Home > Uncategorized > Edmund Spenser: Wars can nought but sorrows yield

Edmund Spenser: Wars can nought but sorrows yield

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Anti-war essays, poems, short stories and literary excerpts

British writers on peace and war

Edmund Spenser: The first to attack the world with sword and fire

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Edmund Spenser
From The Faerie Queene

The longer life, I wote the greater sin,
The greater sin, the greater punishment;
All those great battels which thou boasts to win,
Through strife, and bloodshed, and avengement,
Now prais’d, hereafter dear thou shalt repent:
For, life must life, and blood must blood repay.
Is not enough thy evil life forespent?

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Thence-forth the suit of earthly conquest shun,
And wash thy hands from guilt of bloody field:
For, blood can nought but sin, and wars but sorrows yield.

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What need of arms, where peace doth ay remain
(Said he) and battles none are to be fought?

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Soon as thy dreadful trump begins to sound,
The God of war with his fierce equipage
Thou dost awake, sleep never he so sound,
And feared nations dost with Horror stern astound.

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From Mutabilitie

And drad Bellona, that hath doth sound on hie
Warres and allarums unto Nations wide,
That make both heaven and earth to tremble at her pride…

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. ignasi orobitg gene
    August 25, 2016 at 2:27 pm

    War destroys solutions

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