The Eighteenth Century (Poem by Victor Hugo)

the Old Poems

The Eighteenth Century
By Victor Hugo


    O Eighteenth Century! by Heaven chastised!
Godless thou livedst, by God thy doom was fixed.
Thou in one ruin sword and sceptre mixed,
    Then outraged love, and pity's claim despised.
Thy life a banquet — but its board a scaffold at the close,
Where far from Christ's beatic reign, Satanic deeds arose!
Thy writers, like thyself, by good men scorned — 
    Yet, from thy crimes, renown has decked thy name,
    As the smoke emplumes the furnace flame,
A revolution's deeds have thine adorned!

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