PAUL AT ATHENS. 275
Of gentle Plato bow the listening soul
To search for wisdom, and with reason's art
Build the fair argument. Behold the throngs
Press on the speaker, drawing still more close
In denser circles, as his thrilling tones
Speak of the God who " warneth everywhere
Men to repent," and of that fearful day
When He shall judge the world. Loud tumult wakes,
The tide of strong emotion hoarsely swells,
And that blest voice is silent. They have mocked
At Heaven's high messenger, and he departs
From the mad circle. But his graceful hand
Points to an altar, with its mystic scroll
" The Unknown God." Oh ! Athens ! is it so ?
Thou who hast crowned thyself with woven rays
As a divinity, and called the world
Thy pilgrim-worshipper, dost thou confess
Such ignorance and shame ?
The Unknown God !
Why, all thy hillocks and resounding streams Do boast their deity, and every house, Yea, every beating heart within thy walls, May choose its temple and its priestly train, Victim and garland, and appointed rite ; Thou makest the gods of every realm thine own, Fostering, with frantic hospitality, All forms of idol-worship. Can it be That still thou found'st not Him who is so near T 2