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Introduction and Dramatis Personae

TO HIS EXCELLENCY THE RIGHT HON. LORD LYTTON, VICEROY AND GOVERNOR-GENERAL OF INDIA.

My Dear Lord Lytton,

After old-world records--such as the Bayeux tapestry and the Roman de Rou,--Edward Freeman's History of the Norman Conquest, and your father's Historical Romance treating of the same times, have been mainly helpful to me in writing this Drama. Your father dedicated his 'Harold' to my father's brother; allow me to dedicate my 'Harold' to yourself. A. TENNYSON.

SHOW-DAY AT BATTLE ABBEY, 1876.

A garden here--May breath and bloom of spring--
The cuckoo yonder from an English elm
Crying 'with my false egg I overwhelm
The native nest:' and fancy hears the ring
Of harness, and that deathful arrow sing,
And Saxon battleaxe clang on Norman helm.
Here rose the dragon-banner of our realm:
Here fought, here fell, our Norman-slander'd king.
O Garden blossoming out of English blood!
O strange hate-healer Time! We stroll and stare
Where might made right eight hundred years ago;
Might, right? ay good, so all things make for good--
But he and he, if soul be soul, are where
Each stands full face with all he did below.

DRAMATIS PERSONAE:

KING EDWARD THE CONFESSOR.
STIGAND, created Archbishop of Canterbury by the Antipope Benedict.
ALDRED, Archbishop of York.
THE NORMAN BISHOP OF LONDON.
HAROLD, Earl of Wessex, afterwards King of England, Son of Godwin
TOSTIG, Earl of Northumbria, Son of Godwin
GURTH, Earl of East Anglia, Son of Godwin
LEOFWIN, Earl of Kent and Essex, Son of Godwin
WULFNOTH
COUNT WILLIAM OF NORMANDY.
WILLIAM RUFUS.
WILLIAM MALET, a Norman Noble.[1]
EDWIN, Earl of Mercia, Son of Alfgar of Mercia
MORCAR, Earl of Northumbria after Tostig, Son of Alfgar of Mercia
GAMEL, a Northumbrian Thane.
GUY, Count of Ponthieu.
ROLF, a Ponthieu Fisherman.
HUGH MARGOT, a Norman Monk.
OSGOD and ATHELRIC, Canons from Waltham.
THE QUEEN, Edward the Confessor's Wife, Daughter of Godwin.
ALDWYTH, Daughter of Alfgar and Widow of Griffyth, King of Wales.
EDITH, Ward of King Edward.
Courtiers, Earls and Thanes, Men-at-Arms, Canons of Waltham, Fishermen, etc.

[Footnote 1: quidam partim Normannus et Anglus Compater Heraldi. (Guy of Amiens, 587.)]

Lord Alfred Tennyson

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