« ZurückWeiter »
Be b furious, envious, Aothful, mad, or drunk,
'Tis the first Virtue, Vices to abhor; 65
70 See him, with pains of body, pangs of foul, Burn through the Tropic, freeze beneath the Pole! Wilt thou do nothing for a nobler end, Nothing, to make Philosophy thy friend ? To stop thy foolish views, thy long desires, 75 And & ease thy heart of all that it admires?
Here, Wifdom calls: i« Seek Virtue first, be bold! “ As Gold to Silver, Virtue is to Gold.”
Notes. VER. 77. Here Wisdom calls : etc.) All from hence to 4 110, is a prefty clofe tranfation: but in general done with so mafferly a spirit, that the Original, tho' one of the moft finished paffages in Horace, looks only like the imitation of it.
Ver. 78. As Gold to Silver, Virtue is to Gold.] This perhaps is the most faulty line in the whole collection. The Original is,
Vilius eft auro mgentum, virtutibus aurum. which only favs, ihat as Situer is of iefs value than Gold, so Gold
Virtus post nummos: haec 'Janus summus ab imo Prodocct: hacc recinunt juvencs di&tata sencsque,
m Lacvo suspensi loculos tabulamquc lacerto.
Ef" animus tibi, funt mores, es lingua fidefque: Scd quadringentis sex septem millia desint, • Plebs cris. Pat pueri ludentes, Rex eris, aiunt,
No T E ,
is of lefs value than Virtue: in which simple inferiority, and not the proportion of it, is implied. For it was as contrary to the Author's purpose, as it is to common sense, to suppose, that Virtue was but just as much better than gold, as gold is better than silver. Yet Mr. Pope, too attentive to his constant object, conciseness, bas, before he was aware, fallen into this absurd meaning. However this, and many other inaccuracics in his works, had been corrcétcd, had he lived; as many, that now first appear in this Edition, were actually corrected a little before his death.
And here I cannot but do justice to one of his many good qualities, a very rare one indeed, and what none but a truly great genius can afford to indulge; I mean his extreme readinefs, and unfcigncd pleasure, in acknowledging his mistakes: this, with an impatience to reform them, he poslefied in a greater dcgrce, and with less affectation than any Man I ever kucw.
There, London's yoice: k«Get Money, Moneyftill!
- And then let Virtue follow, if she will.” 80 : This, this the saving doctrine, preach'd to all,
From 'low St. James's up to high St. Paul;
Barnard in " spirit, sense, and truth abounds; 85 “Pray then, what wants he?" Fourscore thoufand
Yet ev'ry ? child another song will fing,
Ver. 83. From him whose quills ftand quiver'd at his ear, ] They who do not take the delicacy of this satire, may think the figure of standing quiver'd, extremely hard and quaint; but it has an exquisite beauty, insinuating that the pen of a Scrivener is as ready as the quill of a porcupine, and as fatal as the shafts, of a Parthian.- Quiver'd at his ear, which describes the position it is usually found in, alludes to the custom of the American canibals, who make use of their hair (tied in a knot on the top of their heads) for a quiver for their poison’d arrows.
Ver. 84. notches fticks] Exchequer Tallies. ;
Ver. 85. Barnard in spirit, sense, and truth abounds,] Sir John Barnard. It was the Poet's purpose to say, that this great man (who does so much honour to his Country) had a fine ge
Si recte facies. Hic murus aheneus efto,
Nil conscire fibi, nulla pallescere culpa.
Roscia, dic sodes, melior lex, an puerorum eft
Naenia, quae regnum recte facientibus offert,
Et maribus Curiis et decantata Camillis ?
*Isne tibi melius suadet, qui, “Rem facias; rém,
« Si poffis, recte; si non, quocunque modo rem."
Ul 'propius spectes lacrymosa poemata Pupi!
An, " qui fortunae te responsare superbae
Liberum et erectum, ' praesens hortatur et aptat ?
NOT E S. nius, improved and put in use by a true understanding; and both, under the guidance of an integrity fuperior to all the temptations of interest, honours, or any meaner passion. Many events, fince the paying this tribute to his virtue, have thewń how much, and how particularly it was due to him. VER. 95. Be this thy Screen, and this thy Wall of Brass ;]
Hic murus aheneus esto. Dacier laughs at an able Critic, who was fcandalized, that the antient Scholiasts had not explained what Horace meant by a wall of brass; for, says Dacier, “ Chacun se fait des difficultez
True, conscious Honour is to feel no fin,
"And say, to which shall our applause belong, This new Court jargon, or the good old song? The modern language of corrupted Peers, Or what was spoke at · Cressy and POITIERS? * Who counsels best? who whispers, “Be but great, “ With Praise or Infamy leave that to fate; 102 “Get Place and Wealth, if possible, with grace; “If not, by any means get Wealth and Place. For what? to have a 'Box where Eunuchs sing, And foremost in the Circle eye a King 106 Or " he, who bids thee face with steddy view ) Proud Fortune, and look shallow Greatness thro':> And, w while he bids thee, sets th’Example too?)
NOTES. . « à la mode, & demande des remarques proportionnées à fon " goût;" he then fets himself in good earnest about this important inquiry; and, by a passage in Vegetius, luckily difçovers, that it fignified an old veteran armed cap-a-pie in brassa and PLACED TO COVER HIS FELLOW. Our Poet has hape pily served himself of this impertinence to convey a very fine Itroke of satire.
Ver. 97. And say, etc.] These four lines greatly fuperior to any thing in the Original.