Punch,  51 (1866), 77.

La Mer de Glace



Poetry, Drollery


Telegraphy, Engineering, Invention, Aeronautics, Comparative Philology, Internationalism

    Begins with two epigraphs. The first, from Horace's Pindaric Ode on the myth of Icarus ( '—Vitreo daturus / Nomina ponto'), refers to the fact that Icarus gave his name to a 'glassy sea'. The second reads 'Canning to Glass', which was the first message sent through the Atlantic telegraph cable, and was reported in The Times. Playing on the name of the telegraph projector Glass, the poem begins by lamenting the fate of Icarus who was given wings by Daedalus but because 'Fair Science' was then 'weak in infancy', fell to the 'glassy wave'. However, it explains how, after 'centuries' there appeared a 'full-armed Goddess [...] strong with diviner will', and that 'another' Daedalus 'comes, to join / Two worlds in one magic chain [the telegraph]'. Concludes by noting how 'all the world' hails the 'sea of peace, the Sea of Glass'.

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