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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Oceanica: Vol. XXXI. 1876–79.

Various Islands: Malta

The Knights of St. John

By Friedrich von Schiller (1759–1805)

Translated by Edward, Lord Lytton

OH, nobly shone the fearful cross upon your mail afar,

When Rhodes and Acre hailed your might, O lions of the war!

When leading many a pilgrim horde, through wastes of Syrian gloom;

Or standing with the cherub’s sword before the Holy Tomb.

Yet on your forms the apron seemed a nobler armor far,

When by the sick man’s bed ye stood, O lions of the war!

When ye, the high-born, bowed your pride to tend the lowly weakness,

The duty, though it brought no fame, fulfilled by Christian meekness,—

Religion of the cross, thou blend’st, as in a single flower,

The twofold branches of the palm,—humility and power.