William Wordsworth

LINES INSCRIBED IN A COPY OF HIS POEMS SENT TO THE QUEEN FOR THE ROYAL LIBRARY AT WINDSOR

Deign, Sovereign Mistress! to accept a lay, No laureate offering of elaborate art; But salutation taking its glad way From deep recesses of a loyal heart.

Queen, Wife and Mother! may All-judging Heaven Shower with a bounteous hand on Thee and Thine Felicity that only can be given On earth to goodness blest by grace divine.

Lady! devoutly honoured and beloved Through every realm confided to thy sway; May'st thou pursue thy course by God approved, And he will teach thy people to obey.

As thou art wont, thy sovereignty adorn With woman's gentleness, yet firm and staid; So shall that earthly crown thy brows have worn Be changed for one whose glory cannot fade.

And now by duty urged, I lay this Book Before thy Majesty, in humble trust That on its simplest pages thou wilt look With a benign indulgence more than just.

Nor wilt thou blame the Poet's earnest prayer That issuing hence may steal into thy mind Some solace under weight of royal care, Or grief -- the inheritance of humankind.

-254-

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The Poets Laureate
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page 3
  • Contents 7
  • Preface 11
  • I - The Poets Laureate 13
  • 1 - Before the Laureateship: Jonson and Davenant 15
  • 2 - The First Laureate: John Dryden 21
  • 3 - Thomas Shadwell 32
  • 4 - Nahum Tate 44
  • 5 - Nicholas Rowe 55
  • 6 - Laurence Eusden 62
  • 7 - Colley Cibber 68
  • 8 - William Whitehead 79
  • 9 - Thomas Warton 92
  • 10 - Henry James Pye 109
  • 11- Robert Southey 124
  • 12 - William Wordsworth 145
  • 13 - Alfred, Lord Tennyson 153
  • 14 - Alfred Austin 166
  • 15 - Robert Bridges 178
  • 16 - John Masefield 185
  • II - Selections from the Works Of the Poets Laureate 193
  • Ben Jonson 195
  • Sir William Davenant 198
  • John Dryden 200
  • Thomas Shadwell 204
  • Nahum Tate 208
  • Nicholas Rowe 213
  • Laurence Eusden 220
  • Colley Cibber 225
  • William Whitehead 230
  • Thomas Warton 235
  • Henry James Pye 243
  • Robert Southey 248
  • William Wordsworth 254
  • Alfred, Lord Tennyson 260
  • Alfred Austin 267
  • Robert Bridges 272
  • John Masefield 277
  • Select Bibliography 281
  • Index 285
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