CAMILLUS: A POEM Humbly Inscrib'd to the Right Honourable CHARLES Earl of Peterborough and Monmouth. By AARON HILL, Gent.

Et thure & fidibus juvat
Placare, & vituli sanguine debito
Custodes Numidae Deos:
Qui Nunc Hesperia sospes ab ultima:
Charis multa Sodalibus,
—dividit ocula.
Horat Ode 36. lib 1.

LONDON, Printed for THO. BICKERTON at the Golden Flower-de-Luce in St. Paul's Church-Yard, and sold by B. Bragg in Pater-noster-Row. 1707.

CAMILLUS: A POEM Humbly Inscrib'd to the Right Honourable CHARLES Earl of Peterborough and Monmouth.

WHEN Injur'd Heroes suffer in their Fame,
Justice, unsummon'd, shou'd their Wrongs proclaim;
Apollo's Sons shou'd raise Resentment high'r,
And flame in Raptures of Poetick Fire;
Since where Injustice clouds a Noble Name,
The Poet suffers in the Patron's Shame.
Permit, Great Sir, my humble Muse to raise
A grateful Monument to Crown your Praise;
Unbend your mighty Soul, and stoop to Fame,
Whose Voice shall sound to Heav'n your glorious Name.
[Page 4] Minds that are Great like Y [...]urs, disdain Applause,
Their inborn Vertue gives their Reason Laws,
Above the reach of Malice, bless'd they live,
Prou'd to be enay'd, and like Heav'n forgive.
Where shall my lab'ring Fancy Numbers find,
To sing the shining Glories of thy Mind?
Or thro' the lab'rynth of thy Wonders wind?
How dares my artless Pen attempt a Verse,
Worthy thy God-like Actions to reherse?
How dares my Muse to Songs of Valour press,
Which all alike admire, but none can well express!
About my Breast tumult'ous Terrors rowl,
And rising Passions shake my sickly Soul,
Reasons un-number'd through my Judgment shine,
Some urge, and some forbid the vast Design,
Here Justice summons, There my Youth denies,
Duty to This, to That my Will replys,
Resolv'd, at last, your safe Return to greet,
I throw my worthless Numbers at your Feet,
Assur'd, the gen'rous Goodness of your Eye,
Will see my Will, and pass my Errors by.
But if my feeble Genius chance to fail,
Nor ardent Pray'rs can with the Nine prevail,
Think, Sir, how various your Great Acts appear,
There War and Glory, Wit and Honour Here;
One Glitt'ring Moment spreads your wond'rous Fame,
Battles and Bloodshed celebrate your Name;
[Page 5] Now the great Hero, in a Purple Flood,
Plunges thro' stormy Seas of hostile Blood;
Then Strides with skilful Courage from afar,
To stop the Gap of unsuccessful W A R:
Another Moment smoothly Guilds his Face
With Female Sweetness, and a Lovely Grace;
Calmly he Tunes his Mind to soster Sports,
And lives the Matchless Parragon of Courts,
No wonder then, if my presumptuous Eye,
Viewing thy Sun of Excellence too nigh,
Dazled with Light, is forc'd to look awry.
Thus, when some Traveller who wants a Guide,
O'er an extended Plain attempts to ride,
Where Num'rous Paths of Equal breadth appear,
Till he no longer knows which Course to Steer,
If, chusing wrong at last, he goes astray,
What Man wou'd blame him that he lost his way?
In Peace, the fam'd HISPANIA long had slept,
And full Possession of her Indies kept;
Burthen'd with Plenty, idle Bliss they knew,
Till with their Swords, their Natures rusty grew:
But now, against their Wills, they climb to Fate,
And hostile Heroes force 'em to be Great,
When their late Monarch had resign'd his Breath,
And swift-wing'd Fame, proclaim'd his mighty Death,
[Page 6] The Trumpets Clangors eccho'd from afar,
And Friendly Nations rose to sudden War;
The hardy Veterans their Arms prepare,
And waving Banners fan the Warlike Air;
The sprightly Steeds with lofty Bounds advance,
And curb'd by skillful Riders, proudly prance;
A wild Confusion o'er the Globe is hurl'd,
And dreadful Earthquakes shake the Christian World;
The AUSTRIAN Prince, Heir by a just Descent,
To gain his Right, his strong Endeavours bent:
BOURBON oppos'd, and in the vacant Throne
Wou'd place a Royal Offspring of his own;
The first had Right, but Pow'r, which all obey,
Appear'd, to justifie the Second's Sway;
The Arms of France his false Pretence maintain,
And mount their ANJOU to the Crown of Spain.
With helpless sighs the Injur'd AUSTRIAN stands,
And lifts to gracious Heav'n his Eyes and Hands;
He begs his Justice to a much-wrong'd Man,
And Heav'n directs his Pray'rs to matchless ANNE.
Thither they fly whom pow'rful Wrongs oppress,
And find a certain Shelter from Distress:
By her the proud Usurper daily bleeds,
And Gazing Monarchs Wonder at her Deeds;
In deep Surprize and Silence, fix'd they stand,
And see the Fate of Europe in her Hand.
Thither, with tow'ring Hopes, and longing Eyes,
The Young Excluded Monarch swiftly flies,
[Page 7] Whispers in ANNA's Ears his weighty Grief,
And from her Pitty'ng Soul extracts Relief.
At her Command the ready Britains fly,
Exert their inborn Worth and proudly die;
Pleas'd with their Fate, they gladly sell their Breath,
And smile amidst the raging Pangs of Death.
A Chosen Band of Men, who all things dare,
For distant War their mighty Souls prepare;
Through ev'ry Ear their Glorious Cause they Ring,
To Curb proud France, and Right an injur'd King.
O'er these a * Chief, by Art and Nature grac'd,
Renown'd in War and Policy, was plac'd;
Beyond the rest his Judgment cou'd discern,
And cou'd with ease improve, what others cou'd not learn.
He ow'd not Virtue to the fear of Shame,
Nor practis'd Honesty in Hopes of Fame.
In him a spotless Honour firmly stood,
Bath'd in the Gen'rous Streams of Noble Blood.
Him the Great ANNA chose—CAMILLUS go,
Revenge my Brother on his haughty Foe,
Guard him through Dangers, give the Prince his own,
And safely lift him to the Spanish Throne.
The Valiant Chief, without Ambition Brave,
Humbly Receiv'd the Weighty Charge She gave;
Destin'd in spite of Malice to be Great,
He Arms his daring Soul to Combate Fate.
And now the British Gen'rals gladly meet,
And lead their Army to the waiting Fleet:
With swelling Hopes embark, and Joy to find
The brisk Assistance of a willing Wind.
In loud Salutes the deep-mouth'd Cannons Roar,
Answer'd by zealous Wishes from the Shore,
Whence mingled Crowds their hearty Pray'rs repeat,
Till rising Waves Obscure the sailing Fleet.
On the extremest Limits of that Land,
Through which the Tagus, rich in Golden Sand,
His Rapid Course in depth of Waters bends,
And twice two hundred Miles his Stream extends,
Old BARCELONA, strong by Nature stands,
And Rules a vast Extent of fertile Lands.
With Rocky Mountains half environ'd round,
The other half, by Bogs and Marshy Ground;
Beneath her Walls surrounding Trenches lie,
Above their Banks rise Bulworks vastly high;
Walls within Walls the solid Place defend,
And watchful Centinels their Charge attend:
[...]ngines of hollow Brass, with fiery Breath,
Vomit black sulph'rous Messages of Death;
Charg'd with Destruction, speak with horrid Roar,
And scatter Terrors round the Neigh'bring Shore.
Hither with crowded Sails the Britains bent,
Big with the Message their Great Mistress sent;
Their War-like Souls to Emulation rise,
And breath out pious Wishes to the Skies.
And now those Pow'rs which brave Designs attend,
Had brought their Voyage to an happy End.
From Barcelona's Tow'rs, with wild Affright,
The trembling Foe beholds th' unwelcome Sight;
A mighty Fleet approaching by degrees,
In graceful Order Ploughs the smiling Seas;
Harmonious Musick spreads the Joy they bring,
And Clam'rous Shouts proclaim the coming King:
The sounding Trumpets his Intent declare,
And waving Streamers flourish in the Air.
Arriv'd at length, the Cannons loudly roar,
And shake with panick Fright the wond'ring Shore.
Mean while the Spaniards all their Force prepare,
And Arm confus'dly for defensive War;
Blind with Amusement, and ignoble Fear,
They double all the BRITAINS that appear;
All think with Horror, England now had bent
Her utmost Force to form one Grand Descent.
But when they saw so small a Number Land—
And boldly tread the Surface of their Sand,
The paler Marks of Fear forsook their Face,
And Wonder, far more Great, supplies the Place.
An equal Force within their Walls they found,
Yet fear'd to meet their Foes on equal Ground;
They saw, with Wonder at an Act so vain,
Th' undaunted Britains win the Neighb'ring Plain,
[Page 10] Where soon their Squadrons form'd a Camp, and then
They thought, or dreaded they were more than Men.
Thus had the great CAMILLUS forc'd his Way,
And void of Fear, in midst of Dangers lay.
Impatient of Delays the Austrian Youth,
Deep touch'd with Sorrow, listen'd to the Truth;
He saw the Weakness of his daring Few,
And with Concern his Foes Advantage knew.
The Brazen Tubes of Death were mounted high,
And Clouds of rowling Smoak obscur'd the Sky:
All this and more, from his small Camp was seen,
And Death, disguis'd with Horror, stalk'd between.
The Aged Chiefs, in cautious War grown old,
Wou'd rather be too backward than too bold;
Therefore advis'd the Prince to haste away,
Since 'twas scarce possible to live and stay.
The Prince, with melancholy Thoughts opprest,
Came to CAMILLUS and unlock'd his Breast,
[...] the Pangs of Sorrow, Shame and Rage,
[...] shook the blooming Comforts of his Age:
Told him the Flames in which his Soul wou'd burn,
Shou'd he thus unsuccessfully Return.
With Grief the gen'rous Britain heard him tell
The deep Misfortunes he but knew too well.
He rowls his Eyes, accuses Partial Fate,
And tells the Austrian, that he shou'd be Great.
[Page 11] Resolv'd to act, the Council speak in vain,
And, by Debates, protract the Fall of Spain;
CAMILLUS had a Soul, whose Heav'nly Fire
Cou'd compass all Things, and to all aspire.
Himself alone cou'd with himself Debate,
And mov'd obscurely, like the Hand of Fate.
Hard by the Tow'rs of Barcelona stands,
High on the Rocks o'erlooking Neighb'ring Lands,
A strong-built Castle, whose extended Sway
Obliges ev'n the City to Obey.
Five Hundred Men the solid Ramparts keep
On Rocks beyond Imagination steep;
Whence rowling Stones invading Foes can Chace,
When with an aking Eye they climb the dreadful Place.
This was the Source whence Victories must flow,
Hither the British Chief resolv'd to go;
Unus'd to Fear, and more unus'd to boast,
With temp'rate Words he chear'd his wond'ring Host;
Strove not to hide the Hazard of the Task,
Nor cover Danger with a guilded Mask:
He tells each Soldier what he must perform,
And by Example wins 'em to the Storm.
The Rosy Morning usher'd in the Sun,
Which was to see a bloody Business done;
His Beams shon bright to guide the Battle well,
And drank their Blood in Pitty as it fell.
Eight Hundred Britains on this glorious Day,
O'er Pathless Forrests force their oblique Way:
[Page 12] In tedious March o'er high Assents they past,
And won the dang'rous Precipice at last.
With strange Surprize the Foe begins to Arm,
And Bells rung backward in a loud alarm:
The summon'd Soldiers hasten to their Post,
And pour whole Vollies on the climbing Host:
New Forms of Death huge falling Stones create,
And crush invading Numbers with their Weight.
Repeated Charges from the Cannons fly,
Like fiery Meteors blazing thro' the Sky.
The shatter'd Limbs of Men, who bravely dare,
Are born on Bullets thro' the flaming Air,
Adding new Motion to disjointed Parts;
The dismal Prospect shocks the bravest Hearts.
The brave CAMILLUS, with a fierce Delight,
Guides on the head-long Fury of the Fight;
Prompting his bleeding Troops to venture higher,
And scatter Death for Death, and Fire for Fire.
[...] when of old, the mighty Giants strove
[...] check the boundless Pow'r of angry Jove;
With Force like this, but in a Cause less good,
The huge Briareus, bath'd in Streams of Blood,
Stands on the Globe, attempts to conquer Fate,
And shakes the solid Center with his Weight;
Kicks at the Thunder which with Horror flies,
And while swift Lightning flashes in his Eyes,
Tears up a hundred Rocks, and throws 'em at the Skies.
But now aloft the mingled War grows high,
On heaps promiscuous Numbers fall and Die;
Rivers of Blood from the mix'd Battle flows,
Till Death scarce sees to Guide her destin'd Blows.
The Walls are won, the Spaniards lose the Day,
And Valiant Britains win the Cover'd Way:
Soldiers below, by mutual Help ascend,
While those above the Conquer'd Pass Defend.
No more the driven Foes their Fortune try,
But quit their bloody Battlements and fly:
Despair and Horror fill the Dismal Place,
And Terror sits Enthron'd on ev'ry Face;
Destructive Fate grows Cruel to Excess,
And rages blindly in her blackest Dress.
Matrons and Virgins Weep with bitter Cries,
And Noisy Sorrows pierce the distant Skies.
But cease, mistaken Wretches, cease your Moan,
And on your bended Knees your Follies own;
Tho' haughty Gauls will still Tyrannick be,
CAMILLUS Conquers but to set you Free.
His Gen'rous Soul no base Intention knows,
But Pitties ev'n the Blackest of his Foes.
This swift Success confounds the wondring King,
And all the Host their Gen'ral's Praises sing.
But he with wonted Care proceeds to End
The vast Design, such early Joys attend;
VVith rich Rewards he chears his Men again,
And leads them down with Courage to the Plain,
[Page 14] There plants divided Troops on distant Ground,
To force a City they not half surround.
Thus moves he brightly like some wand'ring Star,
And scorns the heavy Arts of Common VVar;
His Actions by their Merits brightly blaze,
He needs no Council, and he seeks no Praise.
VVhile other Gen'rals tedious Projects Form,
He Thinks, and Acts, and VVins Applause by Storm;
With furious Courage stands and Tempts his Fate,
But Heav'n still spares the MAN to Bless the STATE.
With Threat'ning Look each ready Britain stands,
And sharp-edg'd VVeapons grace their VVar-like Hands,
Obsequious Silence waits the Gen'ral's Nod,
As Ancient Grecians watch'd the Delphian God.
Mean while each trembling Tow'r with horrid Dread,
Loosen'd its Walls, and shook its batter'd Head,
The lofty VVorks, which shou'd the Town defend,
The shocks of hostile Thunder widely rend;
Amidst these Crowds of Terrors and Despair,
The Britains for a sharp Assault prepare;
The Spaniards see and shun their low'ring Fates,
And widely open their submissive Gates.
And now the mighty Deed is greatly done,
A King reliev'd and Kingdoms bravely won;
The Warlike Chief, with Glory fir'd his Breast,
Forgot his Pleasures, and forsook his Rest;
[Page 15] The Austrian fix'd he boldly onward bent,
And Conquer'd Rebel Countries as he went.
The stubborn Catalans, unus'd to bow,
Gladly submit to firm Subjection now;
With joyful Shouts their happy Monarch greet,
And leave their Mountains for the Regal Seat;
That strong-built Fort, whose State the rest excell'd,
And thrice Ten Thousand Gallick Foes repell'd,
Afraid to strive, her Iron Gates unlock'd,
And calmly open'd when CAMILLUS knock'd:
To his Successful Arms whole Nations yield,
And freely give him up an untry'd Field;
At his bless'd Feet the Rich Tortosa lay,
And Matchless Conduct gain'd him Lerida;
Valencia's Kingdom Gloriously he won,
And triumph'd o'er the prostrate Arragon.
But hold, unwary Muse, no higher soar,
He that did this, alas! must do no more:
Oh! that thy Numbers cou'd but reach my Aim,
How wou'd I celebrate his Glorious Name!
How wou'd I Paint the Battles he has won,
And all the Noble Actions he has done!
How wou'd I Paint him spilling Gen'rous Blood,
And tempting Death for his dear Country's good!
How wou'd I draw his two illustrious Sons,
Proud of their mangled Flesh and shatter'd Bones!
[Page 16] How wou'd I tune my elevated Song,
To Shame those Men who do CAMILLUS wrong!
But since his VVorks thro' Clouds are forc'd to Shine,
How can I hope Success for such as mine!
Let Vertue be Rewarded if it can,
VVhen Gratitude forgets so Great a MAN.

This keyboarded and encoded edition of the work described above is co-owned by the institutions providing financial support to the Text Creation Partnership. This Phase I text is available for reuse, according to the terms of Creative Commons 0 1.0 Universal. The text can be copied, modified, distributed and performed, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission.