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Or bidst thou rather party to embrace ?
(A friend to party thou, and all her race;
'Tis the same rope at different ends they twist;
To Dulness Ridpath is as dear as Mist).
Shall I, like Curtius, desperate in my zeal,
O'er head and ears plunge for the commonweal? 210
Or rob Rome's ancient geese of all their glories,
And cackling save the monarchy of Tories?
Hold-to the minister I more incline;
To serve his cause, O queen! is serving thine.

REMARKS. modest and upright appearance, no air of over-bearing; but, like true masters

of arts, were only habited in black and white they were justly styled subtiles and graves, but not always irrefragabiles, being sometimes examined, and by a nice distinction, divided and laid open.-Scribl.

This learned critic is to be understood allegorically. The doctors in this place mean no more than false dice, a cant phrase used among gamesters. So the meaning of these four sonorous lines is only this,'Shall I play fair or foul ?'

Ver. 208. Ridpath-Mist.) George Ridpath, author of a Whig paper, called the Flying-post; Nathaniel Mist, of a famous Tory journal.

Ver. 211. Or rob Rome's ancient geese of all their glories,] Relates to the well-known story of the geese that saved the Capitol; of which Virgil, Æn. viii.

Atque hic auratis volitans argenteus anser

Porticibus, Gallos in limine adesse canebat.' A passage I have always suspected. Who sees not the antithesis of auralis and argenteus to be unworthy the Virgilian majesty! And what absurdity to say a goose sings? canebat. Virgil gives a contrary character of the voice of this silly bird, in Ecl. ix.

'-argutos inter strepere anser olores.' Read it, therefore, adesse strepebat. And why auratis porticibus ? does not the very verse preceding this inform us,

'Romuleoque recens horrebat regia culmo.' Is this thatch in one line, and gold in another, consistent! I scruple not (repugnantibus omnibus manuscriptis) to correct it auritis. Horace uses the same epithet in the same sense,

Auritas fidibus canoris

Ducere quercus.' Add to say that walls have ears is common even to a proverb.Scribl.

Ver. 212. And cackling save the monarchy of Tories !) Not out of any preference or affection to the Tories. For what Hobbes so ingenuously confesses of himself, is true of all ministerial writers whatsoever : ' That he defends the supreme powers, as the geese by their cackling defended the Romans, who held the Capitol; for they favoured them no more than the Gauls, their enemies, but were as ready to have defended the Gauis if they had been possessed of the Capitol.

Epist. Dedic. to the Leviathan.

And see! thy very Gazetteers give o'er,
E'en Ralph repents, and Henley writes no more.
What then remains? Ourself. Still, still remain
Cibberian forehead, and Cibberian brain.
This brazen brightness, to the 'squire so dear;
This polish'd hardness, that reflects the peer: 220
This arch absurd, that wit and fool delights;
This mess, toss'd up of Hockley-hole and White's;
Where dukes and butchers join to wreathe my

crown,
At once the bear and fiddle of the town.

O born in sin, and forth in folly brought! Works damn’d or to be damn'd (your father's fault) Go, purified by flames, ascend the sky, My better and more Christian progeny! Unstain'd, untouch'd, and yet in maiden sheets; While all your smutty sisters walk the streets. 230 Ye shall not beg, like gratis-given Bland, Sent with a pass, and vagrant through the land;

REMARKS.

Ver. 215.-Gazetteers-] A band of ministerial writers, hired at the prices mentioned in the note on Book ii. ver. 316, who on the very day their patron quitted his post, Jaid down their paper, and declared they would never more meddle in politics.

Ver. 218. Cibberian forehead,] So indeed all the MSS. read; but I make no scruple to pronounce them all wrong, the laureat being elsewhere celebrated by our poet for his great modestymodest Cibber-Read, therefore, at my peril, Cerberian forehead.' This is perfectly classical, and, what is more, Homerical; the dog was the ancient, as the bitch is the modern symbol of impudence (Kuvos őupat' exwv, says Achilles to Agamemnon), which, when in a superlative degree, may well be denominated from Cerberus, the dog with three heads. But as to the latter part of this verse,

Cibberian brain, that is certainly the genuine reading. -Bentl.

Ver. 225. O born in sin, &c.) This is a tender and passionate apostrophe to his own works, which he is going to sacrifice, agreeable to the nature of man in great affliction; and reflecting, like a parent, on the many miserable fates to which they would otherwise be subject.

Ver. 228. My better and more Christian progeny!). It may be observable, that my muse and my spouse were equally prolific; that the one was seldom the mother of a child, but in the same year the other made me the father of a play. I think we had a dozen of each sort between us; of both which kinds some died in their infancy,' &c. Life of C.C. p. 217, 8vo. euit.

Ver. 231. -gratis-given Bland,-Sent with a pass,) It was a practice so to give the Daily Gazetteer and ministerial pamphlets (in which this B. was a writer), and to send them post-free to all the towns in the kingdom.

U

Nor sail with Ward, to ape-and-monkey climes,
Where vile mundungus trucks for viler rhymes:
Not, sulphur-tipt, emblaze an ale-house fire;
Nor, wrap up oranges, to pelt your sire!
O! pass more innocent, in infant state,
To the mild limbo of our father Tate:
Or, peaceably forgot, at once be bless'a
In Shadwell's bosom with eternal rest!

240 Soon to that mass of nonsense to return, Where things destroy'd are swept to things unborn.

With that, a tear (portentous sign of grace!) Stole from the master of the seven-fold face: And thrice he lifted high the birth-day brand, And thrice he dropp'd it from his quivering hand; Then lights the structure, with averted eyes : The rolling smoke involves the sacrifice. The opening clouds disclose each work by turns, Now flames the Cid, and now Perolla burns; 250 Great Cæsar roars, and hisses in the fires; King John in silence modestly expires : No merit now the dear Nonjuror claims, Moliere's old stubble in a moment flames.

REMARKS. Ver. 233. --with Ward, to ape-and-monkey climes,] Edward Ward, a very voluminous poet in Hudibrastic verse, but best known by the London Spy, in prose. He has of late years kept a public-house in the city (but in a genteel way), and with bis wit, and humour, and good liquor (ale), afforded his guests a pleasurable entertainment, especially those of the high churchparty.' Jacob, Lives of Poets, vol. ii. p. 225. Great number of his works were yearly sold into the plantations.-Ward, in a book, called Apollo's Maggot, declared this account to be a great falsity, protesting that his public-house was not in the city, but in Moorfields.

Ver. 238, 240. Tate-Shadwell-] Two of his predecessors in the laurel.

Ver. 250. Now flames the Cid, &c.] In the first rotes on the Duuciad it was said, that this author was particularly excellent at tragedy. This,' says he, is as unjust as to say, I could not dance on a rope.' But certain it is, that he had attempted to dance on this rope, and fell most shamefully, having produced no less than four tragedies (the names of which the poet preserves th these few lines); the three first of them were fairly printed, acted, and damned; the fourth suppressed, in fear of the like treatment.

Ver. 253, 254. -the dear Nonjuror-Moliere's old stubble-]1A comedy thrashed out of Moliere's Tartuffe, and so much the translator's favourite, that he assures us all our author's dislike to it could only arise from disaffection to the government. He assures us, that when he had the honour to kiss his majesty's

Tears gush'd again, as from pale Priam's eyes,
When the last blaze sent Ilion to the skies.

Roused by the light, old Dulness heaved the head,
Then snatch'd a sheet of Thule from her bed;
Sudden she flies, and whelms it o'er the pyre;
Down sink the flames, and with a hiss expire. 260

Her ample presence fills up all the place; A veil of fogs dilates her awful face : Great in her charms! as when on shrieves and mayors She looks, and breathes herself into their airs. She bids him wait her to her sacred dome: Well pleased he enter'd, and confess'd his home. So spirits, ending their terrestrial race, Ascend, and recognize their native place. This the great mother dearer held than all The club of quidnuncs, or her own Guildhall : 270 Here stood her opium, here she nursed her owls, And here she plann'd th' imperial seat of fools.

Here to her chosen all her works she shews; Prose swels'd to verse, verse loitering into prose: How random thoughts now meaning chance to find, Now leave all memory of sense behind: How prologues into prefaces decay, And these to notes are fritter'd quite away: How index-learning turns no student pale, Yet holds the science by the tail:

280
How, with less reading than makes felons 'scape,
Less human genius than God gives an ape,
Small thanks to France, and none to Rome ur

Greece,
A past, vamp'd, future, old, revived, new piece,

REMARKS. hand, upon presenting his dedication of it, he was graciously pleased, out of his royal bounty, to order him two hundred pounds for it. And this he doubts not grieved Mr. P.'

Ver. 258. Thule-) An unfinished poem of that name, of which one sheet was printed many years ago, by Ambrose Philips, a northern author. It is an usual method of putting out fire, to cast wet sheets upon it. Some critics have been of opinion that this sheet was of the nature of the asbestos, which cannot be consumed by fire: but I rather think it an allegorical allusion to the coldness and heaviness of the writing.

Ver. 269. -great mother-] Magna mater, here applied to Dulness. The quidnuncs, a name given to the ancient members of several political clubs, who were constantly inquiring Quid nunc! What news!

"Twixt Plautus, Fletcher, Shakspeare, and Corneille, Can make a Cibber, Tibbald, or Ozell.

The goddess then, o'er his anointed head,
With mystic words the sacred opium shed.
And lo! her bird (a monster of a fowl,
Something betwixt a heidegger and owl)

290
Perch'd on his crown. • All hail ! and hail again,
My son ! the promised land expects thy reign.
Know, Eusden thirsts no more for sack or praise ;
He sleeps among the dull of ancient days;

1

REMARKS. Ver. 286. -Tibbald,] Lewis Tibbald (as pronounced) or Theobald (as written) was bred an attorney, and son to an attorney, says Mr. Jacob, of Sittenburn, in Kent. He was author of some forgotten plays, translations, and other pieces. He was concerned in a paper called the Censor, and a translation of Ovid. *There is a notorious idiot, one hight Wachum, who, from an under spur-leather to the law, is become an understrapper to the play-bouse, who hath lately burlesqued the Metamorphoses of Ovíd by a vile translation, &c. This fellow is concerned in an impertinent paper called the Censor.' Dennis, Rem. on Pope's Homer, p. 9, 10.

Ibid. ---Ozell.] Mr. John Ozell, if we credit Mr. Jacob, did go to school in Leicestershire, where somebody left him something to live on, when he shall retire from business. He was designed to be sent to Cambridge, in order for priesthood; but he chose rather to be placed in an office of accounts, in the city, being qualified for the same by his skill in arithmetic, and writing the necessary hands. He has obliged the world with many translations of French plays.'-Jacob, Lives of Dram. Poets, p. 198.

Mr. Jacob's character of Mr. Ozell seems vastly short of his merits, and he ought to have further justice done him, having since fully confuted all sarcasms on his learning and genius, by an advertisement of Sept. 20, 1729, in a paper called The Weekly Medley, &c. 'As to my learning, this envious wretch knew, and every body knows, that the whole

bench of bishops, not long ago, were pleased to give me a purse

of guineas, for discovering the erroneous translations of the Common-Prayer in Portuguese, Spanish, French, Italian, &c. As for my genius, let Mr. Cleland shew better verses in all Pope's works, than Ozell's version of Boileau's Lutrin, which the late Lord Halifax was so pleased with, that he complimented him with leave to dedicate it to him, &c. Let him shew better and truer poetry in the Rape of the Lock, than in Ozell's Rape of the Bucket (la Secchia rapita). And Mr. Toland and Mr. Gildon publicly declared Ozell's trans lation of Homer to be, as it was prior,

su likewise superior to Pope's. Surely, surely, every man is free to deserve well of his country!'-John Ozel.

We cannot but subscribe to such reverend testimonies, as those of the bench of bishops, Mr. Toland, and Mr. Gildon.

Ver. 290.-a heidegger-) A strange bird from Switzerland, and not, as some have supposed, the name of an eminent person who was a man of parts, and, as was said of Petronius, arbiter ele. gantiarum.

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