The Works of Lord Byron (ed. Coleridge, Prothero)/Poetry/Volume 3/Hebrew Melodies/The Harp the Monarch Minstrel swept

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The Works of Lord Byron by George Gordon Byron
The Harp the Monarch Minstrel swept

THE HARP THE MONARCH MINSTREL SWEPT.

I.

 The Harp the Monarch Minstrel swept,[1]
  The King of men, the loved of Heaven!
 Which Music hallowed while she wept
  O'er tones her heart of hearts had given—
Redoubled be her tears, its chords are riven!
 It softened men of iron mould,
  It gave them virtues not their own;
 No ear so dull, no soul so cold,
  That felt not—fired not to the tone,
Till David's Lyre grew mightier than his Throne!


II.

 It told the triumphs of our King,[2]
  It wafted glory to our God;
 It made our gladdened valleys ring,
  The cedars bow, the mountains nod;
Its sound aspired to Heaven and there abode![3]
 Since then, though heard on earth no more,[4]
  Devotion and her daughter Love
 Still bid the bursting spirit soar
  To sounds that seem as from above,
In dreams that day's broad light can not remove.


  1. The Harp the Minstrel Monarch swept,
     The first of men, the loved of Heaven,
    Which Music cherished while she wept.—[MS. M.]

  2. It told the Triumph ——.—[MS. M.]
  3. ["When Lord Byron put the copy into my hand, it terminated with this line. This, however, did not complete the verse, and I asked him to help out the melody. He replied, 'Why, I have sent you to Heaven—it would be difficult to go further!' My attention for a few moments was called to some other person, and his Lordship, whom I had hardly missed, exclaimed, 'Here, Nathan, I have brought you down again;' and immediately presented me the beautiful and sublime lines which conclude the melody."—Fugitive Pieces, 1829, p. 33.]
  4. It there abode, and there it rings,
     But ne'er on earth its sound shall be;
    The prophets' race hath passed away;
     And all the hallowed minstrelsy—
    From earth the sound and soul are fled,
     And shall we never hear again?—[MS. M. erased.]