Philip II. of Spain fitted out an immense fleet for the invasion of England, which sailed from Lisbon, May 29th, 1588. It consisted of 130 vessels, and, besides the crews of the different ships, contained not less than 20,000 troops, with 2431 pieces of artillery, and 4575 quintals' of powder. The Spaniards, in the confidence of success, previous to its departure, had given to their fleet the name of the Invincible Armada. The Duke of Medina Sidonia took the command of the whole. The beginning of the enterprise was unfavourable. A storm took the fleet as it rounded Cape Finisterre, in consequence of which the admiral, after losing several of his vessels, was forced to withdraw for the purpose of repair, into the harbour of Corunna. He then set sail for Plymouth, when Howard, who had been informed of his approach, instantly put to sea. With his lighter and better managed ships he so harassed and destroyed the Spanish ships, that they sought shelter in Calais roads. He, however, fitted out six of his smaller pinnaces as fireships, and sent them adrift, when the Spaniards cut their cables in alarm, and fled in all directions. The discomfited Armada then endeavoured to make its way homeward, by a northern passage round the British isles. The British vessels still followed and did considerable damage, capturing several ships and crippling more. But that from which they suffered most was a storm of wind which overtook them after they had rounded the Orkneys. The whole fleet was dispersed; some of the ships were dashed to pieces on the coast of Norway; some sunk in the middle of the North Sea; and others were thrown upon the coasts of Ireland and Scotland and the Western Isles. The Duke de Medina arrived at Santander, in the Bay of Biscay, about the end of September, “ with noe more than sixty sayle oute of his whole fleete, and these verye much shattered.” Attend, all ye who list to hear our noble England's praise : I sing of the thrice famous deeds, she wrought in ancient days, When that great fleet invincible, against her bore, in vain, The richest spoils of Mexico, the stoutest hearts in Spain. It was about the lovely close of a warm summer's day, There came a gallant merchant ship, full sail to Plymouth

bay; The crew had seen Castile’s black fleet, beyond Aurigny's?

isle, At earliest twilight, on the waves, lie heaving many a mile. At sunrise she escaped their van, by God's especial grace ; And the tall Pinta, till the noon, had held her close in

chase. Forthwith a guard, at every gun, was placed along the wall ; The beacon blazed upon the roof of Edgecombe's lofty hall4; Many a light fishing bark put out, to pry along the coast; And with loose rein, and bloody spur, rode inland many a

post. i Quintal, a hundred pounds in 4 Mount Edgecombe House was built weight.

on Edgecombe Mount, a hill in De· Aurigny, the island of Alderney, vonshire, opposite Plymouth harbour. in the English channel.

A most extensive view is obtained 9 Pinta, a Spanish vessel of war from its summit. built for fast sailing.

With his white hair, unbonneted, the stout old sheriff comes; Behind him march the halberdiers', before him sound the

drums. His yeomen, round the market cross, make clear an ample

space, For there behoves him to set up the standard of her grace: And haughtily the trumpets peal, and gaily dance the bells, As slow, upon the labouring wind, the royal blazon swells. Look how the lion of the sea lifts up his ancient crown, And underneath his deadly paw treads the gay lilies down! So stalk'd he when he turn’d to flight, on that famed Picard

field Bohemia’s plume, and Genoa's bow, and Cæsar's eagle

shield 3: So glared he when, at Agincourt4, in wrath he turn'd to bay, And crush'd and torn, beneath his claws, the princely hunters

lay, Ho! strike the flagstaff deep, sir knight, ho, scatter flowers,

fair maids! Ho, gunners! fire a loud salute! ho, gallants! draw your

blades! Thou, sun, shine on her joyously! ye breezes, waft her wide! Our glorious semper eadem ! 5 the banner of our pride ! The freshening breeze of eve unfurld that banner's massy

fold The parting gleam of sunshine kiss'd that haughty scroll of

gold. Night sank upon the dusky beach, and on the purple sea; Such night in England ne'er had been, nor e'er again shall be. From Eddystone 6 to Berwick bounds, from Lynn to Milford

bay, That time of slumber was as bright and busy as the day;



| Halberdiers, those who carried French line; they were, however, halberts. These, in early times, were dispersed by the English men-atlong poles, terminating with battle- arms.

4 Agincourt. This battle was gained 2 Picard field, the battle of Cressy. by Henry V., Oct. 25. 1415. Cressy is in the province of Picardy. Semper eadem, “always the same;"

s Bohemia's plume. The King of Bo- the motto of Queen Elizabeth. hemia fell in this battle. His crest, 6 Eddystone, in the English channel, three ostrich feathers, with the motto about fourteen miles S.Š.W. of Ply“ Ich Dien,” “I serve," has since then mouth sound. been worn by the Prince of Wales. 7 Lynn, in Norfolk: Milford Bay,

The Genoese bow-men, consisting of in Pembrokeshire. 15,000 men, fought in front of the

For swift to east, and swift to west, the warning radiance

spread — High on St. Michael's Mount it shone- -it shone on Beachy

Head. Far o'er the deep, the Spaniard saw, along each southern


Cape beyond cape, in endless range, those twinkling points

of fire, The fisher left his skiff to rock on Tamar's 2 glittering

waves, The rugged miners pour'd to war, from Mendip's 3 sunless

caves :

O'er Longleat's towers, o'er Cranbourne's5 oaks, the fiery

herald flew He roused the shepherds of Stonehenge — the rangers of

Beaulieu.6 Right sharp and quick the bells all night rang out from

Bristol town ; And, ere the day, three hundred horse had met on Clifton

Down.7 The sentinel on Whitehall gate looked forth into the night, And saw, o'erhanging Richmond Hill, the streak of blood

red light. Then bugle's note, and cannon's roar, the deathlike silence

broke, And with one start, and with one cry, the royal city woke; At once, on all her stately gates, arose the answering fires; At once the wild alarum clashed from all her reeling spires; From all the batteries of the Tower pealed loud the voice of

fear, And all the thousand masts of Thames sent back a louder

cheer : 1 Michael's Mount, in Mount's bay, abounding in coal, copper, &c., are in Cornwall. At high tide it appears a

the N.E. of Somersetshire. completely insulated assemblage of 4 Longleat, in Wiltshire. This was rocks, rising to a considerable height; originally the princely domain of the at low water it may be approached Lord Viscount Weymouth. It now from the shore, by means of a kind of belongs to the Marquis of Bath. causeway of rock and sand. Beachey 5 Cranbourne, in Dorsetshire. Near Head, on the coast of Sussex, be the town is a fine chase, which in tween Hastings and Seaford. early times was an immense tract of

2 Tamar. This river rises in the N. unenclosed woodland. part of Cornwall; separates Cornwall 6 Stonehenge, in Wiltshire: Beaufrom Devon, and forms the harbour lieu, New Forest, Southampton. of Homoaze, at Plymouth.

7 Clifton, in the county of Glou3 Mendip. The Mendip Hills, cester, about one mile west of Bristol.

And from the furthest wards was heard the rush of hurry

ing feet, And the broad streams of flags and pikes rushed down each

roaring street : And broader still became the blaze, and louder still the din, As fast from every village round the horse came spurring in ; And eastward straight, from wild Blackheath', the warlike

errand went; And roused, in many an ancient hall, the gallant squires of

Kent: Southward, from Surrey's pleasant hills, flew those bright

couriers forth; High on black Hampstead's? swarthy moor, they started for

the north; And on, and on, without a pause, untired they bounded still ; All night from tower to tower they sprang, all night from

hill to hill; Till the proud peak unfurled the flag o'er Derwent's rocky

dales; Till, like volcanoes, flared to heaven the stormy hills of Wales; Till twelve fair counties saw the blaze on Malvern's 3 lonely

height; Till streamed in crimson, on the wind, the Wrekin's+ crest

of light: Till, broad and fierce, the star came forth, on Ely's5 stately fane, And town and hamlet rose in arms, o'er all the boundless

plain : Till Belvoir's 6 lordly terraces the sign to Lincoln sent, And Lincoln sped the message on, o'er the wide vale of Trent; Till Skiddaw 7 saw the fire that burnt on Gaunt's 8 embattled

pile, And the red glare on Skiddaw roused the burghers of Carlisle. 9


| Blackheath, an elevated plain, 6 Belvoir Castle, the mansion of five miles E. of London, partly in the the Duke of Rutland. The vale of parish of Greenwich.

Belvoir "extends into the counties of · Hampstead heath, in Middlesex, Lincoln, Nottingham, and Leicester. four miles N.N.W. of London.

7 Skiddaw, a mountain in Cum3 Malvern Hills, in the counties of berland, 3270 feet in height. Worcester and Hereford.

8 Gaunt's embattled pile, Lancaster 4 Wrekin, a noted mountain in Castle. Shropshire, 1200 feet in height. 9 Carlisle, the capital of Cumber.

5 Ely, a city in Cambridgeshire; land. the fane, the cathedral.





ed-logue, pastoral

visi-u-al, belonging to poem


visum. fra'grance, sweetness of

ob-struct/-ed, hindered structum. smell

fragrans ex-ult/-ing, rejoicing er saltum, de-scends', comes down scando. ex-plores', searches for - ploro. au-spil-cious, having

per-plexed', entangled plexum. omens


de-light, please greatly deliciæ. lucky

avis, specio. im-pel-ri-al, royal imperium. de-clined', bent down clino. a-dorn', beautify an'-cient, of old time ancien. port/-als, gates

porta. purge, to clear purgo. de-cay', waste or fail



Ye nymphs of Solyma', begin the song:
To heavenly themes sublimer strains belong.

fountains and the sylvan shades,
The dreams of Pindus?, and the Aonian maids,
Delight no more-O Thou my voice inspire,
Who touch'd Isaiah's hallow'd lips with fire!
Rapt into future times, the bard 3 begun :-
A virgin shall conceive, a virgin bear a son !4
From Jesse's root 5 behold a branch arise,
Whose sacred flower with fragrance fills the skies ;
The ethereal Spirit o'er its leaves shall move,
And on its top descends the mystic Dove.
Ye heavens !6 from high the dewy nectar pour,
And in soft silence shed the kindly shower!
The sick and weak the healing plant shall aid,
From storms a shelter, and from heat a shade.?

| Solyma, the same as Salem, a root of Jesse, which shall stand for which is supposed to have been the an ensign of the people.”—Is. xi. 10. ancient name of Jerusalem. - See “ And there shall come forth a rod Gen. xiv. 18.

out of the stem of Jesse, and a Pindus, a mountain in Thessaly; Branch shall grow out of his roots.” Aonia, a district in Baotia, both in -Is. xi. 1. Greece. They are celebrated as 6 “ Drop down, ye heavens, from “ haunts of the muses." Aonian above, and let the skies pour down maids, the Muses.

righteousness.”—Isa. xlv. 8. $ The bard, the prophet Isaiah. 7 “For thou hast been a strength

4 “Behold, a virgin shall conceive, to the poor, a strength to the needy and bear a son, and shall call his name in his distress, a refuge from the Immanuel.”—Is. vii. 14.

storm, a shadow from the heat, &c.” 5 “And in that day there shall be - Isa. xxv. 4.; see also Isa. xxxii. 2.

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