Treasure Island

Rudyard Kipling

(30 December 1865 – 18 January 1936 / Bombay)

Dane-Geld


A.D. 980-1016


It is always a temptation to an armed and agile nation
To call upon a neighbour and to say:--
"We invaded you last night--we are quite prepared to fight,
Unless you pay us cash to go away."

And that is called asking for Dane-geld,
And the people who ask it explain
That you've only to pay 'em the Dane-geld
And then you'll get rid of the Dane!

It is always a temptation for a reach and lazy nation,
To puff and look important and to say:--
"Though we know we should defeat you, we have not the
time to meet you.
We will therefore pay you cash to go away."

And that is called paying the Dane-geld;
But we've proved it again and again,
That if once you have paid him the Dane-geld
You never get rid of the Dane.

It is wrong to put temptation in the path of any nation,
For fear they should succumb and go astray;
So when you are requested to pay up or be molested,
You will find it better policy to say:--

"We never pay any-one Dane-geld,
No matter how trifling the cost;
For the end of that game is oppression and shame,
And the nation that plays it is lost!"

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Read poems about / on: fear, people, lost, night

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (Dane-Geld by Rudyard Kipling )

Enter the verification code :

  • Mark Schulte (6/6/2007 10:21:00 PM)

    These days, this poem is much more relevant to the financial world or to the litigation world than to the political world.

    MJS (Report) Reply

Read all 1 comments »

Top Poems

  1. Phenomenal Woman
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  5. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  6. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  7. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  8. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  9. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
    Maya Angelou
  10. A Dream Within A Dream
    Edgar Allan Poe

New Poems

  1. Silent tears are good., PARTHA SARATHI PAUL
  2. choice, Gangadharan nair Pulingat..
  3. Thhe Common Man, Harshpreet Kaur Kathuria
  4. Never again, Leslie Guylee Cron
  5. The Poor Child, Akhtar Jawad
  6. Bills, Leslie Guylee Cron
  7. The Truth of You, Christina de Vries
  8. Manitoulin Island, Ontario, Richard Provencher
  9. Daddy Went to Germany, Raluca Neagu
  10. Family, Leslie Guylee Cron

Poem of the Day

poet Emily Dickinson

70

"Arcturus" is his other name—
I'd rather call him "Star."
It's very mean of Science
To go and interfere!

I slew a worm the other day—
...... Read complete »

 

Modern Poem

poet Kenneth Allott

 
[Hata Bildir]