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Quam puer et validus præfumis, mollitiem; feu
Illis nullus erat; fed, credo, hac mente, quod hofpes
Heroas natum tellus me prima tuliffet.
Iratum patruum, vicinos, te tibi iniquum, Et fruftra mortis cupidum, cum deerit egenti PAs, laquei pretium.
Jure, inquit, Traufius iftis
Templa ruunt antiqua Deûm? cur, improbe, caræ
Uni nimirum tibi recte femper erunt res?
VER. 118. How dar'f thou] Very spirited, and superior to the original; for dar'ft is far beyond the mere eget. Two lines on this subject in Armstrong are exquifitely tender, efpecially the second:
"E'en modeft want may bless your hand unfeèn,
* Our fathers prais'd rank Ven'fon. You fuppofe Perhaps, young men! our fathers had no nose. Not fo: a Buck was then a week's repast, And 'twas their point, I ween, to make it last; More pleas'd to keep it till their friends could come, Than eat the sweetest by themselves at home.
Why had not I in thofe good times my birth, Ere coxcomb-pies or coxcombs were on earth? Unworthy he, the voice of Fame to hear, That sweetest mufic to an honeft ear, (For 'faith, Lord Fanny! you are in the wrong, The world's good word is better than a song,) Who has not learn'd, " fresh fturgeon and ham-pie Are no rewards for want, and infamy! When Luxury has lick'd up all thy pelf, Curs'd by thy neighbours, thy trustees, thyself, To friends, to fortune, to mankind a shame, Think how pofterity will treat thy name; And buy a rope, that future times may tell Thou haft at least bestow'd one penny well.
Right," cries his Lordship, "for a rogue in need "To have a Tafte, is infolence indeed :
"In me 'tis noble, fuits my birth and state,
"My wealth unwieldy, and my heap too great.' Then, like the Sun, let Bounty spread her ray, 115 And shine that fuperfluity away.
Oh Impudence of wealth! with all thy ftore,
O magnus pofthac inimicis rifus! uterne
Quo magis his credas: puer hunc ego parvus
Integris opibus novi non latius ufum,
Quam nunc accifis. Videas, metato in agello,
cur, Improbe! caræ
Non aliquid patriæ tanto emetiris acervo ?"
Ver. 122. As M**o's was, &c.] I think this light stroke of fatire ill placed; and that it hurts the dignity of the preceding morality. Horace was very serious, and properly fo, when he faid,
He remembered, and hints with just indignation at, thofe luxurious Patricians of his old party; who, when they had agreed to establish a fund in the cause of Freedom, under the conduct of Brutus, could never be perfuaded to withdraw from their expenfive pleasures what was fufficient for the fupport of fo great a caufe. He had prepared his apology for this liberty, in the preceding line, where he pays a fine compliment to Auguftus!
which oblique Panegyric the Imitator has very properly turned into a direct ftroke of fatire. WARBURTON.
VER. 122. not at five per cent.] He could not forbear this ftroke against a nobleman, whom he had been for many years accuftomed to hear abused by his most intimate friends. A certain parafite, who thought to please Lord Bolingbroke by ridiculing the avarice of the Duke of M. was ftopt fhort by that Lord, who faid, "He was so very great a man, that I forgot he had that
Or to thy Country let that heap be lent,
As M**o's was, but not at five per cent.
Who thinks that Fortune cannot change her mind, Prepares a dreadful jeft for all mankind. And" who ftands fafeft? tell me, is it he That spreads and fwells in puff'd Profperity, Or bleft with little, whofe preventing care In peace provides fit arms against a war? *Thus BETHEL fpoke, who always fpeaks his thought,
And always thinks the very thing he ought:
In South-Sea days not happier, when furmis'd
Than in five acres now of rented land.
VER. 122. five per cent.] Among the papers of the Orford collection, is a curious note to Sir. Robert Walpole, when Secretary at War, from the Duke of Marlborough, in which he says, he has a hundred thoufand pounds he does not know how to dispose of, and defires Walpole to put it out for him. From Mr. Coxe.
VER. 129. Thus BETHEL spoke,] This speech of Ofellus continues in the original to the end of this Satire. Pope has taken all that follows out of the mouth of Bethel, and speaks entirely in his own perfon. It is impoffible not to be pleased with the picture of his way of life, and the account he gives of his own table, in lines that exprefs common and familiar objects with dignity and elegance. WARTON.
VER. 133 In South-Sea days not happier, &c.] Mr. Pope had South Sea ftock, which he did not fell out. It was valued at between twenty and thirty thousand pounds when it fell.
Cum pecore et gnatis, fortem mercede colonum,
Sæviat atque novos moveat Fortuna tumultus! Quantum hinc imminuet? quanto aut ego parcius,
O pueri, nituiftis, ut huc novus incola venit?
VER. 134 than if now Excis'd;] Pope naturally joined the violent cry against the Excife, with the Party in oppofition to Sir R Walpole. Pulteney exclaimed upon another occafion:
"There is another thing impending! a monstrous project! fuch a project as has ftruck terror into the minds of most gentle. inen of this Houfe, and into the minds of all men without doors, who have any regard to the happinefs, or to the conflitution, of their country. I mean THAT MONSTER, THE EXCISE! that PLAN OF ARBITRARY POWER, which is expected to be laid before the House in the present Parliament." Coxe's Memoirs, chap. 41.
VER. 136. Than in five acres] He had a leafe of his house and gardens at Twickenham for his life. The leafe was purchased of a Mrs. Vernon; hence the expreffions,
-Does it concern one,
Whether the House belong to Pope, or Vernon?
VER. 152. double tax'd,] An additional tax was laid on the eftates of Papifts and Nonjurors.