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BARBOUR, John

The Bruce (detail)

Freedom

Ah, freedom is a noble thing!

Freedom makes man to have liking!

Freedom all solace to man gives:

He lives at ease that freely lives!

A noble heart may have none ease,

Nor ellys nought that may him please,

If freedom fail: for free liking

Is yearned owre all other thing.

Nor he, that has aye lived free,

May not know well the property,

The anger, nor the wretched doom,

That is coupled to foul thraldom.

But, if he had essayed it,

Then all perquer he should it wit;

And should think freedom more to prize

Than all the gold in world that is.