The Other Ozymandias

The sonnet Ozymandias by Percy Bysshe Shelley is so famous that it really needs no introduction here. What you may not know, however, is that Shelley’s poem was one of a pair with the same title on the same theme and submitted to the literary magazine The Examiner. Shelley’s poem was published on January 11th  1818; the other Ozymandias, composed by Shelley’s friend Horace Smith, appeared about three weeks later on February 1st. I can see why Shelley’s is the more famous of the two!

In Egypt’s sandy silence, all alone,
Stands a gigantic Leg, which far off throws
The only shadow that the Desert knows.
“I am great Ozymandias,” saith the stone,
“The King of kings: this mighty city shows
The wonders of my hand.” The city’s gone!
Naught but the leg remaining to disclose
The sight of that forgotten Babylon.
We wonder, and some hunter may express
Wonder like ours, when through the wilderness
Where London stood, holding the wolf in chase,
He meets some fragment huge, and stops to guess
What wonderful, but unrecorded, race
Once dwelt in that annihilated place.

 

3 Responses to “The Other Ozymandias”

  1. “I can see why Shelley’s is the more famous of the two!”

    Maybe, but is Smith’s really that bad?

  2. Even I once impressed Anton with my sonnet-writing skills. (Yes, it really was written in less than 5 minutes.)

  3. […] The Other Ozymandias(telescoper.wordpress.com) […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: