Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

But hear me further - Japhet, 'tis agreed, 185
Writ not, and Chartres scarce could write or read,
In all the Courts of Pindus guiltless quite;
But Pens can forge, my Friend, that cannot write;
And must no Egg in Japhet's face be thrown, :. :
Because the Deed he forg'd was not my own! 190
Must never Patriot then declaim at Gin,
Unless, good man ! he has been fairly in? .
No zealous Pastor blame a failing Spouse,
Without a staring Reason on his brows?
And each Blasphemer quite escape the rod,
Because the insult's not on Man, but God?

Ask you what Provocation I have had ?
The strong Antipathy of Good to Bad.
When Truth or Virtue an Affront endures, . .
Th' Affront is mine, my friend, and should be yours.
Mine, as a Foe profess’d to falfe Pretence, 201
Who think a Coxcomb’s Honour like his Sense;
Mine, as a Friend to ev'ry worthy mind;
And mine as Man, who feel for all mankind.

VARIATIONS.
Ver. 185. in the MS.

I grant it, Sir ; and further, 'tis agreed,
Japhet writ not, and Chartres scarce could read.

Notes.
Ver. 185. Japhet Chartres) See the Epifle to Lord
Bathurit. P.
VER. 204. And mine as Man, who feel for all mankind.

F. You're ftrangely proud.

P. So proud, I am no Slave : So impudent, I own myself no Knave: 206} So odd, my Country's Ruin makes me grave. Yes, I am proud ; I must be proud to fec Men not afraid of God, afraid of me: Safe from the Bar, the Pulpit, and the Throne, 210 Yet touch'd and sham'd by Ridicule alone.

O facred weapon ! left for Truth's defence, Sole Dread of Folly, Vice, and Infolence ! To all but Heay'n-directed hands deny'd, The Muse may give thee, but the Gods must guide :

Notes. From Terence : “ Honqo fum: humani nihil a me aliegum « puto.”. P. · Ver. 208. Yes, I am proud; etc.] In this ironical exultation the Puet insinuates a subject of the dcepelt humiliation,

VER, 211. Yet touch'd and sham'd by Ridicule alone. The Passions are given us to awake and support Virtue. But they frequently betray their trust, and go over to the interests of Vice. Ridicule, when employed in the cause of Virtue, shames and brings them back to their duty. Hence the use and importance of Satire.

Ver. 214. To all but Heav'n-directed bands] “ The " Citizen (says Plata, in his fifth book of Laws) who does "" no injury to any one, without question, merits our ef«« teem. He, who, not content with being barely just " himself, opposes the course of injustice, by prosecuting " it before the Magistrate, merits our esteem vastly more. “ The first discharges the duty of a single Citizen ; but !! the oiher does the office of a Body. But he whose zeal " Hops not here, but proceeds to ASSIST THE MAGISTRATE

Rev'rent I touch thee! but with honest zeal; 116
To rouse the Watchmen of the public Weal,
To Virtue's work provoke the tardy Hall,
And goad the Prelate flumb'ring in his Stall.
Ye tinsel Insects! whom a Court maintains,
That counts your Beauties only by your Stains,
Spin all your Cobwebs o'er the Eye of Day!
The Muse's wing shall brulh you all away :

Notes
« IN PUNTHING is the mot precious blessing of society.
“ This is the PERFECT CITIZEN, to whom we should
« adjudge the prize of Virtue;"

- VfR. 220. Ye Infeets-The Muse's wing Mall brula yox
all away:] This it did very effectually; and the memory
of them had been now forgotten, had not the Poet's cha-
rity, for a while, protracted their miserable Being. There
is now in his library a complete collection of all the horrid
Libels written and published against him;

The tale reviv'd, the lye fo oft o'erthrown,
Th'imputed trash, and dulness not his own;
The morals blacken'd, when the writings Scape,

The libellid Perfon, and the piqur'd pape. These he had bound up in several volumes, according ta - their various sizes, from folios down to duodecimos ; and

to each of them hath affixed this motto out of the book of Job:

Bebold, my desire is, that mine adversary fould write a tin book. Surely I should take it upon my houlder, and bind it

as a crown to me. Ch. xxxi. 35, 36.

VER. 222. Cobwebs] Weak and night fophiftry against

yirtue and honour. Thin colours over vice, as unable to e. bide the light of Truth, as cobwebe to shade the fun. Pa

wa

All his Grace preaches, all his Lordship sings 224 All that makes Saints of Queens, and Gods of Kings. All, all but Truth, drops dead-born from the Press, Like the last Gazette, or the laft Address.

When black Ambition stains a public Caufe, A Monarch's sword when mad Vain-glory drawsy, Not Waller's. Wreath can hide the Nation's Scar, Nor Boileau turn the Feather to a Star. 2

Not so, when diadem'd with rays divine, Touch'd with the Flame that breaks from Virtue's

Shrine, a

RIATIONS

After x 227. in the MS.

Where's now the Star that lighted Charles to rise ?
- With that which follow'd Julius to the kies.
Angels, that watch'd the Royal Oak so well,
How chanc'd ye nod, when luckless Sorel fell? .
Hence, lying miracles ! reduc'd fo low
As to the regal-touch, and papal-toe ;
Hence haughty Edgar's title to the Main,
Britain's to France, and thine to India, Spain !

.

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

Vor. 228. When black Ambition etc.] The case of Cromwell in the civil war of England; and (x 229.) of Louis XIV. in his conquest of the Low Countries. B.

VBR. 231. Nor Boileau turn the Feather to a Star.] See his Ode on Namur; where (to use his own words) « ill a “ fait un Aftre de la Plume blanche que le Roy porte or. " dinairement à son Chapeau, et qui est en effet une espece “ de Comete, fatale à nos ennemis.." P.

235

Her Priestess Muse forbids the Good to die,
And opes the Temple of Eternity.
There, other Trophies deck the truly brave,
Than such as Anstis cafts into the Grave;
Fař other Stars than * and ** wear,
And may defcend to Mordington from STAIR:
(Such as on HOUGH's unfully'd Mitre shine, 240
Or beam, good DIGBY, from a heart like thine)
Let Envy howl, while Heav'n's whole Chorus fings,
And bark at Honour not confer'd by Kings ;
Let Flatt'ry sickening see the Incense rise,
Sweet to the World, and grateful to the Skies: 245
Truth guards the Poet, fanctifies the line,
And makes immortal, Verse as mean as mine,

Yes, the last Pen for Freedom let me draw,
When Truth stands trembling on the edge of Law; .
:

Notes. Ver. 237. Anftis] The chief Herald at Arms. It is the :.tuftom, at the funeral of great peers, to caft into the grave the broken staves and ensigns of honour. P.

VER. 239. Stair;] John Dalrymple Earl of Stair, Knighé or the Thistle ; ferved in all the wars under the Duke $$ Mårlborough ; and afterwards as Embassador in France.

Ver. 240, 241. Hough and Digby] Dr. John Hough Bishop of Worcefter, and the Lord Digby. The one;an

fertor of the Church of England in opposition to the false y measure: of King James II. The other as firmly attached

to the cause of that King. Both acting out of principle, and equally men of honour and virtue. P.

LEA. 249. on the edge of Law:] From the summit of.

[ocr errors]
« ZurückWeiter »