Lines Placed on a Venerable Oak at Rudhall

Placed on a venerable Oak at Rudhall

Ye Britons, venerate this tree,
The guardian of our liberty
Through many a distant age.
Beneath its shade the Druid rose,
And wak'd the British youth from woes
To true heroic rage.

Forth from their woods they rush'd like flame;
What time Rome's hostile legions came,
They met them at the waves; —
And who shall call the conflict vain?
They perish'd on their native plain,
Nor liv'd a race of slaves.

And still this tree, to Britons dear,
Protects our rights from year to year;
Hence are our terrors hurl'd.
Ye Britons, venerate the Oak;
Nelson from this in thunder spoke,
And shook th' astonish'd world.

While this shall flourish in the glade,
What foe shall dare our rights invade?
O lovely tree! increase:
Still spread thy bending branches far,
Protect us from the woes of war,
And shelter us in peace.
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