Letitia Elizabeth Landon (L. E. L.) in Fisher's Drawing Room Scrap Book, 1838/Gibraltar, Queen of Spain

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1838-45-Gibraltar, from the Queen of Spain's Chair.png


GIBRALTAR,
FROM THE SIGNAL TOWER AT THE FOOT OF THE QUEEN OF SPAIN’S CHAIR.

Artist: C. Bentley - Engraved by: E. Finden




GIBRALTAR.


FROM THE QUEEN OF SPAIN’S CHAIR.



High on the rock that fronts the sea
Stands alone our fortress key;
Ladye of the southern main,
Ladye, too, of stately Spain.

Look which way her eye she bends,
Where’er she will her sway extends.
Free on air her banner thrown,
Half the world it calls its own.

Let her look upon the strand—
Never was more lovely land:
Had her rule dominion there,
It were free as it is fair.

Let her look across the waves,
They are but her noblest slaves;
Sweeping north or south, they still
Bear around her wealth and will.

Siege and strife these walls have borne,
By the red artillery torn;
Human life has poured its tide
In the galleries at her side.

But the flag that o’er her blows
Rival nor successor knows.
Lonely on the land and sea,
Where it has been, it will be.

Safe upon her sea-beat rock,
She might brave an army’s shock:
For the British banner keeps
Safe the fortress where it sweeps.

GIBRALTAR FROM THE QUEEN OF SPAIN’S CHAIR—p.45.


During the celebrated siege of Gibraltar, the subjects of her most faithful Majesty, with becoming loyalty and gallantry, but with little knowledge of coming events, erected a small tower on the hill nearest to Gibraltar, from which her Majesty and the ladies of her court, were to witness the surrender of the fortress to her arms. This fortalice is called "the Queen's Chair," and from its summit may be enjoyed the most striking, grand, and complete view of the formation of the rock, as well as of its relative position with respect to surrounding objects. At the spectator's feet is the Isthmus, dotted with Spanish sentinel-houses, that mark the limits of the neutral ground, and extend from the ruined fortress of Santa Barbarossa to that of St. Philip. The sandy soil beyond yields to British industry both fruits and vegetables; and the giant rock, that raises its bold form above the sea, is an appropriate emblem of the power, strength, and courage of that nation by which it is retained. The Straits intervene, on the right, between the rock and the African coast, which there attains an elevation of 3,000 feet, and the blue waves of the Mediterranean wash the Isthmus on the left.