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Archive for the ‘Godmersham’ Category

Jane Austen wrote this poem for her niece, Fanny Knight, on the occasion of Captain Francis Austen’s wedding to Mary Gibson at Ramsgate 24 July 1806. Jane’s brother Francis and his new wife were to spend their honeymoon at their brother Edward’s house, Godmersham Park, which was also Fanny’s home.
I love the the rhythm of the words that sound like cantering horse’s hooves – it almost gives you the sensation that you are sharing the carriage ride along with them! Try saying it out loud for the best effect!

See they come, post haste from Thanet,
Lovely couple, side by side;
They’ve left behind them Richard Kennet
With the Parents of the Bride!
Canterbury they have passed through;
Next succeeded Stamford-bridge;
Chilham village they came fast through;
Now they’ve mounted yonder ridge.

Down the hill they’re swift proceeding,
Now they skirt the Park around;
Lo! The Cattle sweetly feeding
Scamper, startled at the sound!

Run, my Brothers, to the Pier gate!
Throw it open, very wide!
Let it not be said that we’re late
In welcoming my Uncle’s Bride!

To the house the chaise advances;
Now it stops -They’re here, they’re here!
How d’ye do, my Uncle Francis?
How does do your Lady dear?

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