"At such Reflections do's not Nature start, / And try at every Spring to touch your Heart? / Do's not soft Pity's fire begin to burn, / Do not your yearning Bowels in you turn? / In such a case Breasts arm'd with temper'd Steel / And Hearts of Marble, should impression feel."
— Blackmore, Sir Richard (1654-1729)
But if you die will give me no Relief,
But minding me of you, revive my Grief.
When on them I shall look theyll but invite
New floods of Tears, and fresh Complaints excite.
Can't these endearing Pledges of our Love
Dissolve your Heart, and your Compassion move?
Can you these sweet Delights chuse to forsake,
And from the helpless Babes their Father take?
Think how their Lives they must in Sorrow spend,
Who will you leave your Orphans to defend?
You know your Foes will labour to Oppress
Your helpless Widow, and your Fatherless.
Can such a Father e'er Unnatural prove,
Cease to be tender, and forget to Love?
Can you lay by th'Indulgent Parent's care,
And leave these Babes abandon'd to despair?
At such Reflections do's not Nature start,
And try at every Spring to touch your Heart?
Do's not soft Pity's fire begin to burn,
Do not your yearning Bowels in you turn?
In such a case Breasts arm'd with temper'd Steel
And Hearts of Marble, should impression feel.
Then on her bended Knees she fell, and fast,
All drown'd in Tears, his Fetter'd Limbs embrac'd.
And thus she cry'd, here ever will I stay,
Here will I lie, here beg, and weep, and pray,
And strive in Sighs to breath my Life away;
Till Clovis shall our heavy Doom retrieve,
And say he do's at last consent to Live.
(Bk VIII, p. 223, ll. 569-598)
First published in 1695 in ten books as Prince Arthur. Reprinted 1696, 1714.
See Richard Blackmore. King Arthur, An Heroick Poem. In Twelve Books. By Richard Blackmore. To which is Annexed, An Index, Explaining the Names of Countrys, Citys, and Rivers, &c. (London: Printed for Awnsham, John Churchil, and Jacob Tonson, 1697). <Link to ESTC>