Thomas Cole, The Course of Empire (1833-1836)

There is the moral of all human tales;

'Tis but the same rehearsal of the past.

First Freedom and then Glory—when that fails,

Wealth, vice, corruption—barbarism at last.

And History, with all her volumes vast,

Hath but one page. 

-- Lord Byron, Childe Harold's Pilgrimage

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The Savage State

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The Arcadian or Pastoral State

 

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The Consummation of Empire

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Destruction

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Desolation

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