William Blake

28 November 1757 – 12 August 1827 / London

Now Art Has Lost Its Mental Charms

'Now Art has lost its mental charms
France shall subdue the world in arms.'
So spoke an Angel at my birth;
Then said 'Descend thou upon earth,
Renew the Arts on Britain's shore,
And France shall fall down and adore.
With works of art their armies meet
And War shall sink beneath thy feet.
But if thy nation Arts refuse,
And if they scorn the immortal Muse,
France shall the arts of peace restore
And save thee from the ungrateful shore.'

Spirit who lov'st Britannia's Isle
Round which the fiends of commerce smile --
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