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W 11; if it be my time to quit the fage,
Adieu to all the follies of the age!
I die in charity with fool and knave,
Secure of peace at least beyond the grave.
I've had my purgatory here betimes,
And paid for all my satires, all my rhymes.
The poet's hell, its tortures, fiends, and fames,
To this were trifles, toys and empty names,
With foolish pride my heart was never fir'd,
Nor the vain itch t'admire , or be admniid;
I hop'd for no commission from his grace ;
I bought no benefice , I begg'd no place ;
Had no new verses, nor new fuit to show;
Yet went to court! -the dev'l would have it fo.
But, as the fool that in reforming days
Would go to mass in jest ( as story says)
Could not but think, 10 pay his fine was odd ,
Since 'twas no form’d design of serving God;
So was I punish'd, as if full as proud
As prone to ill, as negligent of good,
As deep in debt, without a thought to pay,
As vain , as idle , and as false, as they
Who live at court, for going once that way!
Therefore I suffer'd this ; towards me did run Athing more strange, than on Nile's Nime the sun E’er bred, or all which inro Noah's ark came: A thing which would have pos'd Adam to name : Stranger than seven antiquaries studies, Than Africk monsters, Guianaes rarities, Stranger than strangers : one who, for a Dane, In the Danes massacre had sure been slain, If he had liv'd then ; and without help dies, When next the prentices 'gainst ftrangers rise ; One whom the watch at noon lets scarce go by ; One, to whom the examining justice sure would cry: Sir , by your priesthood , tell me what you are ? His cloaths were strange, tho' coarse, and black ,
though bare, Sleeveless his jerkin was, and it had been Velvet, but 'twas now ( so much ground was seen) Become rufftaftaty; and our children shall See it plain rash a while, then nought at all. The thing hath travaild, and, faith, speaks all
tongues, And only knoweth what to all states belongs , Made of th' accents, and best phrase of all these, He speaks one language. If strange meats displease, Art can deceive, or hunger force my taft ; But pedants motly tongue , soldiers bumbast, Mountebanks drug-tongue , nor the terms of law, dre strong enough preparatives to draw
Scarce was I enter'd, when, behold! there came
A thing which Adam had been pos'd to name ;
Noah had refus'd it lodging in his ark,
Where all the race of repriles might embark :
A verier monster , than on Africk's shore
The sun e'er got, or fimy Nilus bore,
Or Sloane or Woodward's wondrous shelves contain,
Nay, all that lying travellers can feign.
The watch would hardly let him pass at noon,
At night, would swear him dropt out of the moon.
One whom the mob, when next we find or make
A popish plot, shall for a Jesuit take,
And the wise justice , starting from his chair ,
Cry: By your priesthood, tell me what you are?
Such was the wight. Th' apparel on his back,
Tho' coarse, was rev'rend, and tho' bare, was black:
The suit , if by the fashion one might guess,
Was velvet in the youth of good queen Bess,
But mere tuff-taffety what now remain'd;
So time, that changes all things , had ordain'd!
Our sons shall fee it leisurely decay,
First turn plain rash, then vanish quite away.
This thing has traveld, speaks each language too, And knows what's fit for ev'ry state to do ; Ofwhose beft phrase and courtly accent join'd, He forms one tongue exotic and refin’d. Talkers I've learn’d to bear; Motteux I knew, Henley himself I've heard, and Budgel too. The doctor's Wormwood style, the hash of tongues A pedant makes, the storm of Gonson's lungs, The whole artillry of the terms of war, And ( all those plagues in one ) the bawling bar:
Me to hear this, yet I must be content
With his tongue,
in his tongue call'd complement: In which he can win widows,
and Make men speak treason, couzen subtleit whores, Out-Alatter favourites, or out-lie either Jovius, or Surius, or both together.
He names me, and comes to me; I whisper: God, How have I finn'd, that thy wrath's furious rod, This fellow, chuseih me! He faith : Sir, I love your judgment, whom
For the best linguist? and I seelily
Said that I thought Calepine's di&ionary.
Nay, but of men, most sweet Sir? Beza then,
Some Jesuits , and two reverend men
Of our two academies I nam'd : here
He stopt me, and said: Nay your apostles were
Good pretty linguists ; fo Panurgus was,
Yet a poor gentleman ; all these may pass
By travail. Then, as if he would have sold
tongue, he prais’d it, and such wonders told ,
That I was fain to say : If you had liv'd, Sir,
Time enough to have been interpreter
To Babel's bricklayers, sure the tower had stood.
He adds : If of court life you knew the good,
These I could bear; but not a rogue so civil ,
Whose tongue will compliment you to the devil.
A tongue , that can cheat widows, cancel scores,
Make Scots speak treason, cozen fubtleit whores,
With royal favourites in flatt’ry vie,
And Oldmixon and Burnet both out-lie,
He spies me out; I whisper : Gracious God!
What sin of mine could merit such a rod?
That all the shot of dulness now must be
From this thy blunderbuss discharg’d on me!
Permit ( he cries ) no stranger to your fame
To crave your sentiment, if- 's your name.
What speech esteem you most :» The King's, « said I.
But the best words: » Sir , the Dictionary «.
You miss my aim; I mean the most acute
And perfect speaker? Onflow , past dispute cc,
But, Sir, of writers ? » Swift, for closer style,
» But Ho**y for a period of a mile (s.
Why yes, 'tis granted, these indeed
Good common linguists , and fo Panurge was;
Nay troth th' apostles ( cho' perhaps too rough)
Had once a pretty gift of tongues enough:
Yet these were all poor gentlemen ! I dare
Afirm , 'twas travel made them what they were.
Thus others talents having nicely shown,
He came by sure transition to his own :
Till I cry'd out: You prove yourself so able,
Pity! you was not druggerman at Babel ;
For had they found a linguist half so good,
I make no question but the tow'r had stood.
» Obliging Sir! for courts you sure were made: » Why then for ever bury'd in the shade ?