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Booth in his cloudy tabernacle fhrin'd,
On grinning dragons thou shalt mount the wind.
Here shouts all Drury, there all Lincoln's inn;
And are these wonders, Son, to thee unknown?
fwer; only the queftion ftill feems to be, 1. How the doing a thing against one's confcience is an excufe for it? and, zdly. It will be hard to prove how he got the leave of Truth and Senfe to quit their fervice, unless he can produce a Certificate that he ever was in it.
VER. 266, 267. Booth and Cibber were joint managers of the Theatre in Drury-lane.
VER. 268 On grinning dragons thou shalt mount the wind.] In his Letter to Mr. P. Mr. C. folemnly declares this not to be literally true. We hope therefore the reader will understand it allegorically only.
VER, 282. Annual trophies on the Lord-mayor's day: and monthly wars in the Artillery-ground.
VER. 283. Tho' long my party] Settle, like moft Party-writers, was very uncertain in his political principles. He was employed
Yet lo! in me what authors have to brag on!
And ev'ry year be duller than the laft,
And lick up ev'ry blockhead in the way.
Thy Dragons, Magiftrates, and Peers fhall tafte,
VER. 295. Safe in its heaviness, &c.] In the former Ed. Too fafe in inborn heaviness to stray;.
to hold the pen in the Character of a popish fucceffor, but afterwards printed his Narrative on the other fide. He had ma naged the ceremony of a famous Pope-burning on Nov. 17. 1680, then became a trooper in King James's army, at Hounflow-heath. After the Revolution he kept a booth at Bartholomew-fair, where, in the droll called St. George for England, he acted in his old age in a Dragon of green leather of his own invention; he was at last taken into the Charter-house, and there died, aged fixty years.
VER. 297. Thee hall the Patriot, thee the Courtier tafte,] It ftood in the first edition with blanks, ** and **. Concanen
was fure they must needs mean no body but King
"GEORGE and Queen CAROLINE; and faid he "would infift it was fo, till the Poet cleared himself by
'Till rais'd from booths, to Theatre, to Court,
filling up the blanks otherwife, agreeably to the context, "and confiftent with his allegiance" Pief. to a Collection of verfes, eflays, letters, &c. against Mr. P. printed for A. Moor, p. 6.
Ver. 305 Polypheme] He tranflated the Italian Opera of Polifemo; but unfortunately loft the whole jeft of the ftory. The Cyclops afks Ulyffes his name, who tell him his name is Noman: After his eye is put out, he roars and calls the Brother Cyclops to his aid: They inquire who has hurt him? he antwers Noman; whereupon they all go away again. Our ingenious Tranflator made Ulyffes anfwer, I take no name, whereby all that followed became unintelligible. Hence it appears that Mr. Cibber (who values himself on fubfcribing to the English Tranflation of Homer's Iliad) had not that merit with respect to the Odyffey, or he might have been better inftructed in the Greek Pun nology.
Ver. 308, 309. Fauftus, Pluto, &c.] Names of miferable Farces, which it was the custom to act at the end of the best Tragedies, to spoil the digestion of the audience.
Ver. 312. enfure it but from Fire] In Tibbald's farce of Proferpine, a corn field was fet on fire: whereupon the other
Another Æfchylus appears! prepare
See, see, our own true Phoebus wears the bays!
VER. 323. See, fee. our own, &c.] In the former Ed.
play-houfe had a barn burnt down for the recreation of the Spectators. They also rival'd each other in fhowing the burnings of hell-fire, in Dr. Fauftus.
Ver. 313. Another Afchylus appears! It is reported of Afchylus, that when his tragedy of the Furies was acted, the audience were fo terrified, that the children fell into fits, and the big-bellied women mifcarried.
Ver. 315. like Semele's,] See Ovid. Met. iii.
Ver. 319, 320. This, this is he, foretold by ancient rhymes,
Hic vir, hic eft tibi quem promitti fepius audis,
Virg. Æn. vi. mentioned book I.
On Poets Tombs fee Benfon's titles writ!
I fee th' unfinish'd Dormitory wall,
I fee the Savoy totter to her fall;
And Pope's, tranflating three whole years with Broome.
Ver. 325. On Poets Tombs fee Benfon's titles writ!] W-m Benfon (Surveyor of the Buildings to his Majefty K. George I.) gave in a report to the Lords, that their house and the Paintedchamber adjoining were in immediate danger of falling. Whereupon the Lords met in a committee to appoint fome other place to fit in, while the house should be taken down. But it being proposed to cause some other builders first to infpect it, they found it in a very good condition. The Lords. upon this, were going upon an addrefs to the King againft Benfon, for such a misrepresentation; but the Earl of Sunderland, then fecretary, gave them an affurance that his Majesty would remove him, which was done accordingly. In favour of this man, the famous Sir Chriftopher Wren, who had been Architect to the crown for above fifty years, who built most of the Churches in London, laid the first stone of St. Paul's, and lived to finish it, had been difplaced from his employment at the age of near ninety years.
Ver. 326. Ambrofe Philips] "He was (faith Mr JACOB) one of the wits at Button's, and a justice of the peace;' he hath fince met with higher preferment in Ireland: And a much greater character we have of him in Mr. Gildon's Complete Art of Poetry, vol. 1. p. 157. "Indeed he confeffes,
he dares not fet him quite on the fame foot with Virgil, left it "fhould feem Aattery, but he is much mistaken if pofterity "does not afford him a greater efteem than he _at_present enjoys." He endeavoured to create some misunderstanding "between our Author and Mr. Addifon, whom also foon after he abused as much. His conftant cry was, that Mr. P. was an Enemy to the government; and in particular he was the avowed author of a report very iuduftriously fpread, that he had a hand in a party paper calied the Examiner: A falfhood well known to thofe yet living, who had the direction and publication