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In Soldier, Churchman, Patriot, Man in Pow'r, -
Yet may this Verse (if such a Verse remain) Show, there was one who held it in disdain.
NOTES. Ver. 164. See, all our fools aspiring to be Knaves'] This will always be the case when knavery is in fashion, becaufc fools always dread the being unfashionable.
Ver. 165. The IV it of Cheats, the Courage of a Ilhore,— Are what ten thousand envy and adore :) And no wonder, for the wit of Cheats being the evasion of Justice, and the Courage of a Whore the contempt for reputation; these emancipate men from the two tyrannical restraints upon free fpirits, fear of punishment, and dread of shame. Scribl.
IT IS all a Libel --- Paxton (Sir) will say, 1 P. Not yet, my Friend! to morrow 'faith
Ver. 8. Feign what I will, etc.] The Poet has here introduced an oblique apology for himself with great art. You attack personal characters, say his enemies. No, replies he, I paint merely from my invention; and, to prevent a likeness, I then aggravate the features. But alas! the growth of vice
F. Yet none but you by Name the guiltỳ lash;
P. How, Sir! not damn the Sharper, but the Dice?
P. Why that's the thing you bid me not to do.
F. You do.
NOTES. is so monstrously sudden, that it rises up to a resemblance before I can get from the press.
Ver 11. Ev’n Guthry] The Ordinary of Newgate, who publishes the memoirs of the Malefactors, and is often prevailed upon to be so tender of their reputation, as to set down no more than the initials of their name.
P. Ver. 13. How, Sir! not damn the Sharper, but the Dice?] The liveliness of the reply may excuse the bad reasoning; otherwise the dice, tho' they rhyme to vice, can never stand for it, which his argument requires they should do. For the dice are only the instruments of fraud; but the question is not, whether the instrument, but whether the act committed by it, should be exposed, instead of the person.
The bribing Statesman---F.Hold, too high you go. · P. The brib'd Elector---F. There you stoop too low.
25 P. I fain would please you, if I knew with what; Tell me, which Knave is lawful Game, which not? Must great Offenders, once escap'd the Crown, Like Royal Harts, be never more run down? Admit your Law to spare the Knight requires, 30 As Beasts of Nature may we hunt the Squires ?
NOTES. VER. 26. I fain would please you, if I knew with what ;-Tell me, which Knave is lawful Game, which not?] I have observed, that our author has invented, and introduced into his writings, a new species of the sublime, by heightenii g it with wit. There is a species of elegance in his works (of which these lines are an instance) almost as peculiar to him, which he has produced by employing the simpleft and tritest phrases to prevent stiffness, and yet, by a supreme effort of his art, giving them the dignity of the choicest. Quintilian was fo sensible of the lustre which this throws upon true eloquence under a masterly direction, and of the prejudices against it from the difficulty of succeeding in it; that he says, Utinam-et verba in ufu quotidiano posita minus timeremus.
Ver. 28. Must great Offenders, etc.] The case is archly put. Those who escape public justice being the particular property of the Satirist.
Ver. 29. like Royal Harts, etc.] Alluding to the old Gamelaws, when our Kings spent all the time they could spare from human slaughter, in Woods and Forests.
Ver. 31. As Beasts of Nature may we hunt the Squires?] The expression is rough, like the subject, but na reflection : For if beasts of Naturė, then not beasts of their own making ; a fault too frequently objected to country Squires. However, the Latin is nobler, Ferae natura, Things uncivilized, and free, Feral,
Suppose I censure ---you know what I mean---
F. A Dean, Sir? no: his Fortune is not made, You hurt a man that's rising in the Trade. 35
P. If not the Tradesman who set up to day, Much less the 'Prentice who to morrow may. Down, down, proud Satire! tho’a Realm be spoil'd, Arraign no mightier Thief than wretched Wild; Or, if a Court or Country's made a job, 40 Go drench a Pick-pocket, and join the Mob.
But, Sir, I beg you (for the Love of Vice !) The matter's weighty, pray consider twice ; Have you less pity for the needy Cheat, The poor and friendless Villain, than the Great?45 Alas! the small Discredit of a Bribe Scarce hurts the Lawyer, but undoes the Scribe.
the ERASME, doit pen Wild,] Jonathan caught in his own
Notes. as the Critics say, being from the Hebrew, Pere, Asimus silvertris. SCRIBL.
Ver. 35. You hurt a man that's rising in the Trade.] For, as the reasonable De la Bruyere observes, “ Qui ne fait être un “ ERASME, doit penser à être Evêque.” Scrill,
VER. 39. wretched Wild,] Jonathan Wild, a famous Thief, and Thief-Impeacher, who was at last caught in his own train and hanged.
P. Ver. 42. for the love of Vice] We must consider the Poet' as here directing his discourse to a follower of the new systern of Politics, That private vices are public benefits. SCRIBLE