The Ballad of the White Horse: An Epic Poem

The Ballad of the White Horse: An Epic Poem

Language: English

Pages: 120


Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

A rousing ballad based on the true story of legendary Saxon king Alfred the Great

In the dark times before a unified England, warring tribes roved and sparred for territory across the British Isles. The Ballad of the White Horse records the deeds and military accomplishments of Alfred the Great as he defeats the invading Danes at the Battle of Ethandun. Published in 1911, this poem follows the battle—from the gathering of the chiefs to the last war cry—with a care to rhythm, sound, and language that makes it a magnificent work of art as well as a vital piece of English history.
A significant influence on the structure of Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, The Ballad of the White Horse transforms the thrilling exploits of a courageous leader into an inspirational Christian allegory.
This ebook has been professionally proofread to ensure accuracy and readability on all devices.

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EARLY BIRD BOOKS FRESH EBOOK DEALS, DELIVERED DAILY BE THE FIRST TO KNOW— NEW DEALS HATCH EVERY DAY! The Ballad of the White Horse An Epic Poem G. K. Chesterton Publisher’s Note Long before they were ever written down, poems were organized in lines. Since the invention of the printing press, readers have become increasingly conscious of looking at poems, rather than hearing them, but the function of the poetic line remains primarily sonic. Whether a poem is written in meter or in free

white hair of the world. And some had knocked at the northern gates Of the ultimate icy floor, Where the fish freeze and the foam turns black, And the wide world narrows to a track, And the other sea at the world’s back Cries through a closed door. And men went forth from Alfred’s face, Even great gift-bearing lords, Not to Rome only, but more bold, Out to the high hot courts of old, Of negroes clad in cloth of gold, Silence, and crooked swords, Scrawled screens and secret gardens

king; “By this sign you shall know them, The breaking of the sword, And man no more a free knight, That loves or hates his lord. “Yea, this shall be the sign of them, The sign of the dying fire; And Man made like a half-wit, That knows not of his sire. “What though they come with scroll and pen, And grave as a shaven clerk, By this sign you shall know them, That they ruin and make dark; “By all men bond to Nothing, Being slaves without a lord, By one blind idiot world obeyed, Too

With desperate dyke and wall, With foemen leaning on his shield And roaring on him when he reeled; And no help came at all. He broke them with a broken sword A little towards the sea, And for one hour of panting peace, Ringed with a roar that would not cease, With golden crown and girded fleece Made laws under a tree. The Northmen came about our land A Christless chivalry: Who knew not of the arch or pen, Great, beautiful half-witted men From the sunrise and the sea. Misshapen

ever, But suddenly it fails. “Doubtless your sires were sword-swingers When they waded fresh from foam, Before they were turned to women By the god of the nails from Rome; “But since you bent to the shaven men, Who neither lust nor smite, Thunder of Thor, we hunt you A hare on the mountain height.” King Guthrum smiled a little, And said, “It is enough, Nephew, let Elf retune the string; A boy must needs like bellowing, But the old ears of a careful king Are glad of songs less

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