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James C. Hickey

THE Bear put on a robe of white

That like a halo glowed.

“Behold,” he said, “a spotless knight,

A champion of human right”—

And forth to war he strode.

That garment hid his horrid pelt

And hid his bloody claws;

And round the weapon at his belt

Fools thought they saw a light and felt

He fought in Freedom’s cause.

“’Tis not the Bear of old” men cried,

“That marches thus arrayed”—

And some that said it knew they lied,

While others blundered, mystified

By what the liars said.

The ghost of murdered Liberty

Rose up beside his path:

“It is the Bear of old!   I see

The fangs that rent the heart o’ me

What time I knew his wrath.”

“Be still, thou foolish sprite,” said they

Who urged the Beast along;

“The fangs that tore your heart away

Are pearls upon his lips to-day—

Forget your ancient wrong.”

Then ghosts of strangled creeds cried out:

“Oh, halt his deadly stride!

Look! look! it is the dreadful knout,

Which soweth sorrow all about—

That weapon at his side.”

A Warrior heard and came apace

Without a thought of fear;

He met the Monster face to face

And smote him with a shining mace,

And with a gleaming spear.

“For shame!” a shout went up, “for shame,

To strike the noble Bear!”

But still the Warrior, eyes aflame,

Rained blows upon his hulking frame

And drove him to his lair.

And there they fought the hours away

From blood-red sun to sun;

And men who in another day

Had cursed the Bear, I weep to say.

Forever cheered him on.

Hickey, James C. “Freedom’s New Champion.” The Fatherland 1, no. 26 (February 3, 1915): 12.

Hickey, James C. “Freedom’s New Champion.” The Fatherland 1, no. 26 (February 3, 1915): 12.



The bear is a common symbol of Russia. Here Russia has deceived the British into thinking it would be a trustworthy ally in their fight for liberty. The warrior fighting the bear represents Germany.



A type of whip or scourge, the knout was used in Imperial Russia as an instrument of punishment.

“knout, n.” OED Online. Oxford University Press, June 2021. https://www.oed.com/view/Entry/104153?rskey=NaM8i8&result=1&isAdvanced=false.




The bear is a symbol of Russia.

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