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OZYMANDIAS, by Horace Smith


This poem Ozymandias was written in 1817 and published in 1818 by Horace Smith.

The poem Ozymandias ia a sonnet, and was written by Horace Smith as part of a writing competition.

Ozymandias was another name of the Pharaoh, Rameses the Great, who ruled in Ancient Egypt almost 1300 years BC in the nineteenth dynasty.



By Horace Smith, published 1818

Note: In later collections this poem was retitled "On A Stupendous Leg of Granite, Discovered Standing by Itself in the Deserts of Egypt, with the Inscription Inserted Below".

  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,
  Nought but the Leg remaining to disclose
  The site of this forgotten Babylon.
  We wonder, and some Hunter may express
  Wonder like ours, when thro' the wilderness
  Where London stood, holding the Wolf in chace,
  He meets some fragments huge, and stops to guess
  What powerful but unrecorded race
  Once dwelt in that annihilated place.