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Famous Assize Poems by Famous Poets

These are examples of famous Assize poems written by some of the greatest and most-well-known modern and classical poets. PoetrySoup is a great educational poetry resource of famous assize poems. These examples illustrate what a famous assize poem looks like and its form, scheme, or style (where appropriate).

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by Chaucer, Geoffrey
...thee be';
For herebefore full oft in many a wise
Unto mercy hast thou received me.
But mercy, Lady! at the great assize,
When we shall come before the high Justice!
So little fruit shall then in me be found,
That,* thou ere that day correcte me,                            *unless
Of very right my work will me confound.

                               F.

Flying, I flee for succour to thy tent,
Me for to hide from tempest full of dread;
Beseeching you,...Read More



by Yeats, William Butler
...is wife he found and the rich man
In the comfort of a bed.
The Colonel went out sailing.

 VI

The Judge at the Assize Court,
When he heard that story told,
Awarded him for damages
Three kegs of gold.
The Colonel said to Tom his man,
'Harness an ass and cart,
Carry the gold about the town,
Throw it in every patt.'
The Colonel went out sailing.

 VII

And there at all street-corners
A man with a pistol stood,
And the rich man had paid them well
To shoot the...Read More

by Housman, A E
...t thy heart has had
 The fingers of no heir will ever hold.

When thou descendest once the shades among,
 The stern assize and equal judgment o'er,
Not thy long lineage nor thy golden tongue,
 No, nor thy righteousness, shall friend thee more.

Night holds Hippolytus the pure of stain,
 Diana steads him nothing, he must stay;
And Theseus leaves Pirithous in the chain
 The love of comrades cannot take away....Read More

by Lanier, Sidney
...blazed the two great Theban bucklers bright
That swayed the random of that furious fight
Where Palamon and Arcite made assize
For Emily; fresh, crisp as her replies,
That, not with sting, but pith, do oft invite
More trial of the tongue; simple, like her,
Well fitting lowlihood, yet fine as well,
-- The queen's no finer; rich (though gossamer)
In help to him they came to, which may tell
How rich that him SHE'LL come to; thus men see,
Like Violet's self e'en Violet's wafers b...Read More

by Chaucer, Geoffrey
...nce.
Discreet he was, and of great reverence:
He seemed such, his wordes were so wise,
Justice he was full often in assize,
By patent, and by plein* commission; *full
For his science, and for his high renown,
Of fees and robes had he many one.
So great a purchaser was nowhere none.
All was fee simple to him, in effect
His purchasing might not be in suspect* *suspicion
Nowhere so busy a man as he there was
And yet he seemed busier than he was
In termes had he case'...Read More



by Strode, William
...The Sheriffe of Oxford late is grown so wise
As to repreive his Beere till next assize:
Alas! twas not so quick, twas not so heady,
The Jury sate and found it dead already....Read More

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