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Of darkness visible so much be lent,
Beneath her foot-stool, Science groans in chains, As half to show, half veil the deep intent.
And wit dreads exile, penalties, and pains. Ye powers ! whose mysteries restor'd I sing, There foam'd rebellious Logic, gagg'd and bound; To whom Time bears me on his rapid wing, There, stript, fair Rhetoric languish'd on the ground; Suspend a while your force inertly strong,
His blunted arms by Sophistry are borne, Then take at once the poet and the song.
And shameless Billingsgate her robes adorn. Now Aann'd the dog-star's unpropitious ray, Morality, by her false guardians drawn, Smote every brain, and wither'd every bay; 10 Chicane in furs, and Casuistry in lawn, Sick was the Sun, the owl forsook his bower, Gasps, as they straiten at each end the cord, The moon-struck prophet felt the madding hour: And dies, when Dulness gives her Page the word. 30 Then rose the seed of Chaos and of Night, Mad Máthesis alone was uncontin'd, To blot out order, and extinguish light,
Too mad for mere material chains to bind, Of dull and venal a new world to mold,
Now to pure space lifts her extatic stare, And bring Saturnian days of lead and gold. Now running round the circle, finds it square.
She mounts the throne : her head a cloud conIn broad effulgence all below reveal'd, [ceal'd, ('Tis thus aspiring Dulness ever shines)
verified his prophecy (p. 213. of his own Life, Soft on her lap her laureate son reclines. 20 Svo. ch. ix.) where he says, “ the reader will be
as much pleased to find me a dunce in my old
age, as he was to prove me a brisk blockhead in which I am much more certain than that the Iliad my youth.” Wherever there was any room for itself was the work of Solonion, or the Batrachom- briskness, or alacrity of any sort, even in sinkuonnachia of Homer, as Barnes hath affirmed.-ing, he hath had it allowed ; but here, where Bentl.
there is nothing for him to do but to take his Ver. i, &c.] This is an invocation of much natural rest, he must permit his historian to be piety. The poet, willing to approve himself a silent. It is from their actions only that princes genuine son, beginneth by showing (what is ever have their character, and poets from their works : agreeable to Dulness) his high respect for anti- and if in those he be as much asleep as any fool, qnity and a great family, how dead or dark the poet must leave himn and them to sleep to all soever: next declareth his passion for explaining eternity.-- Bentl. mysteries; and lastly his impatience to be re- Ibid. her laureate] “ When I find my name in united to her. ---Scribl.
the satirical works of this poet, I never look upon Ver. 2. dread Chaos, and eternal Night!] In- it as any malice meant to me, but profit to himvoked, as the restoration of their empire is the self. For he considers that my face is more known action of the poem.
than most in the nation, and therefore a lick at Ver. 14. To blot out order, and extinguish the laureate will be a sure bait ad captandum light,] The two great ends of her mission; the vulgus, to catch little readers."'-Life of Culley one in quality of daughter of Chaos, the other as Cibber, ch. ii. daughter of Night. Order here is to be under- Now if it be certain, that the works of our poet stood extensively, both as civil and moral ; the have owed their success to this ingenious expedistinction between high and low in society, and dient, we hence derive an unanswerable argutrue and false in individuals : light as intellectual ment, that this fourth Dunciad, as well as the only, wit, science, arts.
former three, bath hail the author's last hand, Ver. 15. Of dull and venal] The allegory con- and was by him intended for the press: or else to tinued ; dull referring to the extinctiou of light what purpose hath he crowned it, as we see, by or science; venal to the destruction of order, and this finishing stroke, the profitable lick at the the truth of things.
laureate ? Bentl. Ibid. A new world) In allusion to the Epicurean Ver. 21, 22. Beneath her foot-stool, &e.) We opinion, that from the dissolution of the natural are next presented with the pictures of those whom world into Night and Chaos, a new one should the goddess leads in captivity. Science is only arise; this the poet alluding to, in the produc- depressed and confined so as to be rendered usetion of a new moral world, makes it partake less; but wit or genius, as a more dangerous and of its original principles.
active enemy, punished, or driven away: Dula : l'er. 16. Lead and gold.] i. e. dull and venal. ness being often reconciled in some degrve with
Ver. 20. her laureate son reclines.] With learning, but never upon any terms with wit. great judginent it is imagined by the poet, that And accordingly it will be seen that she admiis such a colleague as Dulness haud elected, should something like each science, as casuistry, sosleep on the throne, and have very little share in pbistry, &c. but nothing like wit, opera alone the action of the poem.
Accordingly he hath supplying its place. done little or nothing from the day of his anoint- Ver. 30. gives her Page the word.) There ing ; having past through the sccoud book with- was a judge of this name, always ready to hans out taking part in any thing that was transacted any man that came before him, of which he was about hiin ; and through the third in profound suffered to give a hundred miserable examples, sleep. Nor onght this, well considered, to seam during a long life, even to his dotage. - Though strange in our lays, when so many king-consorts the candid Scriblerus imagined page here to mean bave done the like-Scribl.
no more than a page or mute, and to allude to This verse our excellent laureate took so to the custoin of strangling state criminals in Turkey heart, that he appealed to all ma:ikind. “ith by mutes or pages. A practice more decent than was not as seldom asleep as any tow!” But it is that of our Page, who, before he hanged any one, hoped the poet hath not injured him, but rather | loaded him with reproachful language.Scribl.
But held in tenfold bonds the Muses lie,
Foreign her air, her robe's discordant pride Watch'd both by Enry's and by Flattery's eye, In patch-work futtering, and her head aside ; There to her heart sad Tragedy addrest
By singing peers upheld on either hand, The dagger wont to pierce the tyrant's breast; She trip'd and laugh’d, too pretty much to stand: But sober History restrain'd her rage,
Cast on the prostrate Nine a scornful look, 51 And proinisid vengeance on a barbarous age. 40 Then thus in quaint recitativo spoke. There sunk Thalia, perreless, cold, and dead,
( Cara! Cara ! silence all that train : Had not her sister Satire held her head :
Joy to great Chaos! let division reign : Nor could'st thou, Chesterfield! a tear refuse, Chromatic tortures soon shall drive them hence, Thou wep'st, and with thee wept each gentle Muse. Break all their nerves, and fritter all their sense; When lo! a harlot form soft sliding by,
One trill shall harinonize joy, grief, and rage, With mincing step, small voice, and languid eye: Wake the dull Church, and lull the raïting Stage;
To the same notes thy sons shall hum, or snore,
And all thy yawning daughters cry, cncore. 60 Ver. 39. But sober History] History attends on Another Phoebus, thy own Phæbus, reigns, tragedy, satire on comedy, as their substitutes Joys in my jicgs, and dances in my chains. in the discharge of their distinct functions; the But soon, ah soon, rebellion will commence, one in high life, recording the crimes and punish- If Music meanly borrows aid from Sense: ments of the great ; the other in low, exposing Strong in new arms, lo! Giant Handel stands, the vices or follies of the common people. But it Like bold Briareus, with a hundred hands; may be asked, How came history and satire to To stir, to rouze, to shake the soul he comes, be admitted with impunity to minister comfort to And Jore's own thunders follow Mars's druins. the Muses, even in the presence of the goddess, | Arrest him, empress, or you sleep no more: and in the midst of all her triumphs ? “ A ques- | She heard, and drove him to th' Hibernian shore. 70 tion," says Scriblerus, “which we thus resolve: And now had Fame's posterior trumpet blown, History was brought up in her infancy by Dulness And all the nations suminon'd to the throne. herself; but being afterwards espouser into a The young, the old, who feel her inward sway, noble house, she forgot (as is usual) the humi- One instinct seizes, and transports away. lity of her birth, and the cares of her early friends. None need a guide, by sury attraction led, This occasioned a long estrangement between her and strong impulsive gravity of head: and Dulness. At length, in process of time, they None want a place, for all their centre found, met together in a monk's cell, were reconciled, Hung to the goddess, and coher'd around. and became better friends than erer. After this / Not closer orb, in orb, conglob’d are seen they had a second quarrel, but it held not lony, The buzzing bees about their dusky queen. 80 and are now again on reasonable terms, and so The gathering number, as it moves along, are likely to continne." This accounts for the co'l- Involves a rast involuntary throng, nivance shown to history on this occasion. But Who, gently drawn, and strugzling less and less, the boldness of satire springs from a very different | Roll in her vortex, and her power confess. cause; for the reader ought to know, that she Not those alone who passive own her laws, alone of all the sisters is unconquerable never to
But who, weak rebels, more advance her cause be silenced, when truly inspired and animated (as Whate'er of dunce in college or in town should seemn) from above, for this very purpose, to
Sneers at another, in toupee or gown; oppose the kingdoin of Dulness to her last breath.
Ver. 43. Nor could'st thou, &c.) This noble person in the year 1737, when the act aforesaid Ver. 54. Let division reign :] Alluding to the was brought into the house of lords, opposed it in false taste of playing tricks in music with numberan excellent speech (says Mr. Cibber)
less divisions, to the neglect of that harmony lively spirit, and uncommon cloquence.” This which contorns to the sense, and applies to the speech had the honour to be answered by the said passions. Mr. Handel had introduced a great Mr. Cibber, with a lively spirit also, and in a onumber of hands, and more variety of instrumei ts manner very uncoinmon, in the cighth chapter of into the orchestra, and employed even drums and of his Life and Manners. And here, gentle reader, cannon tu make a fuller chorus: which proved so would I gladly insert the other specch, whereby much too manly for the fine gentlemen of his thou mightest julge between them; but I must age, that he wils obliged to remove his music defer it on account of soine differences not yet into Ireland. After wbich they were reduced, for adjusted between the noble author, and myself, want of composers, to practise the patch-work concerning the true reading of certain passages.
Vir. 76. to 101. It ought to be observed that fer. 45. When lo! a harlot form] The attitude here are three classes in this assembly, 'The given to this phantom represents the nature and trst, of men absolutely and avowedly dill, who genius of the Italian opera ; its atiected ajrs, its naturally adhere to the goddess, and are imaged etfeminate sounds, and the practice of patebing in the simile of the bers about their queen The up these operas with favourite songs, incoherently second involuntarily drawn to her, though not put together. Those things were supported by caring to own her iniluence; from ver. 81. to the subscriptions of the nobility. This circum- 90. The third of such as, though not members stance, that opera should prepare for the opening of her state, yet arivance her service by flattering of the grand sessions, was prophesied of in Book Dulness, cultivating mistaken talents, patronizing m. ver. 304.
vile scribblers, discouraging living merit, or setting Already Opera prepares the way,
up for wits, and men of taste in arts they under... The sure forerunner of ber gentle sway.
stand uot; from vas. 91. w 101.
"" with a
Whate'er of mungril no one class admits,
Let standard-authors, thus, like trophies borne, A wit with dunces, and a dunce with wits. 90 Appear more glorious, as more hack'd and wrn.
Nor absent they, no meinbers of her state, And you, my critics ! in the chequer'd shade, Who pay her homage in her sons, the great ; Admire new light through holes yourselves have Who, false to Phæbus, bow the knee to Baal;
made. Or impious, preach his word without a call,
“ Leave not a foot of verse, a foot of stone, Patrons, who sneak from living worth to dead, A
page, a grave, that they can call their own; With-hold the pension, and set up the head; But spread, my sons, your glory thin or thick, Or vest dull Flattery in the sacred gown;
On passive paper, or on solid brick. Or give froin fool to fool the laurel crown.
So by each bard, an alderman shall sit, And (last and worse) with all the cant of wit, A heavy lord shall hang at every wit, Without the soul, the Muses' hypocrite. 100 And while on Fame's triumphal car they ride, There march'd the bard and blockhead side by Some slave of mine be pinion'd to their side.” side,
Now crowds on crowds around the goddess press, Who rhym'd for hire, and patroniz'd for pride. Each eager to present the first address. Narcissus, prais'il with all a parson's power, Dunce scorning dunce beholds the next advance, Look'd a white lily sunk beneath a shower. But fop shows fup superior complaisance. There mor’d Montalto with superior air; His stretch'd-out arm display'd a volume fair; Courtiers and patriots in two ranks divide,
Ver. 128. A page, a grave,) For what less than Through both he pass'd, and bow'd from side to But as in graceful act, with awful eye, (side;
a grave can be granted to a dead author? or what Compos'd he stood, bolil Benson thrust him by: 110
less than a page can be allowed a living one! On two unequal crutches propt he came,
Ver. 128. A page,] Pagina, not pedissequus.
A page of a book, not a servant, follower, or Milton's on this, on that one Johnston's name. The decent knight retir'd with sober rage,
attendant: no poet having had a page since the Withdrew his hand, and clos'd the pompous page.
death of Mr. Thomas Durfey.-Scribl.
Ver. 131. So by each bard an alderman, &c.] But (happy for him as the times went then)
Vide the Tombs of the Poets, editio WestmonasAppear'd Apollo's mayor and aldermen,
teriensis, On whom three hundred gold-capt youths await,
Ibid.--an alderman shall sit,) Alluding to the To lug the ponderous volume oil in state.
monument erected for Butler by alderman BarWhen Dulness smiling :--" Thus revive the
ber. But murder first, and mince them all to bits; 120 As erst Medea (cruel, so to save!)
Ver. 132. A heavy lord shall hang at every wit.] A new edition of old fson gave;
How unnatural an inage, and how ill-supported ! saith Aristarchus. Had it been,
A heavy wit shall hang at every lord, Ver. 114.
something inight have been said, in an age so disWhat! no respect, he cried, for Shakespeare's tinguished for well-judging patrons. For lord, page?
then, read load ; that is, of debts here, and of
commentaries hereafter. To this purpose, conREMARKS. Ver. 108-bow'd from side to side :] As being of spicuous is the case of the poor author of Hudsno one party
bras, whose body, long since weighed duwn to the Ver. 110. bold Benson) This man endeavoured rave, by a load of debts, has lately had a more to raise hinself to fame bv erecting monuments,
unmerciful load of commentaries laid upon his striking coins, siting up heads, and procuring spirit; wherein the editor has achieved more translatioos of Miltow; and afterwards by as great wast of, which was only, that he had pixkel gold
than Virgil himself, when he turned critic, could a passion for Arthur Johnson,
a Süütch physiciau's Version of the Parlms, of which he printed out of another man's dung; whereas the editor Man v tine ed ions. See more of hin, Bouk ini.
has pick d it out of his ow).-Scribl. ver. 325.
Aristarchus thinks the common reading right: Ver 113. The decent knight] An eminent
and that the author himself had been struggling, person who was alsont to publish a very pomporis
and bitji:st shaken of his load when he wroie the ectition of
following epigram: a great author at peose.
My lord complains, that Pope, stark mail with Ver. 115. &c.) These four lines were printed in gardens, a separate leaf by Mr. Pope in the last edition, Hlas lopt tlıree trees the value of three farthings: which he bimself gave, of the Dunciati, with But he's my neighbour, cries the peer polite, directions to the printer, to put this leaf into its And if he'll visit me, I'll wave my right. place as soon as sir T. II.'s Shakespeare should be What' on compulsion ? and against my will, published.
A loul's acquaintance? Let him file his bill. Ver. 119. Thus revive, &c.) The goilies ap- Ver. 157, 158. plads the practice of tacking the obscure nanca Duuce scorning dunce beholds the next advance, of persons not eminent in my branch of learning, But fup shows top superior complaisance.) to those of the inost distinguished writers: either This is not to be ascribed so much to the different bv priutins eritims of their works with imper manners of a court and college', as to the difterint tinent alterations of their text, as in the former etii cts which a pretence to learuing, and a pretence instances; or by setting up mounnants disgraced to wit, have on blockhends. For as judgment with their uwa vile names and inscriptions, as in consists in finding ont the differences in things, the latter.
and wit in linding out their likcuisses, so the dunce
When lo! a spectre rose, whose index-hand Senates and courts with Greek and Latin rule,
May you, my Cam, and Isis, preach it long, And holds his breeches close with both his hands. “ The right divine of kings to govern wrong. Then thus, since man from beast by words is Prompt at the call, around the goddess roll known,
Broad hats, and hoods, and caps, a sable shoal: 190 Words are man's province, words we teach alone. Thick and more thick the black blockade extends, When Reason doubtful, like the Samian letter, 151 A hundred head of Aristotle's friends. Points him two ways, the narrower is the better. Nor wert thou, Isis! wanting to the day, Plac'd at the door of Learning, youth to guide, [Though Christ-church long kept prudishly away.) We never suffer it to stand too wide.
Each staunch polemic, stubborn as a rock, To ask, to guess, to know, as they commence,
Each fierce logician, still expelling Locke, (thick As fancy opens the quick springs of sense,
Came whip and spar, and dash'd through thin and We ply the memory, we load the brain,
On German Crouzaz, and Dutch Burgersdyck. Bind rebel Wit, and double chain on chain, Confine the thought, to exercise the breath; And keep them in the pale of words till death. 160 This great prince was the first who assumed the Whate'er the talents, or bowe'er design's, title of Sacred Majesty, which his loyal clergy We hang one jingling padlock on the mind: transferred from God to hiin. “ The principles A poet the first day, he dips his quill;
of passive obedience and on resistance (says the And what the last ? a very poet still.
author of the Dissertation on Parties, Letter 8), Pity! the charm works only in our wall,
which before his time had skulked perhaps in some Lost, lost tou soon in yonder house or hall. old homily, were talked, written, and preached There truant Windham every Muse gave o'er, into vogne in that inglorious reign.” There Talbot sunk, and was a wit no more !
Ver. 194. Though Christ-church, &c.] This How sweet an Ovid, Murray was onr boast ! line is doubtless spurious, and foisted in by the How many Martials were in Pulteney lost ! 170 | impertinence of the editor; and a corilingly we Else sure some bard, to our eternal praise, have put it in between hooks. For I affirm this In twice ten thousand rhyming nights and days, college came as early as any other, by its proper Had reach'd the work, the all that inortal can; deputies ; por did any college pay homage to DulAnd South beheld that master-piece of man. ness in its whole body.- Bentl.
“Oh” (cry'd the goddess)" for some pedant reign! Ver. 196. still expelling Locke,) In the year Some gentle James, to bless the land again; 1703 there was a ineeting of the heads of the To stick the doctor's chair into the throne,
University of Oxford to censure Mr. Locke's Essay Give law to words, or war with words alone, on Human Understanding, and to forbid the reada
ing of it. See his Letters in the last Edit.
Ver. 198. On German Crouzaz, and Dutch is all discord and dissension, and constantly busied Burgersdyck ] There seems to be an improbability in reproving, examining, confuting, &c. while that the doctors and heads of houses should rivie the fop flourishes in peace, with songs and hymns on horseback, who of late days, being gouty or of praise, addresses, characters, epithalamiums, unwielly, have kept their coaches. But thise are &c.
horses of great strength, and fit to carry any Ver. 110. the dreadful wand ;] A cane usually weight, as their Gerinan and Dutch extractwn borne by schoolinasters, which drives the poor mar manifest ; and very famous we may conclude, souls about like the wand of Mercury: -Seribl. being honour'd with names, as were the horses
Ver. 151. like the Samian letter,j The letter Y Pegasus and Bucephalus.-Scribl. used by Pythagoras as an emhlem of the different Though I have the greatest deference to the peneroasts of virtue and vice.
tration of this eminent scholiast, and most own Et tibi quæ Samios diduxit litera ramos.-Pers.
that nothing can be more natural than his inter
pretation, or juster than that rule of criticism, Ver. 174. that master-piece of man.] Viz. an
which directs is to keep to the literal sense, when epigram. The famous Dr. South declared a per:
no apparent absurdity acrompanies it (and sure fact epigram to be as difficult a performance as an
there is no absurdity in supposing a logician on epic poein.
And the critics say, An epic horsback). you still I must needs think the backpoena is the greatest work htunan nature is capable nevs here celebrated were not real horses, nor even of."
Centanrs, which, for the sake of the learned Ver. 176. Some gentle James, &c.] Wilson tells Chiron. I shoulí rather be inclined to think, if I us that this king, James the First, took upon hiin.
were forced to find them four lers, but downright self to teach tlie Latin tongue to Car, earl of pinin men, though logicians : and only thus mee Sunerset ; and that Gondomar, the Spanish ambas- tao:orphose? by a rule of rhetorie, of which canlisador would speak false Latin to hiin, ou par
nal Perron gives us an example, where he calls puse to give him the pleasure of correcting Clavius, “ Un esprit pesant, louril, sans suba it, whereby he wrought himself into his good tilité, ni gentillesse', 'un gros cheval d'Allegraces.
As many quit the streams that murmuring fall While tow'ring o'er your alphabet like Saul,
Disputes of Me or Te, or Aut or At,
Or chew'd by blind old scholiasts o'er and o'er,
single letters. But Aristarchus, who had found Here I profess to go opposite to the whole stream out a double one, was therefore worthy of double of commentators. I think the poet only aimed, honour.--Seribl. thongh awkwardly, at an elegant Græcism in Ver. 217, 218. While towering o'er your this representation ; for in that language the word alphabet, like Saul, -Stands our digamma,] AlluOTTOS [horse] was often prefixed to others, to
des to the boasted restoration of the Folic digamma, denote greatness of strength; as it Toderator in his long projected edition of Homer. He calls ίπτογλωσσον ιππομάραθρον and particularly 1ΠΠο. .
it something more than letter, from the enormous INNMON, a great connoisseur, which comes
figure it would make among the other letters, nearest to the case in hand.--Scip. Maft.
being one gamma set upon the shoulders of Ver. 199. the streains) The river Cam, running another. by the walls of these colleges, which are particu
Ver. 220. of Me or Te,) It was a serious dislarly famous for their skill in disputation.
pute, about which the learned were much divided, Ver. 202. sleeps in port.] viz.
“ Now retired and some treatisi's written : had it been about into harbour, after the tempests that had long meum and tuum it could not be more contested, agitated his society.” So Scriblerus. But the
than whether at the end of the first Ode of Horace, learned Scipio Maffei understands it of a certain to read, Me doctarum hederæ præmnia frontium, wine called port, from Oporto, a city of Portugal, or, Te doctarum hederæ.-By this the learned of which this professor invited him to drink abun- scholiast would seem to insinuate that the dispute dantly. Scip. Maff. De Coinpotation. Academicis. was not about meum and tuum, which is a mis(And to the opinion of Matlei incliucth the saga
take: for, as a venerable sage observeth, words cious annotator on Dr. King's Advice to
are the counters of wiseinen, but the money of Horace.)
fools; so that we see their property was indeed Ver. 210. Aristarchus.] A famous commentator concerned.--Scribl. and corrector of Homer, whose name has been
Ver. 229. Or give up Cicero to C or K.) frequently used to signity a complete critic. The Grammatical disputes about the manner of procompliment paid by our author to this eminent nouncing Cicero's name in Greek. It is a dispnto professor, in applying to him so great à name,
whether in Latin the name of Hermagoras should was the reason that he hath onnitted to coinment
end in as or a. Quintilian quotes Cicero as writon this part which conta'ns his own praise's. We ing it Hermagora, which Bently rejects, and says shall therefore supply that loss to
our best Quintilian must be mistaken, Cicero could not ability.--Scribl.
write it so, and that in this case he would not Ver. 214. Crities like mer] Alluling to two believe Cicero himself. These are his very words: famous editions of Horace and Milton; whose | Ego vero Ciceronem ita scripsisse ne Ciceroni richest veins of poetry he had prodigally reduced quidem affirmanti crediderim. ---Epist. ad Milli to the poorest and inost beggarly prose. - Verily in fin. Frag. Menand. et Phil. the learned scholiast is grievously mistaken. * Ver. 223, 224. Freind. Alsop) Dr. Robert Aristarchus is not boasting here of the wonders Freind, master of Westminster-school, and canon of his art in annihilating the sublime; but of the of Christ-church, Dr. Anthony Alsop, happy usefulness of it, in reducing the turgid to its proper imitator of the Horatian style. class ; the words “ make it prose again,” plainly
Ver. 226. Manilius and Solinus] Some critics showing that prose it was, though ashamed of having had it in their choice to cominent either on its original, and therefore to prose it should re
Virgil or Manilius, Pliny or Solinus, have chosen turn. Indeed, much it is to be lamented that the worse author, the more freely to display their Dulness doth not confine her crities to this useful critical capacity. task; and commission them to dismount what Ver. 228, &c. Suidas, Gellius, Stobxus] The Aristophanes calls Pakal' imobápova, all prose on
first a dictionary-writer, a collector of inpertinent horse-back.-Scribl.
facts and barbarous words; the second a minute Ver. 216. Author of something yet more great critic; the third an author, who gave his commonthan letter ;) Alluding to those grammarians, piace book to the public, where we happen to find such as Palamedes and Simonides, who invented much mince-meat of old books,