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xxviii. Europe can boast no richer, goodlier scene, Than that through which our pleasant passage lay, By fertile fields and fruitful gardens green, The journey of a short autumnal day; Sleek well-fed steeds our steady vessel drew, The heavens were fair, and Mirth was of our crew.
xxix. Along the smooth canal's unbending line, Beguiling time with light discourse, we went, Nor wanting savoury food nor generous wine. Ashore too there was feast and merriment; The jovial peasants at some village fair Were dancing, drinking, smoking, gambling there.
xxx. Of these, or of the ancient towers of Ghent Itenowned, I must not tarry now to tell; Of picture, or of church, or monument; Nor how we mounted to that ponderous bell, The Belfroy's boast, which bears old Roland's name, Nor yields to Oxford Tom, or Tom of Lincolu's fame.
XXXI. Nor of that sisterhood whom to their rule of holy life no hasty vows restrain, 5. who, meek disciples of the Christian school, watch by the bed of sickness and of pain: Oh what a strength divine doth Faith impart To inborn goodness in the female heart!
XXXII. A gentle party from the shores of Kent Thus far had been our comrades as befell; Fortune had linked us first, at:d now Consent, For why should Choice divide whom Chance so well Hadjoined, seeing they to view the fainous ground, Like us, were to the Field of Battle bound.
XXXiii. Farther as yet they looked not than that questThe land was all before them where to chuse. So we consorted liere as seemed best; who would such pleasant fellowship refuse Of ladies fair and gentle comrades free?— Certes we were: joyous company.
xxx; W. Yet lacked we not discourse for graver times, Such as might suit sage auditors, I ween; For some among us, in far distant climes The cities and the ways of men had seen; No unobservant travellers they, but well of what they there had learnt they knew to tell.
XXXV. The one of frozen Moscovy could speak, And well his willing listeners entertain with tales of that inclement region bleak, The pageantry and poinp of Catherine's reign, And that proud city, which with wise intent The mighty founder raised, his own great monument.
XXXVI. And one had dwelt with Malabars and Moors, Where fertile earth and genial heaven dispense Profuse their bounty upon Indian shores; Whateer delights the eye, or charms the sense, The valleys with perpetual fruit age Llest, The mountains with unfading foliage drest.
XXXVII. He those barbaric palaces had seen, The work of Eastern potentates of old; And in the Temples of the Rock had been, Awe-struck their dread recesses to behold; A gifted hand was his, which by its skill Could to the eye pourtray such wonderous scenes at will. XXYVIII. A third, who from the Land of Lakes with me Went out upon this pleasant pilgrimage, Had sojourned long beyond the Atlantic sea; Adventurous was his spirit as his age, For he in far Brazil, through wood and waste, Had travelled many a day, and there his heart was placed. XXVIX. Wild region,-happy if at night he found The shelter of some rude Tapuya's shed; Else would he take his lodgement on the ground, Or from the tree suspend his hardy bed; And sometimes starting at the jaguar's cries, See through the murky night the prowler's fiery eyes.