Rule Britannia

Original Text: 
Thomas Augustine Arne, Alfred: a masque (London: A. Millar, 1740). MCC T4 A63 1740 Fisher Rare Book Library (Toronto).
1  When Britain first, at Heaven's command,
2    Arose from out the azure main;
3This was the charter of the land,
4    And guardian angels sung this strain:
5      "Rule, Britannia, rule the waves;
6      Britons never will be slaves."
7  The nations, not so blest as thee,
8    Must, in their turns, to tyrants fall:
9While thou shalt flourish great and free,
10    The dread and envy of them all.
11      "Rule, Britannia, rule the waves;
12      Britons never will be slaves."
13  Still more majestic shalt thou rise,
14    More dreadful, from each foreign stroke:
15As the loud blast that tears the skies,
16    Serves but to root thy native oak.
17      "Rule, Britannia, rule the waves;
18      Britons never will be slaves."
19  Thee haughty tyrants ne'er shall tame:
20    All their attempts to bend thee down,
21Will but arouse thy generous flame;
22    But work their woe, and thy renown.
23      "Rule, Britannia, rule the waves;
24      Britons never will be slaves."
25  To thee belongs the rural reign;
26    Thy cities shall with commerce shine:
27All thine shall be the subject main,
28    And every shore it circles thine.
29      "Rule, Britannia, rule the waves;
30      Britons never will be slaves."
31  The Muses, still with freedom found,
32    Shall to thy happy coast repair:
33Blest isle! with matchless beauty crown'd,
34    And manly hearts to guard the fair.
35      "Rule, Britannia, rule the waves;
36      Britons never will be slaves."
Publication Start Year: 
RPO poem Editors: 
N. J. Endicott
RPO Edition: 
2RP 1.658.