"For Freedom's battle once begun,
Bequeath'd by bleeding sire to son,
Though baffled oft is ever won."
Lord Byron
[George Gordon Noel Byron] (1788-1824), The 6th Baron Byron of Rochdale
Giaour (l. 123)
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Reader comments about this quote:
 -- Mike, Norwalk      
I think it is confusing. What value is there in constraining important communication to rhyme and meter? If you want music, hum a tune. After struggling with the puzzle that is this poem, I for one come away liking poetry even less than before. Saying as much as possible with few words is also of no value. The assumption in the missing words is that you will get it. But you will, only if you are of the same culture as the poet. Poems are for people who like puzzles, not people who like philosophy. What poet Byron is saying here is that freedom is a continuing battle and it is the battle, not the freedom, that is handed down from father to son. And even though there's some confusion in this battle it will eventually be obtained. What crap. If it didn't have the pedigree of poetry, it would be discarded in a minute. Why would it eventually be won? Why would the son take up the battle. Noble sentiments, not an observation of human nature. My observation of human nature on this subject is that through battle, you just exchange one tyrant for another. Unlike war, when a revolution is over, the enemy is still with you and you must repress him with as much bloodshed as was done in the revolution. The American revolution was not a revolution. It was the throwing out of an occupying force. When the fighting was over. They left.
 -- Walter Clark, Fullerton California     
    I wish it was true that freedom is inevitable even though often temporarily set back. The fact is the natural and undesirable state of man in this world is that he will be a slave. It takes a constant battle against the natural state of slavery to remain free and it is not a battle that most will take up. Nature is what man was put in this world to rise above. It's too bad we don't.
     -- Ken, Allyn, WA     
    Yes, a noble sentiment. How about, "It ain't over until the fat lady sings."? ;-)
     -- E Archer, NYC     
    Like Mike from Norwalk, I think that poetry that uses mysterious alliterations. allusions, and esoteric similes is fine for those whose heads are in the clouds, but for the average joe six-pack, it's just so much mumbo-jumbo. He could have just said that the fight for freedom is never-ending and unless we remain vigiliant against those who would take it away from us, we will lose it.
     -- GunnyCee, Durham     
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