« ZurückWeiter »
To Wle guilty of some venial fin;
The Priest whose Flattery be dropt the Crown,
175 As pure a mess almost as it came in s The blesed benefit, not there confin'd, Drops to the third, whe nuzzles clofe behind ; From tail to mouth, they feed and they carouse: The last full fairly gives it to the House.
180 F. This filthy fimile, this beastly line Quite turns my stomach
P. So does Flatt'ry mine; And all your courtly Civet-eats can vent, Perfume to you, to me is Excrement.
Ver. 164. The Priest, etc.] Spoken not of any particular priest, but of many priests.
Vir. 166. And bow did, etc.] This feems to allude to a complaint made ver. 71, of the preceding Dialogue,
But hear me further - Japhet, 'tis agreed, 185
what Provocation I have had?
F. You're strangely proud.
VARIATIONS, VER. 185. in the MS.
I grant it, Sir; and further, 'tis agreed,
Japhet writ not, and Chartres (carce could read. VIR. 185. Japbet - Chartres] See the Epistle to Lord Bathurst.
VIR. 204. And mine as Man, who feel for all mankind.] From Terence: " Homo fum: humani nihil a me alienung
P. So proud, I am no Slave: So impudent, I own myself no knave: 206 So odd, my country's Ruin makes me grave. Yes, I am proud; I must be proud to see Men not afraid of God, afraid of me: Safe from the Bar, the Pulpit, and the Throne, Yet touch'd and sham'd by Ridicule alone. 211
O sacred weapon ! left for Truth's defence, Sole Dread of Folly, Vice, and Insolence! To all but Heav'n-directed hands deny'd, The Muse may give thee, but the Gods must guide: Rev'rent I touch thee! but with honeft zeal ;
216 To rouse the Watchmen of the public Weal,
VER. 208. Tes, I am proud; etc.] In this ironical exultation the Poet insinuates a subject of the deepest humiliation.
VER. 211. Yet toucb'd and foam'd by Ridicule alone.] The Pasions are given us to awaken and support Virtue. But they frequently betray their truft, and go over to the interests of Vice. Ridicule, when employed in the cause of Virtue, shames and brings them back to their duty. Hence the use and importance of Satire.
VER. 214. To all but Heav'n-direzted bands] “ The Citizen « (says Plato, in his fifth book of Laws) who does no injury to
any one, without question, merits our esteem. He, who, “ not content with being barely just himself, opposes the “ course of injustice, by prosecuting it before the Magistrate, “ merits our esteem vastly more. The first discharges the duty 6 of a fiagle Citizen: but the otber does the office of a Body. “ But he whose zeal stops not here, but proceeds to ASSIST
THE MAGISTRATE IN PUNISHING is the most valuable “ blessing of Society. This is the PERFECT CITIZEN, to " whom we should adjudge the prize of Virtue,"
To Virtue's wosk provoke the tardy Hal,
When black Ambition tains a public Caule,
Where's now the Star that lighted Charles to rife?
Ver. 222. Cobroebs] Weak and slighe fophifry against virtut and honour. Thin colours over vice, as unable to bide the light of Truth, as cobwebs to shade the fun.
VIR. 228. Wben black Ambition etc.] The ease of Cromwelt in the civil war of England; and (ver. 229.) of Louis XIV. in his conquest of the Low Countries.
VER. 231. Nor Boilear turk the Fearbet to a Star.} See his Ode on Namus; where (to use his own words)
" il a fait un
Not so, when diadem'd with
rays divine, Touch'd with the Flame that breaks from Virtue's
wear, And may descend to Mordington from STAIR: (Such as on Hough's unfully'd Mitre fhine, 240 Or beam, good Digby, from a heart like thine) Let Envy howl, while Heav'n's whole Chorus fings, And bark at Honour not confer'd by Kings ; Let Flatt’rg fick’ning see the Incenfe rise, Sweet to the World, and grateful to the Skies : 245 Truth guards the Poet, sanctifies the line, And makes immortal, Verse as mean as mine.
“ Aftre de la Plume blanche que le Roy porte ordinairement à “ son Chapeau, et qui eft en effet une espece de Comete, o fatale a nos ennemis."
VIR. 237. Anfis] The chief Herald at arms. It is the custom, at the funeral of great peers, to cast into the grave the broken staves and enfigns of honour.
VIR. 239. Stair ;] John Dalrymple Earl of Stair, Knight of the Thistle; served in all the wars under the Duke of Marl. borough; and afterwards as Embaffador in France.
VER. 240, 241. Hough and Digby] Dr. John Hough Bishop of Werceter, and the Lord Digby. The one an affertor of the Church of England in opposition to the false measures of King James II. The other as firmly attached to the cause of that King. Both acting out of principle, and equally men of honour and virtue.