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Three-hundred year-old poem in support of British union goes on sale


Copy of Elkanah Settles Carmen irenicum surfaces just as Scotland readies itself for independence vote

Queen Anne I is depicted as a proud, jealous defender of a united Britain in a 1707 poem about Englands union with Scotland that year which has just gone up for sale. As Scotland prepares to vote on the future of the 300-year-old union with the Yes and No campaigns running neck-and-neck according to polls over the weekend antiquarian bookseller Bernard Quaritch unveiled a unique copy of Restoration playwright Elkanah Settles heroick poem Carmen irenicum: The Union of the Imperial Crowns of Great Britain.

Dedicated to the monarch Anne I, the poem sees Settle supporting the Union and, finally, showing the queen in triumphant, mythological terms. How shall She deck the proud Imperial Robe, / And how, how tune her whole Harmonious Globe; / Not only hush Ambition into Peace: / She can evn make Religious Discord cease, writes the playwright. No frantick Zeal at home, nor from abroad / Shall Powrs aspiring Lust dare front the God: / No Clouds within, no Tempests from afar, / A British Jove shall fear no Gyants-War.

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