1816 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Robert Southey

Anonymous, "Inscription for a Monument at Old Sarum. By Robert Southey, Esq. Poet Laureate" Morning Chronicle (30 August 1816).



"A Reformer is worse than a house-breaker." — Quart. Rev.

Reader, if thou can'st boast the noble name
Of Englishman, it is enough to know
Thou standest in Old Sarum. But if chance
'Twas thy misfortune in some other land
Inheritor of slavery to be born,
Read, and be envious! Dost thou see yon hut,
Its old and mossy walls with many a patch
Spotted? Know, foreigner! so wisely well
In England it is ordered, that the laws
Which bind the people from themselves should spring—
Know that the dweller in that little hut,
That wretched hovel, to the Senate sends
Two Delegates. Think, foreigner, where such
An individual's rights, how happy all!