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The Statue and the Bust

By Browning, Robert

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Book Id: WPLBN0000679421
Format Type: PDF eBook
File Size: 146,878 KB.
Reproduction Date: 2007
Full Text

Title: The Statue and the Bust  
Author: Browning, Robert
Language: English
Subject: Fiction, Poetry, Verse drama
Collections: Poetry Collection
Publication Date:
Publisher: World Public Library Association


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Browning, R. (n.d.). The Statue and the Bust. Retrieved from


Excerpt: THERE's a palace in Florence, the world knows well, // And a statue watches it from the square, // And this story of both do our townsmen tell. // Ages ago, a lady there, // At the farthest window facing the East, // Asked, Who rides by with the royal air? // The bridesmaids' prattle around her ceased; // She leaned forth, one on either hand; // They saw how the blush of the bride increased - // They felt by its beats her heart expand - // As one at each ear and both in a breath // Whispered, The Great-Duke Ferdinand. // That self-same instant, underneath, // The Duke rode past in his idle way, // Empty and fine like a swordless sheath. // Gay he rode, with a friend as gay, // Till he threw his head back - Who is she? // - A bride the Riccardi brings home today. // Hair in heaps lay heavily // Over a pale brow spirit-pure - // Carved like the heart of the coal-black tree, // Crisped like a war-steed's encolure - // And vainly sought to dissemble her eyes // Of the blackest black our eyes endure. // And lo, a blade for a knight's emprise // Filled the fine empty sheath of a man, - // The Duke grew straightway brave and wise. // He looked at her, as a lover can; // She looked at him, as one who awakes: // The past was a sleep, and their life began. // Now, love so ordered for both their sakes, // A feast was held that selfsame night // In the pile which the mighty shadow makes. // (For Via Larga is three-parts light, // But the palace overshadows one, // Because of a crime which may God requite! // To Florence and God the wrong was done...


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