Richard Llwyd, the Bard of Snowden,
To His Countrymen
The Anti-Gallican (1804), pp. 139-141
whom Britain's earliest day
Saw among her meadows play;
Unconscious yet that Ocean's waves
Form'd the isle it loves and laves!
Lords of realms, as yet unknown,
A blest creation all your own;
A region yet by blood unstain'd
Where Peace unbroke, unruffl'd reign'd.
Ere yet, the icy rocky North (2)
Had pour'd her hungry myriads forth,
The hordes that ravag'd guiltless lands,
And forc'd to arms your past'ral bands.
Decreed to share a restless doom,
A world, in vain, resisted Rome:
Yet Claudius (3)
heard, on Empire's throne,
A voice then greater than his own.
Led by rapine, fraud and spoil,
Saxons, Normans, trod your soil;
And Bards in strains of sorrow tell,
That Britain's offspring, fought, and fell.
Lost your own paternal plains,
Florid fields, and wide domains;
Fair Cambria saw with beckoning eyes,
And bade ERYRI'S
(4) ramparts rise.
Here amid her cliffs of snow,
Ages saw you brave the foe;
Till Concord came, with efforts blest,
And sooth'd Contention's roar to rest!
United now to Britain's throne,
Your Sires (5)
return, resume their own;
Chiefs of your country's antient days,
Britannia's wider sceptre sways!
O'er Britain's fair extended face,
One brave, one rich, and potent race;—
High in honour—high in fame—
The first of nations—BOASTS YOUR NAME!
Britons hear, that name's a host,
And forms a bulwark round your coast:
And Fame shall tell, in records fair,
You're worthy of the name you bear!
The foe that racks a suffering world,
At you the bolt of war has hurl'd;
And dares in language loud and high
Your warriors to the field defy:
Dares, and hopes, by threats and wiles,
To ravage, rule—The Queen of Isles:
Her sons shall check his thirst of blood,
By all that's great, and all that's good!
By genuine Freedom's holy flame,
By your own Arthur, Alfred's name;
By Deva's (6)
waves, when Ida fled,
By Mona's sons, and Merfyn (7)
By Rodri's (8)
bright and vengeful sword,
That gleam'd in Conway's lucid ford;
By Euloe's (9)
forests, Berwyn's heath,
Where Owen gain'd th' unfading wreath.
By Jorwerth (10)—Cynan—Howel's
By all that fills the rolls of fame,
Unfold your banners, rend the air,
And proudly show the shields (11)
of Snowden, yours the need,
Nobly live, or nobly bleed;
Your Country, Parents, Children, save,
Or fill one great and glorious grave!
[The parenthetical numbers in this poem are the author's own]