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Thro' his young woods how pleas'd Sabinus stray'd, Or sat delighted in the thickening shade, With annual joy the reddening shoots to greet, Or see the stretching branches long to meet ! His son's fine taste an opener vista loves, Foe to the Dryads of his father's groves ; One boundless green or flourish'd carpet views, With all the mournful family of yews; The thriving plants ignoble broomsticks made, Now sweep those alleys they were born to shade.
At Timon's villa let us pass a day, Where all cry out, “ What sums are thrown away." So proud, so grand; of that stupendous air, Soft and agreeable come never there. Greatness with Timon dwells in such a draught As brings all Brobdignag before your thought. To compass this his building is a town, His pond an ocean, bis parterre a dowo'; Who but must laugh the master when he sees, A puny insect shivering at a breeze ! . Lo, what huge heaps of littleness around! The whole a labour'd quarry above ground. Two Cupids squirt before ; a lake behind Improves the keenness of the porthern wind. His gardens next your admiration call; On every side you look, behold the wall! No pleasing intricacies intervene, No artful wildness to perplex the scene; Grove nods at grove, each alley has a brother, And half the platform just reflects the other. The suffering eye inverted Nature sees, Trees cut to statues, statues thick as trees; With here a fountain never to be play'd, And there a summer-house that knows no shade; Here Amphitrite sails through myrtle bowers, There gladiators fight, or die in flowers ; Unwater'd, see the drooping sea-horse mourn, And swallows toost in Nilus' dusty urn.
My lord advances with majestic mieu, Smit with the mighty pleasure to be seen :
But soft-by regular approach-not yet
His study! with what authors is it stor'd ?
These Aldus printed, those Du Suil has bound !
And now the chapel's silver bell you hear, That summons you to all the pride of prayer : Light quirks of music, broken and unev’n, Make the soul dance upon a jig to heav'n. On painted ceilings you devoutly stare, Where sprawl the saints of Verrio or Laguerre, Or gilded clouds in fair expansion lie, And bring all Paradise before your eye. To rest, the cushion and soft Dean invite, Who never meutions hell to ears polite.
But hark! the chiming clocks to dinner call; A hundred footsteps scrape the marble hall : The rich beaufet well-colour'd serpents grace, And gaping Tritons spew to wash your face. Is this a dinner? this a genial room? No, 'tis a temple, and a hecatomb; A solemn sacrifice, perform'd in state, You drink by measure, and to minutes eat. So quick retires each flying course, you'd swear Sancho's dread doctor and his wand were there. Between each act the trembling salvers ring, From soup to sweet wine, and God bless the King. In plenty starving, tantalizid in state, And complaisantly help'd to all I hate; Treated, caress'd, and tir'd, I take my leave, Sick of his civil pride from morn to ere ;
I curse such lavish cost and little skill,
Yet hence the poor are cloth’d, the hungry fed;
Another age shall see the golden ear Imbrown the slope, and nod on the parterre; Deep harvest bury all his pride has plann'd, And laughing Ceres reassume the land.
Who then shall grace, or who improve the soil? Who plants like Bathurst, or who builds like Boyle? 'Tis use alone that sanctifies expence, And splendour borrows all her rays from sense,
His father's acres who enjoys in peace, Or makes his neighbours glad if he increase ; Whosa cheerful tenants bless their yearly toil, Yet to their lord owe more than to the soil ; Whose ample lawns are not asham'd to feed The milky heifer and deserving steed : Whose rising forests not for pride or show, But future buildings, future navies, grow; Let his plantations stretch from down to down, First shade a country, and then raise a town.
You, too, proceed ! make falling arts your care, Erect new wonders, and the old repair; Jones and Palladio to themselves restore, And be whate'er Vitruvius was before : Till kings call forth the ideas of your mind, (Proud to accomplish what such hands design'd) Bid harbours open, public ways extend, Bid temples worthier of the God ascend; Bid the broad arch the dangerous flood contain, The mole projected break the roaring main; Back to his bounds their subject sea command, And roll obedient rivers through the land: These honours Peace to happy Britain brings; These are imperial works, and worthy kings.
ARGUMENT. Edipus king of Thebes having, by mistake, slain his father
Laius, and married bis mother Jocasta, put out his own eyes, and resigned his realm to his sons Eteocles and Polynices. Being neglected by them, he makes his prayer to the fury Tisiphone to sow debate betwixt the brothers. They agree at last to reign singly, each a year by turns, and the first lot is obtained by Eteocles. Jupiter, in a council of the gods, declares his resolution of punishing the Thebans, and Argives also, by means of a marriage betwixt Polynices and one of the daughters of Adrastas king of Argos. Juno opposes, but to no effect; and Mercury is sent on a message to the shades, to the ghost of Laius, who is to appear to Eteocles, and provoke him to break the agreement. Poly nices, in the mean time, departs from Thebes by night, is overtaken by a storm, and arrives at Argos; where he meets with Tydens, who had Aed from Calydon, having killed his brother. . Adras tus entertains them, baving received an oracle from Apollo that his daughters should be married to a boar and a lion, which he understands to be meant of these strangers, by whom the hides of those beasts were worn, and who arrived at the time when he kept an annual feast in honour of that god. The rise of this polemnity. He relates to his guests the loves of Phoebus and Psamathe, and the story of Choroebus : he inquires, and is made acquainted with their descent and quality. The sacrifice is renewed, and the book concludes with a hymn to Apollo. VRA
The' alternate reign destroy'd by impious arms Demand our song; a sacred fury firos My ravish'd breast, and all the Muse inspires.
goddess ! say, shall I deduce my rhymes From the dire pation in its early times,
FRATERNAL, rage the guilty, Thebes alarms,
Europa's rape, Agenor's stero decree,
But wave whate'er to Cadmus may belong,