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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Spain, Portugal, Belgium, and Holland: Vols. XIV–XV. 1876–79.

Portugal: Vimeiro

Inscription for a Monument at Vimeiro

By Robert Southey (1774–1843)

THIS is Vimeiro; yonder stream, which flows

Westward through heathery highlands to the sea,

Is called Maceira, till of late a name,

Save to the dwellers of this peaceful vale,

Known only to the coasting mariner;

Now in the bloody page of war inscribed.

When to the aid of injured Portugal

Struggling against the intolerable yoke

Of treacherous France, England, her old ally,

Long tried and always faithful found, went forth,

The embattled hosts, in equal strength arrayed

And equal discipline, encountered here.

Junot, the mock Abrantes, led the French,

And confident of skill so oft approved,

And vaunting many a victory, advanced

Against an untried foe. But when the ranks

Met in the shock of battle, man to man,

And bayonet to bayonet opposed,

The flower of France, cut down along their line,

Fell like ripe grass before the mower’s scythe;

For the strong arm and rightful cause prevailed.

That day delivered Lisbon from the yoke,

And babes were taught to bless Sir Arthur’s name.