Sir Walter Ralegh (ca. 1552-1618)
Prais'd be Diana's Fair and Harmless Light
1Prais'd be Diana's fair and harmless light;
2Prais'd be the dews wherewith she moists the ground;
3Prais'd be her beams, the glory of the night;
4Prais'd be her power by which all powers abound.
5Prais'd be her nymphs with whom she decks the woods,
6Prais'd be her knights in whom true honour lives;
7Prais'd be that force by which she moves the floods;
8Let that Diana shine which all these gives.
9In heaven queen she is among the spheres;
10In aye she mistress-like makes all things pure;
11Eternity in her oft change she bears;
12She beauty is; by her the fair endure.
13Time wears her not: she doth his chariot guide;
14Mortality below her orb is plac'd;
15By her the virtue of the stars down slide;
16In her is virtue's perfect image cast.
17 A knowledge pure it is her worth to know:
18 With Circes let them dwell that think not so.
1] Reprinted in England's Helicon, 1600, signed with Ralegh's initials. Queen Elizabeth was often addressed as Diana.
Online text copyright © 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department
of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services,
University of Toronto Libraries.
Original text: R. S., The Phoenix Nest. London, 1593 (Menston: Scolar Press, 1973). PR 1207 P5 1593a ROBA.
First publication date:
RPO poem editor: F. D. Hoeniger
RP edition: 3RP 1.149.
Recent editing: 2:2002/4/10
Rhyme: abab cdcd efef ghgh ii
Other poems by Sir Walter Ralegh