When battles were fought With a chivalrous sense of should and ought, In spirit men said, "End we quick or dead, Honour is some reward! Let us fight fair—for our own best or worst; So, Gentlemen of the Guard, Fire first!" In the open they stood, Man to man in his knightlihood: They would not deign To profit by a stain On the honourable rules, Knowing that practise perfidy no man durst Who in the heroic schools Was nurst. But now, behold, what Is war with those where honour is not! Rama laments Its dead innocents; Herod howls: "Sly slaughter Rules now! Let us, by modes once called accurst, Overhead, under water, Stab first."
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