Home  »  A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895  »  Written in Edinburgh

Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908). A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895. 1895.

Arthur Henry Hallam 1811–33

Written in Edinburgh

EVEN thus, methinks, a city rear’d should be,

Yea, an imperial city, that might hold

Five times an hundred noble towns in fee,

And either with their might of Babel old,

Or the rich Roman pomp of empery

Might stand compare, highest in arts enroll’d,

Highest in arms; brave tenement for the free,

Who never crouch to thrones, or sin for gold.

Thus should her towers be rais’d—with vicinage

Of clear bold hills, that curve her very streets,

As if to vindicate, ’mid choicest seats

Of art, abiding Nature’s majesty;

And the broad sea beyond, in calm or rage

Chainless alike, and teaching Liberty.