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The Monks of Bangor’s March
WHEN the heathen trumpet’s clang Round beleaguered Chester rang, Veiled nun and friar gray Marched from Bangor’s fair Abbaye; High their holy anthem sounds, Cestria’s vale the hymn rebounds, Floating down the sylvan Dee. O miserere, Domine! On the long procession goes, Glory round their crosses glows, And the Virgin-mother mild In their peaceful banner smiled; Who could think such saintly band Doomed to feel unhallowed hand! Such was the Divine decree, O miserere, Domine! Bands that masses only sung, Hands that censers only swung, Met the northern bow and bill, Heard the war-cry wild and shrill; Woe to Brockmael’s feeble hand, Woe to Olfrid’s bloody brand, Woe to Saxon cruelty, O miserere, Domine! Weltering amid warriors slain, Spurned by steeds with bloody mane, Slaughtered down by heathen blade, Bangor’s peaceful monks are laid; Word of parting rest unspoke, Mass unsung and bread unbroke; For their souls for charity, Sing, O miserere, Domine! Bangor! o’er the murder wail! Long thy ruins told the tale, Shattered towers and broken arch Long recalled the woful march: On thy shrine no tapers burn, Never shall thy priests return; The pilgrim sighs and sings for thee, O miserere, Domine!
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