George Henry Borrow (5 July 1803 – 26 July 1881) was an English author who wrote novels and travelogues based on his own experiences around Europe. Over the course of his wanderings, he developed a close affinity with the Romani people of Europe. They figure prominently in his work. His best known book is The Bible in Spain; Lavengro is autobiographical, and Romany Rye is about his time with the ... more »
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George Borrow Poems
May Asda is gone to the merry green wood; Like flax was each tress on her temples that stood; Her cheek like the rose-leaf that perfumes the air;
Ode To A Mountain
How lovely art thou in thy tresses of foam, And yet the warm blood in my bosom grows chill, When yelling thou rollest thee down from thy home,
Aager And Eliza (From The Old Danish)
Have ye heard of bold Sir Aager, How he rode to yonder isle; There he saw the sweet Eliza, Who upon him deign’d to smile.
This is Denmark’s holyday; Dance, ye maidens! Sing, ye men! Tune, ye harpers!
The Broken Harp
O thou, who, ’mid the forest trees, With thy harmonious trembling strain, Could’st change at once to soothing ease,
Ode (From The Gaelic)
“Is luaimnach mo chodal an nochd.” Oh restless, to night, are my slumbers; Life yet I retain, but not gladness;
King Christian stood beside the mast; Smoke, mixt with flame, Hung o’er his guns, that rattled fast Against the Gothmen, as they pass’d:
What darkens, what darkens?—’t is heaven’s high roof: What lightens?—’t is Heckla’s flame, shooting aloof:
Lines To Six-Foot Three
A lad, who twenty tongues can talk And sixty miles a day can walk; Drink at a draught a pint of rum, And then be neither sick nor dumb
Roseate colours on heaven’s high arch Are beginning to mix with the blue and the gray, Sol now commences his wonderful march,
From Allan Cunningham
Sing, sing, my friend; breathe life again Through Norway’s song and Denmark’s strain: On flowing Thames and Forth, in flood,
Fridleif and Helga
The woods were in leaf, and they cast a sweet shade; Among them walk'd Helga, the beautiful maid. The water is dashing o'er yon little stones;
A sultry eve pursu'd a sultry day; Dark streaks of purple in the sky were seen, And shadows half conceal'd the lonely way;
Elvir Hill (From The Old Danish)
I rested my head upon Elvir Hill’s side, and my eyes were beginning to slumber; That moment there rose up before me
Quotationsmore quotations »
I have always been a friend to hero-worship; it is the only rational one, and has always been in use amongst civilized peoplethe worship of spirits is synonymous with barbarismit is mere f...George Borrow (1803-1881), British author. An elderly individual, in Lavengro, ch. 23 (1851).
''If you must commit suicide ... always contrive to do it as decorously as possible; the decencies, whether of life or of death, should never be lost sight of.''George Borrow (1803-1881), British author. An "elderly individual," in Lavengro, ch. 23 (1851).
''There's night and day, brother, both sweet things; sun, moon, and stars, brother, all sweet things; there's likewise a wind on the heath. Life is very sweet, brother; who would wish to die?''George Borrow (1803-1881), British author. Jasper, in Lavengro, ch. 25 (1851).
''I am invariably of the politics of the people at whose table I sit, or beneath whose roof I sleep.''George Borrow (1803-1881), British author. The Bible in Spain, ch. 16 (1843).
Comments about George Borrow
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May Asda is gone to the merry green wood;
Like flax was each tress on her temples that stood;
Her cheek like the rose-leaf that perfumes the air;
Her form, like the lily-stalk, graceful and fair:
She mourn’d for her lover, Sir Frovin the brave,
For he had embark’d on the boisterous wave;
And, burning to gather the laurels of war,
Had sail’d with King Humble to Orkney afar:
At feast and at revel, wherever she went,
Her thoughts on his perils and dangers were bent;
No joy has the heart that loves fondly and dear—
No pleasure save when the lov’d object is ...