Verse > Anthologies > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of English Verse
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Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. 1919. The Oxford Book of English Verse: 1250–1900.
  
Francis Beaumont. 1586–1616
  
234. On the Tombs in Westminster Abbey
  
MORTALITY, behold and fear! 
What a change of flesh is here! 
Think how many royal bones 
Sleep within this heap of stones: 
Here they lie had realms and lands,         5
Who now want strength to stir their hands: 
Where from their pulpits seal'd with dust 
They preach, 'In greatness is no trust.' 
Here 's an acre sown indeed 
With the richest, royall'st seed  10
That the earth did e'er suck in 
Since the first man died for sin: 
Here the bones of birth have cried— 
'Though gods they were, as men they died.' 
Here are sands, ignoble things,  15
Dropt from the ruin'd sides of kings; 
Here 's a world of pomp and state, 
Buried in dust, once dead by fate. 
 
 
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