Two Went Up Into The Temple To Pray

written by Richard Crashaw

Two Went Up Into The Temple To Pray

— Richard Crashaw

Two went to pray? O rather say
One went to brag, th' other to pray:

One stands up close and treads on high,
Where th' other dares not send his eye.

One nearer to God's altar trod,
The other to the altar's God.

About the poet


Richard Crashaw

Richard was the only son of William Crashaw, a puritan preacher in London who had officiated at the burning of Mary, Queen of Scots. In defiance of his father's views on religion, Crashaw went to a High Church college at Cambridge, Pembroke. He later became a fellow of Peterhouse College but was forced to resign because of his Roman Catholic leanings. Victory for Oliver Cromwell's Puritans in the Civil War made England a dangerous place for Catholic sympathisers like Crashaw, and in 1644 he fled to France. He became a Catholic sometime around 1645. His friend Abraham Cowley found him living in poverty in Paris, and introduced him to Charles I's Queen, Henrietta Maria. She sent Crashaw to Rome with a recommendation...

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