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- Maiden of Arc,” So as he spake approaching, cried the chief, “ Well hast thou proved thy mission, as by words And miracles attested when dismay'd The grave theologists dismiss'd their doubts,

55 So in the field of battle now confirm’d. Yon well-fenced forts protect the fugitives, And seem as in their strength they mock'd our force. Yet must they fall."

“And fall they shall!" replied The Maid of Orleans. 6 Ere the sun be set 60 The lily on that shattered wall shall wave Triumphant.— Men of France! ye have fought well On yon blood-reeking plain. Your humbled foes Lurk trembling now behind their massy

walls. Wolves that have ravaged the neglected flock! 65 The Shepherd — the Great Shepherd is arisen! Ye fly! yet shall not ye by flight escape His vengeance. Men of Orleans ! it were vain By words to waken wrath within your

breasts. 69 Look round ! Your holy buildings and your homes Ruins that choke the way! your populous town One open sepulchre! who is there here That does not mourn a friend, a brother slain, A parent famished, .. or his dear loved wife Torn from his bosom .. outcast .. broken-hearted.. Cast on the mercy of mankind ? ”

She ceased ; 76 A cry of indignation from the host Burst forth, and all impatient for the war Demand the signal. These Dunois arrays In four battalions. Xaintrailles, tried in war, 80

Commands the first; Xaintrailles, who oftentimes
Defeated, oft a prisoner, and as oft
Released for ransom, both with friend and foe
Growing repute of active hardihood,
And martial skill obtained; so erst from earth 85
Antæus vaunting in his giant bulk,
When graspt by force Herculean, down he fell
Vanquish'd, anon uprose more fierce for war.

Gaucour the second battle led, true friend And faithful servant of the imprison'd Duke; 90 In counsel provident, in action prompt, Collected always, always self-controul'd, He from the soldiers' confidence and love Prompter obedience gain'd, than ever fear Forced from the heart reluctant.

The third band Alençon leads. On Verneuil's fatal field

96 The day when Buchan and the Douglas died, Wounded and senseless with the loss of blood, He fell, and there being found, was borne away A prisoner, in the ills of that defeat

100 Participant, partaking not the shame: But for his rank and high desert, the King Had ransom'd him, doom'd now to meet the foe With better fortune.

O'er the last presides The bastard son of Orleans, great in arms. 105 His prowess knew the foes, and his fair fame Acknowledged, since before his stripling arm Fled Warwick; Warwick, he whose wide renown Greece knew and Antioch and the holy soil

Of Palestine, since there in arms he went 110
On gallant pilgrimage; yet by Dunois
Baffled, and yielding him the conqueror's praise.
And by his side the martial Maiden pass'd,
Lovely in arms as that Arcadian boy
Parthenopæus, when the war of beasts 115
Disdaining, he to cope with men went forth,
Bearing the bow and those Dictæan shafts
Diana gave, when she the youth's fair form
Saw, soften'd, and forgave the mother's fault. 119

Loup's was the nearest fort. Here Gladdisdale Commands the English, who as the enemy Moved to the assault, from bow and arbalist Their shafts and quarrels shower'd. Nor did they use Hand-weapons only and hand-engines here, Nor by the arm alone, or bow-string sped 125 The missile flew, but driven by the strain'd force Of the balista, in one body spent Stay'd not; through arms and men it made its way, And leaving death behind, still held its course 129 By many a death unclogg'd. With rapid march Onward the assailants came, and now they reach'd Where by the bayle's embattled wall in arms The knights of England stood. There Poynings shook His lance, and Gladdisdale his heavy mace For the death-blow prepared. Alençon here, 135 And here the Bastard came, and by the Maid, That daring man who to the English host Then insolent of many a conquest gain'd, Had borne her bidding. A rude coat of mail Unhosed, unhooded, as of lowly line

140

He wore, though here amid the high-born chiefs
Pre-eminent for prowess. On his head
A black plume shadow'd the rude-featured helm.
Then was the war of men, when front to front
They rear'd the hostile hand, for low the wall 145
Where an assailant's upward-driven spear
Might reach his enemy.

As Alençon moved,
On his crown-crested helm with ponderous blow
Fell Gladdisdale's huge mace. Back he recoil'd
Astounded; soon recovering, his sharp lance 150
Thrust on the warrior's shield: there fast-infixed,
Nor could Alençon the deep-driven spear
Recover, nor the foeman from his grasp
Wrench the contended weapon. Fierce again
He lifts the mace, that on the ashen hilt 155
Fell full; it shiver'd, and the Frenchman held
A pointless truncheon. Where the Bastard fought,
The spear of Poynings, through his plated mail
Pierced, and against the iron fence beneath
Blunted its point. Again he thrust the spear; 160
At once Dunois on his broad buckler met
The unharming stroke, and aim'd with better hap
His javelin. Through his sword-arm did it pierce
Maugre the mail: hot from the streaming wound
He pluck'd the weapon forth, and in his breast 165
Clean through the hauberk drove.

But there the war Raged fiercest where the martial Maiden moved A minister of wrath ; for thither throng'd The bravest champions of the adverse host.

And on her either side two warriors stood 170
Protecting her, and aiming at her foes
Watchful their weapons, of themselves the while
Little regarding: on the one side he
Who to the English had her bidding borne ;
Firmly he stood, untired and undismay'd, 175
Though many a spear against his burgonet
Was thrust, and on his arm the buckler hung
Heavy, thick-bristled with the hostile shafts,
Even like a porcupine when in his rage
Roused, he collects within him all his force, 180
Himself a quiver. On the other hand
Competing with him to protect the Maid,
Conrade maintain'd the fight; at all points arm’d,
A jazerent of double mail he wore,
Its weight in little time had wearied one 185
Of common strength; but unencumber'd he
And unfatigued, alertly moved in it,
And wielded with both hands a battle-axe,
Which gave no second stroke ; for where it fell,
Not the strong buckler nor the plated mail 190
Might save, nor crested casque. On Molyn's head,
As the Maid he aim'd his javelin,
Forceful it fell, and shiver'd with the blow
The iron helm, and to his brain-pan drove
The fragments. At his fall the enemy,

195
Stricken with instantaneous fear, gave way.
That instant Conrade, with an active bound,
Sprung on the battlements; and there he stood,
Keeping the ascent. The herald and the Maid
Follow'd, and soon the exulting cry of France 200
Along the lists was heard, as there they saw

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