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Tf parts allure thee, think how Bacon shined,
The wisest, brightest, meanest of mankind:
Or ravish'd with the whistling of a name,
See Cromwell, damn'd to everlasting fame!
If all, united, thy ambition call,
From ancient story learn to scorn them all.
There, in the rich, the honour'd, fam'd, and great^
See the false scale of happiness complete!
In Hearts of kings, or arms of queens who lay
How happy! those to ruin, these betray.
Mark by what wretched steps their glory grows,
From dirt and sea-weed as proud Venice rose;
In each how guilt and greatness equal ran,
And all that raised the hero, sunk the man:
Now Europe's laurels on their brows behold,
But stain'd with blood, or ill exchanged for gold:
Then see them broke with toils, or sunk in ease,
Or infamous for plunder'd provinces.
O wealth ill-fated! which no act of fame
E'er taught to shine, or sanctified from shame!
What greater bliss attends their close of life ]
Some greedy minion, or imperious wife,
The trophied arches, storied halls invade,
And haunt their slumbers in the pompous shade.
Alas! not dazzled with their noontide ray,
Compute th^ morn and evening to the day;
The whole amount of that enormous fame,
A tale, that blends their glory with their shame!
"VII. Know then this truth (enough for man to know), / ~y"ir*ii^ alone is hafopinftsfl frelpw" Theonly point wheref numan bliss stands still, And tastes the good without the fall to ill; Where only merit constant pay receives, Is blest in what it takes, and what it gives; The joy unequall'd, if its end it gain, And if it lose, attended with no pain: Without satiety, though e'er so blest, And but more relish'd as the more distress'd: The broadest mirth unfeeling folly wears, Less pleasing far than virtue's very tears: Good, from each object, from each place acquired, For ever exercised, yet never tired; Never elated, while one man's oppress'd; Never dejected, while another's bless'd;
And where no wants, no wishes eaa remain,
See the sole bliss Heaven could on all bestow!
For him alone, Hope leads from goal to goal,
Self-love thus push'd to social, to divine,
God loves from whole to parts: but human soul
Wide, and more wide, the' o'erflowings of the mind
Come then, my friend! my genius! come along;
THE UNIVERSAL PBAYER.
Father of all! in every age,
In every clime adored,
Jehovah, Jove, or Lord I
Thou great First Cause, least understood,
Who all my sense confined
And that myself am blind;
Yet gave me, in this clark estate,
And binding nature fast in fate,
What conscience dictates to be done,
Or warns me not to do, This, teach me more than hell to shun,
That, more than heaven pursue.
What blessings thy free bounty gives,
Let me not cast away;
To enjoy is to obey.
Yet not to earth's contracted span
Or think thee Lord alone of man,
Let not this weak, unknowing hand
And deal damnation round the land
If I am right, thy grace impart,
If I am wrong, oh teach my heart
Save me alike from foolish pride,
Or impious discontent,
Or aught thy goodness lent.
Teaeh me to feel another's woe,
To hide the fault I see; That mercy I to others show,
That mercy show to me.
Mean though I am, not wholly so,
Oh lead me wheresoe'er I go,
This day, be bread and peace my lot:
All else beneath the sun, TFhou know'st if best bestow'd or not*
And let Thy will be done.
To thee, whose temple is all space,
Whose altar, earth, sea, skies I
All Nature's incense rise!
FOUK EPISTLES TO SEVERAL PEBSONS,
Est brevitate opus, ut currat sententia, neu se
TO SIR RICHARD TEMPLE, LORD COBHAM,
OF THE KNOWLEDGE AND CHARACTERS OP MEN.
I. That it is not sufficient for this knowledge to consider man in the abstracts books will not serve the purpose, nor yet our own experience singly. General maxims, unless they be formed upon both, will be but notional. Some peculiarity in every man, characteristic to Mjaself, yet varying from himself. Difficulties arising from our own passi^nsTfancies, faculties, &c. The shortness of life, to observe in, and the uncertainty of the principles of action in men, to observe by. Our own principle of action often hid from ourselves. Some few characters plain, but in general confounded, dissembled, or inconsistent. The same man utterly different in different places and seasons. Unimaginable weaknesses in the greatest. Nothing constant and certain but God and nature. No judging of the motives from the actions; the same actions proceeding from contrary motives, and the same motives influencing contrary actions. II. Yet to form characters, we can only take the strongest actions of a man's life, and try to make them agree: the utter uncertainty of this, from nature itself, and from policy. Characters given according to the rank of men of the world. And some reason for it. Education alters the nature, or at least the character, of many. Actions passions, opinions, manners, humours, or principles, all subject to change. No judging by nature. III. It only remains to find (if we can) hia Ruling Passion: that will certainly influence, all the rest, and cav