Helen Maria Williams
Helen Maria Williams was a British novelist, poet, and translator of French-language works. A religious dissenter, she was a supporter of abolitionism and of the ideals of the French Revolution; she was imprisoned in Paris during the Reign of Terror, but nonetheless spent much of the rest of her life in France.
A controversial figure in her own time, the young Williams was favorably portrayed in a 1787 poem by William Wordsworth, but (especially at the height of the French Revolution) she was portrayed by other writers as irresponsibly politically radical and even as sexually wanton.
She was born to a Scottish mother, Helen Hay, and a Welsh army officer ... more »
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Helen Maria Williams Poems
Ode to Peace
I. She comes, benign enchantress, heav'n born PEACE! With mercy beaming in her radiant eye;
Peruvian Tales: Alzira, Tale I
Description of Peru, and of its Productions--Virtues of the People; and of their Monarch, ATALIBA --His love for ALZIRA --Their Nup- tials celebrated--Character of ZORAI , her Father--Descent of the Genius of Peru--Prediction of the Fall of that Empire.
An Address to Poetry
I. While envious crowds the summit view, Where Danger with Ambition strays;
An American Tale
"Ah! pity all the pangs I feel, If pity e'er ye knew;-- An aged father's wounds to heal, Through scenes of death I flew.
Sonnet on Reading Burns' Mountain Daisy
While soon the "garden's flaunting flowers" decay, And, scatter'd on the earth, neglected lie, The "Mountain Daisy," cherish'd by the ray A poet drew from heav'n, shall never die.
I. Slow spreads the gloom my soul desires-- The sun from India's shore retires--
Part of an Irregular Fragment
I. Rise, winds of night! relentless tempests, rise! Rush from the troubled clouds, and o'er me roll!
Sonnet to Peace of Mind
Sweet Peace! ah, lead me from the thorny dale, Where desolate my wand'ring steps have fled; Far from the sunny paths which others tread, While youth enlivens, and while joys prevail.
Peruvian Tales: Aciloe, Tale V
Character of ZAMOR , a bard--His passion for ACILOE , daughter of the Cazique who rules the valley--The Peruvian tribe prepare to defend themselves--A battle--The PERUVIANS are vanquished--ACILOE'S father is made a prisoner, and ZAMOR is supposed to have fallen in the engagement--ALPHONSO becomes enamoured of ACILOE --Offers to marry her--She rejects him--In revenge he puts her father to the torture--She appears to consent, in order to save him--Meets ZAMOR in a wood--LAS CASAS joins them--Leads the two lovers to ALPHONSO , and obtains their freedom--ZAMOR conducts ACILOE and her father to Chili--A reflection on the influence of Poetry over the human mind. In this sweet scene, to all the virtues kind,
On the Bill Which Was Passed in England ...
The hollow winds of night no more In wild, unequal cadence pour, On musing fancy's wakeful ear, The groan of agony severe
Peruvian Tales: Cora, Tale VI
The troops of ALMAGRO and ALPHONSO meet on the plain of CUZCO --. MANCO -CAPAC attacks them by nights--His army is defeated, and he is forced to fly with its scattered remains--CORA goes in search of him-- Her infant in her arms--Overcome with fatigue, she rests at the foot of a mountain--An earthquake--A band of Indians fly to the mountain for shelter--CORA discovers her husband--Their interview--Her death --He escapes with his infant--ALMAGRO claims a share of the spoils of Cuzco--His contention with PIZARRO --The Spaniards destroy each other--ALMAGRO is taken prisoner, and put to death--His soldiers, in revenge, assassinate PIZARRO in his palace--LAS CASAS dies--The annual festival of the PERUVIANS --Their victories over the Spaniards in Chili--A wish for the restoration of their liberty--Conclusion. At length ALMAGRO and ALPHONSO'S train,
Peruvian Tales: Alzira, Tale II
PIZARRO lands with the Forces--His meeting with ATALIBA --Its un- happy consequences--ZORAI dies--ATALIBA imprisoned, and strangled --Despair of ALZIRA .
Peruvian Tales: Cora, Tale IV
ALMAGRO'S expedition to Chili--His troops suffer great hardships from cold, in crossing the Andes--They reach Chili--The Chilians make a brave resistance--The revolt of the Peruvians in Cuzco---They are led on by MANCO CAPAC , the successor of ATALIBA --Parting with CORA , his wife--The Peruvians regain half their city--ALMAGRO leaves Chili--To avoid the Andes, he crosses a vast desert--His troops can find no water--They divide into two bands--ALPHONSO leads the second band, which soon reaches a fertile valley--The Spaniards observe that the natives are employed in searching the streams for gold--They resolve to attack them. Now the stern partner of PIZARRO'S toils,
Peruvian Tales: Zilia, Tale III
PIZARRO takes possession of Cuzco--The fanaticism of VALVERDA , a Spanish priest--Its dreadful effects--A Peruvian priest put to the tor- ture--His Daughter's distress--He is rescued by LAS CASAS , a Spa- nish ecclesiastic--And led to a place of safety, where he dies--His
Comments about Helen Maria Williams
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
Edgar Allan Poe
(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849)
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
(31 May 1819 - 26 March 1892)
(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994)
Ode to Peace
She comes, benign enchantress, heav'n born PEACE!
With mercy beaming in her radiant eye;
She bids the horrid din of battle cease,
And at her glance the savage passions die.
'Tis Nature's festival, let earth rejoice,
And pour to Liberty exulting songs,
In distant regions, with according voice,
Let Man the vict'ry bless, its prize to Man belongs.
Resistless Freedom! when she nerves the arm,
No vulgar triumph crowns the hero's might;
She, she alone can spread a moral charm
O'er war's fell deeds, and sanctify the fight.
O, GALLIA !...