William Cowper

26 November 1731 – 25 April 1800 / Hertfordshire

On The Same By Palladas

A Spartan 'scaping from the fight,
His mother met him in his flight,
Upheld a falchion to his breast,
And thus the fugitive address'd:
'Thou canst but live to blot with shame
Indelible thy mother's name,
While every breath that thou shalt draw
Offends against thy country's law;
But if thou perish by this hand,
Myself indeed, throughout the land,
To my dishonor, shall be known
The mother still of such a son;
But Sparta will be safe and free
And that shall serve to comfort me.'
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