Abbildungen der Seite

Booth in his cloudy tabernacle fhrin'd,

On grinning dragons thou shalt mount the wind.
Dire is the conflict, dismal is the dinn,

Here shouts all Drury, there all Lincoln's inn;
Contending Theatres our empire raise,
Alike their labours, and alike their praise.

And are these wonders, Son, to thee unknown?
Unknown to thee? These wonders are thy own.
Thefe Fate referv'd to grace thy reign divine,
Foreseen by me, but ah! with-held from mine.
In Lud's old walls tho' long I rul'd, renown'd
Far as loud Bow's ftupendous bells refound;
Tho' my own Aldermen conferr'd the bays,
To me committing their eternal praise,
Their full-fed Heroes, their pacific May'rs,
Their annual trophies, and their monthly wars :
Tho' long my Party built on me their hopes,
For writing Pamphlets, and for roasting Popes :





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!
Reduc'd at last to his in my own dragon.
Avert it heav'n? that thou, my Cibber, e'er
Should't wag a ferpent-tail in Smithfield fair!
Like the vile straw that's blown about the streets,
The needy Poet sticks to all he meets ;
Coach'd, carted, trod upon, now loose, now fast,
And carry'd off in fome dog's tail at laft.
Happier thy fortunes! like a rolling stone,
Thy giddy dulness still shall lumber on,
Safe in its heaviness shall never stray,
But lick up ev'ry blockhead in the way.
Thee fhall the Patriot, thee the Courtier taste,

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,
And from each fhew rife duller than the last.
Till rais'd from booths, &c.



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,
Her feat imperial Dulness shall transport.
Already Opera prepares the way,
The fure fore-runner of her gentle sway!
Let her thy heart, next Drabs and Dice, engage,
The third mad paffion of thy doting age.
Teach thou the warbling Polypheme to roar,
And scream thyfelf as none e'er fcream'd before!
To aid our caufe, if Heav'n thou can't not bend,
Hell thou shalt move; for Fauftus is our friend;
Pluto with Cato thou for this fhalt join,
And link the Mourning Bride to Proferpine.
Grubstreet! thy fall fhould men and Gods confpire,
Thy stage shall stand, enfure it but from fire.






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
For new abortions, all ye pregnant fair!
In flames, like Semele's, be brought to bed, 315
While op'ning Hell spouts wild-fire at your head.
Now Bavius take the Poppy from thy brow,
And place it here! here all ye Heroes bow!
This, this is he, foretold by ancient rhymes:
Th' Auguftus born to bring Saturnian times.
Signs following figns lead on the mighty year!
See the dull ftars roll round and re-appear.

See, see, our own true Phoebus wears the bays!
Our Midas fits Lord Chancellor of Plays!

VER. 323. See, fee. our own, &c.] In the former Ed.
Beneath his reign, fhall Eufden wear the bays,
Cibber prefide Lord Chancellor of plays,
Benfon fole Judge of Architecture fit,
And Namby Pamby be preferr'd for Wit!



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,
Th' Auguftus, &c.

Hic vir, hic eft tibi quem promitti fepius audis,
Auguftus Cafar, divum genus; aurea condet
Secula que rurfus Latio, règnata per arva
Saturno quondam
Saturnian here relates to the age of Lead,
V. 26.

Virg. Æn. vi. mentioned book I.

[ocr errors]

On Poets Tombs fee Benfon's titles writ!
Lo! Ambrofe Philips is preferr'd for Wit!

I fee th' unfinish'd Dormitory wall,

I fee the Savoy totter to her fall;
Hibernian Politics, O Swift! thy doom,

And Pope's, tranflating three whole years with Broome.
Proceed great days, &c.


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.

" But


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

of it.

« ZurückWeiter »