Verse > Anthologies > > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse
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Arthur Quiller-Couch, comp.  The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse.  1922.
 
The Latest Decalogue
By Arthur Hugh Clough (1819–1861)
 
THOU shalt have one God only; who
Would be at the expense of two?
 
No graven images may be
Worshipp’d, except the currency:
 
Swear not at all; for, for thy curse        5
Thine enemy is none the worse:
 
At church on Sunday to attend
Will serve to keep the world thy friend:
 
Honour thy parents; that is, all
From whom advancement may befall:        10
 
Thou shalt not kill; but need’st not strive
Officiously to keep alive:
 
Do not adultery commit;
Advantage rarely comes of it:
 
Thou shalt not steal; an empty feat,        15
When ’tis so lucrative to cheat:
 
Bear not false witness; let the lie
Have time on its own wings to fly:
 
Thou shalt not covet, but tradition
Approves all forms of competition.        20
 
 
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