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EP I S T L E

III.

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HO shall decide, when Doctors disagree,
And foundest Casuists doubt, like you

and me?

Epistle III.] This Epistle was written after a violent outcry against our Author, on a supposition that he had ridiculed a worthy nobleman merely for his wrong tafte. He justified himself upon that article, in a letter to the Earl of Burlington ; at the end of which are these words: “ I have learnt that there are some who would rather be “ wicked than ridiculous ; and therefore it may be safer " to attack vices chan follies. I will therefore leave my “ betters in the quiet poffeffion of their idols, their groves, “ and their high places; and change my subject from “ their pride to their meanness, from their vanities to their miseries ; and as the only certain way to avoid “ misconstructions, to lessen offence, and not to multiply “ ill-natured applications, I may probaby, in my next, « make use of real names instead of fictitious ones." P.

VER. 1. Who shall decide, &c.) The address of the Introduction (from ø 1 to 21) is remarkable: The poet represents himself and the noble Lord his friend, as in a conversation, philosophising on the final cause of Riches ; and it proceeds by way of dialogue, which most writers use to hide want of method ; our Author only to soften and enliven the dryness and severity of it. You (says the poet) bold the word

from Yove to Momus giv'n, But I, who think more highly of our kind, &c. Opine that Nature, &c.

You hold the word, from Jove to Momus giv'n, That Man was made the standing jest of Heav'n ; And Gold but sent to keep the fools in play, 5 For some to heap, and some to throw away.

As much as to say, You, my Lord, hold the subject we

are upon as fit only for Satire ; I, on the contrary, “ efteem it a case of Philosophy and profound Ethics: " But as we both agree in the main Principle, that Riches

were not given for the reward of Virtue, but for very different purposes (See Esay on Man, Ep. iv.) let us “ compromise the matter, and consider the subject joint“ ly, both under your idea and mine, i.e. Satirically and Philosophically."-And this, in fact, we shall find to be the true character of this poem, which is a Species peculiar to itself, and partaking equally of the nature of his Ethic Epistles and his Satires, as the best pieces of Lucian arose from a combination of the Dialogues of Plato, and the Scenes of Aristophanes. This it will be necessary to carry with us, if we would see either the Wit or the Reasoning of this Epifle in their true light.

Notes.

Ver. 3. Momus giv'n]A- the Son of Sleep and Night, mongst the earliest abuses of and so, consequently, halfreason, one of the first was brother to Dulness. But hav. to cavil at the ways of Pro- ing been much employed, vidence. But as, in those in after ages, by the Greek times, every Vice as well Satirifts, he came, at last, as Virtue, had its Patron- to pass for a Wit ; and unGod, Momus came to be der this idea, he is to be at the head of the old Free considered in the place bethinkers. Him, the Mytho- fore us. logists very ingeniously made

But I, who think more highly of our kind, (And surely, Heav'n and I are of a mind) Opine, that Nature, as in duty bound, Deep hid the shining mischief under ground: 10 But when by Man's audacious labour won, Flam'd forth this rival to, its Sire, the Sun, Then careful Heav'n supply'd two sorts of Men, To squander These, and Those to hide agen.

Like Doctors thus, when much dispute has past, We find our tenets just the same at last. 16 Both fairly owning, Riches, in effect, No grace of Heav'n or token of th’Elect; Giv'n to the Fool, the Mad, the Vain, the Evil, To Ward, to Waters, Chartres, and the Devil. 20

NOTES,

Ver. 9. Opine,] A term Sun,] The rival of its Sire sacred to controversy and in its brightness, and in its high debate.

power of drawing mankind Ibid. -- that Nature, as into error and delusion; the in duty bound,] This, though two first idols of the world, ludicrously, is yet exactly, natural and moral, being expressed; to thew, that, by the Sun and Gold. Nature, the poet meant, not Ver. 20. JOHN WARD of the God of nature, but the Hackney, Efq; Member of . inftrument and subftitute of Parliament, being prosecuhis providence.

.ted by the Duchess of Buck. Ver. 12. Flam'd forth ingham, and convicted of this rival to, its Siré, the Forgery, was first expelled B. What Nature wants, commodious Gold bestows,

'Tis thus we eat the bread another sows.

NOTES.

the House, and then stood | ments. To sum up the
in the Pillory on the 17th worth of this gentleman, at
of March 1727. He was the several æra's of his life,
suspected of joining in a At his standing in the Pillo-
conveyance with Sir John ry he was worth above two
Blunt, to secrete fifty thou- bundred thousand pounds; at
fand pounds of that Direc- his commitment to Prifon,
tor's Eftate, forfeited to the he was worth one hundred
South-Sea company by Act and fifty thousand; but has
of Parliament. The Compa- been since so far diminished
ny recovered the fifty thou. in his reputation, as to be
fand pounds against Ward ; thought a worfe man by fifty
but he set up prior convey or fixty thousand. P.
ances of his real estate to Fr. CHARTRES, a man
his brother and son, and infamous for all manner of
conceal'd all his personal, vices. When he was an en-
which was computed to be sign in the army, he was
one hundred and fifty thou- drumm'd out of the regi-
fand pounds. These con- ment for a cheat; he was
veyances being also set aside next banish'd Brussels, and
by a bill in Chancery, Ward drumm'd out of Ghent on
was imprisoned, and ha- the fame account. After a
zarded the forfeiture of his hundred tricks at the gam-
life, by not giving in his ing-tables, he took to lend -
effects till the laft day, ing of money at exorbitant
which was that of his exa- interest and on great pe-
'mination. During his con- nalties, accumulating pre-
finement, his amusement was mium, interest, and capital
to give poison to dogs and into a new capital, and seiz-
cats, and see them expire ing to a minute when the
by flower or quicker tor payments became due ; in

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P. But how unequal it bestows, observe,

'Tis thus we riot, while, who fow it, starve:
What Nature wants (a phrase I much distrust)
Extends to Luxury, extends to Lust: 26
Useful, I grant, it serves what life requires,
But dreadful too, the dark Affaflin hires :

Notes.

a word, by a constant at-, Scotland in 1731, aged 62. tention to the vices, wants, The populace at his funeral and follies of mankind, he rais'd a great riot, almost acquired an immense for- tore the body, out of the tune. His house was a per- coffin, and cast dead dogs, petual bawdy-houfe. He was &c. into the grave along twice condemn'd for rapes, with it. The following Epiand pardoned ; but the last taph contains his character, time not without imprison- very justly drawn by Dr Arment in Newgate, and large buthnot: confiscations. He died in

HER E continueth to roc The Body of FRANCIS CHARTRES, Who, with an INFLEXIBLE CONSTANCY, and INIMITABLE UNIFORMITY of Life,

PERSISTED, In spite of Age and INFIRMITIES, In the Practice of Every HUMAN Vice; Excepting PRODIGALITY and HYPOCRISY: His insatiable AVARICE exempted him from the first,

His matchless IMPUDENCE from the second.

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