[The Temple, Detail of Model]from The Temple (1633), by George Herbert:


¶   Peace.

SWeet Peace, where dost thou dwell?  I humbly crave,
                                           Let me once know.
             I sought thee in a secret cave,
             And ask’d, if Peace were there.
A hollow winde did seem to answer, No:
                                           Go seek elsewhere.

I did; and going did a rainbow note:
                                           Surely, thought I,
             This is the lace of Peaces coat:
             I will search out the matter.
But while I lookt, the clouds immediately
                                           Did break and scatter.

Then went I to a garden, and did spy
                                           A gallant flower,
             The Crown Imperiall:1 sure, said I,
             Peace at the root must dwell.
But when I digg’d, I saw a worm devoure
                                           What show’d so well.

At length I met a rev’rend good old man,
                                           Whom when of Peace
             I did demand, he thus began:
             There was a Prince of old
At Salem dwelt, who liv’d with good increase
                                           Of flock and fold.

He sweetly liv’d; yet sweetnesse did not save
                                           His life from foes.
       But after death out of his grave
              There sprang twelve stalks of wheat:
Which many wondring at, got some of those
                                           To plant and set.

It prosper’d strangely, and did soon disperse
                                           Through all the earth:
        For they that taste it do rehearse,
             That vertue lies therein,
A secret vertue bringing peace and mirth
                                           By flight of sinne.

Take of this grain, which in my garden grows,
                                           And grows for you;
        Make bread of it: and that repose
             And peace, which ev’ry where
With so much earnestnesse you do pursue,
                                           Is onely there.

Crown Imperial in Gerard's Herbal 1 Crown Imperial recorded in John Gerard's The Herball or Generall Historie of Plantes, (Norton and Whittaker: London, 1633), p. 202. He describes it as yellow in color and lists the Latin name as Corona Imperialis, making it a distinctive genus. Today it is known as Fritillaria Imperalis. His illustration with the root is at right. [Return]

Editor’s Note: The third and fourth lines are indented the same distance in stanzas 1-4. Beginning on page 118, the third line is indented less in stanzas 6-8.

In the Outlandish Proverbs that George Herbert collected is # 733. "Where there is peace, God is."

Music: "Dona Nobis Pacem," "Give Us Peace," 18th Century canon, composer unknown. [Trio arr. Red Dragon] To open music in another program.

Modern version
1633 Poem Index George Herbert & The Temple Home Page

[Chi Rho]