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WILLIAM HAYWARD ROBERTS.
BORN 1745.-DIED 1791.
was educated at Eton, and from thence was elected to King's college, Cambridge, where he took the degree of master of arts, and of doctor in divinity. From being an under master at Eton, he finally rose to be provost of the college, in the year 1781. He was also chaplain to the king, and rector of Farnbam Royal, in Buckinghamshire. In 1771, he published, in three parts, “A Poetical Essay on the Attributes and Providence of the Deity.” Two years afterwards, “A Poetical Epistle to Christopher Anstey, on the English Poets, chiefly those who had written in blank verse;" and in 1774, his poem of “ Judah Restored," a work of no common merit.
FROM JUDAH RESTORED.
The Subject proposed-State of the Jews in captivity-Charac.
ter of Belshazzar-Feast of Baal-Daniel visited by the Angel Gabriel.
The fall of proud Belshazzar, the return
The sun full seventy times had pass'd the realm
Harps, which their fathers struck to festal hymas, Hang useless. 'Twas the hill, 'twas Sion's bill, Which yet Jehovah lov'd. There once he dwelt; There stood his temple ; there from side to side The cherub stretch'd his wings, and from the cloud Beam'd bright celestial radiance. Thence, though
driven In early childhood to a stranger's land, Or born sad heirs of slavery, still they cast An anxious look from Perath's willowy vale, Toward Jordan, sacred stream; and when the sun Sunk in the west, with eager eye pursued His parting beams; and pointed to the place, Where from their sight the faint horizon hid Those hills, which round deserted Salem's walls Stood like a bulwark. And as some tired hart, Driven by keen hunters o'er the champain wild, Pants for the running brook, so long the tribes Of captive Judah for their native clime, Again to sing the strains of Jesse's son, Again to raise a temple to their God.
But oh! what hope, what prospect of return, While fierce Belsbazzar reigns? He, undismay'd Though hostile banners stream near Babel's towers, Round his galld prisoners binds the griping chain, And scoffs at Judah's God. Even now a shout Is heard through every street, and with loud voice Arioch, an herald tall, proclaims a feast 'To Bel, Chaldæan idol; and commands That when the morrow dawns, soon as is heard The sound of cornet, dulcimer, and harp, Sackbut, and psaltery, each knee be bent Before the mighty dragon. Silent stand With eyes dejected Solyma's sad sons.
Shall they comply? but will Jehovah then
devise? Thus they irresolute wait the fatal hour.
Now Night invests the pole: wrapt is the world In awful silence; not a voice is heard, Nor din of arms, nor sound of distant foot, Through the still gloom. Euphrates lulls bis waves, Which sparkle to the moon's reflected beam; Nor does one sage from Babylon's high towers Descry the planets, or the fix'd, and mark Their distance, or their number. Sunk to rest, With all her horrors of the morrow's doom, Lies Sion's captive daughter: sleep, soft sleep, His dusky mantle draws o’er every eye. But not on Daniel's unpillow'd head One opiate dew-drop falls. Much he revolves Dark sentences of old; much pious zeal For great Jehovah's honour fires his soul; And thus, with lifted hands, the prophet cries:
“Father of truth, and mercy, thou whose arm Even from the day when Abraham heard thy voice, Stretch'd o'er thy chosen race, protects us still, Though now awhile thou suffer us to groan Beneath a tyrant's yoke ; when, gracious Lord, O when shall we return? O when again Shall Siloa's banks, and Sion's holy top, Be vocal with thy name? Said not 'thy seer, When seventy tedious moons had twelve times
waned, We should again be free? Behold, the day