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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Germany: Vols. XVII–XVIII. 1876–79.


The Fall of Magdeburg

By John Bruce Norton (1815–1883)

“TROY and Jerusalem have fallen, but ne’er,”

Wrote Tilly, “the destroying angel, sire,

Lit, until now, a city’s funeral pyre,

Like that which hath laid low the strong and fair,

But heretic Magdeburg.”—O, bid me spare

The tale: my blood would freeze, or brain would fire,

To tell the horrors which sectarian ire,

Croat, Walloon, scarred Pappenheim, wrought there.

Yet mid the flames, and thirty thousand dead,

While salvos from the smoke-grimed cannon leaped,

The victors, lust-polluted, murder-fed,

Mocked God in the Cathedral, chanting high

“Te Deum,” and the demon Blasphemy

Veiled on the altar-steps his face, and wept.