Verse > Anthologies > Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. > Poems of Places > Greece
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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed.  Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Greece and Turkey in Europe: Vol. XIX.  1876–79.
 
Greece: Thebæ (Thebes)
Thebes
Seneca (c. 3 B.C.–65 A.D.)
 
Translated by J. B. Patterson

THEBES! who shall weep aright for thee,
No more the valiant and the free?
Thou cradle-land of many a god,
Stoop’st thou beneath a tyrant’s rod?
She,—from whose fields together rose        5
The sworded bands of spell-born foes,
Whose walls to rear, Amphion’s tones
Led, as in dance, the charmed stones;
For whom so oft eternal Jove
Hath left his radiant seats above:        10
To whom in former years was given
To shrine her favorites in heaven;
Who, haply, gods will yet create,—
She bows beneath the cankering weight
Of iron bondage and disgrace.        15
How are ye fallen, Cadmean race!
Shall a proud outcast vilely spurn
Your freedom’s rights, ye dragon-born?
Shall he usurp your country’s throne,
A sordid exile from his own?        20
Whose crimes affront the land and main,
Shall he Herculean Thebes profane?
 
 
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