November 19 1815: To Kosciuszko

schweikart_tadeusz_koc59bciuszko

On November 19 1815, Leigh Hunt publishes in the Examiner a sonnet about the Polish and the American Revolutionary hero Tadeusz Kosciusko. Coleridge had written and earlier poem to Kosciusko in 1794 and Keats will do so in 1816.

‘Tis like thy patient valour thus to keep,
Great Kosciusko, to the rural shade,
While Freedom’s ill-found amulet still is made
Pretence for old aggression, and a heap
Of selfish mockeries. There, as in the sweep
Of stormier fields, thou earnest with thy blade,
Transform’d, not inly alter’d, to the spade,
Thy never yielding right to a calm sleep.
There came a wanderer, borne from land to land
Upon a couch, pale, many-wounded, mild,
His brow with patient pain dulcetly sour.
Men stoop’d with awful sweetness on his hand,
And kiss’d it; and collected Virtue smiled,
To think how sovereign her enduring hour.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s