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Ye gods! shall Gibber's son, without rebuke, 116
Swear like a lord, or Itich outwhore a duke?
A favourite's porter with his master vie,
Be brib'd as often, and as often lie?
Shall Ward draw contracts with a statesman's skill?
Or Japhet pocket, like his grace, a will? 120
Is it for Bond or Peter (paltry things)
To pay their debts, or keep their faith, like kings?
If Blount dispatch'd himself, he play'd the man,
And so may'st thou, illustrious Passeran!
But shall a printer, weary of his life, 125
Learn from their hooks to hang himself and wife?
This, this, my friend, I cannot, must not, bear;
Vice thus abus'd demands a nation's care;
This calls the church to deprecate our sin,
And hurls the thunder of the laws on gin: I3O
Let modest Foster, if he will, excel
Do good by stealth, and blush to find ii fame.
Vice is undone if she forgets her birth,
Lo! at. the wheels of her triumphal car
Our youth, all liveried o'er with foreign gold, 155
Before her dance; behind her crawl the old!
In soldier, churchman, patriot, man in power,
Are what ten thousand envy and adore:
Yet may this verse (if such a verse remain)
P. Not yet, my friend ! to morrow, 'faith, it may; 5
Vice with such giant strides comes on amain,
F. Yet none but you by name the guilty lash; 10
P. How, sir! not damn the sharper, but the dicer Come on then, satire! general, unconrin'd, Spread thy broad wing, and souse on all the kind. 15 Ye statesmen, priests, of one religion all! Ye tradesmen, vile, in army, court, or hall! Ye reverend atheists.— F. Scandal! name them, who?
P. Why that's the thing you bid me not to do. • Solicitor of the Treasury.
Who starv'd a sister, who forswore a debt, 20
I never nam'd; the town's enquiring yet.
P. See now I keep the secret, and not you!
P. The brib'd elector—P. There you stoop too low.
P. I fain would please you if I knew with what; 2ti
As beasts of nature may we hunt the squires?
F. A dean, sir? no, his fortune is not made;
P. If not the tradesman who setup to-day, Much less the'prentice who to-morrow may. Down, down, proud satire! though a realm be spoil'd, Arraign no mightier thief than wretched Wild; Or, if a court or country's made a job, 40
Go, drench a pickpocket, and join the mob.
But, sir, I beg you, (for the love of vice !) The matter's weighty, pray consider twice: Have you less pity for the needy cheat, The poor and friendless villain, than the great? 45 Alas! the small discredit of a bribe Scarce hurts the lawyer, but Undoes the scribe. Then better sure it charity becomes To tax directors, who (thank God!) have plums; Still better ministers, or if the thing 50
May pinch ev'n there—why lay it on a king.
P. Stop! sto^!
P. Must satire then nor rise nor fall? Speak out, and bid me blame no rogues at all.
P. Yes, strike that Wild, I'lljustify the blow.
P. Strike! why the man was hang'd ten years ago: "Who now that obsolete example fears? 56
Ev'u Peter trembles only for his ears?
F. What, always Peter? Peter thinks you mad: You make men desperate, if they once are bad, Else might he take to virtue some years hence— 60 P. As S**k, if he lives, will love the prince. F. Strange spleen to S**k!—P. Do I wrong the man? God knows I praise a courtier where I can. When I confess there is who feels for fame, And melts to goodness, need I Scarborough name? Pleas'd let me own, in Esher's peaceful grove, 66 (Where Kent and Nature vie for Pelham's love) The scene, the master, opening to my view, I sit and dream I see my Craggs anew!
Ev'n in a bishop I can spy desert; 70
Seeker is decent, Rundel has a heart:
But does the court a worthy man remove?
I shun his zenith, court his mild decline;
Argyle, the state's whole thunder born to wield,
Names which I long lmve lov'd, nor lov'd in vain,
Yet think not friendship only prompts my lays; I follow Virtue; where she shines I praise, 9S
Point she to priest or elder, Whig or Tory, 0» round a Quaker's beaver cast a glor^.
I never (to my sorrow i declare)
To find an honest man I beat about,
F. Then why so few commended ?—P. Not so fierce; Find you the virtue, and I'll find the verse. 105
But random praise—the task can ne'er be done;
What Richelieu wanted Louis scarce could gain,
0 let my country's friends illumine mine!
What are you thinking? F. Faith, the thought's no
1 think your friends are out, and would be in. [sin; P. If merely to come in, sir, they go out,
The way they take is strangely round about. 125
F. They too may be corrupted, you'll allow?
Is that too little? come then, I'll comply—
Spirit of Ainall! aid me while I lie:
Cobham's a coward, Polwarth is a slave, 130
And Lyttlcton a dark designing knave;
St. John has ever been a wealthy fool—
But let mo add, Sir Robert's mighty dull,
Has never made a friend in private life,
And was, besides, a tyrant to his wife. 135
But pray, when others praise him, do I blame?
Call Verrcs, Wolsey, any odious name?