Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Italy: Vols. XI–XIII. 1876–79.



By John Nichol (1833–1894)

  • Capua was supposed to take its name from being the caput, or head city, of the southern Etruscan confederacy.

  • FIRST of old of Oscan towns!

    Prize of triumphs, pearl of crowns;

    Half a thousand years have fled,

    Since arose thy royal head,

    Splendor of the Lucumoes.

    Tuscan fortress, doomed to feel

    Sharpest edge of Samnite steel,

    Flashing down the Liris tide;

    Re-arisen, in richer pride,

    Cynosure of Italy!

    Let the Gaurian echoes say

    How, with Rome, we ruled the fray;

    Till the fatal field was won

    By the chief who slew his son,

    ’Neath the vines of Vesulus.

    Siren city, where the plain

    Glitters twice with golden grain,

    Twice the bowers of roses blow,

    Twice the grapes and olives flow,

    Thou wilt chain the conqueror;

    Home of war-subduing eyes,

    Shining under softest skies,

    Gleaming to the silver sea,

    Liber, Venus, strive for thee,

    Empress of Ausonia!

    Glorious in thy martial bloom,

    Glorious still in storm and gloom,

    We thy chiefs who dare to die

    Raise again thy battle-cry,—

    Charge with Capuan chivalry!