by Walter Scott, Sir (1771 - 1832)

The Crusader's Return
Language: English 
High deeds atchieved of knightly fame,
From Palestine the champion came;
The cross upon his shoulders borne,
Battle and blast had dimm'd and torn.
Each dint upon his batter'd shield
Was token of a foughten field;
And thus, beneath his lady's bower,
He sung as fell the twilight hour:

"Joy to the fair! - thy knight behold,
Return'd from yonder land of gold;
No wealth he brings, nor wealth can need,
Save his good arms and battle steed;
His spurs, to dash against a foe,
His lance and sword to lay him low;
Such all the trophies of his toil,
Such - and the hope of Tekla's smile!

"Joy to the fair! whose constant knight
Her favour fired to feats of might;
Unnoted shall she not remain
Where meet the bright and noble train;
Minstrel shall sing and herald tell -
'Mark yonder maid of beauty well,
'Tis she for whose bright eyes was won
The listed field at Ascalon!

"'Note well her smile! - it edged the blade
Which fifty wives to widows made,
When, vain his strength and Mahound's spell,
Iconium's turban'd soldan fell.
See'st thou her locks, whose sunny glow
Half shows, half shades, her neck of snow;
Twines not of them one golden thread,
But for its sake a Paynim bled.'

"Joy to the fair! - my name unknown,
Each deed, and all its praise, thine own;
Then, oh! unbar this churlish gate,
The night-dew falls, the hour is late.
Inured to Syria's glowing breath,
I feel the north breeze chill as death;
Let grateful love quell maiden shame,
And grant him bliss who brings thee fame."

Confirmed with Ivanhoe; a Romance. By "The Author of Waverley," &c. In three volumes. Vol. II. Edinburgh: Printed for Archibald Constable and Co. Edinburgh; and Hurst, Robinson, and Co. 90, Cheapside, London. 1820, pages 43-45.

Note: The poem appears in the 17th chapter (denominated "Chapter III.") of Walter Scott's novel.


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Research team for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator] , Peter Rastl [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website: 2003-11-07
Line count: 40
Word count: 271