by its noble guardians, it the council chamber. Among the valuable colHas fallen into neglect; and neglect has encoulections of the same gentleman is an extensive raged plunder. "It will be no wonder that this account of Ludlow town and castle from the most noble castle is in the very perfection of decay, early times, to the first year of William and Mawhen we acquaint our readers, that the present ry, copied by him from a MS. of the rev. Rich. inhabitants live upon the sale of the materials. Podmore, A. B. rector of Coppenhall in Co. All the fine courts, the royal apartments, halls, Pal. of Chester, and curate of Cundover, Salop, and rooms of state, lie open and abandoned, and collected with great care from ancient and ausome of them falling down." Tour throughthentic books. From this interesting compilaGreat Britain, quoted by Grose, art. Ludlow tion I have been informed that the court of the Castle. See also two remarkable instances re- Marches was erected by Edward IV. in honour lated by Mr. Hodges in his Account of the Castle, of the earls of March, from whom he was desp. 39. The appointment of a governor, or stew-cended, as the court of the duchy of Lancaster had ard of the castle, is also at present discontinued. Butler enjoyed the stewardship, which was a lucrative as well as an honourable post, while the principality court existed. And, in an apartment over the gateway of the castle, he is said to have written his inimitable Hudibras. The poet had been secretary to the earl of Carbery, who was lord president of Wales; and who, in the great rebellion, had afforded an asylum to the excelTent Jeremy Taylor.

In the account of Ludlow castle, prefixed to

been before by Henry IV. in honour of the house of Lancaster: that the household of Ludlow castle was numerous and splendid, and that the lord president lived in great state. The chaplain had the yearly fee of £.50 with diet for himself and one servant. The other officers of the court

had fees and salaries suitable to their several

ranks. See also Sidney State Papers, vol. i. p. 5, 6. where the “Fees annually allowed to the

Cicero pro Cælio. sect. 25.

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ansel and commissioners, and the officers wages," An. 3 Edw. VI. are set forth. The Court consisted of the lord president, vice-president, and council, who were composed of the lord chancellor, lord treasurer, lord keeper of the privy seal, lord treasurer of the king's household, chancellor of the exchequer, principal secretary of state, the chief justices of England, and of the Common Pleas, the chief baron of the Exchequer, the justices of Assize for the counties of Salop, Gloucester, Hereford, and Monmouth, the justice of the grand Session in Wales, the chief justice of Chester, attorney and solicitor general, with many of the neighbouring nobility, and with various subordinate officers. See Mr. Hodges's Hist. Acc. of the Castle, p. 67, 68. From the inedited tour of a traveller in 1 535, communicated to me by Joseph Cooper Walker, esq. it appears that there was also a secretary to the court; the office of which was then filled by lord Goring, and said to be worth 3000. At the same time, sir John Bridgeman was the chief justice of the court. The traveller adds, that in the absence of the president, the chief justice represented the president's person, and kept "the king's house in the castle, which is a prettie little neate castle, standing high, kept in good repaire:" and that he was "invited by the judge to dinner, and verye kindly and respectfully entertained."


The situation of the castle is delightful, and romantic. It is built in the north-west angle of the town upon a rock, commanding an extensive and beautiful prospect northward. On the west it is shaded by a lofty hill, and washed by the river. It is strongly environed by walls of im'mense height and thickness, and fortified with round and square towers at irregular distances. The walls are said by Grose to have formerly been a mile in compass; but Leland in that measure includes those of the town. The interior apartments were defended on one side by a deep ditch, cut out of the rock; on the other, by an almost inaccessible precipice overlooking the vale of Corve. The castle was divided into two separate parts: the castle, properly speaking, in which were the palace and lodgings; and the green, or outwork, which Dr. Stukely supposes to have been called the Barbican. See his Itinerary, Iter iv. p. 70. The green takes in a large compass of ground, in which were the court of judicature and records, the stables, garden, bowling-green, and other offices. In the front of the castle, a spacious plain or lawn formerly extended two miles. In 1772 a public walk round the castle was planted with trees, and laid out with much taste, by the munificence of the countess of Powis. See Mr. Hodges's Hist. Acc. p. 54.

displayed. But at the same time it is a melancholy monument, exhibiting the irreparable effects of pillage and dilapidation.



ball, &c."

This court was dissolved by act of parliament Mix'd dance, and wanton mask, or midnight in the first year of William and Mary, at the humble suit of all the gentlemen and inhabitants of the principality of Wales; by whom it was represented as an intolerable grievance.

The exterior appearance of this ancient edifice bespeaks, in some degree, what it once has been. Its mutilated towers and walls still afford an idea of the strength and beauty, which so noble a specimen of Norman architecture formerly


IN Fletcher's Faithful Shepherdess, an Arcadian comedy, recently published, Milton found many touches of pastoral and superstitious imagery, congenial with his own conceptions. Many of these, yet with the highest improvements, he has transferred in Comus: together with the general cast and colouring of the piece. He catched also from the lyric rhymes of Fletcher, that Dorique delicacy, with which sir Henry Wotton was so much delighted in the songs of Milton's drama. Fletcher's comedy was coldly received the first night of its performance. But it had ample revenge in this conspicuous and indisputable mark of Milton's approbation. It was afterwards represented as a Mask at court, before the king and queen on twelfth-night, in 1633. I know not, indeed, if this was any recommendation to Milton; who, in the Paradise Lost, speaks contemptuously of these interludes, which had been among the chief diversions of an elegant and liberal monarch. B. iv. 767.

And in his Ready and easy Way to establish a free Commonwealth, written in 1660, on the inconveniences and dangers of readmitting kingship, and with a view to counteract the noxious humour of returning to bondage, he says, “a king must be adored as a demigod, with a dissolute and haughty court about him, of vast expense and luxury, masks and revels, to the debauching our prime gentry, both male and female, not in their pastimes only, &c." Pr. W. i. 590. I believe the whole compliment was paid to the genius of Fletcher. But in the mean time it should be remembered, that Miltou had not yet contracted an aversion to courts and courtamusements; and that, in L'Allegro, masks are among his pleasures. Nor could he now disapprove of a species of entertainment, to which as a writer he was giving encouragement. The royal masks, however, did not, like Comus, always abound with Platonic recommendations of the doctrine of chastity.

The ingenious and accurate Mr. Reed has pointed out a rude out-line, from which Milton seems partly to have sketched the plan of the fable of Comus. See Biograph. Dramat. ii. p. 441. It is an old play, with this title, The old Wives Tale, a pleasant conceited Comedie, plaied by the Queens Maiesties players. Written by G. P. [i. e. George Peele.] Printed at London by John Danter, and are to be sold by Ralph Hancocke and John Hardie, 1595. In quarto. This very scarce and curious piece exhibits, among other parallel incidents, two bro thers wandering in quest of their sister, whom an enchanter had imprisoned. This magician had learned his art from his mother Meroe, as Co,.

mus had been instructed by his mother Circe. The Brothers call out on the Lady's name, and Echo replies. The enchanter had given her a potion which suspends the powers of reason, and superinduces oblivion of herself. The Brothers afterwards meet with an old man who is also skilled in magic; and, by listening to his soothsaying, they recover their lost sister. But not till the enchanter's wreath had been torn from his head, his sword wrested from his hand, a glass broken, and a light extinguished. The names of some of the characters, as Sacrapant, Chorebus, and others, are taken from the Orlando Furioso. The history of Meroe a witch, may be seen in The xi Bookes of the Golden Asse, containing the Metamorphosie of Lucius Apuleius, interlaced with sundrie pleasant and delectable Tales, &c. Translated out of the Latin into English by William Adlington, Lond. 1566. See Chap. iii. "How Socrates in his returne from Macedony to Larissa was spoyled and robbed, and how he fell acquainted with one Meroe a witch." And Chap. iv. "How Meroe the witch turned divers persons into miserable beasts." Of this book there were other editions, in 1571, 1596, 1600, and 1639. All in quarto and the black letter. The translator was of University College. See also Apuleius in the original. A Meroe is mentioned by Ausonius, Epigr. xix.

Pecle's play opens thus.

Anticke, Frolicke, and Fantasticke, three adventurers, are lost in a wood, in the night. They agree to sing the old song,

"Three merrie men, and three merrie men, And three merrie men be wee;

I in the wood, and thou on the ground,
And Jacke sleeps in the tree."

They hear a dog, and fancy themselves to be near some village. A cottager appears, with a lantern: on which Frolicke says, "I perceiue the glimryng of a gloworme, a candle, or a catseye, &c." They entreat him to show the way: otherwise they say, "wee are like to wander among the owlets and hobgoblins of the forest." He invites them to his cottage; and orders his wife to lay a crab in the fire, to "rost for lambeswool, &c." They sing

"When as the rie reach to the chin,
And chopcherrie, chopcherrie ripe within;
Strawberries swimming in the creame,
And schoole-boyes playing in the streame, &c."


At length to pass the time trimly, it is proposed that the wife shall tell "a merry winters tale," or, "an old wiues winters tale," of which sort of stories she is not without a score. begius, There was a king, or duke, who had a most beautiful daughter, and she was stolen away by a necromancer, who turning himself into a dragon, carried her in his mouth to his castle. The king sent out all his men to find his daughter; "at last, all the king's men went Qut so long, that hir two brothers went to seeke hir." Immediately the two brothers enter, and speak.

"1 Br. Vpon these chalkie cliffs of Albion, We are arriued now with tedious toile, &c. To seeke our sister, &c.”—

A soothsayer enters, with whom they converse about the lost lady. "Sooths. Was she fayre? 2 Br. The fayrest for white and the purest for redde, as the blood of the deare or the driven snowe, &c." In their search, Echo replies to their call. They find too late that their sister is under the captivity of a wicked magician, and that she had tasted his cup of oblivion. In the close, after the wreath is torn from the magician's head, and he is disarmed and killed, by a Spirit in the shape and character of a beautiful page of fifteen years old, she still remains subject to the magician's enchantment. But in a subsequent scene the Spirit enters, and declares, that the sister cannot be delivered but by a lady, who is neither maid, wife, nor widow. The Spirit blows a magical horn, and the lady appears; she dissolves the charm, by breaking a glass, and extinguishing a light, as I have before recited. A curtain is withdrawn, and the sister is seen seated and asleep. She is disenchanted and restored to her senses, having been spoken to thrice. She then rejoins her two brothers, with whom she returns home; and the Boy-spirit vanishes under the earth. The magician is here called "inchanter vile," as in Comus, v. 907.

There is another circumstance in this play, taken from the old English Apuleius. It is where the Old Man every night is transformed by our magician into a bear, recovering in the day-time his natural shape.

Among the many feats of magic in this play, a bride newly married gains a marriage-portion by dipping a pitcher into a well. As she dips, there is a voice:

"Faire maiden, white and red,
Combe me smoothe, and stroke my head,
And thou shall haue some cockell bread!
Gently dippe, but not too deepe,

For feare thou make the golden beard to weepe!"
"Faire maider, white and redde,
Combe me smooth, and stroke my head:
And euery haire a sheaue shall be,
And euery sheaue a golden tree!"

With this stage-direction, "A head comes op full of gold; she combes it into her lap."

I must not omit, that Shakespeare seems also to have had an eye on this play. It is in the scene where "The Haruest-men enter with a Song," Again, "Enter the Haruest-men singing with wo men in their handes." Frolicke says, "Who have we here, our amourous haruest starres?" They sing,

"Loe, here we come a reaping a reaping,
To reape our haruest-fruite;

And thus we passe the yeare so long,
And neuer be we mute."

Compare the Mask in the Tempest, A. iv. S. i. where Iris says,

"You sun-burnt sicklemen, of August weary,
Come hither from the furrow, and be merry;
Make holy-day: your rye-straw hats put on,
And these fresh nymphs encounter every one
In country footing."

Where is this stage-direction, "Enter certain
Reapers, properly habited: they join with the
nymphs in a graceful dance." The Tempest pro-
bably did not appear before the year 1612.

BEFORE the starry threshold of Jove's court
My mansion is, where those immortal shapes
Of bright aereal spirits live inspher'd
In regions mild of calm and serene air,
Above the smoke and stir of this dim spot,
Which men call Earth; and, with low-thoughted


Confin'd and pester'd in this pin-fold here,
Strive to keep up a frail and feverish being,
Unmindful of the crown that Virtue gives,
After this mortal change, to her true servants, 10
Amongst the enthron'd gods on sainted seats.
Yet some there be, that by due steps aspire
lay their just hands on that golden key,
That opes the palace of Eternity:
To such my errand is; and, but for such,
I would not soil these pure ambrosial weeds
With the rank vapours of this sin-worn mould.

That Milton had his eye on this ancient drama, which might have been the favourite of his early youth, perhaps it may be at least affirmed with as much credibility, as that he conceiv-To ed the Paradise Lost, from seeing a Mystery at Florence, written by Andreini a Florentine in 1617, entitled Adamo.

In the mean time it must be confessed, that Milton's magician Comus, with his cup and wand, is ultimately founded on the fable of Circe. The effects of both characters are much the same. They are both to be opposed at first with force and violence. Circe is subdued by the virtues of the herb moly which Mercury gives to Ulysses, and Comus by the plant haemony which the Spirit gives to the two Brothers. About the year 1615, a mask called the Inner Temple Masque, written by William Browne, author of Britannia's Pastorals, which I have frequently cited, was presented by the students of the Inner Temple. See Notes on Com. v, 252, 636, 659. It has been lately printed from a manuscript in the library of Emanuel College: but I have been informed, that a few copies were printed soon after the presentation. It was formed on the story of Circe, and perhaps might have suggested some few hints to Milton. I will give some proofs of parallelism as we go along.


But to my task. Neptune, besides the sway
Of every salt flood, and each ebbing stream,
Took in by lot 'twixt high and nether Jove
Imperial rule of all the sea-girt isles,
That, like to rich and various gems, inlay
The unadorned bosom of the deep:
Which he, to grace his tributary gods,
By course commits to several government,
And gives them leave to wear their sapphire


And wield their little tridents: but this isle,
The greatest and the best of all the main,
He quarters to his blue-hair'd deities;
And all this tract that fronts the falling Sun 30
A noble peer of mickle trust and power
Has in his charge, with temper'd awe to guide
An old and haughty nation, proud in arms :
Where his fair offspring, nurs'd in princely lore,
Are coming to attend their father's state,
And new-entrusted sceptre: but their way
Lies through the perplex'd paths of this drear

The genius of the best poets is often deter-
mined, if not directed, by circumstance and ac-The nodding horrour of whose shady brows
cident. It is natural, that even so original a
writer as Milton should have been biassed by the
reigning poetry of the day,by the composition most
in fashion, and by subjects recently brought for-
ward, but soon giving way to others, and almost
as soon totally neglected and forgotten.

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Threats the forlorn and wandering passenger;
And here their tender age might suffer peril, 40'
But that by quick command from sovran Jove
I was dispatch'd for their defence and guard:
And listen why; for I will tell you now
What never yet was heard in tale or song,
From old or modern bard, in hall or bower.

Bacchus, that first from out the purple grape
Crush'd the sweet poison of misused wine,
After the Tuscan mariners transform'd,
Coasting the Tyrrhene shore, as the winds listed,
On Circe's island fell: (Who knows not Circe,50
The daughter of the Sun, whose charmed cup
Whoever tasted, lost his upright shape,
And downward fell into a groveling swine?)
This nymph, that gaz'd upon his clustering locks
With ivy berries wreath'd, and his blithe youth,
Had by him, ere he parted thence, a son
Much like his father, but his mother more,
Whom therefore she brought up, and Comus

Who, ripe and frolic of his full grown age,
Roving the Celtic and Iberian fields,
At last betakes him to this ominous wood;
And, in thick shelter of black shades imbower',
Excels his mother at her mighty art,
Offering to every weary traveller
His orient liquor in a crystal glass,

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