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EPILOGUE TO MR. ROWE'S
DESIGNED FOR MRS. OLDFIELD.
PRODIGIOUS this! the Frail-one of our Play
From her own Sex fhould mercy find to-day! You might have held the pretty head aside, Peep'd in your fans, been ferious, thus, and cry'd, The Play may pass—but that strange creature, Shore, I can't-indeed now-I fo hate a whore Just as a blockhead rubs his thoughtless skull, And thanks his stars he was not born a fool; So from a fifter finner you fhall hear,
"How strangely you expose yourself, my dear?"
Our fex are still forgiving at their heart;
Would you enjoy foft nights and folid dinners?
Yet if a friend, a night or fo, fhould need her,
To lend a Wife, few here would fcruple make, 35
VER. 44. Who ne'er faw] A fly and oblique ftroke on the fuicide of Cato; which was one of the reafons, as I have been informed, why this epilogue was not spoken.
VER. 46. Edward's Mifs] Sir Thomas More fays, she had one accomplishment uncommon in a woman of that time; she could read and write.
To see a piece of failing flesh and blood,
Thomfon in his Epilogue to Tancred and Sigifmunda feverely cenfures the flippancy and gaiety of modern Epilogues, as contrary to thofe impreffions intended to be left on the mind by a well-written tragedy. The laft new part Mrs. Oldfield took in tragedy was in Thomfon's Sophonisba; and it is recorded that fhe spoke the following line;
Not one bafe word of Carthage for thy foul,
in fo powerful a manner, that Wilkes, to whom it was addressed, was aftonifhed and confounded. Mrs. Oldfield was admitted to vifit in the beft families. George II. and Queen Caroline, when Princess of Wales, condefcended fometimes to converse with her at their levees. And one day the Princess asked her if he was married to General Churchill; "So it is faid, may it please your Highness, but we have not owned it yet." Her Lady Betty Modifh, and Lady Townly, have never yet been equalled. She was univerfally allowed to be well-bred, fenfible, witty, and generous. She gave poor Savage an annual penfion of fifty pounds. And it is ftrange that Dr. Johnson seems rather to approve of Savage's having never celebrated his benefactress in any of his poems.
END OF THE FIRST VOLUME.