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admired. u; to two Lord Chancellors, for law, from whom, when confederate against him at the bar, he carried away the prize of Eloquence W; and, to fay all in a word, to the right reverend the Lord Bishop of London himself, in the art of writing pastoral letters x.
Nor did his actions fall short of the sublimity of his Conceit. In his early youth he met the Revolution y face to face in Nottingham ; at a time when his betters contented themselves with following her. It was here he got acquainted with Old Battle-array, of whom he hath made so honourable mention in one of his immortal Odes. But he thone in Courts as well as in Camps : He was called up when the nation fell in labour of this Revolution 2 ; and was a gossip at her christening, with the Bishop and the Ladies a.
As to his Birth, it is true he pretendeth no relation either to Heathen God or Goddess; but, what is as good, he was descended from a Maker of both b. And that he did not pass himself on the world for a Hero, as well by birth as education, was his own fault: For his lineage he bringeth into his life as an Anecdote, and is sensible he had it in his power to be thought nobody's fon at alle ; And what is that but coming into the world a Heri ?
But be it (the punetilious Laws of Epic Poesy so requiring) that a Hero of more than mortal birth mult
u Life, p. 425 2 P. 57.
a P. 58, 59
w P. 436, 437. * P. 52. y P. 47• D A Statuary.
needs be had : Even for this we have a remedy. We can easily derive our Hero's Pedigree from a Goddess of no small power and authority amongst men ; and legitimate and install him after the right classical and authentic fashion : For, like as the ancient Sages found a Son of Mars in a mighty Warrior; a Son of Neptune in skilful Seaman; a Son of Phoebus in a harmonious Poet; so have we here, if need be, a Son of FORTUNE in an artful Gamester. And who fitter than the Offspring of Chance, to assist in restoring the Empire of Night and Chaos ?
There is in truth another objection of greater weight, namely, “ That this Hero still existeth, and hath not “ yet finished his earthly courfe. For if Solon said well,
Ante obitum nemo supremaque funera debet! “ if no man can be called happy till his death, sure“ ly much less can any one, till then, be pronoun“ ced a Hero : this species of men being far more sub"ject than others to the caprices of Fortune and Hu“ mour.” But to this also we have an answer, that will (we hope) be deemed decisive. It cometh from himself; who, to cut this matter short, hath solemnly protested that he will never change or amend.
With regard to his Vanity, he declareth that nothing shall ever part them. “ Nature (faith he) hath amply
supplied me in Vanity; a pleasure which neither the “ pertness of Wit, nor the gravity of Wisdom, will
“ ever persuade me to part with d.” Our poet had charitably endeavoured to administer a cure to it: But he telleth us plainly, “My superiors perhaps may be “ mended by him ; but for my part I own myself in“ corrigible. I look upon my Follies as the best part “ of my Fortune e." And with good reason: We see to what they have brought him !
Secondly, as to Buffoonry, “ Is it (faith he) a time “ of day for me to leave off these fooleries, and set up “ a new character ? I can no more put off my Follies “ than my Skin; I have often tried, but they stick “ too close to me: nor am I sure my friends are dis“ pleased with them, for in this light I afford them “ frequent matter of mirth, &c. &c. f” Having then so publickly declared himself incorrigible, he is become dead in law (I mean the law Epopoian), and devolveth upon the Poet as his property; who may take him, and deal with him as if he had been dead as long as an old Egyptian hero; that is to say, embowel and embalm him for pofterity.
Nothing therefore (we conceive) remaineth to hinder his own prophecy of himself from taking immediate effect. A rare felicity! and what few Prophets have had the satisfaction to see, alive! Nor can we conclude better than with that extraordinary one of his, which is conceived in these Oraculous words, MY DULNESS WILL FIND SOMEBODY TO DO IT RIGHT 6.
« Tandem Phoebus adeft, morsusque inferre parantem “ Congelat, et patulos, ut erant, INDURAT hiatush."
Ovid, of the serpent biting at Orpheus's head.
By virtue of the authority in Us velted by the Act for subjecting Poets to the Power of a Licenser, we have revited this Piece ; where finding the style and appellation of King to have been given to a certain Pretender, Pseudo-Poet, or Phantom, of the name of TIBBALD; and apprehending the same inay he deeined in some fort a Reflection on Majesty, or at least an J11: Cult on that Legal Authority which has beltowed on another Person the Crown of Poely: We have ordered the said Pretender, Pseudo-Poet, or Phantom, utterly to vanish and evaporate out of this work : and do declare the Caid Throne of Poely from henceforth to be abdicated and vacant, unless duly and lawfully supplied by the LAUREATE himself. and it is hereby en: acted, that no other person do presume to fill the same.