MacLean, Gerald, editor. The Return of the King : An Anthology of English Poems Commemorating the Restoration
of Charles II / edited by Gerald MacLean
Electronic Text Center, University of Virginia Library
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To the Worshipful and truly Honorable
Alderman RICHARD BROWNE,
Major General of the Famous City of London;
Alderman JOHN ROBINSON,
Colonel of the Green Regiment:
True paterns of Cordial Loyalty to their
KING, Faithful Patriots of their
Countrey, and deserving Members of that
Noble Metropolis, in which they are
Exemplary Citizens and Gallant
HEroick souls, to you belongs of right,
This, whatso'ere it is, I wish it might
Answer my wishes, and your due desert,
But as it is, accept I pray the heart
5: Of him, who most ambitious is to serve
You to his utmost power, who deserve
Immortal honour, for what you have done
In order to bring back th' Heir to's Crown.
Your grateful Countrey doth confess your praise,
10: London by your help now Triumphs in Bayes,
Which formerly did droop, the way was led
By that Great George, who struck our Dragon dead,
He led the Van, you follow'd in the Rear,
Your Loyalty now shines like Chrystall clear.
15: Accept (great Souls) these ruder lines, which I
Intend, to Celebrate your memory,
Such as they are, my good-will may express
The Lady's fair, though in a homely dress.
Worthy and Worshipful
Your faithful Honourer
Though undeserving Servant
AWake my Muse, let thy dull spirits be rais'd,
Shake off thy former drowsiness, from sleep
Rouse up thy heavy soul, let him be prais'd
Who from Destructions pit, out of the deep.
5: Of troubles hath these Nations three redeem'd,
When to all mortall eyes they helpless seem'd.
Like to a Ship in storm, three Kingdomes lay
Upon Afflictions rageing Billowes tost:
The Pilot o're board thrown, (O dismal day!)
10: The Rudder of our Government quite lost.
Our Sun of happiness had hid his head,
And darknesse our Horizon overspread.
The Birds of darkness every where appear'd,
With frightfull shrieks which fluttered to and fro:
15: Goblins and Elves in every place were heard,
Hagges and Infernall Furies here below,
Had made their Mansion, and resolv'd to dwell,
Thus England seem'd the Suburbs of Black Hell.
After a long Night, loe our Sun appears,
20: Dispelling Mist and Fogges with his bright beams,
His heat and light, one warmth, th'other chears.
Our frozen, drooping spirits, so that streams
Of Joy now wash away the tears of grief,
From him our woes all finde their full relief.
25: Charles! glorious Name! but
glorious more by farre!
Of it the Subject, our Dread Soveraign!
Son of Great Charles, who now a sparkling Starre
In Heaven shines, his Son (long may he reign!)
Our Sun on Earth, let him excell in glory,
30: His famous Father, matchlesse in any story.
Rest, Sacred, Royall Dust! sleeping in hope,
Thy Martyr'd Body Christs appearing waits,
While thy thrice blessed Soul, with Eyes wide ope,
Beholds his glory, thus those dismal Fates,
35: Which snatcht thee from us, did but only lead
Thy spotlesse, Bridelike sp'rit to Christ her Head.
And thou the Son of an unpattern'd Sire
Who giv'st us hopes that him thou wilt excell,
Long mayst thou live, thy Subjects chief desire,
40: In pride of whom England shall shortly swell,
And bid defiance to her proudest Foes,
Charles! thou alone her bleeding wounds could'st close.
Skilfull Physician! who with Soveraign Balme
Three Kingdomes almost wounded to the death,
45: Didst know to cure, who so great a Calme
After so fierce a Tempest, with thy breath,
(Thy Princely breath) to this toss'd Ship could'st bring,
Which owns no Pilot but her lawfull King.
I'th Month of May, most pleasant of the Spring,
50: When Nature seemeth in her greatest pride,
Latona deckt with Flowers, Birds which sing
Sweetly upon each bow i'th Woods are spy'd,
Two days before its Exit, did appear
A Noon-day Starre in Englands Hemisphere.
55: That day, O happy Day! behold a Sonne
To Charles our King, (then happy King!) was born,
Three Nations joy and pride, what was not done,
His Princely pomp, (when Christned) to adorn?
He as his Fathers Heir, his Royall Name,
60: Inherits first, and best it him became.
Charles! son of Charles, thus enters Englands Stage,
Whose brith (his Saviour like) a Starre did show,
An Omen, that he rist should feel the rage
Of Persecutors, and should glorious grow,
65: By suffering first, this was our Princes Fate.
Whom Hells Afflictions led to Heavens Gate.
Ten years and scarce six Moneths this Royall Bud
Had grown upon the Sacred Princely Stock
When sad divisions, like a fearful floud,
Did threaten Majesty, against which Rock
70: So many swelling waves billowes beat,
That overturn'd at last the Royall Seat.
His, and his Countreys Father by the streame,
Carryed with violence into the Deep,
This Infant Prince beholds, (poor soul) a Theame
75: Too sad to think on, thinking makes him weep,
And ev'ry object doth augment his grief,
Pity'd by some, yet findes of none relief.
Thus lives our Soveraign Lord, whom sorrowes School,
For twice ten years, had pious wisdome taught,
80: While Villanous Usurpers think to rule
His Kingdomes by an Iron Rod, which brought
The milder Scepter into due esteem,
When Saints in Title, Reall Monsters seem.
Then all men loath Usurped Tyranny,
85: Wish for their Kings Return in safety home,
Repent their long expressed cruelty
Toward so sweet a Prince whom only some
(Out of a guilty feare) kept in Exile,
Oppressing all his Loyall Friends the while.
90: The same Moneth which the joyfull newes did bring,
(Before its Exit) of this Princes birth,
Now enters with the Tydings of our King,
(Tydings most full of Joy, and reall Mirth)
When thrice ten years over his head had past,
95: (Our King before) our King is own'd at last.
Ring out proud Bells, let these our Joyes resound,
In every Steeple through this gratefull Isle,
The Ecchoe's from all Countyes let rebound
Back to this Joyfull City, and the while
100: Quite tyred Pho/ebus, in the Ocean hides
His weary beams, let Bonfires be our Guides.
Thus we the darkenesse of the Night will turn,
To artificiall day-light, and each street,
For want of Fuel, shall their Sign-posts burn,
105: The painted Lamb and Wolf in flames shall greet
Each other, proud thus to expresse their Joy,
That Charles shall come, whom fiends sought to destroy.
And now the day approaches, which did see
Our Charles (at one view) both a Man and Prince,
110: A Prince not greater by descent, then he,
Equalls his birth by merit, who long since,
Compell'd his Foes his Valour for to own;
And yet as mercifull, as stout is known.
Charles, that the World may know, how neer he comes
115: Unto his Saviours pattern, thirty years
Passeth more silently, Trumpets and Drums Sometimes awake his Courage, and the fears
Of his aspriring Enemies, who still,
Seem for to prosper, and to have their will.
120: But when thrice ten years of his Age are past,
Or thereabouts, behold our Royall King
Is owned publiquely, and for a taste
Of England's love, and bounty, Bells do ring,
Bonfires shine, Moneys are freely lent,
125: And for a Present to our Charles are sent.350
With Expectation great the Eighth of May
Doth adde Incouragment to former hope,
This was to London a Triumphant day,
Those who in darkness seem'd before to grope,
130: Now opened have their Eyes, and clearly see,
Englands Restorer can be none but he.
Oh! he that saw the joy express'd that day,
The peoples concourse, and their lively shout,
Who so had heard, how every one did pray
135: For this Kings Health, could entertain no doubt,
But that as he is Heavens Darling known,
So him (as their chief good) his Subjects own.
This was the Day wherein, (a turn most strange!)
Our Peerlesse Prince, Son of a matchlesse Sire,
140: From Pallace-yard, down to the Royall Change
Most solemnly, (by such who did aspire
Him to Proclaim and hear) proclaim'd and heard,
Was, our true Soveraign, to all indear'd.
Then might you heare the spritefull shouts, and cryes
145: Long live our blessed King, Charles! pious Prince,
Whose name with acclamations, rent the skyes,
And they their kinde acceptance to evince,
Let fall at first of Joy some sprinkling tears,
But soon with his bright beams the Sun appears.
150: Thus Heaven seems with Earth for to agree
In paying this just debt to both their friend,
The sky from Clouds and blustring windes was free,
The streets, (proud of this Office) did attend
On this Solemnity in cleanest dresse,
155: The very houses Joy seem'd to expresse.
Each Shop stood early ope, then soon was shut,
Boasting their riches first to grace their King,
On whom such dreadfull reverence they put,
That day to work is judg'd a sordid thing.
160: Work they that list cryes ev'ry Prentise Boy,
This day I'le only sing, Vive la Roy. [sic
The London Train'd Bands, glad that they might shew
Some signal token of their dear bought wit,
Early in Armes appear, at length they know
165: Rebellions sin, by punishment of it.
All are resolved now to make appear
Their Loyalty, unto their Soveraign dear.
And that they may wash off the staine and blot,
Contracted in these Wars first infancy,
170: When 'gainst their King they took up Armes, whose lot
It was to die his Subjects infamy.
(Though Crownd himself with such a Crown of glory,
Not to be parallel'd by any story.)
Now with a different, but better zeal
175: One heart doth seem in each mans breast to dwell,
All willing are a like the breach to heal,
In forwardness all strive for to excell.
So great appearance never England saw,
Charles magnetisme did so strongly draw.
180: The streets too narrow to receive the throng,
Were of themselves most ready to make room,
Nature our King to gratifie did long,
Dispenst with her dimensions law, for whom
A man would think five streets could scarce receive
185: Finde place, yet for the show due space do leave.
Gallant spectators every room do fill
Whose prospect forward lay unto the street,
Each window stor'd with Ladies, who with still
And silent Eloquence, their Sov'raign greet;
190: Their graceful countenances, beauties choyce,
Their cheerful smiles, made ev'n the stones rejoyce.
The splendid Servants of these charmes divine,
Each one his Mistress stood observant by,
Yet seem regardless of her beauties shrine,
195: A rarer object, had rapt ev'ry eye.
Love charmes are idle toyes, the only thing
Which all attend, is to proclaim their KING.
The ruder sort of Mankind, that stood by,
Both old and young, servants, both maids and men,
200: Poor Tradesmen likewise, 'mongst themselves did vye, Who should express affection most, for when,
The name of Charles did in their ears but sound,
Their Acclamations rent the very ground.
The Soldiers in most splendid equipage
205: Attend, this Joyful day to Celebrate,
Each one a young man seem'd, for elder age,
This news had changed to a younger date:
Among them were so many Voluntiers,
Six Regiments, an Army great appears.
210: You would have thought that every one in Armes,
Had there appear'd a Lady for to win;
So clad, so cheerful, as if all the charmes
Of Love each breast possessed had, but sin
Each man (that day) accounted such a thought,
215: Thee, thee, O Charles! (none other) there they sought.
Each Alderman who there was in Command,
Exchang'd his Scarlet Robe for Warlike dresse:
Robinson of the Green, his Trained band
To Fleetstreet led, to be in readinesse
220: The Proclamation to attend, so soon
As it the City entred, which was done.
Stout Browne who led the Horse, was ready there
In this great Solemn Scene to act his part,
And stately did perform it, every where
225: Throughout his Regiment, both voice and heart
Concur, thy Title just, great Charles! by word,
As to proclaime, so to defend by Sword.
Oh! what a gallant sight, 'twas to behold,
The spritely flower of the London youth,
230: Outvying one another, in their bold Defence of Charles their King, whom with one mouth
They all Proclaim their only Sov'raign Lord,
And do defie his foes with one accord.
Their Swords aloft over their heads they wave,
235: God blesse King Charles the Second, is the cry:
Their glittering weapons, with their clothes most brave,
Do make a glorious object to the eye:
This addes a lustre, but the cause ofjoy,
Is that we heard Proclaim'd, Vive la roy.
240: This cry the hearers so affects, that they,
Eccho it back again with such a voice,
As showes a true affection, Happy day
Saith ev'ry one, the very streets rejoyce:
Guns, Drums and Trumpets, rend the skies with noyse,
245: Th' earth quakes with shouting of the London Boyes.
The prancing Horses very richly drest,
With riders who excell'd in gallantry:
Their joy together with their state exprest,
All ravish't seem with Charles his memory.
250: The very houses wondred at this chance,
For joy the pavements ready were to dance.
Th'old drooping Churches, who had long been rob'd
Of their most faithfull Preachers, and for fear
Of never having them again, had sob'd,
255: And in sad grief had let drop many a tear:
Do now rejoyce at this approaching show,
The Bels themselves to ring are ready too.
Long live King Charles, the very stones would cry
Should men be silent, yea the very Drums,
260: Trumpets and Guns, to all the standers by,
(Sometimes, though seldom, as to passe it comes,
I know not by what fate) seem'd to Proclaim,
(The best Monarchs) great King Charles's name.
265: Now comes the matcheless shew, and it to meet,
Londons Lord Major, and the Aldermen,
In all their Pompe, the welcome Heralds greet,
At Temple-bar, where that was done agen
Which was done twice before, at Palace-yard
270: And at Whitehall, Great Charles, our King declar'd.
Th'attendants did withall solemnity
Perform their charge, and did such joy express
As might become the dread of Majesty,
Awful by right, yet lovely neretheless.
275: Now England once more on her basis stands,
She hath her King, though yet he want his Lands.
To grace this sight both Houses now combine,
On it who with their Speakers do attend;
While Rumpish Lenthal sate at home, and whin'd
280: That his longwinded speaking had such end.
Yet one who once abjured both King and Duke,
Repents (as some say) limping, Rumpish Luke.
O that the Preaching Statesman had been there,
And heard Proclaimed his old Masters Son,
285: Whom basely he betray'd, t'have seen his cheer,
How like a patient of Doctor Dun
He'da look't, would doubtless have encreast the joy,
To see him louting, like the Hangmans boy.
Now Lord of Durhams Bishoprick! what chear?
290: No thoughts now how to cheat poor Collinwood?
To bribe a Jury? hire men to swear?
To turn the City to a bath of blood?
To fire the houses? and the Goldsmiths plunder?
Poor Arthur's jaw faln351, is not that a wonder?
295: Lord! what a Lord is Monson now become?
The Lord knows what, but ev'ry one knows where
He is to go, there is an equall doom
On him, and Harry Martin, who's in fear,
To live in Goal, will be too mild a fate,
300: The hopes of both are gone with their Free-state.
Good Master Cecill, how like you this news?
Cry mercy Sir, I mean an Earl, I think,
But know not well, yet something on you shewes
Like to a badge of honor, though it stinke
305: So Rumpishly, that I abhor the smell,
You have a neighbour by you, stinkes as well.
Oh! fie my Lords you make me hold my nose,
Basely degenerated Rumpish Earls!
Vile self-degrading Peers! I'ad rather chose
310: T'have been transmuted into Countrey carles.
Self do, self have, no wise man need to grieve,
A self undoing fool, who would relieve?
Poor Tom, by Nation English, by name Scot,
What shall I say thy chance for to condole?
315: Some say th' hast got (privily) God knows what,
And some men guesse, at Hockley in the hole.
Hadst thou but seen the triumph of that day,
'T had made the quickly Tom of Bedlam play.
What pity 'tis that Bradshaw went to Hell
320: So long before his time, upon whose Herse
So many tears from sobbing Needham fell,
Whose grief made him forget to weep in Verse,
But snivel'd out in Prose his Patrons prayse,
'Twas well his own curst hands cut short his dayes.
325: So dy'd accursed Pilate, as is told
By some who write of his deserved end;
Who ignorantly sentenc't 352 Christ, but bold
Villanous Bradshaw, like a hellish fiend,
Knew, yet condemned his most guiltlesse King,
330: No hands like to own, his death to bring.
Now Needham get the rod of Mercury
His Caducean Rod, and once more change
Thy Knavish shape, 'thas been thy policy
To turn with times, but this a turn too strange
335: For thee to turn with, therefore turn aside,
And take with thee the Hangman for thy Guide.
But who appears here with the Curtain drawn?
What Milton! are you come to see the sight?
Oh Image-breaker! poor Knave! had he sawn
340: That which the fame of, made him crye out-right.
He'ad taken counsel of Achitophell,
Swung himself weary, and so gone to Hell.
This is a sure Divorce, and the best way,
Seek Sir no further, now the trick is found,
345: To part a sullen Knave from's Wife, that day,
He doth repent his Choyce, stab'd, hang'd or drown'd,
Will make all sure, and further good will bring,
The wretch will rail no more against his King.
What newes from th'Ocean, I fain would know?
350: How doth the Rota turn? my pretty Boyes,
What hopes Republicans in such a show?
Certainly these are Babylonish toyes.
Poor Overton! himself who long did gull
With hopes that Christ would come and land at Hull.
355: Forsaken Fleetwood who of Fate complain'd,
Because she threw so great a stumbling-block
I'th way of his Rebellion, how disdain'd
He was, and how God seem'd his Prayers to mock
Ninive's Fast he fasted to no end,
360: God in his face threw dirt, nor would attend.
Despairing Lambert! whither wilt thou run?
However let him scape he humbly begs:
Hard-hearted Ingoldsby353, could'st not be wonne
To let this Valiant Champion use his legges,
365: When his hands failed him? O man forlorn!
Who might have push'd, yet did not use his horn.
Okey what wilt thou doe? there's no more Rump,
The Devil lately claim'd it as his Fee,
Took it, and pick'd it to the very stump,
370: Threw Barebones in his fire, there let him be,
Hee's well content may but his windowes scape,
Then hee'l Praysegod, and chatter like an Ape.
The rest who thought that Christ would come as King,
And reign among them, but mistook the time,
375: Which they were confident would be this Spring,
And were providing for to welcome him,
It is but fit they should both weep and bleed,
Who were so confident, yet lost their Creed.
Foolish Fanaticks, now at last repent.
380: What means this Idle Caterwawling Mew,
Who with his Brother Barebones idly went,
With a Petition of the Devils hew:
How scape his windowes? Praysegods Boyes did souse;
So, thrice, he seem'd to keep a Brothell-house.
385: Like fate, 'tis pity but that all should finde,
Who have so to their Reason bid adieu,
As for to be such a sottish minde
To leave Old Treasure for Toyes that are new,
T'abjure our King, (whom God preserve in health)
390: To set up a Fanatick Common-wealth.
But now since our Distractions cause is gone,
And all our breaches likely to be heal'd.
Oh! let this King be dear by whom 'tis done,
Let former grudges ever be conceal'd,
395: Let them no more revive, but buryed lye,
And be forgot unto Eternity.
Once more we see our Nobles in esteem,
Who all in state did solemnly attend,
To pay this long due debt, was't not a dreame?
400: Or was it reall? to me it reall seem'd,
And yet a dreame appear'd, a turn so strange!
Eight Moneths agoe, who would dream such a Change?
Long let thy name live most heroick soul,
Who of this Change was the grand Instrument.
405: Let Moncks Name famous be, who did controul
That Dragons Tayle of Monstrous Government,
Made Lambert jump into a Muddy Ditch,
And made the Rump scratch where it did not itch.
Will. Lenthall spake so long till he was hoarse,
410: Now he is speechlesse, Sexton tole the Bell,
If but a Quincy trouble him, perforce
Let Ropewort cure him, 'twill make him well,
If Haslerig or Vane should chance to faint,
Hemp is a strengthner, fit for such a Saint.
415: Lawson (it's like) may chance to learn more wit,
Taking Example from some rash mens harms,
Who were of his Fraternity, and split
Upon the Rock of rashnesse, soft fire warms,
Too great consumes, just so it is with Zeal,
420: Blind, fiery, makes braches, milde, doth heal.
Let us at length be all united close
And firmly bound to this our matchlesse Prince,
Let's grutch him nothing, let not basenesse lose
Our choycest good on Earth his love, but since
425: None but his Art our grief knew to allay,
'Tis most just we should for the medicine pay.
Live long Most blessed Soveraign, and let
Thy Birth-day (which is coming) see thee Crown'd,
God grant this Sunne of ours may not set,
430: Till Olive Branches stand thy Table round.
Thus, when to Nestors years, in peace thou hast
Us Govern'd, and shalt yield to Fate at last,
May thy more happy Sonne ascend thy Throne,
When thou shalt change Earth's for a Glory's Crown.
Sic lusit Poemate fausto, ad Calendas May, 1660. G.S.
See The Answer of The Right Honourable the Lord Mayor, Aldermen, and Common-council of the City of london, to hi Majesties gracious Letter and Declaration, sent by the Lord Mordant; and a Present of ten thousand pounds from the City to the King; With their Declaration to submit to his Majesties Government, and an Order for taking down the States Arms, and setting up of the Kings. The names of the Earls, Lords, and Gentlemen appointed to go to the King; the rich and glorious Crown and Scepter, preparing for the Day-tryumphant of his Royal Majesties Coronation; and one hundred thousand pound a year to be setled upon the King, in lieu of the Court of Wards and Liveries, to the great joy of all loyal subjects.  Th=5 May; E 1023(5); and "An Historicall Poem" in the Marvell canon.
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