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Wales and the French Revolution Series
(Welsh Poems)

Britannia’s salutation to the English on the death of Lord Nelson

by John Roberts (Siôn Lleyn; 1749–1817)

Location: Welsh Poetry of the French Revolution 1789–1805, rhif /no. 29

SCROLL DOWN FOR ENGLISH TRANSLATION


Golygwch ddarlun fy anwylfab,
Hwn oedd ddewrwych, eurwych, arab;
Ymladdwr hyf, enillwr hefyd,
A fu nes gwyro i fynwes gweryd:
Daeth wylo trwm i ran Britannia!
Gwlyched pawb ei fedd a’u dagra’;
Na foed sych gwael na gwych
Gan ruddiau gwlych heilltion;
Pawb yn brudd, pob grudd a chalon,
O anwylserch am ddewr Nelson.
Aeth o’m bron gysuron siriol,
A chan adwyth, wyf ochneidiol.
Trwm y troes, lewyg loes,
Tros f’einioes anobeithiol,
Oni wna rhagluniaeth ddwyfol
Wisgo eraill yn weis gwrol,
A chodi arwr (chwedi ei orwedd)
All un fwriad, llawn o’i fawredd
I amddiffyn braint a choron,
Rhyddid gwlad rhag brad gelynion.
Och! pwy leinw ei rymusterau,
Ddewr hynodol addurniadau?
Fy hiraeth yw gweled rhyw
Anturwiw ail Nelson:
Mor anorchfygol, fryd a chalon,
Â’i hoywder o gylch hyd yr eigion,
I lanw gwisgoedd ei fawrhydi.
O! am gael i’w debygoli,
Yn dywysog môr tan llywydd Siôr,
Yn flaenor gwych, gwisgi.
Anrhydedd Nelson fydd yn gorlenwi,
A’i glod ar led tra rhed goleuni.

TRANSLATION
Behold, the portrait of my dear son,
he, who was excellent and brave, eloquent and merry;
he was, until he was laid in the grave,
a brave fighter, and a winner too:
Britannia now weeps heavily!
May everyone wet Nelson’s grave with their tears;
may no man, rich or poor, be dry,
with cheeks wet and salty,
everyone is sad, every cheek and heart,
because of their love for brave Nelson.
Fair comfort has left my breast,
and because of misfortune, I sigh.
It weighs heavily (pang of anguish)
on my despondent life,
unless divine providence
dresses others as brave servants,
and raises a hero (after Nelson’s death)
full of his greatness and capable of the same intent
to defend the privilege and crown,
and Britain’s liberty against the betrayal of enemies.
Alas! who will replace his powers and
remarkably brave military decorations?
I long to see some
great daring similar to Nelson:
as unbeatable (heart and soul)
as his spiritedness on the length and breadth of the ocean,
to fill his majestic boots.
Oh! to have someone like him,
a prince of the sea under George’s rule,
an excellent, energetic leader.
Nelson’s honour will overflow,
and his fame will last as long as light shines.


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