Miscellany Poems, on Several Occasions by Anne Kingsmill Finch, Countess of Winchilsea (1661-1720). London: printed for J[ohn] B[arber] and sold by Benj. Tooke at the Middle-Temple-Gate, William Taylor in Pater-Noster-Row, and James Round, in Exchange-Alley, Cornhil, 1713.
[Title Page ]
THE Town having already done Justice to the Ode on the SPLEEN, and some few Pieces in this Volume, when scattered in other Miscellanies: I think it will be sufficient (now that Permission is at last obtained for the Printing this Collection) to acquaint the Reader, that they are of the same Hand; which I doubt not will render this Miscellany an acceptable Present to the Publick.
|MErcury and the Elephant||1|
|All is Vanity||4|
|The Prevalence of Custom||22|
|The Mussulman's Dream||24|
|The Shepherd Piping to the Fishes||27|
|Love, Death, and Reputation||29|
|There's no To Morrow||32|
|The Petition for an absolute Retreat||33|
|Jupiter and the Farmer||49|
|The Decision of Fortune||51|
|The Brass-Pot and Stone-Jugg||55|
|A Description of a Piece of Tapistry at Long-Leat||66|
|The Poor-Man's Lamb||73|
|Part of the Fifth Scene of the Second Act of Athalia||84|
|Alexander's Epistle to Hephæstion||97|
|On the Marriage of Edw. and Eliz. Herbert||102|
|La Passion vaincue||103|
|The Owl describing her Young ones||104|
|The Philosopher, the Young-man, and his Statue||109|
|The Hog, the Sheep, and the Goat, &c.||110|
|The Shepherd and the Calm||113|
|The Lord and the Bramble||116|
|The Cautious Lovers||118|
|The House of Socrates||124|
|The young Rat and his Dam, the Cock and the Cat||126|
|The Wit and the Beau||131|
|Cupid and Folly||135|
|For the Better||137|
|On the King of Sweden's Picture||140|
|On the Birth-day of Lady Cath. Tufton||141|
|The Miser and the Poet||145|
|Enquiry after Peace||154|
|On the Death of the Hon. James Thynne||156|
|The Critick and the Fable-Writer||162|
|The King and the Shepherd||165|
|Epistle to Madame Deshouliers||171|
|To Edw. Jenkinson, Esq.||174|
|A Dialogue between two Shepherdesses||179|
|Five Pieces out of the Aminta of Tasso||187|
|The Atheist and the Acorn||202|
|The Tradesman and the Scholar||204|
|Man's Injustice towards Providence||208|
|The Eagle, the Sow, and the Cat||212|
|In Praise of Writing Letters||215|
|The Miller, His Son, and their Ass||218|
|The Man bitten by Fleas||223|
|On the Hurricane||230|
|Ephelia to Ardelia||252|
|The Lyon and the Gnat||254|
|The Man and his Horse||257|
|A Moral Song||263|
|The Dog and his Master||265|
|To Mr. F. now Earl of W.–||272|
|A Letter to the same||278|
|Psalm 137 Paraphras'd to the 7th Verse||282|
|A Battle between the Rats and the Weazles||283|
|Democritus and his Neighbors||285|
|A Nocturnal Reverie||291|
|Aristomenes, &c. A Tragedy.||295|
|Page 101. line 5.||read lost Clytus.|
|P. 106. l. 5.||for veil'd r. wav'd.|
|P. 112. l. 8.||r. Conquests.|
|P. 177. l. 9.||r. gentlest.|
|P. 195. l. 9.||r. There.|
|P. 219. l. 7.||r. these.|
|P. 235. l. 10.||for Where r. while.|
|P. 243. l. 1.||r. th' awaken'd.|
|P. 296.||In the Dramatis Personæ for Theata r. Thæta (and so through the play)|
|P. 301. l. 10.||r. Lamia.|
|P. 312. l. 15.||r. Bonds|
|l. 26||r. Man.|
|P. 331. l. 1.||r. Others.|
|l. 5.||r. Græcian Race.|
|P. 337. l. 9.||for Camp r. Gate.|
|P. 346. l. 1.||for bleeds r. breeds.|
As Merc'ry travell'd thro' a Wood,
(Whose Errands are more Fleet than Good)
An Elephant before him lay,
That much encumber'd had the Way:
The Messenger, who's still in haste,
Wou'd fain have bow'd, and so have past;
When up arose th' unweildy Brute,
And wou'd repeat a late Dispute,
In which (he said) he'd gain'd the Prize
From a wild Boar of monstrous Size:
But Fame (quoth he) with all her Tongues,
Who Lawyers, Ladies, Soldiers wrongs,
Has, to my Disadvantage, told
An Action throughly Bright and Bold;
Has said, that I foul Play had us'd,
And with my Weight th' Opposer bruis'd;
Had laid my Trunk about his Brawn,
Before his Tushes cou'd be drawn;
Had stunn'd him with a hideous Roar,
And twenty-thousand Scandals more:
But I defy the Talk of Men,
Or Voice of Brutes in ev'ry Den;
Th' impartial Skies are all my Care,
And how it stands Recorded there.
Amongst you Gods, pray, What is thought?
Quoth Mercury–Then have you Fought!
Solicitous thus shou'd I be
For what's said of my Verse and Me;
Or shou'd my Friends Excuses frame,
And beg the Criticks not to blame
(Since from a Female Hand it came)
Defects in Judgment, or in Wit;
They'd but reply - Then has she Writ!
Our Vanity we more betray,
In asking what the World will say,
Than if, in trivial Things like these,
We wait on the Event with ease;
Nor make long Prefaces, to show
What Men are not concern'd to know:
For still untouch'd how we succeed,
'Tis for themselves, not us, they Read;
Whilst that proceeding to requite,
We own (who in the Muse delight)
'Tis for our Selves, not them, we Write.
Betray'd by Solitude to try
Amusements, which the Prosp'rous fly;
And only to the Press repair,
To fix our scatter'd Papers there;
Tho' whilst our Labours are preserv'd,
The Printers may, indeed, be starv'd.
Nor in th' abused Fancy dance,
When the returning Rays of Light,
Resuming their alternate Right,
Break on th' ill-order'd Scene on the fantastick Trance:
As weak is Man, whilst Tenant to the Earth;
As frail and as uncertain all his Ways,
From the first moment of his weeping Birth,
Down to the last and best of his few restless Days;
When to the Land of Darkness he retires
From disappointed Hopes, and frustrated Desires;
Reaping no other Fruit of all his Pain
Bestow'd whilst in the vale of Tears below,
But this unhappy Truth, at last to know,
That Vanity's our Lot, and all Mankind is Vain.
A studious Boy, advanc'd beyond his Age,
Wastes the dim Lamp, and turns the restless Page;
For some lov'd Book prevents the rising Day,
And on it, stoln aside, bestows the Hours of Play;
Him the observing Master do's design
For search of darkned Truths and Mysteries Divine;
Bids him with unremitted Labour trace
The Rise of Empires, and their various Fates,
The several Tyrants o'er the several States,
To Babel's lofty Towers, and warlike Nimrod's Race;
Bids him in Paradice the Bank survey,
Where Man, new-moulded from the temper'd Clay,
(Till fir'd with Breath Divine) a helpless Figure lay:
Could he be led thus far---What were the Boast,
What the Reward of all the Toil it cost,
What from that Land of ever-blooming Spring,
For our Instruction could he bring,
Unless, that having Humane Nature found
Unseparated from its Parent Ground,
(Howe'er we vaunt our Elevated Birth)
The Epicure in soft Array,
The lothsome Beggar, that before
His rude unhospitable Door,
Unpity'd but by Brutes, a broken Carcass lay,
Were both alike deriv'd from the same common Earth?
But ere the Child can to these Heights attain,
Ere he can in the Learned Sphere arise;
A guilding Star, attracting to the Skies,
A fever, seizing the o'er labour'd Brain,
Sends him, perhaps, to Death's concealing Shade;
Where, in the Marble Tomb now silent laid,
He better do's that useful Doctrine show,
(Which all the sad Assistants ought to know,
Who round the Grave his short continuance mourn)
That first from Dust we came, and must to Dust return.
Bids th' inchanting Trumpet sound,
Loud as Triumph, soft as Love,
Striking now the Poles above,
Then descending from the Skies,
Soften every falling Note;
As the harmonious Lark that sings and flies,
When near the Earth, contracts her narrow Throat,
And warbles on the Ground:
Shews the proud Steed, impatient of the Check,
'Gainst the loudest Terrors Proof,
Pawing the Valley with his steeled Hoof,
With Lightning arm'd his Eyes, with Thunder cloth'd his Neck;
Who on the th' advanced Foe, (the Signal giv'n)
Flies, like a rushing Storm by mighty Whirlwinds driv'n;
Lays open the Records of Fame,
No glorious Deed omits, no Man of mighty Name;
Their Stratagems, their Tempers she'll repeat,
From Alexander's, (truly stil'd the GREAT)
From Cæsar's on the World's Imperial Seat,
To Turenne's Conduct, and to Conde's Heat.
'Tis done! and now th' ambitious Youth disdains
The safe, but harder Labours of the Gown,
The softer pleasures of the Courtly Town,
The once lov'd rural Sports, and Chaces on the Plains;
Does with the Soldier's Life the Garb assume,
The gold Embroid'ries, and the graceful Plume;
Walks haughty in a Coat of Scarlet Die,
A Colour well contriv'd to cheat the Eye,
Where richer Blood, alas! may undistinguisht lye.
And oh! too near that wretched Fate attends;
Hear it ye Parents, all ye weeping Friends!
Thou fonder Maid! won by these gaudy Charms,
(The destin'd Prize of his Victorious Arms)
Now fainting Dye upon the mournful Sound,
That speaks his hasty Death, and paints the fatal Wound!
Trail all your Pikes, dispirit every Drum,
March in a slow Procession from afar,
Ye silent, ye dejected Men of War!
Be still the Hautboys, and the Flute be dumb!
Display no more, in vain, the lofty Banner;
For see! where on the Bier before ye lies
The pale, the fall'n, th' untimely Sacrifice
To your mistaken Shrine, to your false Idol Honour!
A speaking Pulse the secret Cause impart;
The only time, when the Physician's Art
Could ease that lab'ring Grief, or heal a Lover's Smart.
See Great Antonius now impatient stand,
Expecting, with mistaken Pride,
On Cydnus crowded Shore, on Cydnus fatal Strand,
A (1) Queen, at his Tribunal to be try'd,
A Queen that arm'd in Beauty, shall deride
His feeble Rage, and his whole Fate command:
O'er the still Waves her burnisht Galley moves,
Row'd by the Graces, whilst officious Loves
To silken Cords their busie Hands apply,
Or gathering all the gentle Gales that fly,
To their fair Mistress with these Spoils repair,
And from their purple Wings disperse the balmy Air.
Hov'ring Perfumes ascend in od'rous Clouds,
Curl o'er the Barque, and play among the Shrouds;
Whilst gently dashing every Silver Oar,
Guided by the Rules of Art,
With tuneful Instruments design'd
To soften, and subdue the stubborn Mind,
A strangely pleasing and harmonious Part
In equal Measures bore.
Like a new Venus on her native Sea,
In midst of the transporting Scene,
(Which Pen or Pencil imitates in vain)
On a resplendent and conspicuous Bed,
With all the Pride of Persia loosely spread,
The lovely Syrene lay.
Which but discern'd from the yet distant Shore,
Th' amazed Emperor could hate no more;
No more a baffled Vengeance could pursue;
But yielding still, still as she nearer drew,
When Cleopatra anchor'd in the Bay,
Where every Charm cou'd all its Force display,
Like his own Statue stood, and gaz'd the World away.
Where ends alas! this Pageantry and State;
Where end the Triumphs of this conqu'ring Face,
Envy'd of Roman Wives, and all the Female Race?
Oh swift Vicissitude of Beauty's Fate!
Now in her Tomb withdrawn from publick Sight,
From near Captivity and Shame,
The vanquish'd, the abandon'd Dame
Proffers the Arm, that held another's Right,
To the destructive Snake's more just Embrace,
And courts deforming Death, to mend his Leaden Pace.
" And (2) when his Body falls in Funeral Fire,
When late revolving Ages shall consume
The very Pillars, that support his Tomb,
" His name shall live, and his best Part aspire.
Deluded Wretch! grasping at future Praise,
Now planting, with mistaken Care,
Round thy enchanted Palace in the Air,
A Grove, which in thy Fancy time shall raise,
A Grove of soaring Palms, and everlasting Bays;
Could'st Thou alas! to such Reknown arrive,
As thy Imagination wou'd contrive;
Should numerous Cities, in a vain contest,
Struggle for thy famous Birth;
Should the sole Monarch of the conquer'd Earth,
His wreathed Head upon thy Volume rest;
Like Maro, could'st thou justly claim,
Amongst th' inspired tuneful Race,
The highest Room, the undisputed Place;
And after near Two Thousand Years of Fame,
Have thy proud Work to a new People shown;
Th' unequal'd Poems made their own,
In such a Dress, in such a perfect Stile
As on his Labours Dryden now bestows,
As now from Dryden's just Improvement flows,
In every polish'd Verse throughout the British Isle;
What Benefit alas! would to thee grow?
What Sense of Pleasure wou'dst thou know?
What swelling Joy? what Pride? what Glory have,
When in the Darkness of the abject Grave,
Insensible, and Stupid laid below,
No Atom of thy Heap, no Dust wou'd move,
For all the airy Breath that form'd thy Praise above?
Sieze then, my Friends, (he cries) the present Hour;
The Pleasure which to that belongs,
The Feasts, th' o'erflowing Bowls, the Mirth, the Songs,
The Orange-Bloom, that with such Sweetness blows,
Anacreon's celebrated Rose,
The Hyacinth, with every beauteous Flower,
Which just this happy Moment shall disclose,
Are out of Fortune's reach, and all within our Power.
Such costly (3)Garments let our Slaves prepare,
As for the gay Demetrius were design'd;
Where a new Sun of radiant Diamonds shin'd,
Where the enamel'd Earth, and scarce-discerned Air,
With a transparent Sea were seen,
A Sea composed of the Em'rald's Green,
And with a golden Shore encompass'd round;
Where every Orient Shell, of wondrous shape was found.
The whole Creation on his Shoulders hung,
The whole Creation with his Wish comply'd,
Did swiftly, for each Appetite provide,
And fed them all when Young.
No less, th' (4) Assyrian Prince enjoy'd,
Of Bliss too soon depriv'd, but never cloy'd,
Whose Counsel let us still pursue,
Whose Monument, did this Inscription shew
To every Passenger, that trod the way,
Where, with a slighting (5) Hand, and scornful Smile
The proud Effigies, on th' instructive Pile,
A great Example lay.
I, here Entomb'd, did mighty Kingdoms sway,
Two Cities rais'd (6) in one prodigious Day:
Thou wand'ring Traveller, no longer gaze,
No longer dwell upon this useless Place;
Go Feed, and Drink, in Sports consume thy Life;
For All that else we gain's not worth a Moment's Strife.
Thus! talks the Fool, whom no Restraint can bound,
When now the Glass has gone a frequent round;
When soaring Fancy lightly swims,
Fancy, that keeps above, and dances o'er the Brims;
Whilst weighty Reason sinks, and in the bottom's drown'd;
Adds to his Own, an artificial Fire,
Doubling ev'ry hot Desire,
Till th' auxiliary Spirits, in a Flame,
The Stomach's Magazine defy,
That standing Pool, that helpless Moisture nigh,
Thro' every Vital part impetuous fly,
And quite consume the Frame;
When to the Under-world despis'd he goes,
A pamper'd Carcase on the Worms bestows,
Who rioting on the unusual Chear,
As good a Life enjoy, as he could boast of here.
That, should he lead an Army to the Field,
For whose still necessary Use,
Th' extended Earth cou'd not enough produce,
Nor Rivers to their Thirst a full Contentment yield;
Yet, must their dark Reverse of Fate
Roll round, within that Course of Years,
Within the short, the swift, and fleeting Date
Prescrib'd by Xerxes, (7) when his falling Tears
Bewail'd those Numbers, which his Sword employ'd,
And false, Hyena-like, lamented and destroy'd.
Tell Him, that does some stately Building raise,
A Windsor or Versailles erect,
And thorough all Posterity expect,
With its unshaken Base, a firm unshaken Praise;
Tell Him, Judea's Temple is no more,
Upon whose Splendour, Thousands heretofore
Spent the astonish'd Hours, forgetful to Adore:
Tell him, into the Earth agen is hurl'd,
That most stupendious Wonder of the World,
Justly presiding o'er the boasted Seven,
By humane Art and Industry design'd,
This! the rich Draught of the Immortal Mind,
The Architect of Heaven.
Remember then, to fix thy Aim on High,
Project, and build on t'other side the Sky,
For, after all thy vain Expence below,
Thou canst no Fame, no lasting Pleasure know;
No Good, that shall not thy Embraces fly;
Or thou from that be in a Moment caught,
Thy Spirit to new Claims, new Int'rests brought,
Whilst unconcern'd thy secret Ashes lye,
Or stray about the Globe, O Man ordain'd to Dye!
|(1)||Cleopatra's coming down the Cydnus, exactly agreeing with the Description of it in Plutarch.|
|(2)||The two Lines with these Marks before them are thus translated by Ben. Johnson from Ovid.|
|(3)||In the Life of Demetrius in Plutarch, there is a Description of a Garment order'd to be made for him; wherein was expess'd, in precious Stones, and other costly Materials, the Elements as here described.|
|(5)||In Sardanapalus's Statue upon his Monument (as described by several Authors, and upon Medals) his right Hand is held up, with his Fingers as giving a Filip to the World.|
|(6)||Anchialus and Tarsus.|
|(7)||Xerxes reviewing his most numerous Army, wept upon the Reflection that within 100 Years not One of them would be left alive.|
And of what Land she was the Creature,
With outspread Hair, and ghastly Feature?
Mortal, quoth she, (to Darkness hurry'd)
Know, that thou art both Dead and Bury'd;
Convey'd, last Night, from noisie Tavern,
To this thy still, and dreary Cavern.
What strikes thy Nose, springs from the Shatters
Of Bodies kill'd with Cordial Waters,
Stronger than other Scents and quicker,
As urg'd by more spirituous Liquor.
My self attend on the Deceas'd,
When all their Earthly Train's releas'd;
And in this Place of endless Quiet,
My Bus'ness is, to find them Diet;
To shew all sorts of Meats, and Salades,
Till I'm acquainted with their Palates;
But that once known, then less suffices.
Quoth he (and on his Crupper rises)
Thou Guardian of these lower Regions,
Thou Providor for countless Legions,
Thou dark, but charitable Crony,
Far kinder than my Tisiphony,
Who of our Victuals thus art Thinking,
If thou hast Care too of our Drinking,
A Bumper fetch: Quoth she, a Halter,
Since nothing less thy Tone can alter,
Or break this Habit thou'st been getting,
To keep thy Throat in constant wetting.
Yet such a Land of Dreams We must allow,
Who nightly trace it, tho' we know not how:
Unfetter'd by the Days obtruded Rules,
We All enjoy that Paradise of Fools;
And find a Sorrow, in resuming Sense,
Which breaks some free Delight, and snatches us from thence.
Thus! in a Dream, a Musselman was shown
A Vizir, whom he formerly had known,
When at the Port he bore deputed Sway,
And made the Nations with a Nod obey.
Now all serene, and splendid was his Brow,
Whilst ready Waiters to his Orders bow;
His Residence, an artful Garden seem'd,
Adorn'd with all, that pleasant he esteem'd;
Full of Reward, his glorious Lot appear'd,
As with the Sight, our Dreamer's Mind was chear'd;
But turning, next he saw a dreadful Sight,
Which fill'd his Soul with Wonder and Affright,
Pursu'd by Fiends, a wretched Dervis fled
Through scorching Plains, which to wide Distance spread;
Whilst every Torture, gloomy Poets paint,
Was there prepar'd for the reputed Saint.
Amaz'd at this, the sleeping Turk enquires,
Why He that liv'd above, in soft Attires,
Now roll'd in Bliss, while t'other roll'd in Fires?
We're taught the Suff'rings of this Future State,
Th' Excess of Courts is likeliest to create;
Whilst solitary Cells, o'ergrown with Shade,
The readiest way to Paradise is made.
True, quoth the Phantom (which he dream'd reply'd)
The lonely Path is still the surest Guide,
Nor is it by these Instances deny'd.
For, know my Friend, whatever Fame report,
The Vizier to Retirements wou'd resort,
Th' ambitious Dervis wou'd frequent the Court.
The Phillis he an Angle gave,
And bid her toss the Line;
For sure, quoth he, each Fish must have,
Who do's not seek to be thy Slave,
A harder Heart than mine.
Assemble here you watry Race,
Transportedly he cries;
And if, when you behold her Face,
You e'er desire to quit the Place,
You see not with my Eyes.
But you, perhaps, are by the Ear,
More easie to be caught;
If so, I have my Bagpipe here,
The only Musick that's not dear,
Nor in great Cities bought.
So sprightly was the Tune he chose,
And often did repeat;
That Phillis, tho' not up she rose,
Kept time with every thrilling Close,
And jigg'd upon her Seat.
But not a Fish wou'd nearer draw,
No Harmony or Charms,
Their frozen Blood, it seems, cou'd thaw,
Nor all they heard, nor all they saw
Cou'd woo them to such Terms.
The angry Shepherd in a Pett,
Gives o'er his wheedling Arts,
And from his Shoulder throws the Net,
Resolv'd he wou'd a Supper get
By Force, if not by Parts.
Thus stated Laws are always best
To rule the vulgar Throng,
Who grow more Stubborn when Carest,
Or with soft Rhetorick addrest,
If taking Measures wrong.
Death declar'd he wou'd be found
Near the fatal Trumpet's sound;
Or where Pestilences reign,
And Quacks the greater Plagues maintain;
Shaking still his sandy Glass,
And mowing Human Flesh, like Grass.
Love, as next his Leave he took,
Cast on both so sweet a Look,
As their Tempers near disarm'd,
One relax'd, and t'other warm'd;
Shades for his Retreat he chose,
Rural Plains, and soft Repose;
Where no Dowry e'er was paid,
Where no Jointure e'er was made;
No Ill Tongue the Nymph perplex'd,
Where no Forms the Shepherd vex'd;
Where Himself shou'd be the Care,
Of the Fond and of the Fair:
Where that was, they soon should know,
Au Revoir! then turn'd to Go.
Reputation made a Pause,
Suiting her severer Laws;
Second Thoughts, and Third she us'd,
Weighing Consequences mus'd;
When, at length to both she cry'd:
You Two safely may Divide,
To th' Antipodes may fall,
And re-ascend th' encompast Ball;
Certain still to meet agen
In the Breasts of tortur'd Men;
Who by One (too far) betray'd,
Call in t'other to their Aid:
Whilst I Tender, Coy, and Nice,
Rais'd and ruin'd in a Trice,
Either fix with those I grace,
Or abandoning the Place,
No Return my Nature bears,
From green Youth, or hoary Hairs;
If thro' Guilt, or Chance, I sever,
I once Parting, Part for ever.
The Tale's a Jest, the Moral is a Truth;
To-Morrow and To-Morrow, cheat our Youth:
In riper Age, To-Morrow still we cry,
Not thinking, that the present Day we Dye;
Unpractis'd all the Good we had Design'd;
There's No To-Morrow to a Willing Mind.
That the World may ne'er invade,
Through such Windings and such Shade,
My unshaken Liberty.
No Intruders thither come!
Who visit, but to be from home;
None who their vain Moments pass,
Only studious of their Glass,
News, that charm to listning Ears;
That false Alarm to Hopes and Fears;
That common Theme for every Fop,
From the Statesman to the Shop,
In those Coverts ne'er be spread,
Of who's Deceas'd, or who's to Wed,
Be no Tidings thither brought,
But Silent, as a Midnight Thought,
Where the World may ne'er invade,
Be those Windings, and that Shade:
Courteous Fate! afford me there
A Table spread without my Care,
With what the neighb'ring Fields impart,
Whose Cleanliness be all it's Art,
When, of old, the Calf was drest,
(Tho' to make an Angel's Feast)
In the plain, unstudied Sauce
Nor Treufle, nor Morillia was;
Nor cou'd the mighty Patriarch's Board
One far-fetch'd Ortolane afford.
Courteous Fate, then give me there
Only plain, and wholesome Fare.
Fruits indeed (wou'd Heaven bestow)
All, that did in Eden grow,
All, but the Forbidden Tree,
Wou'd be coveted by me;
Grapes, with Juice so crouded up,
As breaking thro' the native Cup;
Figs (yet growing) candy'd o'er,
By the Sun's attracting Pow'r;
Cherries, with the downy Peach,
All within my easie Reach;
Whilst creeping near the humble Ground,
Shou'd the Strawberry be found
Springing wheresoe'er I stray'd,
Thro' those Windings and that Shade.
For my Garments; let them be
What may with the Time agree;
Warm, when Phoebus does retire,
And is ill-supply'd by Fire:
But when he renews the Year,
And verdant all the Fields appear;
Beauty every thing resumes,
Birds have dropt their Winter-Plumes;
When the Lilly full display'd,
Stands in purer White array'd,
Than that Vest, which heretofore
The Luxurious (1) Monarch wore,
When from Salem's Gates he drove,
To the soft Retreat of Love,
Lebanon's all burnish'd House,
And the dear Egyptian Spouse.
Cloath me, Fate, tho' not so Gay;
Cloath me light, and fresh as May:
In the Fountains let me view
All my Habit cheap and new;
Such as, when sweet Zephyrs fly,
With their Motions may comply;
Gently waving, to express
No Perfumes have there a Part,
Borrow'd from the Chymists Art:
But such as rise from flow'ry Beds,
Or the falling Jasmin Sheds!
'Twas the Odour of the Field,
Esau's rural Coat did yield,
That inspir'd his Father's Pray'r,
For Blessings of the Earth and Air:
Of Gums, or Pouders had it smelt;
The Supplanter, then unfelt,
Easily had been descry'd
For One that did in Tents abide;
For some beauteous Handmaids Joy,
And his Mother's darling Boy.
Let me then no Fragrance wear,
But what the Winds from Gardens bear,
In such kind, surprizing Gales,
As gather'd from (2) Fidentia's Vales,
All the Flowers that in them grew;
Which intermixing, as they flew,
In wreathen Garlands dropt agen,
On Lucullus, and his Men;
Who, chear'd by the victorious Sight,
Trebl'd Numbers put to Flight.
Let me, when I must be fine,
In such natural Colours shine;
Wove, and painted by the Sun,
Whose resplendent Rays to shun,
When they do too fiercely beat,
Let me find some close Retreat,
Where they have no Passage made,
Thro' those Windings, and that Shade.
Give me there (since Heaven has shown
It was not Good to be alone)
A Partner suited to my Mind,
Solitary, pleas'd and kind;
Who, partially, may something see
Preferr'd to all the World in me;
Slighting, by my humble Side,
Fame and Splendor, Wealth and Pride.
When but Two the Earth possest,
'Twas their happiest Days, and best;
They by Bus'ness, nor by Wars,
They by no Domestick Cares,
From each other e'er were drawn,
But in some Grove, or flow'ry Lawn,
Spent the swiftly flying Time,
Spent their own, and Nature's Prime,
In Love; that only Passion given
To perfect Man, whilst Friends with Heaven.
Rage, and Jealousie, and Hate,
Transports of his fallen State,
(When by Satan's Wiles betray'd)
Fly those Windings, and that Shade!
Thus from Crouds, and Noise remov'd,
Let each Moment be improv'd;
Every Object still produce,
Thoughts of Pleasure, and of Use:
When some River slides away,
To encrease the boundless Sea;
Think we then, how Time do's haste,
To grow Eternity at last,
By the Willows, on the Banks,
Gather'd into social Ranks,
Playing with the gentle Winds,
Strait the Boughs, and smooth the Rinds,
Moist each Fibre, and each Top,
Wearing a luxurious Crop,
Let the time of Youth be shown,
The time alas! too soon outgrown;
Whilst a lonely stubborn Oak,
Which no Breezes can provoke,
No less Gusts persuade to move,
Than those, which in a Whirlwind drove,
Spoil'd the old Fraternal Feast,
And left alive but one poor Guest;
Rivell'd the distorted Trunk,
Sapless Limbs all bent, and shrunk,
Sadly does the Time presage,
Of our too near approaching Age.
When a helpless Vine is found,
Unsupported on the Ground,
Careless all the Branches spread,
Subject to each haughty Tread,
Bearing neither Leaves, nor Fruit,
Living only in the Root;
Back reflecting let me say,
So the sad Ardelia lay;
Blasted by a Storm of Fate,
Felt, thro' all the British State;
Fall'n, neglected, lost, forgot,
Dark Oblivion all her Lot;
Faded till Arminda's Love,
(Guided by the Pow'rs above)
Warm'd anew her drooping Heart,
And Life diffus'd thro' every Part;
Mixing Words, in wise Discourse,
Of such Weight and wond'rous Force,
As could all her Sorrows charm,
And transitory Ills disarm;
Chearing the delightful Day,
When dispos'd to be more Gay,
With Wit, from an unmeasured Store,
To Woman ne'er allow'd before.
What Nature, or refining Art,
All that Fortune cou'd impart,
Heaven did to Arminda send;
Then gave her for Ardelia's Friend:
To her Cares the Cordial drop,
Which else had overflow'd the Cup.
So, when once the Son of Jess,
Every Anguish did oppress,
Hunted by all kinds of Ills,
Like a Partridge on the Hills;
Trains were laid to catch his Life,
Baited with a Royal Wife,
From his House, and Country torn,
Made a Heathen Prince's Scorn;
Fate, to answer all these Harms,
Threw a Friend into his Arms.
Friendship still has been design'd,
The Support of Human-kind;
The safe Delight, the useful Bliss,
The next World's Happiness, and this.
Give then, O indulgent Fate!
Give a Friend in that Retreat
(Tho' withdrawn from all the rest)
Still a Clue, to reach my Breast.
Let a Friend be still convey'd
Thro' those Windings, and that Shade!
Where, may I remain secure,
Waste, in humble Joys and pure,
A Life, that can no Envy yield;
Want of Affluence my Shield.
Thus, had (3) Crassus been content,
When from Marius Rage he went,
With the Seat that Fortune gave,
The commodious ample Cave,
Form'd, in a divided Rock,
By some mighty Earthquake's Shock,
Into Rooms of every Size,
Fair, as Art cou'd e'er devise,
Leaving, in the marble Roof,
('Gainst all Storms and Tempests proof)
Only Passage for the Light,
To refresh the chearful Sight,
Whilst Three Sharers in his Fate,
On th' Escape with Joy dilate,
Beds of Moss their Bodies bore,
Canopy'd with Ivy o'er;
Rising Springs, that round them play'd,
O'er the native Pavement stray'd;
When the Hour arriv'd to Dine,
Various Meats, and sprightly Wine,
On some neighb'ring Cliff they spy'd;
Every Day a-new supply'd
By a Friend's entrusted Care;
Had He still continu'd there,
Made that lonely wond'rous Cave
Both his Palace, and his Grave;
Peace and Rest he might have found,
(Peace and Rest are under Ground)
Nor have been in that Retreat,
Fam'd for a Proverbial Fate;
In pursuit of Wealth been caught,
And punish'd with a golden Draught.
Nor had (4) He, who Crowds cou'd blind,
Whisp'ring with a snowy Hind,
Made 'em think that from above,
(Like the great Imposter's Dove)
Tydings to his Ears she brought,
Rules by which he march'd and fought,
After Spain he had o'er-run,
Cities sack'd, and Battles won,
Drove Rome's Consuls from the Field,
Made her darling Pompey yield,
At a fatal, treacherous Feast,
Felt a Dagger in his Breast;
Had he his once-pleasing Thought
Of Solitude to Practice brought;
Had no wild Ambition sway'd;
In those Islands had he stay'd,
Justly call'd the Seats of Rest,
Truly (5) Fortunate, and Blest,
By the ancient Poets giv'n
As their best discover'd Heav'n.
Let me then, indulgent Fate!
Let me still, in my Retreat,
From all roving Thoughts be freed,
Or Aims, that may Contention breed:
Nor be my Endeavours led
By Goods, that perish with the Dead!
Fitly might the Life of Man
Be indeed esteem'd a Span,
If the present Moment were
Of Delight his only Share;
If no other Joys he knew
Than what round about him grew:
But as those, who Stars wou'd trace
From a subterranean Place,
Through some Engine lift their Eyes
To the outward, glorious Skies;
So th' immortal Spirit may,
When descended to our Clay,
From a rightly govern'd Frame
View the Height, from whence she came;
To her Paradise be caught,
And things unutterable taught.
Given me then, in that Retreat,
Give me, O indulgent Fate!
For all Pleasures left behind,
Contemplations of the Mind.
Let the Fair, the Gay, the Vain
Courtship and Applause obtain;
Let th' Ambitious rule the Earth;
Let the giddy Fool have Mirth;
Give the Epicure his Dish,
Ev'ry one their sev'ral Wish;
Whilst my Transports I employ
On that more extensive Joy,
When all Heaven shall be survey'd
From those Windings and that Shade.
|(1)||Josephus says, that every Monday Solomon went to the House of Lebanon in an open Chariot, cloath'd in a Robe most dazling White, which makes that Allusion not improper, and may give us Grounds to believe that the Lilly mention'd by our Saviour (compar'd to Solomon in his Glory) might really be the common white Lilly, altho' the Commentators seem in doubt what Flowers are truly meant by the Lillies, as thinking the plain Lilly not gay enough for the Comparison; whereas this Garment is noted by Josephus to be wonderfully beautiful tho' only White; nor can any Flower, I believe, have a greater Lustre than the common white Lilly.|
|(2)||These Circumstances are related by Plutarch in the Life of Sylla.|
|(3)||The Description of this Cave, is exactly taken from Plutarch in the Life of Crassus.|
|(5)||The Canary Islands, called by the Ancients the Fortunate Islands, and taken by some of the Poets for Elysium.|
But Merc'ry, who as Steward kept the Court,
So rack'd the Rent, that all who made Resort
Unsatisfy'd return'd, nor could agree
To use the Lands, or pay his secret Fee;
'Till one poor Clown (thought subt'ler than the rest,
Thro' various Projects rolling in his Breast)
Consents to take it, if at his Desire
All Weathers tow'rds his Harvest may conspire;
The Frost to kill the Worm, the brooding Snow,
The filling Rains may come, and Phoebus glow.
The Terms accepted, sign'd and seal'd the Lease,
His Neighbours Grounds afford their due Encrease
The Care of Heav'n; the Owner's Cares may cease.
Whilst the new Tenant, anxious in his Mind,
Now asks a Show'r, now craves a rustling Wind
To Raise what That had lodg'd, that he the Sheaves may bind.
The Sun, th'o'er-shadowing Clouds, the moistning Dews
He with such Contrariety does chuse;
So often and so oddly shifts the Scene,
Whilst others Load, he scarce has what to Glean.
O Jupiter! with Famine pinch'd he cries,
No more will I direct th' unerring Skies;
No more my Substance on a Project lay,
No more a sullen Doubt I will betray,
Let me but live to Reap, do Thou appoint the way.
The gilded Air about her Statue shines,
As if the Earth had lent it all her Mines;
At random Here a Diadem she flings,
And There a scarlet Hat with dangling Strings,
And to ten Thousand Fools ten Thousand glorious Things.
Shall I then stay at Home, Dull and Content
With Quarter-Days, and hard extorted Rent?
No, I'll to Horse, to Sea, to utmost Isles,
But I'll encounter her propitious Smiles:
Whilst you in slothful Ease may chuse to Sleep,
And scarce the few Paternal Acres keep.
Farewel, reply'd his Friend, may you advance,
And grow the Darling of this Lady Chance:
Whilst I indeed, not courting of her Grace,
Shall dwell content, in this my Native Place,
Hoping I still shall for your Friend be known:
But if too big for such Acquaintance grown,
I shan't be such a fond mistaken Sot,
To think Remembrance should become my Lot;
When you Exalted, have your self Forgot.
Nor me Ambitious ever shall you find,
Or hunting Fortune, who, they say, is Blind:
But if her Want of Sight shou'd make her Stray,
She shou'd be Welcome, if she came this way.
'Tis very like (the Undertaker cry'd)
That she her steps to these lost Paths shou'd guide:
But I lose Time, whilst I such Thoughts deride.
Away he goes, with Expectation chear'd,
But when his Course he round the World had steer'd,
And much had borne, and much had hop'd and fear'd,
Yet cou'd not be inform'd where he might find
This fickle Mistress of all Human-kind:
He quits at length the Chace of flying Game,
And back as to his Neighbor's House he came,
He there encounters the uncertain Dame;
Who lighting from her gaudy Coach in haste,
To him her eager Speeches thus addrest.
Fortune behold, who has been long pursu'd,
Whilst all the Men, that have my Splendors view'd,
Madly enamour'd, have such Flatt'ries forg'd,
And with such Lies their vain Pretensions urg'd,
That Hither I am fled to shun their Suits,
And by free Choice conclude their vain Disputes;
Whilst I the Owner of this Mansion bless,
And he unseeking Fortune shall possess.
Tho' rightly charg'd as something Dark of Sight,
Yet Merit, when 'tis found, is my Delight;
To Knaves and Fools, when I've some Grace allow'd,
'T has been like scattering Money in a Croud,
To make me Sport, as I beheld them strive,
And some observ'd (thro' Age) but Half-alive;
Scrambling amongst the Vigorous and Young,
One proves his Sword, and One his wheedling Tongue,
All striving to obtain me right or wrong;
Whilst Crowns, and Crosiers in the Contest hurl'd,
Shew'd me a Farce in the contending World.
Thou wert deluded, whilst with Ship, or Steed,
Thou lately didst attempt to reach my Speed,
And by laborious Toil, and endless Pains,
Didst sell thy Quiet for my doubtful Gains:
Whilst He alone my real Fav'rite rises,
Who every Thing to its just Value prizes,
And neither courts, nor yet my Gifts despises.
Brother, quoth he, (Love to endear)
Why shou'd We Two continue here,
To serve and cook such homely Cheer?
Who tho' we move with awkward pace,
Your stony Bowels, and my Face,
Abroad can't miss of Wealth and Place.
Then let us instantly be going,
And see what in the World is Doing.
The bloated Jugg, supine and lazy,
Who made no Wish, but to be easy,
Nor, like it's Owner, e'er did think
Of ought, but to be fill'd with Drink;
Yet something mov'd by this fine Story,
And frothing higher with Vain-glory,
Reply'd, he never wanted Metal,
But had not Sides, like sturdy Kettle,
That in a Croud cou'd shove and bustle,
And to Preferment bear the Justle;
When the first Knock would break His Measures,
And stop his Rise to Place and Treasures.
Sure (quoth the Pot ) thy Scull is thicker,
Than ever was thy muddiest Liquor:
Go I not with thee, for thy Guard,
To take off Blows, and Dangers ward?
And hast thou never heard, that Cully
Is borne thro' all by daring Bully?
Your self (reply'd the Drink-conveigher)
May be my Ruin and Betrayer:
A Superiority you boast,
And dress the Meat, I but the Toast:
Than mine your Constitution's stronger,
And in Fatigues can hold out longer;
And shou'd one Bang from you be taken,
I into Nothing shou'd be shaken.
A d'autre cry'd the Pot in scorn,
Dost think, there's such a Villain born,
That, when he proffers Aid and Shelter,
Will rudely fall to Helter-Skelter?
No more, but follow to the Road,
Where Each now drags his pond'rous Load,
And up the Hill were almost clamber'd,
When (may it ever be remember'd!)
Down rolls the Jugg, and after rattles
The most perfidious of all Kettles;
At every Molehill gives a Jump,
Nor rests, till by obdurate Thump,
The Pot of Stone, to shivers broken,
Sends each misguided Fool a Token:
To show them, by this fatal Test,
That Equal Company is best,
Where none Oppress, nor are Opprest.
Whilst, gentle Stower, thy Waters near them flow,
To beautify the Seats that crown thy Banks.
–In this Retreat
(1) Through Ages pass'd consign'd for Harbour meet,
And Place of sweet Repose to Wand'rers poor,
The weary Strolepedon felt that Ease,
Which many a dangerous Borough had deny'd
To him, and his Budgeta lov'd Compeer;
Nor Food was wanting to the happy Pair,
Who with meek Aspect, and precarious Tone,
Well suited to their Hunger and Degree,
Had mov'd the Hearts of hospitable Dames,
To furnish such Repast as Nature crav'd.
Whilst more to please the swarthy Bowl appears,
Replete with Liquor, globulous to fight,
And threat'ning Inundation o'er the Brim;
Yet, ere it to the longing Lips was rais'd
Of him who held it at its due Desert,
And more than all entreated Bounty priz'd,
Into the strong Profundity he throws
The floating Healths of Females, blith and young,
Who there had rendezvouz'd in past Delight,
And to stol'n Plenty added clamorous Mirth,
With Song and Dance, and every jovial Prank
Befitting buxom Crew, untied by Forms:
Whilst kind Budgeta nam'd such sturdy Youths,
As next into her tender Thoughts revolv'd,
And now were straggling East, and West, and South,
Hoof-beating, and at large, as Chance directs,
Still shifting Paths, lest Men (tho' stil'd of Peace)
Should urge their calmer Thoughts to Iron War,
Or force them to promote coercive Laws,
Beating that Hemp which oft entraps their Lives;
Or into Cordage pleated, and amass'd,
Deprives unruly Flesh of tempting Skin.
Thus kind Remembrance brought the Absent near
And hasten'd the Return of either's Pledge:
Brown were the Toasts, but not unsav'ry found
To Fancies clear'd by Exercise and Air,
Which the spirituous Nectar still improves,
And gliding now thro' every cherish'd Vein,
New Warmth diffus'd, new Cogitations bred,
With Self-conceit of Person, and of Parts.
When Strolepedon (late distorted Wight,
Limb-wanting to the View, and all mis-shap'd)
Permits a pinion'd Arm to fill the Sleeve,
Erst pendant, void, and waving with the Wind,
The Timber-Leg obsequiously withdraws,
And gives to that of Bone Precedence due.
Thus undisguis'd that Form again he wears,
Which Damsel fond had drawn from houshold Toils,
And strict Behests of Parents, old and scorn'd;
Whilst farther yet his Intellects confess
The bouzy Spell dilated and inhans'd,
Ripe for Description, and sett Turns of Speech,
Which to Conjugal Spouse were thus addrest.
My Wife (acknowledg'd such thro' maunding Tribes,
As long as mutual Love, the only Law,
Of Hedge or Barn, can bind our easy Faiths)
Be thou observant of thy Husband's Voice,
Sole Auditor of Flights and Figures bold;
Know, that the Valley which we hence descry
Richly adorn'd, is Fanscomb-Bottom call'd:
But whether from these Walls it takes the Name,
Or they from that, let Antiquaries tell,
And Men, well-read in Stories obsolete,
Whilst such Denomination either claims,
As speaks Affinity contiguous–
Thence let thy scatter'd Sight, and oft-griev'd Smell
Engulf the Sweets, and Colours free dispos'd
To Flowers promiscuous, and redundant Plants.
And (if the drouzy Vapour will admit,
Which from the Bowl soon triumphs o'er thy Lidds,
And Thee the weaker Vessel still denotes)
With Looks erect observe the verdant Slope
Of graceful Hills, fertile in Bush and Brake,
Whose Height attain'd, th' expatiated Downs
Shall wider Scenes display of rural Glee;
Where banner'd Lords, and fair escutcheon'd Knights,
With gentle Squires, and the Staff-griping Clown,
Pursue the trembling Prey impetuous;
Which yet escaping, when the Night returns,
And downy Beds enfold their careless Limbs,
More wakeful Trundle (Knapsack-bearing Cur)
Follows the Scent untrac'd by nobler Hounds,
And brings to us the Fruit of all their Toil.
Thus sung the Bard, whom potent Liquor rais'd,
Nor so contented, wish'd sublimer Aid.
Ye Wits! (he cry'd) ye Poets! (Loiterers vain,
Who like to us, in Idleness and Want
Consume fantastick Hours) hither repair,
And tell to list'ning Mendicants the Cause
Of Wonders, here observ'd but not discuss'd:
(2) Where, the White Sparrow never soil'd her Plumes,
Nor the dull Russet cloaths the Snowy Mouse.
To Helicon you might the Spring compare,
(3) That flows near Pickersdane renowned Stream,
Which, for Disport and Play, the Youths frequent,
Who, train'd in Learned School of ancient Wye,
First at this Fount suck in the Muses Lore,
When mixt with Product of the Indian Cane,
They drink delicious Draughts, and part inspir'd,
Fit for the Banks of Isis, or of Cham,
(For Cham, and Isis to the Bard were known,
A Servitor, when young in College-Hall,
Tho' vagrant Liberty he early chose,
Who yet, when Drunk, retain'd Poetick Phrase.)
(4) Nor shou'd (quoth he) that Well, o'erhung with shade,
Amidst those neighb'ring Trees of dateless growth,
Be left unfathom'd by your nicer Skill
Who thence cou'd extricate a thousand Charms,
Or to oblivious Lethe might convert
The stagnant Waters of the sleepy Pool.
But most unhappy was that Morphean Sound
For lull'd Budgeta, who had long desir'd
Dismission fair from Tales, not throughly scann'd,
Thinking her Love a Sympathy confest,
When the Word Sleepy parted from his Lips,
Sunk affable and easy to that Rest,
Which Straw affords to Minds, unvex'd with Cares.
|(1)||Fanscomb-Barn, near Wye in Kent, is a privileg'd Retreat for Beggars.|
|(2)||Fanscomb-Barn is famous for breeding White Sparrows and White Mice.|
|(3)||Pickersdane, is a Point of Wye-Downs, where there is an excellent Spring, much frequented by the Scholars of the Free-School at Wye; who meet there, to drink the Water with Sugar; which has been an ancient Custom, and a great Diversion to them.|
|(4)||A very deep Well, within a little Wood near Fanscomb Barn.|
THUS Tapistry of old, the Walls adorn'd,
Ere noblest Dames the artful Shuttle scorn'd:
Arachne, then, with Pallas did contest,
And scarce th' Immortal Work was judg'd the Best.
Nor valorous Actions, then, in Books were fought;
But all the Fame, that from the Field was brought,
Employ'd the Loom, where the kind Consort wrought:
Whilst sharing in the Toil, she shar'd the Fame,
And with the Heroes mixt her interwoven Name.
No longer, Females to such Praise aspire,
And seldom now We rightly do admire.
So much, All Arts are by the Men engross'd,
And Our few Talents unimprov'd or cross'd;
Even I, who on this Subject wou'd compose,
Which the fam'd Urbin for his Pencil chose,
(And here, in tinctur'd Wool we now behold
Correctly follow'd in each Shade, and Fold)
Shou'd prudently from the Attempt withdraw,
But Inclination proves the stronger Law:
And tho' the Censures of the World pursue
These hardy Flights, whilst his Designs I view;
My burden'd Thoughts, which labour for a Vent,
Urge me t'explain in Verse, what by each Face is meant.
Of SERGIUS first, upon his lofty Seat,
With due Regard our Observations treat;
Who, whilst he thence on ELYMAS looks down,
Contracts his pensive Brow into a Frown,
With Looks inquistive he seeks the Cause
Why Nature acts not still by Natures Laws.
'Twas but a Moment, since the Sorcerer's Sight
Receiv'd the Day, and blaz'd infernal Light:
Untouch'd, the Optiques in a Moment fail'd,
Their fierce Illumination quench'd, or veil'd;
Throughout th' Extention of his ample Sway,
No Fact, like this, the Roman cou'd survey,
Who, with spread Hands, invites Mankind to gaze,
And sympathize in the profound Amaze.
To share his Wonder every one combines,
By diff'rent Aspects shewn, and diff'rent Signs.
A comely Figure, near the Consul plac'd,
With serious Mildness and Instruction grac'd,
To Others seems imparting what he saw,
And shews the Wretch with reverential Awe:
Whilst a more eager Person next we find,
Viewing the Wizard with a Skeptic's Mind;
Who his fixt Eyes so near him do's apply,
We think, enliv'ning Beams might from them fly,
To re-inkindle, by so just an Aim,
The radial Sparks, but lately check'd and tame,
As Tapers new put-out will catch approaching Flame.
But dire Surprize th' Enquiry do's succeed,
Whilst full Conviction in his Face we read,
And He, who question'd, now deplores the Deed.
To sacred PAUL a younger Figure guides,
With seeming Warmth, which still in Youth presides;
And pointing forward, Elder Men directs,
In Him, to note the Cause of these Effects;
Upon whose Brow do's evidently shine
Deputed Pow'r, t' inflict the Wrath Divine;
Whilst sad and solemn, suited to their Years,
Each venerable Countenance appears,
Where, yet we see Astonishment reveal'd,
Tho' by the Aged often 'tis conceal'd;
Who the Emotions of their Souls disguize,
Lest by admiring they shou'd seem less Wise.
But to thy Portrait, ELYMAS, we come
Whose Blindness almost strikes the Poet dumb;
And whilst She vainly to Describe thee seeks,
The Pen but traces, where the Pencil speaks.
Of Darkness to be felt, our Scriptures write,
Thou Darken'd seem'st, as thou would'st feel the Light;
And with projected Limbs, betray'st a Dread,
Of unseen Mischiefs, levell'd at thy Head.
Thro' all thy Frame such Stupefaction reigns,
As Night it self were sunk into thy Veins:
Nor by the Eyes alone thy Loss we find,
Each Lineament helps to proclaim thee Blind.
An artful Dimness far diffus'd we grant,
And failing seem all Parts through One important Want.
Oh! Mighty RAPHAEL, justly sure renown'd!
Since in thy Works such Excellence is found;
No Wonder, if with Nature Thou'rt at strife,
Who thus can paint the Negatives of Life;
And Deprivation more expressive make,
Than the most perfect Draughts, which Others take.
Whilst to this Chiefest Figure of the Piece,
All that surround it, Heightnings do encrease:
In some, Amazement by Extreams is shewn,
Who viewing his clos'd Lids, extend their Own.
Nor can, by that, enough their Thoughts express,
Which op'ning Months seem ready to confess.
Thus stand the LICTORS gazing on a Deed,
Which do's all humane Chastisements exceed;
Enfeebl'd seem their Instruments of smart,
When keener Words can swifter Ills impart.
Thou, BARNABAS, though Last, not least our Care,
Seem'st equally employ'd in Praise, and Prayer,
Acknowledging th' Omnipotent Decree,
Yet soft Compassion in thy Face we see;
Whilst lifted Hands implore a kind Relief,
Tho' no Impatience animates thy Grief;
But mild Suspence and Charity benign,
Do all th' excesses of thy Looks confine.
Thus far, our slow Imagination goes:
Wou'd the more skill'd THEANOR his disclose;
Expand the Scene, and open to our Sight
What to his nicer Judgement gives Delight;
Whose soaring Mind do's to Perfections climb,
Nor owns a Relish, but for Things sublime:
Then, wou'd the Piece fresh Beauties still present,
Nor Length of Time wou'd leave the Eye content:
As moments, Hours; as Hours the Days wou'd seem,
Observing here, taught to observe by HIM.
Led to the Onset by a Chosen Few,
Who at the treacherous Signal, soon withdrew;
Nor to his Rescue e'er return'd again,
Till by fierce Ammon's Sword they saw the Victim slain.
'Tis pass'd, 'tis done! the holy Marriage-Knot,
Too strong to be unty'd, at last is cut.
And now to Bathsheba the King declares,
That with his Heart, the Kingdom too is hers;
That Israel's Throne, and longing Monarch's Arms
Are to be fill'd but with her widow'd Charms.
Nor must the Days of formal Tears exceed,
To cross the Living, and abuse the Dead.
This she denies; and signs of Grief are worn;
But mourns no more than may her Face adorn,
Give to those Eyes, which Love and Empire fir'd,
A melting Softness more to be desir'd;
Till the fixt Time, tho' hard to be endur'd,
Was pass'd, and a sad Consort's Name procur'd:
When, with the Pomp that suits a Prince's Thought,
By Passion sway'd, and glorious Woman taught,
A Queen she's made, than Michal seated higher,
Whilst light unusual Airs prophane the hallow'd Lyre.
Where art thou Nathan? where's that Spirit now,
Giv'n to brave Vice, tho' on a Prince's Brow?
In what low Cave, or on what Desert Coast,
Now Virtue wants it, is thy Presence lost?
But lo! he comes, the Rev'rend Bard appears,
Defil'd with Dust his awful silver Hairs,
And his rough Garment, wet with falling Tears.
The King this mark'd, and conscious wou'd have fled,
The healing Balm which for his Wounds was shed:
Till the more wary Priest the Serpents Art,
Join'd to the Dove-like Temper of his Heart,
And thus retards the Prince just ready now to part.
Hear me, the Cause betwixt two Neighbors hear,
Thou, who for Justice dost the Sceptre bear:
Help the Opprest, nor let me weep alone
For him, that calls for Succour from the Throne.
Good Princes for Protection are Ador'd,
And Greater by the Shield, than by the Sword.
This clears the Doubt, and now no more he fears
The Cause his Own, and therefore stays and hears:
When thus the Prophet: –
–In a flow'ry Plain
A King-like Man does in full Plenty reign;
Casts round his Eyes, in vain, to reach the Bound,
Which Jordan's Flood sets to his fertile Ground:
Countless his Flocks, whilst Lebanon contains
A Herd as large, kept by his numerous Swains,
That fill with morning Bellowings the cool Air,
And to the Cedar's shade at scorching Noon repair.
Near to this Wood a lowly Cottage stands,
Built by the humble Owner's painful Hands;
Fenc'd by a Stubble-roof, from Rain and Heat,
Secur'd without, within all Plain and Neat.
A Field of small Extent surrounds the Place,
In which One single Ewe did sport and graze:
This his whole Stock, till in full time there came,
To bless his utmost Hopes, a snowy Lamb;
Which, lest the Season yet too Cold might prove,
And Northern Blasts annoy it from the Grove,
Or tow'ring Fowl on the weak Prey might sieze,
(For with his Store his Fears must too increase)
He brings it Home, and lays it by his Side,
At once his Wealth, his Pleasure and his Pride;
Still bars the Door, by Labour call'd away,
And, when returning at the Close of Day,
With One small Mess himself, and that sustains,
And half his Dish it shares, and half his slender Gains.
When to the great Man's table now there comes
A Lord as great, follow'd by hungry Grooms:
For these must be provided sundry Meats,
The best for Some, for Others coarser Cates.
One Servant, diligent above the rest
To help his Master to contrive the Feast,
Extols the Lamb was nourished with such Care,
So fed, so lodg'd, it must be Princely Fare;
And having this, my Lord his own may spare.
In haste he sends, led by no Law, but Will,
Not to entreat, or purchase, but to Kill.
The Messenger's arriv'd: the harmless Spoil,
Unus'd to fly, runs Bleating to the Toil:
Whilst for the Innocent the Owner fear'd,
And, sure wou'd move, cou'd Poverty be heard.
Oh spare (he cries) the Product of my Cares,
My Stock's Encrease, the Blessing on my Pray'rs;
My growing Hope, and Treasure of my Life!
More was he speaking, when the murd'ring Knife
Shew'd him, his Suit, tho' just, must be deny'd,
And the white Fleece in its own Scarlet dy'd;
Whilst the poor helpless Wretch stands weeping by,
And lifts his Hands for Justice to the Sky.
Which he shall find, th' incensed King replies,
When for the proud Offence th' Oppressor dies.
O Nathan! by the Holy Name I swear,
Our Land such Wrongs unpunished shall not bear
If, with the Fault, th' Offender thou declare.
To whom the Prophet, closing with the Time,
Thou art the Man replies, and thine th' ill-natur'd Crime.
Nor think, against thy Place, or State, I err;
A Pow'r above thee does this Charge prefer;
Urg'd by whose Spirit, hither am I brought
T' expostulate his Goodness and thy Fault;
To lead thee back to those forgotten Years,
In Labour spent, and lowly Rustick Cares,
When in the Wilderness thy Flocks but few,
Thou didst the Shepherd's simple Art pursue
Thro' crusting Frosts, and penetrating Dew:
Till wondring Jesse saw six Brothers past,
And Thou Elected, Thou the Least and Last;
A Sceptre to thy Rural Hand convey'd,
And in thy Bosom Royal Beauties laid;
A lovely Princess made thy Prize that Day,
When on the shaken Ground the Giant lay
Stupid in Death, beyond the Reach of Cries
That bore thy shouted Fame to list'ning Skies,
And drove the flying Foe as fast away,
As Winds, of old, Locusts to Egypt's Sea.
Thy Heart with Love, thy Temples with Renown,
Th' All-giving Hand of Heav'n did largely crown,
Whilst yet thy Cheek was spread with youthful Down.
What more cou'd craving Man of God implore?
Or what for favour'd Man cou'd God do more?
Yet cou'd not These, nor Israel's Throne, suffice
Intemp'rate Wishes, drawn thro' wand'ring Eyes.
One Beauty (not thy own) and seen by chance,
Melts down the Work of Grace with an alluring Glance;
Chafes the Spirit, fed by sacred Art,
And blots the Title AFTER GOD'S OWN HEART;
Black Murder breeds to level at his Head,
Who boasts so fair a Part'ner of his Bed,
Nor longer must possess those envy'd Charms,
The single Treasure of his House, and Arms:
Giving, by this thy Fall, cause to Blaspheme
To all the Heathen the Almighty Name.
For which the Sword shall still thy Race pursue,
And, in revolted Israel's scornful View,
Thy captiv'd Wives shall be in Triumph led
Unto a bold Usurper's shameful Bed;
Who from thy Bowels sprung shall seize thy Throne,
And scourge thee by a Sin beyond thy own.
Thou hast thy Fault in secret Darkness done;
But this the World shall see before the Noonday's Sun.
Enough! the King, enough! the Saint replies,
And pours his swift Repentance from his Eyes;
Falls on the Ground, and tears the Nuptial Vest,
By which his Crime's Completion was exprest:
Then with a Sigh blasting to Carnal Love,
Drawn deep as Hell, and piercing Heaven, above
Let Me (he cries) let Me attend his Rod,
For I have sinn'd, for I have lost my God.
Hold! (says the Prophet ) of that Speech beware,
God ne'er was lost, unless by Man's Despair.
The Wound that is thus willingly reveal'd,
Th' Almighty is as willing should be heal'd.
Thus wash'd in Tears, thy Soul as fair does show
As the first Fleece, which on the Lamb does grow,
Or on the Mountain's top the lately fallen Snow.
Yet to the World that Justice may appear
Acting her Part impartial, and severe,
The Offspring of thy Sin shall soon resign
That Life, for which thou must not once repine;
But with submissive Grief his Fate deplore,
And bless the Hand, that does inflict no more.
Shall I then pay but Part, and owe the Whole?
My Body's Fruit, for my offending Soul?
Shall I no more endure (the King demands)
And 'scape thus lightly his offended Hands?
Oh! let him All resume, my Crown, my Fame;
Reduce me to the Nothing, whence I came;
Call back his Favours, faster than he gave;
And, if but Pardon'd, strip me to my Grave:
Since (tho' he seems to Lose ) He surely Wins,
Who gives but earthly Comforts for his Sins.
'Twas Heav'ns Decree, that I should thus succeed,
Whose following Favour justifies the Deed,
Extending my unlimited Command
From Sea to Sea o'er the obedient Land:
Whilst your Jerusalem all Peace enjoys,
Nor now the' encroaching Philistine destroys,
Nor wandring Arab his Pavilion spreads,
Near Jordan's Banks, nor wastes his flow'ry Meads.
The great Assyrian, Terror of your Kings,
Who bought his Friendship with their holiest Things,
Yields that a Sister, of his pow'rful Race,
Should sway these Realms, and dignify the Place.
Nor need we add the late insulting Foe,
The furious Jehu does this Sceptre know,
And sinks beneath the Load of conscious Fears,
When in Samaria he my Actions hears.
Distrest by Foes, which I've against him rais'd,
He sees me unmolested, fix'd, and pleas'd;
At least, till now thus glorious was my State;
But something's threatned from relaxing Fate,
And the last Night, which should have brought me Rest,
Has all these great Ideas dispossest.
A Dream, a Vision, an apparent View
Of what, methinks, does still my Steps pursue,
Hangs on my pensive Heart, and bears it down
More than the weight of an objected Crown,
My Mother (be the Name with Rev'rence spoke!)
Ere chearful Day thro' horrid Shades had broke,
Approach'd my Bed, magnificent her Dress,
Her Shape, her Air did Jesabel confess:
Nor seem'd her Face to have refus'd that Art,
Which, in despight of Age, does Youth impart,
And which she practis'd, scorning to decay,
Or to be vanquish'd ev'n in Nature's way.
Thus all array'd, in such defying Pride
As when th' injurious Conqu'ror she descry'd,
And did in height of Pow'r for ill-got Pow'r deride.
To me she spake, these Accents to me came:
"Thou worthy Daughter of my soaring Fame,
"Tho' with a more transcendent Spirit fill'd,
"Tho' struggling Pow'rs attempt thy Life to shield,
"The Hebrew's God (Oh, tremble at the sound!)
"Shall Thee and Them, and all their Rights confound.
A pitying Groan concludes, no Word of Aid.
My Arms I thought to throw about the Shade
Of that lov'd Parent, but my troubled Sight
No more directed them to aim aright,
Nor ought presented, but a heap of Bones,
For which fierce Dogs contended on the Stones,
With Flakes of mangled Flesh, that quiv'ring still
Proclaim'd the Freshness of the suffer'd Ill;
Distain'd with Blood the Pavement, and the Wall,
Appear'd as in that memorable Fall–
Thy fond Delusions cheat the Eyes,
Before them antick Spectres dance,
Unusual Fires their pointed Heads advance,
And airy Phantoms rise.
Such was the monstrous Vision seen,
When Brutus (now beneath his Cares opprest,
And all Rome's Fortunes rolling in his Breast,
Before Philippi's latest Field,
Before his Fate did to Octavius lead)
Was vanquish'd by the Spleen.
Falsly, the Mortal Part we blame
Of our deprest, and pond'rous Frame,
Which, till the First degrading Sin
Let Thee, its dull Attendant, in,
Still with the Other did comply,
Nor clogg'd the Active Soul, dispos'd to fly,
And range the Mansions of it's native Sky.
Nor, whilst in his own Heaven he dwelt,
Whilst Man his Paradice possest,
His fertile Garden in the fragrant East,
And all united Odours smelt,
No armed Sweets, until thy Reign,
Cou'd shock the Sense, or in the Face
A flusht, unhandsom Colour place.
Now the Jonquille o'ercomes the feeble Brain;
We faint beneath the Aromatick Pain, 
Till some offensive Scent thy Pow'rs appease,
And Pleasure we resign for short, and nauseous Ease.
In ev'ry One thou dost possess,
New are thy Motions, and thy Dress:
Now in some Grove a list'ning Friend
Thy false Suggestions must attend,
Thy whisper'd Griefs, thy fancy'd Sorrows hear,
Breath'd in a Sigh, and witness'd by a Tear;
Whilst in the light, and vulgar Croud,
Thy Slaves, more clamorous and loud,
By Laughters unprovok'd, thy Influence too confess.
In the Imperious Wife thou Vapours art,
Which from o'erheated Passions rise
In Clouds to the attractive Brain,
Until descending thence again,
Thro' the o'er-cast, and show'ring Eyes,
Upon her Husband's soften'd Heart,
He the disputed Point must yield,
Something resign of the contested Field;
Til Lordly Man, born to Imperial Sway,
Compounds for Peace, to make that Right away,
And Woman, arm'd with Spleen, do's servilely Obey.
The Fool, to imitate the Wits,
Complains of thy pretended Fits,
And Dulness, born with him, wou'd lay
Upon thy accidental Sway;
Because, sometimes, thou dost presume
Into the ablest Heads to come:
That, often, Men of Thoughts refin'd,
Impatient of unequal Sence,
Such slow Returns, where they so much dispense,
Retiring from the Croud, are to thy Shades inclin'd.
O'er me, alas! thou dost too much prevail:
I feel thy Force, whilst I against thee rail;
I feel my Verse decay, and my crampt Numbers fail.
Thro' thy black Jaundice I all Objects see,
As Dark, and Terrible as Thee,
My Lines decry'd, and my Employment thought
An useless Folly, or presumptuous Fault:
Whilst in the Muses Paths I stray,
Whilst in their Groves, and by their secret Springs
My Hand delights to trace unusual Things,
And deviates from the known, and common way;
Nor will in fading Silks compose
Faintly th' inimitable Rose,
Fill up an ill-drawn Bird, or paint on Glass
The Sov'reign's blurr'd and undistinguish'd Face,
The threatning Angel, and the speaking Ass.
Patron thou art to ev'ry gross Abuse,
The sullen Husband's feign'd Excuse,
When the ill Humour with his Wife he spends,
And bears recruited Wit, and Spirits to his Friends.
The Son of Bacchus pleads thy Pow'r,
As to the Glass he still repairs,
Pretends but to remove thy Cares,
Snatch from thy Shades one gay, and smiling Hour,
And drown thy Kingdom in a purple Show'r.
When the Coquette, whom ev'ry Fool admires,
Wou'd in Variety be Fair,
And, changing hastily the Scene
From Light, Impertinent, and Vain,
Assumes a soft, a melancholy Air,
And of her Eyes rebates the wand'ring Fires,
The careless Posture, and the Head reclin'd,
The thoughtful, and composed Face,
Proclaiming the withdrawn, the absent Mind,
Allows the Fop more liberty to gaze,
Who gently for the tender Cause inquires;
The Cause, indeed, is a Defect in Sense,
Yet is the Spleen alleg'd, and still the dull Pretence.
But these are thy fantastic Harms,
The Tricks of thy pernicious Stage,
Which do the weaker Sort engage;
Worse are the dire Effects of thy more pow'rful Charms.
By Thee Religion, all we know,
That shou'd enlighten here below,
Is veil'd in Darkness, and perplext
With anxious Doubts, with endless Scruples vext,
And some Restraint imply'd from each perverted Text.
Whilst Touch not, Taste not, what is freely giv'n,
Is but thy niggard Voice, disgracing bounteous Heav'n.
From Speech restrain'd, by thy Deceits abus'd,
To Desarts banish'd, or in Cells reclus'd,
Mistaken Vot'ries to the Pow'rs Divine,
Whilst they a purer Sacrifice design,
Do but the Spleen obey, and worship at thy Shrine.
In vain to chase thee ev'ry Art we try,
In vain all Remedies apply,
In vain the Indian Leaf infuse,
Or the parch'd Eastern Berry bruise;
Some pass, in vain, those Bounds, and nobler Liquors use.
Now Harmony, in vain, we bring,
Inspire the Flute, and touch the String.
From Harmony no help is had;
Musick but soothes thee, if too sweetly sad,
And if too light, but turns thee gayly Mad.
Tho' the Physicians greatest Gains,
Altho' his growing Wealth he sees
Daily increas'd by Ladies Fees,
Yet dost thou baffle all his studious Pains.
Not skilful Lower thy Source cou'd find,
Or thro' the well-dissected Body trace
The secret, the mysterious ways,
By which thou dost surprize, and prey upon the Mind.
Tho' in the Search, too deep for Humane Thought,
With unsuccessful Toil he wrought,
'Til thinking Thee to've catch'd, Himself by thee was caught,
Retain'd thy Pris'ner, thy acknowleg'd Slave,
And sunk beneath thy Chain to a lamented Grave.
'Till o'er my Head (to stop the swift Despair)
The Bird of Jove fans the supporting Air,
Above my Plume does his broad Wings display,
And follows wheresoe'er I force my way:
Whilst Aristander, in his Robe of White,
Shews to the wav'ring Host th' auspicious Sight;
New Courage it inspires in ev'ry Breast,
And wins at once the Empire of the East.
Cou'd He, but now, some kind Presage afford,
That Health might be again to Thee restor'd;
Thou to my Wishes, to my fond Embrace;
Thy Looks the same, the same Majestick Grace,
That round thee shone, when we together went
To chear the Royal Captives in their Tent,
Where Sysigambis, prostrate on the Floor,
Did Alexander in thy Form adore;
Above great Æsculapius shou'd he stand,
Or made immortal by Apelles Hand.
But no reviving Hope his Art allows,
And such cold Damps invade my anxious Brows,
As, when in Cydnus plung'd, I dar'd the Flood
T' o'er-match the Boilings of my youthful Blood.
But Philip to my Aid repair'd in haste;
And whilst the proffer'd Draught I boldly taste,
As boldly He the dangerous Paper views,
Which of hid Treasons does his Fame accuse.
More thy Physician's Life on Thine depends,
And what he gives, his Own preserves, or ends.
If thou expir'st beneath his fruitless Care,
To Rhadamanthus shall the Wretch repair,
And give strict Answer for his Errors there.
Near thy Pavilion list'ning Princes wait,
Seeking from thine to learn their Monarch's State.
Submitting Kings, that post from Day to Day,
To keep those Crowns, which at my Feet they lay,
Forget th' ambitious Subject of their Speed,
And here arriv'd, only Thy Dangers heed.
The Beauties of the Clime, now Thou'rt away,
Droop, and retire, as if their God of Day
No more upon their early Pray'rs would shine,
Or take their Incense, at his late Decline.
Thy Parisatis whom I fear to name,
Lest to thy Heat it add redoubl'd Flame;
Thy lovely Wife, thy Parisatis weeps,
And in her Grief a solemn Silence keeps.
Stretch'd in her Tent, upon the Floor she lies,
So pale her Looks, so motionless her Eyes,
As when they gave thee leave at first to gaze
Upon the Charms of her unguarded Face;
When the beauteous Sisters lowly knelt,
And su'd to those, who more than Pity felt.
To chear her now Statira vainly proves,
And at thy Name alone she sighs, and moves.
But why these single Griefs shou'd I expose?
The World no Mirth, no War, no Bus'ness knows,
But, hush'd with Sorrow stands, to favour thy Repose.
Ev'n I my boasted Title now resign,
Not Ammon's Son, nor born of Race Divine,
But Mortal all, oppress'd with restless Fears,
Wild with my Cares, and Womanish in Tears.
Tho' Tears, before, I for lost Clytus shed,
And wept more Drops, than the old Hero bled;
Ev'n now, methinks, I see him on the Ground,
Now my dire Arms the wretched Corpse surround,
Now the fled Soul I wooe, now rave upon the Wound.
Yet He, for whom this mighty Grief did spring,
Not Alexander valu'd, but the King.
Then think, how much that Passion must transcend,
Which not a Subject raises but a Friend:
An equal Partner in the vanquished Earth,
A Brother, not impos'd upon my Birth,
Too weak a Tye unequal Thoughts to bind,
But by the gen'rous Motions of the Mind.
My Love to thee for Empire was the Test,
Since him, who from Mankind cou'd chuse the best,
The Gods thought only fit for Monarch o'er the rest.
Live then, my Friend; but if that must not be,
Nor Fate will with my boundless Mind agree,
Affording, at one time, the World and Thee;
To the most Worthy I'll that Sway resign,
And in Elysium keep Hyphæstion mine.
Cupid then her Sight directed
To a lately Wedded Pair;
Where Himself the Match effected;
They as Youthful, they as Fair.
Having by Example carry'd
This first Point in the Dispute;
WORSELEY next he said's not Marry'd:
Her's with Cupid's Charms may suit.
On the Banks of the Severn a desperate Maid
(Whom some Shepherd, neglecting his Vows, had betray'd,)
Stood resolving to banish all Sense of the Pain,
And pursue, thro' her Death, a Revenge on the Swain.
Since the Gods, and my Passion, at once he defies;
Since his Vanity lives, whilst my Character dies;
No more (did she say) will I trifle with Fate,
But commit to the Waves both my Love and my Hate.
And now to comply with that furious Desire,
Just ready to plunge, and alone to expire,
Some Reflection on Death, and its Terrors untry'd,
Some Scorn for the Shepherd, some Flashings of Pride
At length pull'd her back, and she cry'd, Why this Strife,
Since the Swains are so Many, and I've but One Life?
'Twas, sure, for every Mortals good,
When, by wrong painting of her Brood,
She doom'd them for the Eagle's Food:
Who proffer'd Safety to her Tribe,
Wou'd she but shew them or describe,
And serving him, his Favour bribe.
When thus she did his Highness tell;
In Looks my Young do all excel,
Nor Nightingales can sing so well.
You'd joy to see the pretty Souls,
With wadling Steps and frowzy Poles,
Come creeping from their secret Holes.
But I ne'er let them take the Air,
The Fortune-hunters do so stare;
And Heiresses indeed they are.
This ancient Yew three hundred Years,
Has been possess'd by Lineal Heirs:
The Males extinct, now All is Theirs.
I hope I've done their Beauties right,
Whose Eyes outshine the Stars by Night;
Their Muffs and Tippets too are White.
The King of Cedars wav'd his Power,
And swore he'd fast ev'n from that Hour,
Ere he'd such Lady Birds devour.
Th' Agreement seal'd, on either part,
The Owl now promis'd, from her Heart,
All his Night-Dangers to divert;
As Centinel to stand and whoop,
If single Fowl, or Shoal, or Troop
Should at his Palace aim or stoop.
But home, one Evening without Meat,
The Eagle comes, and takes his Seat,
Where they did these Conditions treat.
The Mother-Owl was prol'd away,
To seek abroad for needful Prey,
And forth the Misses came to play.
What's here! the hungry Monarch cry'd,
When near him living Flesh he spy'd,
With which he hop'd to be supply'd.
But recollecting, 'twas the Place,
Where he'd so lately promis'd Grace
To an enchanting, beauteous Race;
He paus'd a while, and kept his Maw,
With sober Temperance, in awe,
Till all their Lineaments he saw.
What are these Things, and of what Sex,
At length he cry'd, with Vultur's Becks, 
And Shoulders higher than their Necks?
These wear no Palatines, nor Muffs, 
Italian Silks, or Doyley Stuffs,
But motley Callicoes, and Ruffs.
Nor Brightness in their Eyes is seen,
But through the Film a dusky Green,
And like old Margery is their Mien.
Then for my Supper they're design'd,
Nor can be of that lovely Kind,
To whom my Pity was inclin'd.
No more Delays; as soon as spoke,
The Plumes are stripped, the Grisles broke,
And near the Feeder was to choak.
When now return'd the grizly Dame,
(Whose Family was out of Frame)
Against League-Breakers does exclaim.
How! quoth the Lord of soaring Fowls,
(Whilst horribly she wails and howls)
Were then your Progeny but Owls?
I thought some Phoenix was their Sire,
Who did those charming Looks inspire,
That you'd prepar'd me to admire.
Upon your self the Blame be laid;
My Talons you've to Blood betray'd,
And ly'd in every Word you said.
Faces or Books, beyond their Worth extoll'd,
Are censur'd most, and thus to pieces pulled.
A youthful Smile adorn'd the Face,
The polish gave that Smile a Grace;
And through the Marble reigns
(Which well the Artist's Skill cou'd trace,
And in their due Positions place)
A Thread of purple Veins.
The Parasites about it came,
(Whose Praises were too large to name)
And to each other said;
The Man so well had reach'd his Aim,
Th' Original cou'd o'er it claim
Only a native Red.
Mean while a Sage, amidst the Croud,
Thus, with a Precept wise and loud,
Check'd the Vain-glorious Boy;
By telling him, who now grew proud,
That tho' with Beauty 'twas endow'd,
The Figure was a Toy:
Of no Advantage to the State,
'Twou'd neither combate, nor debate,
But idly stand alone;
Bids him beware, whilst Men create
In Stone thus his Resemblance great,
He proves not like the Stone.
Tho' it too often multiplies his Cares?
And who has greater Sense, but greater Sorrow shares?
This felt the Swine, now carrying to the Knife;
And whilst the Lamb and silent Goat
In the same fatal Cart lay void of Strife,
He widely stretches his foreboding Throat,
Deaf'ning the easy Crew with his outragious Note.
The angry Driver chides th'unruly Beast,
And bids him all this Noise forbear;
Nor be more loud, nor clamorous than the rest,
Who with him travel'd to the neighb'ring Fair.
And quickly shou'd arrive, and be unfetter'd there.
This, quoth the Swine, I do believe, is true,
And see we're very near the Town;
Whilst these poor Fools of short, and bounded View,
Think 'twill be well, when you have set them down,
And eas'd One of her Milk, the Other of her Gown.
But all the dreadful Butchers in a Row,
To my far-searching Thoughts appear,
Who know indeed, we to the Shambles go,
Whilst I, whom none but Belzebub wou'd shear,
Nor but his Dam wou'd milk, must for my Carcase fear.
But tell me then, will it prevent thy Fate?
The rude unpitying Farmer cries;
If not, the Wretch who tastes his Suff'rings late,
Not He, who thro' th'unhappy Future prys,
Must of the Two be held most Fortunate and Wise.
In vain the Phillis wept, which heretofore
Receiv'd his Presents, and his Garlands wore.
False and upbraided, he forsakes the Downs,
Nor courts her Smiles, nor fears the Ocean's Frowns.
For smooth it lay, as if one single Wave
Made all the Sea, nor Winds that Sea cou'd heave;
Which blew no more than might his Sails supply:
Clear was the Air below, and Phoebus laugh'd on high.
With this Advent'rer ev'ry thing combines,
And Gold to Gold his happy Voyage joins;
But not so prosp'rous was the next Essay,
For rugged Blasts encounter'd on the way,
Scarce cou'd the Men escape, the Deep had all their Prey.
Our broken Merchant in the Wreck was thrown
Upon those Lands, which once had been his own;
Where other Flocks now pastur'd on the Grass,
And other Corydons had woo'd his Lass.
A Servant, for small Profits, there he turns,
Yet thrives again, and less and less he mourns;
Re-purchases in time th'abandon'd Sheep,
Which sad Experience taught him now to keep.
When from that very Bank, one Halcyon Day,
On which he lean'd, when tempted to the Sea,
He notes a Calm; the Winds and Waves were still,
And promis'd what the Winds nor Waves fulfill,
A settl'd Quiet, and Conveyance sure,
To him that Wealth, by Traffick, wou'd procure.
But the rough part the Shepherd now performs,
Reviles the Cheat, and at the Flatt'ry storms.
Ev'n thus (quoth he) you seem'd all Rest and Ease,
You sleeping Tempests, you untroubl'd Seas,
That ne'er to be forgot, that luckless Hour,
In which I put my Fortunes in your Pow'r;
Quitting my slender, but secure Estate,
My undisturb'd Repose, my sweet Retreat,
For Treasures which you ravish'd in a Day,
But swept my Folly, with my Goods, away.
Then smile no more, nor these false Shews employ,
Thou momentary Calm, thou fleeting Joy;
No more on me shall these fair Signs prevail,
Some other Novice may be won to Sail,
Give me a certain Fate in the obscurest Vale.
That Shrub was qualify'd to Bite;
And now there went a Tale,
That this injurious partial Wight
Had bid his Gard'ner rid it quite,
And throw it o'er the Pail.
Often the Bry'r had wish'd to speak,
That this might not be done;
But from the Abject and the Weak,
Who no important Figure make,
What Statesman does not run?
But clinging now about his Waste,
Ere he had time to fly,
My Lord (quoth he) for all your haste,
I'll know why I must be displac'd,
And 'mongst the Rubbish lie.
Must none but buffle-headed Trees
Within your Ground be seen?
Or tap'ring Yews here court the Breeze,
That, like some Beaux whom Time does freeze,
At once look Old and Green?
I snarl, 'tis true, and sometimes scratch
A tender-footed Squire;
Who does a rugged Tartar catch,
When me he thinks to over-match,
And jeers for my Attire.
As to Yourself, who 'gainst me fret,
E'en give this Project o'er:
For know, where'er my Root is set,
These rambling Twigs will Passage get,
And vex you more and more.
No Wants, no Threatnings, nor the Jail
Will curb an angry Wit:
Then think not to chastise, or rail;
Appease the Man, if you'd prevail,
Who some sharp Satire writ.
Apart we'll live, tho' not alone;
For, who alone can call
Those, who in Desarts live with One,
If in that One they've All?
The World a vast Meander is,
Where Hearts confus'dly stray;
Where Few do hit, whilst Thousands miss
The happy mutual Way:
Where Hands are by stern Parents ty'd,
Who oft, in Cupid's Scorn,
Do for the widow'd State provide,
Before that Love is born:
Where some too soon themselves misplace;
Then in Another find
The only Temper, Wit, or Face,
That cou'd affect their Mind.
Others (but oh! avert that Fate!)
A well-chose Object change:
Fly, Silvia, fly, ere 'tis too late;
Fall'n Nature's prone to range.
And, tho' in heat of Love we swear
More than perform we can;
No Goddess, You, but Woman are,
And I no more than Man.
Th' impatient Silvia heard thus long;
Then with a Smile reply'd;
Those Bands cou'd ne'er be very strong,
Which Accidents divide.
Who e'er was mov'd yet to go down,
By such o'er-cautious Fear;
Or for one Lover left the Town,
Who might have Numbers here?
Your Heart, 'tis true, is worth them all,
And still preferr'd the first;
But since confess'd so apt to fall,
'Tis good to fear the worst.
In ancient History we meet
A flying Nymph betray'd;
Who, had she kept in fruitful Crete,
New Conquest might have made.
And sure, as on the Beach she stood,
To view the parting Sails;
She curs'd her self, more than the Flood,
Or the conspiring Gales.
False Theseus, since thy Vows are broke,
May following Nymphs beware:
Methinks I hear how thus she spoke,
And will not trust too far.
In Love, in Play, in Trade, in War
They best themselves acquit,
Who, tho' their Int'rests shipwreckt are,
Keep unreprov'd their Wit.
Gently thy fatal Sceptre on me lay,
And take to thy cold Arms, insensibly, thy Prey.
But Mob despis'd the little Cell,
That struck them with no Fear;
Whilst Others thought, there should not dwell
So great a Person there.
How shou'd a due Recourse be made
To One, so much Admir'd?
Where shou'd the spacious Cloth be laid,
Or where the Guests retir'd?
Believe me, quoth the list'ning Sage,
'Twas not to save the Charge;
That in this over-building Age,
My House was not more large.
But this for faithful Friends, and kind,
Was only meant by me;
Who fear that what too streight you find,
Must yet contracted be.
Truth an equal Part sustains,
All indulg'd the loosen'd Reins:
In the Box fits vig'rous Health,
Shunning miry Paths of Wealth:
Gaiety with easy Smiles,
Ev'ry harsher Step beguiles;
Whilst of Nature, or of Fate
Only This I wou'd intreat:
The Equipage might not decay,
Till the worn Carriage drops away.
Who follow'd him with utmost reach of Sight,
Then, lost in Tears, and in abandon'd Plight,
Turn'd to her mournful Cell, and bid the World Good-Night.
But Fortune, kinder than her boding Thought,
In little time the Vagrant homewards brought,
Rais'd in his Mind, and mended in his Dress,
Who the Bel-air did every way confess,
Had learnt to flow'r his Wigg, nor brusht away
The falling Meal, that on his Shoulders lay;
And from a Nutshell, wimbl'd by a Worm,
Took Snuff, and cou'd the Government reform.
The Mother, weeping from Maternal Love,
To see him thus prodigiously improve,
Expected mighty Changes too, within,
And Wisdom to avoid the Cat, and Gin.
Whom did you chiefly note, Sweetheart, quoth she,
Of all the Strangers you abroad did see?
Who grac'd you most, or did your Fancy take?
The younger Rat than curs'd a noisy Rake,
That barr'd the best Acquaintance he cou'd make;
And fear'd him so, he trembl'd ev'ry Part;
Nor to describe him, scarce cou'd have the Heart.
High on his Feet (quoth he) himself he bore,
And terribly, in his own Language, swore;
A feather'd Arm came out from either Side,
Which loud he clapp'd, and Combatants defy'd,
And to each Leg a Bayonette was ty'd:
And certainly his Head with Wounds was sore;
For That, and both his Cheeks a Sanguine Colour wore.
Near Him there lay the Creature I admir'd,
And for a Friend by Sympathy desir'd:
His Make, like Ours, as far as Tail and Feet,
With Coat of Furr in parallel do meet;
Yet seeming of a more exalted Race,
Tho' humble Meekness beautify'd his Face:
A purring Sound compos'd his gentle Mind,
Whilst frequent Slumbers did his Eye-lids bind;
Whose soft, contracted Paw lay calmly still,
As if unus'd to prejudice, or kill.
I paus'd a while, to meditate a Speech,
And now was stepping just within his reach;
When that rude Clown began his hect'ring Cry,
And made me for my Life, and from th' Attempt to fly.
Indeed 'twas Time, the shiv'ring Beldam said,
To scour the Plain, and be of Life afraid.
Thou base, degen'rate Seed of injur'd Rats,
Thou veriest Fool (she cry'd) of all my Brats;
Would'st thou have shaken Hands with hostile Cats,
And dost not yet thine Own, and Country's Foe,
At this expence of Time, and Travel know?
Alas! that swearing, staring, bullying Thing,
That tore his Throat, and blustered with his Wing,
Was but some paltry, Dunghill, Craven Cock,
Who serves the early Household for a Clock.
And We his Oats, and Barley often steal,
Nor fear, he shou'd revenge the pilfer'd Meal:
Whilst that demure, and seeming harmless Puss
Herself, and mewing Chits regales with Us.
If then, of useful Sense thou'st gain'd no more,
Than ere thou'dst past the Threshold of my Door;
Be here, my Son, content to Dress and Dine,
Steeping the List of Beauties in thy Wine,
And neighb'ring Vermin with false Gloss outshine.
Amongst Mankind a Thousand Fops we see,
Who in their Rambles learn no more than Thee;
Cross o'er the Alpes, and make the Tour of France,
To learn a paltry Song, or antick Dance;
Bringing their Noddles, and Valizes pack'd
With Mysteries, from Shops and Taylors wreck'd:
But what may prejudice their Native Land;
Whose Troops are raising, or whose Fleet is mann'd,
Ne'er moves their Thoughts, nor do they understand.
Thou, my dear Rattlehead, and such as These
Might keep at home, and brood on Sloth and Ease:
Whilst Others, more adapted to the Age,
May vig'rously in Warlike Feats engage,
And live on foreign Spoils, or dying thin the Stage.
With Bows, and Smiles he did his Part;
But Oh! 'twas all in vain:
A Youth less Fine, a Youth of Art
Had talk'd himself into her Heart,
And wou'd not out again.
Strephon with change of Habits press'd,
And urg'd her to admire;
His Love alone the Other dress'd,
As Verse, or Prose became it best,
And mov'd her soft Desire.
This found, his courtship Strephon ends,
Or makes it to his Glass;
There, in himself now seeks amends,
Convinc'd, that where a Wit pretends,
A Beau is but an Ass.
When Death, at last, to either gave Release,
Making One's Pains, the Other's Longings cease:
Who to the Grave must decently convey,
Ere he Possession takes the kindred Clay,
Which in a Coach was plac'd, wherein he rides,
And so no Hearse, or following Train provides;
Rejecting Russel, who wou'd make the Charge
Of one dull tedious Day, so vastly Large.
When, at his Death, the humble Man declar'd,
He wished thus privately to be Interr'd.
And now, the Luggage moves in solemn State,
And what it wants in Number, gains in Weight.
The happy Heir can scarce contain his Joy,
Whilst sundry Musings do his Thoughts employ,
How he shalt act, now Every thing's his Own,
Where his Revenge, or Favour shall be shown;
Then recollecting, draws a counterfeited Groan.
The Avenues, and Gardens shall be chang'd,
Already he the Furniture has ranged.
To ransack secret Draw'rs his Phancy flies,
Nor can th' appearing Wealth his Mind suffice.
Thus he an Age runs o'er betwixt the Porch
Of his Friend's House, and the adjacent Church:
Whilst the slow Driver, who no reck'ning kept
Of what was left, indulging Nature, slept;
Till on a Bank, so high, the Wheel was borne
That in a Moment All must overturn:
Whilst the rich Heir now finds the giving Dead
Less weighty in his Gold, than in his Lead;
Which falling just on his contriving Breast,
Expell'd the Soul, leaving the corpse to rest
In the same Grave, intended for his Friend.
Then why shou'd We our Days in Wishes spend,
Which, e'er we see fulfill'd, are often at an End?
Venus hears his mournful Crys,
And repeats 'em, in the Skys,
To Jupiter in Council set,
With Peers for the Occasion met;
In her Arms the Boy she bears,
Bathing him in falling Tears;
And whilst his want of Eyes is shown,
Secures the Judges by her Own.
Folly to the Board must come,
And hear the Tryal and the Doom;
Which Cytherea loudly prays
May be as heavy as the Case:
Which, when All was justly weigh'd,
Cupid's Wings now useless made,
That a staff, his Feet must guide,
Which wou'd still be apt to slide;
This Decree at last was read,
That Love by Folly shou'd be lead.
Good Signs afford, and what you seem to feel
Proceeds from Vapours, which we'll help with Steel.
With kindled Rage, more than Distemper, burns
The suff'ring Man, who thus in haste returns:
No more of Vapours, your belov'd Disease,
Your Ignorance's Skreen, your What-you-please,
With which you cheat poor Females of their Lives,
Whilst Men dispute not, so it rid their Wives.
For me, I'll speak free as I've paid my Fees;
My Flesh consumes, I perish by degrees:
And as thro' weary Nights I count my Pains,
No Rest is left me, and no Strength remains.
All for the Better, Sir, the Quack rejoins:
Exceeding promising are all these Signs.
Falling-away, your Nurses can confirm,
Was ne'er in Sickness thought a Mark of Harm.
The want of Strength is for the Better still;
Since Men of Vigour Fevers soonest kill.
Ev'n with this Gust of Passion I am pleas'd;
For they're most Patient who the most are seiz'd.
But let me see! here's that which all repels:
Then shakes, as he some formal Story tells,
The Treacle-water, mixt with powder'd Shells.
My Stomach's gone (what d'you infer from thence?)
Nor will with the least Sustenance dispense.
The Better; for, where appetite endures,
Meats intermingle, and no Med'cine cures.
The Stomach, you must know, Sir, is a Part–
But, sure, I feel Death's Pangs about my Heart.
Nay then Farewel! I need no more attend
The Quack replies. A sad approaching Friend
Questions the Sick, why he retires so fast;
Who says, because of Fees I've paid the Last,
And, whilst all Symptoms tow'rd my Cure agree,
Am, for the Better, Dying as you see.
Fatal to none, but thy invading Foe.
So Lightnings, which to all their Brightness shew,
Strike but the Man alone, who has provok'd the Blow.
So let my Pen, the next in Fame,
Now wait on fair SERENA's Name;
The second Tribute gladly pay,
And hail this blest returning Day.
But let it not attempt to raise
Or rightly speak SERENA's Praise:
Since with more ease we might declare
How Great her Predecessors were;
How Great that more distinguish'd Peer, 
To whom she owes her Being here;
In whom our Britain lets us see
What once they were, and still shou'd be;
As, when the earliest Race was drown'd,
Some Patterns, from amongst them found,
Were kept to shew succeeding Times
Their Excellence without their Crimes:
More easily we might express
What Vertues do her Mother dress;
What does her Form and Mind adorn,
Of whom th' engaging Nymph was born;
What Piety, what generous Love,
Does the enlarged Bosom move
Of (1) Her, whose Fav'rite she appears, 
Who more than as a Niece endears.
Such full Perfections obvious lie,
And strike, at first, a Poet's Eye.
Deep Lines of Honour all can hit,
Or mark out a superior Wit;
Consummate Goodness all can show,
And where such Graces shine below:
But the more tender Strokes to trace,
T' express the Promise of a Face,
When but the Dawnings of the Mind
We from the Air unripen'd find;
Which alt'ring, as new Moments rise,
The Pen or Pencil's Art defies;
When Flesh and Blood in Youth appears,
Polish'd like what our Marble wears;
Fresh as that Shade of op'ning Green,
Which first upon our Groves is seen;
Enliven'd by a harmless Fire,
And brighten'd by each gay Desire;
These nicer Touches wou'd demand
A Cowley's or a Waller's Hand,
T'explain, with undisputed Art,
What 'tis affects th'enlighten'd Heart,
When ev'ry darker Thought gives way,
Whilst blooming Beauty we survey;
To shew how All, that's soft and sweet,
Does in the fair SERENA meet;
To tell us, with a sure Presage,
The Charms of her maturer Age.
When Hothfeild shall (as heretofore 
From its far-sought and virtuous Store
It Families of great Renown
Did with illustrious Hymens crown)
When Hothfeild shall such Treasure know,
As fair SERENA to bestow:
Then shou'd some Muse of loftier Wing
The Triumphs of that Season sing;
Describe the Pains, the Hopes, the Fears
Of noble Youths, th'ambitious Cares
Of Fathers, the long-fram'd Design,
To add such Splendour to their Line,
Whilst all shall strive for such a Bride
So Educated, and Ally'd.
|(1)||The Lady Coventry.|
A WIT, transported with Inditing,
Unpay'd, unprais'd, yet ever Writing;
Who, for all Fights and Fav'rite Friends,
Had Poems at his Fingers Ends;
For new Events was still providing;
Yet now desirous to be riding,
He pack'd-up ev'ry Ode and Ditty
And in Vacation left the City;
So rapt with Figures, and Allusions,
With secret Passions, sweet Confusions;
With Sentences from Plays well-known,
And thousand Couplets of his own;
That ev'n the chalky Road look'd gay,
And seem'd to him the Milky Way.
But Fortune, who the Ball is tossing,
And Poets ever will be crossing,
Misled the Steed, which ill he guided,
Where several gloomy Paths divided.
The steepest in Descent he follow'd,
Enclos'd by Rocks, which Time had hollow'd;
Till, he believ'd, alive and booted,
He'd reach'd the Shades by Homer quoted.
But all, that he cou'd there discover,
Was, in a Pit with Thorns grown over,
Old Mammon digging, straining, sweating,
As Bags of Gold he thence was getting;
Who, when reprov'd for such Dejections
By him, who liv'd on high Reflections,
Reply'd; Brave Sir, your Time is ended,
And Poetry no more befriended.
I hid this Coin, when Charles was swaying;
When all was Riot, Masking, Playing;
When witty Beggars were in fashion,
And Learning had o'er-run the Nation,
But, since Mankind is so much wiser,
That none is valued like the Miser,
I draw it hence, and now these Sums
In proper Soil grow up to (1) Plumbs;
Which gather'd once, from that rich Minute
We rule the World, and all that's in it.
But, quoth the Poet,can you raise,
As well as Plumb-trees, Groves of Bays?
Where you, which I wou'd chuse much rather,
May Fruits of Reputation gather?
Will Men of Quality, and Spirit,
Regard you for intrinsick Merit?
And seek you out, before your Betters,
For Conversation, Wit, and Letters?
Fool, quoth the Churl, who knew no Breeding;
Have these been Times for such Proceeding?
Instead of Honour'd, and Rewarded,
Are you not Slighted, or Discarded?
What have you met with, but Disgraces?
Your PRIOR cou'd not keep in Places;
And your VAN-BRUG had found no Quarter,
But for his dabbling in the Morter.
ROWE no Advantages cou'd hit on,
Till Verse he left, to write North-Briton.
PHILIPS, who's by the Shilling known,
Ne'er saw a Shilling of his own.
Meets (2) PHILOMELA, in the Town
Her due Proportion of Renown?
What Pref'rence has ARDELIA seen,
T'expel, tho' she cou'd write the Spleen?
Of Coach, or Tables, can you brag,
Or better Cloaths than Poet RAG?
Do wealthy Kindred, when they meet you,
With Kindness, or Distinction, greet you?
Or have your lately flatter'd Heroes
Enrich'd you like the Roman Maroes?
No–quoth the Man of broken Slumbers:
Yet we have Patrons for our Numbers;
There are Mecænas's among 'em.
Quoth Mammon,pray Sir, do not wrong 'em;
But in your Censures use a Conscience,
Nor charge Great Men with thriftless Nonsense:
Since they, as your own Poets sing,
Now grant no Worth in any thing
But so much Money as 'twill bring.
Then, never more from your Endeavours
Expect Preferment, or less Favours.
But if you'll 'scape Contempt, or worse,
Be sure, put Money in your Purse;
Money! which only can relieve you
When Fame and Friendship will deceive you.
Sir, (quoth the Poet humbly bowing,
And all that he had said allowing)
Behold me and my airy Fancies
Subdu'd, like Giants in Romances.
I here submit to your Discourses;
Which since Experience too enforces,
I, in that solitary Pit,
Your Gold withdrawn, will hide my Wit:
Till Time, which hastily advances,
And gives to all new Turns and Chances,
Again may bring it into use;
Roscommons may again produce;
New Augustean Days revive,
When Wit shall please, and Poets thrive.
Till when, let those converse in private,
Who taste what others don't arrive at;
Yielding that Mammonists surpass us;
And let the Bank out-swell Parnassus.
|(1)||A Plumb is a Cant word, signifying a Hundred Thousand Pound.|
|(2)||Mrs. Singer, Author of several excellent Poems.|
And thou, poor Sun! that sat'st on high;
But late, the Splendour of the Sky;
What Flow'r, tho' by thy Influence born,
Now Clouds prevail, will tow'rds thee turn?
Now Darkness sits upon thy Brow,
What Persian Votary will bow?
What River will her Smiles reflect,
Now that no Beams thou can'st direct?
By watry Vapours overcast,
Who thinks upon thy Glories past?
If present Light, nor Heat we get,
Unheeded thou may'st rise, and set.
Not all the past can one Adorer keep,
Fall, wretched Sun, to the more faithful Deep.
Nor do thou, lofty Structure! boast,
Since undermin'd by Time and Frost:
Since thou canst no Reception give,
In untrod Meadows thou may'st live.
None from his ready Road will turn,
With thee thy wretched Change to mourn.
Not the soft Nights, or chearful Days
Thou hast bestow'd, can give thee Praise.
No lusty Tree that near thee grows,
(Tho' it beneath thy Shelter rose)
Will to thy Age a Staff become.
Fall, wretched Building! to thy Tomb.
Thou, and thy painted Roofs, in Ruin mixt,
Fall to the Earth, for That alone is fixt.
The same, poor Man, the same must be
Thy Fate, now Fortune frowns on thee.
Her Favour ev'ry one pursues,
And losing Her, thou all must lose.
No Love, sown in thy prosp'rous Days,
Can Fruit in this cold Season raise:
No Benefit, by thee conferr'd,
Can in this time of Storms be heard.
All from thy troubl'd Waters run;
Thy stooping Fabrick all Men shun.
All do thy clouded Looks decline,
As if thou ne'er did'st on them shine.
O wretched Man! to other World's repair;
For Faith and Gratitude are only there.
High above, or deep below,
Fain I thy Retreat wou'd know.
Fain I thee alone wou'd find,
Balm to my o'er-weary'd Mind.
Since what here the World enjoys,
Or our Passions most employs,
Peace opposes, or destroys.
Pleasure's a tumultuous thing,
Busy still, and still on Wing;
Flying swift, from place to place,
Darting from each beauteous Face;
From each strongly mingled Bowl
Through th'inflam'd and restless Soul.
Sov'reign Pow'r who fondly craves,
But himself to Pomp enslaves;
Stands the Envy of Mankind,
Peace, in vain, attempts to find.
Thirst of Wealth no Quiet knows,
But near the Death-bed fiercer grows;
Wounding Men with secret Stings,
For Evils it on Others brings.
War who not discreetly shuns,
Thorough Life the Gauntlet runs.
Swords, and Pikes, and Waves, and Flames,
Each their Stroke against him aims.
Love (if such a thing there be)
Is all Despair, or Extasie.
Poetry's the feav'rish Fit,
Th' o'erflowing of unbounded Wit. &c.
Who once believ'd, it was the Fates Design
In Him to double an Illustrious Line,
And in a second Channel spread that Race
Where ev'ry Virtue shines, with every Grace.
But we mistook, and 'twas not here below
That this engrafted Scion was to grow;
The Seats above requir'd him, that each Sphere
Might soon the Offspring of such Parents share.
Resign him then to the supream Intent,
You, who but Flesh to that blest Spirit lent.
Again disrob'd, let him to Bliss retire,
And only bear from you, amidst that Choir,
What, Precept or Example did inspire,
A Title to Rewards, from that rich store
Of Pious Works, which you have sent before.
Then lay the fading Reliques, which remain,
In the still Vault (excluding farther Pain);
Where Kings and Counsellors their Progress close,
And his renowned Ancestors repose;
Where (1) COVENTRY withdrew All but in Name, 
Leaving the World his Benefits and Fame;
Where his Paternal Predecessor lies, 
Once large of Thought, and rank'd among the Wise;
Whose Genius in Long-Leat we may behold
(A Pile, as noble as if he'd been told
By WEYMOUTH, it shou'd be in time possest,
And strove to suit the Mansion to the Guest.)
Nor favour'd, nor disgrac'd, there ESSEX sleeps, 
Nor SOMERSET his Master's Sorrows weeps, 
Who to the shelter of th' unenvy'd Grave
Convey'd the Monarch, whom he cou'd not save;
Though, Roman-like, his own less-valu'd Head
He proffer'd in that injur'd Martyr's stead.
Nor let that matchless (2) Female 'scape my Pen, 
Who their Whole Duty taught to weaker Men,
And of each Sex the Two best Gifts enjoy'd,
The Skill to write, the Modesty to hide;
Whilst none shou'd that Performance disbelieve,
Who led the Life, might the Directions give.
With such as These, whence He deriv'd his Blood,
Great on Record, or eminently Good,
Let Him be laid, till Death's long Night shall cease,
And breaking Glory interrupt the Peace.
Mean-while, ye living Parents, ease your Grief
By Tears, allow'd as Nature's due Relief.
For when we offer to the Pow'rs above,
Like You, the dearest Objects of our Love;
When, with that patient Saint in Holy Writ,
We've learnt at once to Grieve, and to Submit;
When contrite Sighs, like hallow'd Incense, rise
Bearing our Anguish to th' appeased Skies;
Then may those Show'rs, which take from Sorrow birth,
And still are tending tow'rd this baleful Earth,
O'er all our deep and parching Cares diffuse,
Like Eden's Springs, or Hermon's soft'ning Dews.
But lend your Succours, ye Almighty Pow'rs,
For as the Wound, the Balsam too is Yours.
In vain are Numbers, or persuasive Speech,
What Poets write, or what the Pastors teach,
Till You, who make, again repair the Breach.
For when to Shades of Death our Joys are fled,
When for a Loss, like This, our Tears are shed,
None can revive the Heart, but who can raise the Dead.
But yet, my Muse, if thou hadst softer Verse
Than e'er bewail'd the melancholy Herse;
If thou hadst Pow'r to dissipate the Gloom
Inherent to the Solitary Tomb;
To rescue thence the Memory and Air
Of what we lately saw so Fresh, so Fair;
Then shou'd this Noble Youth thy Art engage
To shew the Beauties of his blooming Age,
The pleasing Light, that from his Eyes was cast,
Like hasty Beams, too Vigorous to last;
Where the warm Soul, as on the Confines, lay
Ready for Flight, and for Eternal Day.
Gently dispos'd his Nature shou'd be shown,
And all the Mother's Sweetness made his Own.
The Father's Likeness was but faintly seen,
As ripen'd Fruits are figur'd by the Green.
Nor cou'd we hope, had he fulfill'd his Days,
He shou'd have reach'd WEYMOUTH's unequal'd Praise.
Still One distinguish'd plant each Lineage shews,
And all the rest beneath it's Stature grows.
Of Tully's Race but He possess'd the Tongue,
And none like Julius from the Caesars sprung.
Next, in his harmless Sports he shou'd be drawn
Urging his Courser, o'er the flow'ry Lawn;
Sprightly Himself, as the enliven'd Game,
Bold in the Chace, and full of gen'rous Flame;
Yet in the Palace, Tractable and Mild,
Perfect in all the Duties of a Child;
Which fond Reflection pleases, whilst it pains,
Like penetrating Notes of sad Harmonious Strains.
Selected Friendships timely he began,
And siezed in Youth that best Delight of Man,
Leaving a growing Race to mourn his End,
Their earliest and their Ages promis'd Friend.
But far away alas! that Prospect moves,
Lost in the Clouds, like distant Hills and Groves,
Whilst with encreasing Steps we all pursue
What Time alone can bring to nearer View,
That Future State, which Darkness yet involves,
Known but by Death, which ev'ry Doubt resolves.
|(1)||Lord Keeper Coventry.|
|(2)||The Lady Packington supposed by many to be the Author of The Whole Duty of Man.|
Whilst aery Fictions hastily repair
To fill my Page, and rid my Thoughts of Care,
As they to Birds and Beasts new Gifts impart,
And Teach, as Poets shou'd, whilst they Divert.
But here, the Critick bids me check this Vein.
Fable, he crys, tho' grown th' affected Strain,
But dies, as it was born, without Regard or Pain.
Whilst of his Aim the lazy Trifler fails,
Who seeks to purchase Fame by childish Tales.
Then, let my Verse, once more attempt the Skies,
The easily persuaded Poet cries,
Since meaner Works you Men of Taste despise.
The Walls of Troy shall be our loftier Stage,
Our mighty Theme the fierce Achilles Rage.
The Strength of Hector, and Ulysses Arts
Shall boast such Language, to adorn their Parts,
As neither Hobbes, nor Chapman cou'd bestow,
Or did from Congreve, or from Dryden flow.
Amidst her Towers, the dedicated Horse
Shall be receiv'd, big with destructive Force;
Till Men shall say, when Flames have brought her down.
" Troy is no more, and Ilium was a Town.
Is this the way to please the Men of Taste,
The Interrupter cries, this old Bombast?
I'm sick of Troy, and in as great a Fright,
When some dull Pedant wou'd her Wars recite,
As was soft Paris, when compell'd to Fight.
To Shades and Springs shall we awhile repair,
The Muse demands, and in that milder Air
Describe some gentle Swain's unhappy Smart
Whose folded Arms still press upon his Heart,
And deeper drive the too far enter'd Dart?
Whilst Phillis with a careless pleasure reigns
The Joy, the Grief, the Envy of the Plains;
Heightens the Beauty of the verdant Woods,
And softens all the Murmurs of the Floods.
Oh! stun me not with these insipid Dreams,
Th' Eternal Hush, the Lullaby of Streams.
Which still, he cries, their even Measures keep,
Till both the Writers, and the Readers sleep.
But urge thy Pen, if thou wouldst move our Thoughts,
To shew us private, or the publick Faults.
Display the Times, High-Church or Low provoke;
We'll praise the Weapon, as we like the Stroke,
And warmly sympathizing with the Spite
Apply to Thousands, what of One you write.
Then, must that single Stream the Town supply,
The harmless Fable-writer do's reply,
And all the Rest of Helicon be dry?
And when so many choice Productions swarm,
Must only Satire keep your Fancies warm?
Whilst even there, you praise with such Reserve,
As if you'd in the midst of Plenty starve,
Tho' ne'er so liberally we Authors carve.
Happy the Men, whom we divert with Ease,
Whom Opera's and Panegyricks please.
As cou'd be prov'd, but that our plainer Task
Do's no such Toil, or Definitions ask;
But to be so rehears'd, as first 'twas told,
When such old Stories pleas'd in Days of old.
A King, observing how a Shepherd's Skill
Improv'd his Flocks, and did the Pastures fill,
That equal Care th' assaulted did defend,
And the secur'd and grazing Part attend,
Approves the Conduct, and from Sheep and Curs
Transfers the Sway, and changed his Wool to Furrs.
Lord-Keeper now, as rightly he divides
His just Decrees, and speedily decides;
When his sole Neighbor, whilst he watch'd the Fold,
A Hermit poor, in Contemplation old,
Hastes to his Ear, with safe, but lost Advice,
Tells him such Heights are levell'd in a trice,
Preferments treach'rous, and her Paths of Ice:
And that already sure 't had turn'd his Brain,
Who thought a Prince's Favour to retain.
Nor seem'd unlike, in this mistaken Rank,
The sightless Wretch, who froze upon a Bank
A Serpent found, which for a Staff he took,
And us'd as such (his own but lately broke)
Thanking the Fates, who thus his Loss supply'd,
Nor marking one, that with amazement cry'd,
Throw quickly from thy Hand that sleeping Ill;
A Serpent 'tis, that when awak'd will kill.
A Serpent this! th' uncaution'd Fool replies:
A Staff it feels, nor shall my want of Eyes
Make me believe, I have no Senses left,
And thro' thy Malice be of this bereft;
Which Fortune to my Hand has kindly sent
To guide my Steps, and stumbling to prevent.
No Staff, the Man proceeds; but to thy harm
A Snake 'twill prove: The Viper, now grown warm
Confirm'd it soon, and fasten'd on his Arm.
Thus wilt thou find, Shepherd believe it true,
Some Ill, that shall this seeming Good ensue;
Thousand Distastes, t' allay thy envy'd Gains,
Unthought of, on the parcimonious Plains.
So prov'd the Event, and Whisp'rers now defame
The candid Judge, and his Proceedings blame.
By Wrongs, they say, a Palace he erects,
The Good oppresses, and the Bad protects.
To view this Seat the King himself prepares,
Where no Magnificence or Pomp appears,
But Moderation, free from each Extream,
Whilst Moderation is the Builder's Theme.
Asham'd yet still the Sycophants persist,
That Wealth he had conceal'd within a Chest,
Which but attended some convenient Day,
To face the Sun, and brighter Beams display.
The Chest unbarr'd, no radiant Gems they find,
No secret Sums to foreign Banks design'd,
But humble Marks of an obscure Recess,
Emblems of Care, and Instruments of Peace;
The Hook, the Scrip, and for unblam'd Delight
The merry Bagpipe, which, ere fall of Night,
Cou'd sympathizing Birds to tuneful Notes invite.
Welcome ye Monuments of former Joys!
Welcome! to bless again your Master's Eyes,
And draw from Courts, th' instructed Shepherd cries.
No more dear Relicks! we no more will part,
You shall my Hands employ, who now revive my Heart.
No Emulations, nor corrupted Times
Shall falsely blacken, or seduce to Crimes
Him, whom your honest Industry can please,
Who on the barren Down can sing from inward Ease.
How's this! the Monarch something mov'd rejoins.
With such low Thoughts, and Freedom from Designs,
What made thee leave a Life so fondly priz'd,
To be in Crouds, or envy'd, or despis'd?
Forgive me, Sir, and Humane Frailty see,
The Swain replies, in my past State and Me;
All peaceful that, to which I vow return.
But who alas! (tho' mine at length I mourn)
Was e'er without the Curse of some Ambition born.
URANIA, whom the Town admires,
Whose Wit and Beauty share our Praise;
This fair URANIA who inspires
A thousand Joys a thousand ways,
She, who cou'd with a Glance convey
Favours, that had my Hopes outdone,
Has lent me Money on that Day,
Which our Acquaintance first begun.
Nor with the Happiness I taste,
Let any jealous Doubts contend:
Her Friendship is secure to last,
Beginning where all others end.
And thou, known Cheat! upheld by Law,
Thou Disappointer of the craving Mind,
BASSETTE, who thy Original dost draw
From Venice (by uncertain Seas confin'd);
Author of Murmurs, and of Care,
Of pleasing Hopes, concluding in Despair:
To thee my strange Felicity I owe,
From thy Oppression did this Succour flow.
Less had I gained, had'st thou propitious been,
Who better by my Loss hast taught me how to Win.
Yet tell me, my transported Brain!
(whose Pride this Benefit awakes)
Know'st thou, what on this Chance depends?
And are we not exalted thus in vain,
Whilst we observe the Money which she lends,
But not, alas! the Heart she takes,
The fond Engagements, and the Ties
Her fatal Bounty does impose,
Who makes Reprisals, with her Eyes,
For what her gen'rous Hand bestows?
And tho' I quickly can return
Those useful Pieces, which she gave;
Can I again, or wou'd I have
That which her Charms have from me borne?
Yet let us quit th' obliging Score;
And whilst we borrow'd Gold restore,
Whilst readily we own the Debt,
And Gratitude before her set
In its approved and fairest Light;
Let her effectually be taught
By that instructive, harmless Slight,
That also in her turn she ought
(Repaying ev'ry tender Thought)
Kindness with Kindness to requite.
We Females, Sir, it is I mean:
Whilst I, like BRISTOL for the QUEEN,
For all the Ladies of your Age
As Plenipo' betimes engage;
And as first Article declare,
You shall be Faithful as you're Fair:
No Sighs, when you shall know their Use,
Shall be discharg'd in Love's Abuse;
Nor kindling Words shall undermine,
Till you in equal Passion join.
Nor Money be alone your Aim,
Tho' you an Over-weight may claim,
And fairly build on your Desert,
If with your Person goes your Heart.
But when this Barrier I have gain'd,
And trust it will be well maintain'd;
Who knows, but some imprudent She
Betraying what's secur'd by me,
Shall yield thro' Verse, or stronger Charms,
To Treat anew on easier Terms?
And I be negligently told–
You was too Young, and I too Old,
To have our distant Maxims hold.
And strange it is, thou hast not made her wield
A mortal Dart, or penetrating Shield,
Giving that Hand of disproportion'd size
The Pow'r, of which thou hast disarm'd her Eyes:
As if, like Amazons, she must oppose,
And into Lovers force her vanquish'd Foes.
Had to THEANOR thus her Form been shown
To gain her Heart, he had not lost his own;
Nor, by the gentlest Bands of Human Life,
At once secur'd the Mistress and the Wife.
For still CLEONE's Beauties are the same,
And what first lighten'd, still upholds his Flame.
Fain his Compassion wou'd thy Works approve,
Were pitying thee consistent with his Love,
Or with the Taste which Italy has wrought
In his refin'd and daily heighten'd Thought,
Where Poetry, or Painting find no place,
Unless perform'd with a superior Grace.
Cou'd but my Wish some Influence infuse,
Ne'er shou'd the Pencil, or the Sister-Muse
Be try'd by those who easily excuse:
But strictest Censors shou'd of either judge,
Applaud the Artist, and despise the Drudge.
Then never wou'd thy Colours have debas'd
CLEONE's Features, and her Charms defac'd:
Nor had my Pen (more subject to their Laws)
Assay'd to vindicate her Beauty's Cause.
A rigid Fear had kept us both in Awe,
Nor I compos'd, nor thou presum'd to draw;
But in CLEONE viewing with Surprize
That Excellence, to which we ne'er cou'd rise,
By less Attempts we safely might have gain'd
That humble Praise which neither has obtain'd,
Since to thy Shadowings, or my ruder Verse,
It is not giv'n to shew, or to rehearse
What Nature in CLEONE's Face has writ,
A soft Endearment, and a chearful Wit,
That all-subduing, that enliv'ning Air
By which, a sympathizing Joy we share,
For who forbears to smile, when smil'd on by the Fair?
Pretty Nymph! within this Shade,
Whilst the Flocks to rest are laid,
Whilst the World dissolves in Heat,
Take this cool, and flow'ry Seat:
And with pleasing Talk awhile
Let us two the Time beguile;
Tho' thou here no Shepherd see,
To encline his humble Knee,
Or with melancholy Lays
Sing thy dangerous Beauty's Praise.
Nymph! with thee I here wou'd stay,
But have heard, that on this Day,
Near those Beeches, scarce in view,
All the Swains some Mirth pursue:
To whose meeting now I haste.
Solitude do's Life but waste.
Prithee, but a Moment stay.
No! my Chaplet wou'd decay;
Ev'ry drooping Flow'r wou'd mourn,
And wrong the Face, they shou'd adorn.
I can tell thee, tho' so Fair,
And dress'd with all that rural Care,
Most of the admiring Swains
Will be absent from the Plains.
Gay Sylvander in the Dance
Meeting with a shrew'd Mischance,
To his Cabin's now confin'd
By Mopsus, who the Strain did bind:
Damon through the Woods do's stray,
Where his Kids have lost their way:
Young Narcissus iv'ry Brow
Rac'd by a malicious Bough,
Keeps the girlish Boy from sight,
Till Time shall do his Beauty right.
Lies extended on the Grass;
Tears his Garland, raves, despairs,
Mirth and Harmony forswears;
Since he was this Morning shown,
That Delia must not be his Own.
Foolish Swain! such Love to place.
On any but Dorinda's Face.
Hasty Nymph! I said not so.
No–but I thy Meaning know.
Ev'ry Shepherd thou wou'd'st have
Not thy Lover, but thy Slave;
To encrease thy captive Train,
Never to be lov'd again.
But, since all are now away,
Prithee, but a Moment stay.
No; the Strangers, from the Vale,
Sure will not this Meeting fail;
Graceful one, the other Fair.
He too, with the pensive Air,
Told me, ere he came this way
He was wont to look more Gay.
See! how Pride thy Heart inclines
To think, for Thee that Shepherd pines;
When those Words, that reach'd thy Ear,
Chloe was design'd to hear;
Chloe, who did near thee stand,
And his more speaking Looks command.
Now thy Envy makes me smile.
That indeed were worth his while:
Chloe next thyself decay'd,
And no more a courted Maid.
Next myself! Young Nymph, forbear.
Still the Swains allow me Fair,
Tho' not what I was that Day,
When Colon bore the Prize away;
–Oh, hold! that Tale will last,
Till all the Evening Sports are past;
Till no Streak of Light is seen,
Nor Footstep prints the flow'ry Green.
What thou wert, I need not know,
What I am, must haste to show.
Only this I now discern
From the things, thou'd'st have me learn,
That Woman-kind's peculiar Joys
From past, or present Beauties rise.
Some term'd it cold, unmanly Fear;
Some, Nicety of Sense,
That Drums and Trumpets cou'd not hear,
The sullying Blasts of Powder bear,
Or with foul Camps dispense.
A patient Martyr to their Scorn,
And each ill-fashion'd Jest;
The Youth, who but for Love was born,
Remain'd, and thought it vast Return,
To reign in Cloria's Breast.
But oh! a ruffling Soldier came
In all the Pomp of War:
The Gazettes long had spoke his Fame;
Now Hautboys his Approach proclaim,
And draw in Crouds from far.
Cloria unhappily wou'd gaze;
And as he nearer drew,
The Man of Feather and of Lace
Stopp'd short, and with profound Amaze
Took all her Charms to view.
A Bow, which from Campaigns he brought,
And to his Holsters low,
Herself, and the Spectators taught,
That Her the fairest Nymph he thought,
Of all that form'd the Row.
Next day, ere Phoebus cou'd be seen,
Or any Gate unbarr'd;
At hers, upon th' adjoining Green,
From Ranks, with waving Flags between,
Were soften'd Trumpets heard.
The Noon do's following Treats provide,
In the Pavilion's Shade;
The Neighborhood, and all beside,
That will attend the amorous Pride,
Are welcom'd with the Maid.
Poor Alcidor! thy Hopes are cross'd,
Go perish on the Ground;
Thy Sighs by stronger Notes are toss'd,
Drove back, or in the Passage lost;
Rich Wines thy Tears have drown'd.
In Women's Hearts, the softest Things
Which Nature cou'd devise,
Are yet some harsh, and jarring Strings,
That, when loud Fame, or Profit rings,
Will answer to the Noise.
Poor Alcidor! go Fight or Dye;
Let thy fond Notions cease:
Man was not made in Shades to lie,
Or his full Bliss, at ease, enjoy,
To Live, or Love in peace.
That reconciles the World by soft Desires,
And tender Thoughts in ev'ry Breast inspires,
To you a hateful Season must appear,
Whilst Love prevails, and all are Lovers here.
Observe the gentle Murmurs of that Dove,
And see, how billing she confirms her Love!
For this, the Nightingale displays her Throat,
And Love, Love, Love, is all her Ev'ning Note.
The very Tygers have their tender Hours,
And prouder Lyons bow beneath Love's Pow'rs.
Thou, prouder yet than that imperious Beast,
Alone deny'st him Shelter in thy Breast.
But why should I the Creatures only name
That Sense partake, as Owners of this Flame?
Love farther goes, nor stops his Course at these:
The Plants he moves, and gently bends the Trees.
See how those Willows mix their am'rous Boughs;
And, how that Vine clasps her supporting Spouse!
The silver Firr dotes on the stately Pine;
By Love those Elms, by Love those Beeches join.
But view that Oak; behold his rugged Side:
Yet that rough Bark the melting Flame do's hide.
All, by their trembling Leaves, in Sighs declare
And tell their Passions to the gath'ring Air.
Which, had but Love o'er Thee the least Command,
Thou, by their Motions, too might'st understand.
O'er my sad Grave the haughty Nymph may go,
And the proud Triumph of her Beauty shew
To all the Swains, to Strangers as they pass;
And yet at length she may (but Oh! alas!
I fear, too high my flatt'ring Hopes do soar)
Yet she at length may my sad Fate deplore;
May weep me Dead, may o'er my Tomb recline,
And sighing, wish were he alive and Mine!
But mark me to the End–
Thir. Go on; for well I do thy Speech attend,
Perhaps to better Ends, than yet thou know'st.
Amint. Being now a Child, or but a Youth at most,
When scarce to reach the blushing Fruit I knew,
Which on the lowest bending Branches grew;
Still with the dearest, sweetest, kindest Maid
Young as myself, at childish Sports I play'd.
The Fairest, sure, of all that Lovely Kind,
Who spread their golden Tresses to the Wind;
Cydippe's Daughter, and Montano's Heir,
Whose Flocks and Herds so num'rous do appear;
The beauteous Sylvia; She, 'tis She I love,
Warmth of all Hearts, and Pride of ev'ry Grove.
With Her I liv'd, no Turtles e'er so fond.
Our Houses met, but more our Souls were join'd.
Together Nets for Fish, and Fowl we laid;
Together through the spacious Forest stray'd;
Pursu'd with equal Speed the flying Deer,
And of the Spoils there no Divisions were.
But whilst I from the Beasts their Freedom won,
Alas! I know not how, my Own was gone.
By unperceiv'd Degrees the Fire encreas'd,
Which fill'd, at last, each corner of my Breast;
As from a Root, tho' scarce discern'd so small,
A Plant may rise, that grows amazing tall.
From Sylvia's Presence now I could not move,
And from her Eyes took in full Draughts of Love,
Which sweetly thro' my ravish'd Mind distill'd;
Yet in the end such Bitterness wou'd yield,
That oft I sigh'd, ere yet I knew the cause,
And was a Lover, ere I dream'd I was.
But Oh! at last, too well my State I knew;
And now, will shew thee how this Passion grew.
Then listen, while the pleasing Tale I tell.
Who, whilst his Smiles attract the easy View,
Drops flatt'ring Words, soft as the falling Dew;
Whose outward Form all friendly still appears,
Tho' Fraud and Daggers in his Thoughts he wears,
And the unwary Labours to surprize
With Looks affected, and with riddling Lyes.
If He it is, that bids thy Love despair,
I hope the happier End of all thy Care.
So far from Truth his vain Predictions fall.
Amint. If ought thou know'st, that may my Hopes recall,
Conceal it not; for great I've heard his Fame,
And fear'd his Words–
Thir. –When hither first I came,
And in these Shades the false Imposter met,
Like Thee I priz'd, and thought his Judgment great;
On all his study'd Speeches still rely'd,
Nor fear'd to err, whilst led by such a Guide:
When on a Day, that Bus'ness and Delight
My Steps did to the Neighb'ring Town invite,
Which stands upon that rising Mountain's side,
And from our Plains this River do's divide,
He check'd me thus–Be warn'd in time, My Son,
And that new World of painted Mischiefs shun,
Whose gay Inhabitants thou shalt behold
Plum'd like our Birds, and sparkling all in Gold;
Courtiers, that will thy rustick Garb despise,
And mock thy Plainness with disdainful Eyes.
But above all, that Structure see thou fly,
Where hoarded Vanities and Witchcrafts lie;
To shun that Path be thy peculiar Care.
I ask, what of that Place the Dangers are:
To which he soon replies, there shalt thou meet
Of soft Enchantresses th' Enchantments sweet,
Who subt'ly will thy solid Sense bereave,
And a false Gloss to ev'ry Object give.
Brass to thy Sight as polish'd Gold shall seem,
And Glass thou as the Diamond shalt esteem.
Huge Heaps of Silver to thee shall appear,
Which if approach'd, will prove but shining Air.
The very Walls by Magick Art are wrought,
And Repitition to all Speakers taught:
Not such, as from our Ecchoes we obtain,
Which only our last Words return again;
But Speech for Speech entirely there they give,
And often add, beyond what they receive.
There downy Couches to false Rest invite,
The Lawn is charm'd, that faintly bars the Light.
No gilded Seat, no iv'ry Board is there,
But what thou may'st for some Delusion fear:
Whilst, farther to abuse thy wond'ring Eyes,
Strange antick Shapes before them shall arise;
Fantastick Fiends, that will about thee flock,
And all they see, with Imitation mock.
Nor are these Ills the worst. Thyself may'st be
Transform'd into a Flame, a Stream, a Tree;
A Tear, congeal'd by Art, thou may'st remain,
'Till by a burning Sigh dissolv'd again.
Thus spake the Wretch; but cou'd not shake my Mind.
My way I take, and soon the City find,
Where above all that lofty Fabrick stands,
Which, with one View, the Town and Plains commands.
Here was I stopt, for who cou'd quit the Ground,
That heard such Musick from those Roofs resound!
Musick! beyond th' enticing Syrene's Note;
Musick! beyond the Swan's expiring Throat;
Beyond the softest Voice, that charms the Grove,
And equal'd only by the Spheres above.
My Ear I thought too narrow for the Art,
Nor fast enough convey'd it to my Heart:
When in the Entrance of the Gate I saw
A Man Majestick, and commanding Awe;
Yet temper'd with a Carriage, so refin'd
That undetermin'd was my doubtful Mind,
Whether for Love, or War, that Form was most design'd.
With such a Brow, as did at once declare
A gentle Nature, and a Wit severe;
To view that Palace me he ask'd to go,
Tho' Royal He, and I Obscure and Low.
But the Delights my Senses there did meet,
No rural Tongue, no Swain can e'er repeat.
Celestial Goddesses, or Nymphs as Fair,
In unveil'd Beauties, to all Eyes appear
Sprinkl'd with Gold, as glorious to the View,
As young Aurora, deck'd with pearly Dew;
Bright Rays dispensing, as along they pass'd,
And with new Light the shining Palace grac'd.
Phoebus was there by all the Muses met,
And at his Feet was our Elpino set.
Ev'n humble Me their Harmony inspir'd,
My Breast expanded, and my Spirits fir'd.
Rude Past'ral now, no longer I rehearse,
But Heroes crown with my exalted Verse.
Of Arms I sung, of bold advent'rous Wars;
And tho' brought back by my too envious Stars,
Yet kept my Voice and Reed those lofty Strains,
And sent loud Musick through the wond'ring Plains:
Which Mopsus hearing, secretly malign'd,
And now to ruin Both at once design'd.
Which by his Sorceries he soon brought to pass;
And suddenly so clogg'd, and hoarse I was,
That all our Shepherds, at the Change amaz'd,
Believ'd, I on some Ev'ning-Wolf had gaz'd:
When He it was, my luckless Path had crost,
By whose dire Look, my Skill awhile was lost.
This have I told, to raise thy Hopes again,
And render, by distrust, his Malice vain.
Love, less to Sight than is this Fly,
In a soft Curl conceal'd can lie;
Under an Eyelid's lovely Shade,
Can form a dreadful Ambuscade;
Can the most subtil Sight beguile
Hid in the Dimples of a Smile.
But if from thence a Dart he throw,
How sure, how mortal is the Blow!
How helpless all the Pow'r of Art
To bind, or to restore the Heart!
Then, by the Nymphs no Charms were worn,
But such as with the Nymphs were born.
The Shepherd cou'd not, then, complain,
Nor told his am'rous Tale in vain.
No Veil the Beauteous Face did hide,
Nor harmless Freedom was deny'd.
Then, Innocence and Virtue reign'd
Pure, unaffected, unconstrain'd.
Love was their Pleasure, and their Praise,
The soft Employment of their Days.
Poets, wild as thee, were born,
Pleasing best when unconfin'd,
When to Please is least design'd,
Soothing but their Cares to rest;
Cares do still their Thoughts molest,
And still th' unhappy Poet's Breast,
Like thine, when best he sings, is plac'd against a Thorn.
She begins, Let all be still!
Muse, thy Promise now fulfill!
Sweet, oh! sweet, still sweeter yet
Can thy Words such Accents fit,
Canst thou Syllables refine,
Melt a Sense that shall retain
Still some Spirit of the Brain,
Till with Sounds like these it join.
'Twill not be! then change thy Note;
Let division shake thy Throat.
Hark! Division now she tries;
Yet as far the Muse outflies.
Cease then, prithee, cease thy Tune;
Trifler, wilt thou sing till June?
Till thy Bus'ness all lies waste,
And the Time of Building's past!
Thus we Poets that have Speech,
Unlike what thy Forests teach,
If a fluent Vein be shown
That's transcendant to our own,
Criticize, reform, or preach,
Or censure what we cannot reach.
Behold, quoth he, that mighty thing,
A Pumpkin, large and round,
Is held but by a little String,
Which upwards cannot make it spring,
Or bear it from the Ground.
Whilst on this Oak, a Fruit so small,
So disproportion'd, grows;
That, who with Sence surveys this All,
This universal Casual Ball,
Its ill Contrivance knows.
My better Judgment wou'd have hung
That Weight upon a Tree,
And left this Mast, thus slightly strung,
'Mongst things which on the Surface sprung,
And small and feeble be.
No more the Caviller cou'd say,
Nor farther Faults descry;
For, as he upwards gazing lay,
An Acorn, loosen'd from the Stay,
Fell down upon his Eye.
Th' offended Part with Tears ran o'er,
As punish'd for the Sin:
Fool! had that Bough a Pumpkin bore,
Thy Whimseys must have work'd no more,
Nor Scull had kept them in.
Nor spent more Money in the Town
Than bought, when need requir'd, a Gown;
Which way of Living much offends
The Alderman, who gets and spends,
And grudges him the Vital Air,
Who drives no Trade, and takes no Care.
Why Bookworm! to him once he cry'd,
Why, setting thus the World aside,
Dost thou thy useless Time consume,
Enclos'd within a lonely Room,
And poring damnify thy Wit,
'Till not for Men, or Manners fit?
Hop'st thou, with urging of thy Vein,
To spin a Fortune from thy Brain?
Or gain a Patron, that shall raise
Thy solid State, for empty Praise?
No; trust not to your Soothings vile,
Receiv'd per me's the only Stile.
Your Book's but frown'd on by My Lord;
If Mine's uncross'd, I reach his Board.
In slighting Yours, he shuts his Hand;
Protracting Mine, devolves the Land.
Then let Advantage be the Test,
Which of us Two ev'n Writes the best.
Besides, I often Scarlet wear,
And strut to Church, just next the Mayor.
Whilst rusty Black, with Inch of Band,
Is all the Dress you understand;
Who in the Pulpit thresh to Please,
Whilst I below can snore at Ease.
Yet, if you prove me there a Sinner,
I let you go without a Dinner.
This Prate was so beneath the Sence
Of One, who Wisdom cou'd dispense,
Unheard, or unreturn'd it past:
But War now lays the City waste,
And plunder'd Goods profusely fell
By length of Pike, not length of Ell.
Abroad th' Inhabitants are forc'd,
From Shops, and Trade, and Wealth divorc'd.
The Student leaving but his Book,
The Tumult of the Place forsook.
In Foreign Parts, One tells his Tale,
How Rich he'd been, how quick his Sale,
Which do's for scanty Alms prevail.
The Chance of War whilst he deplores,
And dines at Charitable Doors;
The Man of Letters, known by Fame,
Was welcom'd, wheresoe'er he came.
Still, Potentates entreat his Stay,
Whose Coaches meet him on the Way:
And Universities contest
Which shall exceed, or use him best.
Amaz'd the Burgomaster sees
On Foot, and scorn'd such Turns as these;
And sighing, now deplores too late
His cumb'rous Trash, and shallow Pate:
Since loaded but with double Chest
Of learned Head, and honest Breast,
The Scholar moves from Place to Place,
And finds in every Climate Grace.
Wit and the Arts, on that Foundation rais'd,
(Howe'er the Vulgar are with Shows amaz'd)
Is all that recommends, or can be justly prais'd.
A Dutchess wears not so much Gold and Lace;
Then 'tis with Her an undisputed Case,
The finest Petticoat must take the Place.
Her Rooms, anew at ev'ry Christ'ning drest,
Put down the Court, and vex the City-Guest.
Grinning Malottos in true Ermin stare;
The best Japan, and clearest China Ware
Are but as common Delft and English Laquar there.
No Luxury's by either unenjoy'd,
Or cost withheld, tho' awkardly employ'd.
How comes this Wealth? A Country Friend demands,
Who scarce cou'd live on Product of his Lands.
How is it that, when Trading is so bad
That some are Broke, and some with Fears run Mad,
You can in better State yourself maintain,
And your Effects still unimpair'd remain!
My Industry, he cries, is all the Cause;
Sometimes I interlope, and slight the Laws;
I wiser Measures, than my Neighbors, take,
And better speed, who better Bargains make.
I knew, the Smyrna–Fleet wou'd fall a Prey,
And therefore sent no Vessel out that way:
My busy Factors prudently I chuse,
And in streight Bonds their Friends and Kindred noose:
At Home, I to the Publick Sums advance,
Whilst, under-hand in Fee with hostile France,
I care not for your Tourvills, or Du-Barts,
No more than for the Rocks, and Shelves in Charts:
My own sufficiency creates my Gain,
Rais'd, and secur'd by this unfailing Brain.
This idle Vaunt had scarcely past his Lips,
When Tydings came, his ill-provided Ships
Some thro' the want of Skill, and some of Care,
Were lost, or back return'd without their Fare.
From bad to worse, each Day his State declin'd,
'Till leaving Town, and Wife, and Debts behind,
To his Acquaintance at the Rural Seat
He Sculks, and humbly sues for a Retreat.
Whence comes this Change, has Wisdom left that Head,
(His Friend demands) where such right Schemes were bred?
What Phrenzy, what Delirium mars the Scull,
Which fill'd the Chests, and was it self so full?
Here interrupting, sadly he Reply'd,
In Me's no Change, but Fate must all Things guide;
To Providence I attribute my Loss.
Vain-glorious Man do's thus the Praise engross,
When Prosp'rous Days around him spread their Beams:
But, if revolv'd to opposite Extreams,
Still his own Sence he fondly will prefer,
And Providence, not He, in his Affairs must Err!
Since I, who bring not forth such dainty Bits,
Tremble for my unpalatable Chits;
And had I but foreseen, the Eagle's Bed
Was in this fatal Tree to have been spread;
I sooner wou'd have kitten'd in the Road,
Than made this Place of Danger my abode.
I heard her young Ones lately cry for Pig,
And pity'd you, that were so near, and big.
In Friendship this I secretly reveal,
Lest Pettitoes shou'd make th' ensuing Meal; 
Or else, perhaps, Yourself may be their aim,
For a Sow's Paps has been a Dish of Fame.
No more the sad, affrighted Mother hears,
But overturning all with boist'rous Fears,
She from her helpless Young in haste departs,
Whilst Puss ascends, to practice farther Arts.
The Anti-chamber pass'd, she scratch'd the Door;
The Eagle, ne'er alarum'd so before,
Bids her come in, and look the Cause be great,
That makes her thus disturb the Royal Seat;
Nor think, of Mice and Rats some pest'ring Tale
Shall, in excuse of Insolence, prevail.
Alas! my Gracious Lady, quoth the Cat,
I think not of such Vermin; Mouse, or Rat
To me are tasteless grown; nor dare I stir
To use my Phangs, or to expose my Fur.
A Foe intestine threatens all around,
And ev'n this lofty Structure will confound;
A Pestilential Sow, a meazel'd Pork 
On the Foundation has been long at work,
Help'd by a Rabble, issu'd from her Womb,
Which she has foster'd in that lower Room;
Who now for Acorns are so madly bent,
That soon this Tree must fall, for their Content.
I wou'd have fetch'd some for th' unruly Elves;
But 'tis the Mob's delight to help Themselves:
Whilst your high Brood must with the meanest drop,
And steeper be their Fall, as next the Top;
Unless you soon to Jupiter repair,
And let him know, the Case demands his Care.
Oh! May the Trunk but stand, 'till you come back!
But hark! already sure, I hear it crack.
Away, away---The Eagle, all agast,
Soars to the Sky, nor falters in her haste:
Whilst crafty Puss, now o'er the Eyry reigns,
Replenishing her Maw with treach'rous Gains.
The Sow she plunders next, and lives alone;
The Pigs, the Eaglets, and the House her own.
Curs'd Sycophants! How wretched is the Fate
Of those, who know you not, till 'tis too late!
The parting Farewel spoke, the last Adieu,
The less'ning Distance past, then loss of View,
The Friend was gone, which some kind Moments gave,
And Absence separated, like the Grave.
The Wings of Love were tender too, till then
No Quill, thence pull'd, was shap'd into a Pen,
To send in Paper-sheets, from Town to Town,
Words smooth was they, and softer than his Down.
O'er such he reign'd, whom Neighborhood had join'd,
And hopt, from Bough to Bough, supported by the Wind.
When for a Wife the youthful Patriarch sent,
The Camels, Jewels, and the Steward went,
A wealthy Equipage, tho' grave and slow;
But not a Line, that might the Lover shew.
The Rings and Bracelets woo'd her Hands and Arms;
But had she known of melting Words, the Charms
That under secret Seals in Ambush lie,
To catch the Soul, when drawn into the Eye,
The Fair Assyrian had not took this Guide,
Nor her soft Heart in Chains of Pearl been ty'd.
Had these Conveyances been then in Date,
Joseph had known his wretched Father's State,
Before a Famine, which his Life pursues,
Had sent his other Sons, to tell the News.
Oh! might I live to see an Art arise,
As this to Thoughts, indulgent to the Eyes;
That the dark Pow'rs of distance cou'd subdue,
And make me See, as well as Talk to You;
That tedious Miles, nor Tracts of Air might prove
Bars to my Sight, and shadows to my Love!
Yet were it granted, such unbounded Things
Are wand'ring Wishes, born on Phancy's Wings,
They'd stretch themselves beyond this happy Case,
And ask an Art, to help us to Embrace.
This curious Piece, which I shall now impart,
Fell from Malherbe, a Master in his Art,
To Racan, fill'd with like poetick Fire,
Both tuneful Servants of Apollo's Choir:
Rivals and Heirs to the Horatian Lyre:
Who meeting him, one Day, free and alone,
(For still their Thoughts were to each other known)
Thus ask'd his Aid–Some useful Counsel give,
Thou who, by living long, hast learnt to live;
Whose Observation nothing can escape;
Tell me, how I my course of Life shall shape:
To something I wou'd fix ere't be too late.
You know my Birth, my Talents, my Estate:
Shall I with these content, all Search resign,
And to the Country my Desires confine?
Or in the Court, or Camp, advancement gain?
The World's a mixture of Delight and Pain:
Tho' rough it seems, there's Pleasure in the Wars,
And Hymen's Joys are not without their Cares.
I need not ask, to what my Genius tends,
But wou'd content the World, the Court, my Friends.
Please all the World (in haste) Malherbe replies?
How vain th' Attempt will prove in him, that tries,
Learn from a Fable, I have somewhere found,
Before I answer all that you propound.
A Miller and his Son (the Father old,
The Boy about some fifteen Years had told)
Designed their Ass to sell, and for the Fair,
Some distance off, accordingly prepare.
But lest she in the walk should lose her Flesh,
And not appear, for Sale, so full and fresh,
Her Feet together ty'd; between them two
They heav'd her up; and on the Rusticks go:
Till those, who met them bearing thus the Ass,
Cry'd, Are these Fools about to act a Farce?
Surely the Beast (howe'er it seem to be)
Is not the greatest Ass of all the Three.
The Miller in their Mirth his Folly finds,
And down he sets her, and again unbinds;
And tho' her grumbling shew'd, she lik'd much more
The lazy way, she travell'd in before,
He minds her not; but up the Boy he sets
Upon her Back, and on the Crupper gets.
Thus on they jog, when of Three Men that pass'd,
The eldest thinking Age to be disgrac'd,
Call'd to the Youth, ho! you, young Man for shame!
Come down, lest Passengers your Manners blame,
And say, it ill becomes your tender Years
To ride before a Grandsire with grey Hairs.
Truly, the Gentlemen are in the right,
The Miller cries, and makes the Boy alight;
Then forward slides himself into his place,
And with a Mind content renews his pace:
But much he had not gain'd upon his way,
Before a Troop of Damsels, neat and gay,
(Partial to Youth) to one another cry'd,
See, how with walking by that Dotard's side,
The Boy is tir'd; whilst with a Prelate's state
He rides alone, and dangling in the Seat,
Hangs like a Calf thrown up, across the Beast.
The Miller, thinking to have spoiled that Jest,
Reply'd, he was too Old for Veal to pass,
But after more on him, and on his Ass,
He stands convinc'd, and takes his Son again
To ride at ease himself, still next the Mane.
Yet ere he'd thirty Paces borne the Lad,
The next they met, cry'd---Are these Fellows mad!
Have they no Pity thus t'o'erload the Jade!
Sure, at the Fair, they for her Skin may trade.
See, how's she spent, and sinks beneath their strokes!
The Miller, whom this most of all provokes,
Swears by his Cap, he shews his want of Brains,
Who thus to please the World, bestows his Pains.
Howe'er we'll try, if this way't may be done;
And off he comes, and fetches down his Son.
Behind they walk, and now the Creature drive,
But cou'd no better in their Purpose thrive;
Nor scape a Fellow's Censure, whom they meet,
That cries, to spare the Ass they break their Feet;
And whilst unladen at her ease she goes,
Trudge in the Dirt, and batter out their Shooes;
As if to burthen her they were afraid,
And Men for Beasts, not Beasts for Men were made.
The Proverb right, the Cart before the Horse.
The Miller, finding things grow worse and worse,
Cries out, I am an Ass, it is agreed,
And so are all, who wou'd in this succeed.
Hereafter, tho' Reproof or Praise I find,
I'll neither heed, but follow my own Mind,
Take my own Counsel, how my Beast to sell.
This he resolv'd, and did it, and did well.
For you, Sir, Follow Love, the Court, the War;
Obtain the Crosier, or the City's Furr;
Live single all your Days, or take a Wife;
Trust me, a Censure waits each state of Life.
But Animals of slender size,
That feast on humane Gore,
From secret Ambushes arise,
Nor suffer him to snore;
Who starts, and scrubs, and frets, and swears,
'Till, finding all in vain,
He for Relief employs his Pray'rs
In this old Heathen strain.
Great Jupiter! thy Thunder send
From out the pitchy Clouds,
And give these Foes a dreadful End,
That lurk in Midnight Shrouds:
Or Hercules might with a Blow,
If once together brought,
This Crew of Monsters overthrow,
By which such Harms are wrought.
The Strife, ye Gods! is worthy You,
Since it our Blood has cost;
And scorching Fevers must ensue,
When cooling Sleep is lost.
Strange Revolutions wou'd abound,
Did Men ne'er close their Eyes;
Whilst those, who wrought them wou'd be found
At length more Mad, than Wise.
Passive Obedience must be us'd,
If this cannot be Cur'd;
But whilst one Flea is slowly bruis'd,
Thousands must be endur'd.
Confusion, Slav'ry, Death and Wreck
Will on the Nation seize,
If, whilst you keep your Thunders back,
We're massacr'd by Fleas.
Why, prithee, shatter-headed Fop,
The laughing Gods reply;
Hast thou forgot thy Broom, and Mop,
And Wormwood growing nigh?
Go sweep, and wash, and strew thy Floor,
As all good Housewives teach;
And do not thus for Thunders roar,
To make some fatal Breach:
Which You, nor your succeeding Heir,
Nor yet a long Descent
Shall find out Methods to repair,
Tho' Prudence may prevent.
For Club, and Bolts, a Nation call'd of late,
Nor wou'd be eas'd by Engines of less Weight:
But whether lighter had not done as well,
Let their Great-Grandsons, or their Grandsons tell.
But soon return'd he hears her at his Door,
As noisy and tempestuous as before;
Yet mildly ask'd, How she her Days had spent
Amidst the Quiet of a sweet Content,
Where Shepherds 'tend their Flocks, and Maids their Pails,
And no harsh Mistress domineers, or rails?
Not rail! she cries–Why, I that had no share
In their Concerns, cou'd not the Trollops spare;
But told 'em, they were Sluts–And for the Swains,
My Name a Terror to them still remains;
So often I reprov'd their slothful Faults,
And with such Freedom told 'em all my Thoughts,
That I no more amongst them cou'd reside.
Has then, alas! the Gentleman reply'd,
One single Month so much their patience try'd?
Where you by Day, and but at Seasons due,
Cou'd with your Clamours their Defects pursue;
How had they shrunk, and justly been afraid,
Had they with me one Curtain Lecture heard!
Yet enter Madam, and resume your Sway;
Who can't Command, must silently Obey.
In secret here let endless Faults be found,
Till, like Reformers who in States abound,
You all to Ruin bring, and ev'ry Part confound.
Then live, old Brown! with thy Chalybeats,
Which keep us from becoming Idiots.
At Tunbridge let us still be Drinking,
Though 'tis the Antipodes to Thinking:
Such Hurry, whilst the Spirit's flying,
Such Stupefaction, when 'tis dying;
Yet these, and not sententious Papers,
Must brighten Life, and cure the Vapours, &c.
Throughout the Land, unlimited you flew,
Nor sought, as heretofore, with Friendly Aid
Only, new Motion to bestow
Upon the sluggish Vapours, bred below,
Condensing into Mists, and melancholy Shade.
No more such gentle Methods you pursue,
But marching now in terrible Array,
Undistinguish'd was your Prey:
In vain the Shrubs, with lowly Bent,
Sought their Destruction to prevent;
The Beech in vain, with out-stretch'd Arms,
Deprecates th' approaching Harms;
In vain the Oak (so often storm'd)
Rely'd upon that native Force,
By which already was perform'd
So much of his appointed Course,
As made him, fearless of Decay,
Wait but the accomplish'd Time
Of his long-wish'd and useful Prime,
To be remov'd, with Honor, to the Sea.
The strait and ornamental Pine
Did in the like Ambition joyn,
And thought his Fame shou'd ever last,
When in some Royal Ship he stood the planted Mast;
And shou'd again his Length of Timber rear,
And new engrafted Branches wear
Of fibrous Cordage and impending Shrouds,
Still trimm'd with human Care, and water'd by the Clouds.
But oh, you Trees! who solitary stood;
Or you, whose Numbers form'd a Wood;
You, who on Mountains chose to rise,
And drew them nearer to the Skies;
Or you, whom Valleys late did hold
In flexible and lighter Mould;
You num'rous Brethren of the Leafy Kind,
To whatsoever Use design'd,
Now, vain you found it to contend
With not, alas! one Element; your Friend
Your Mother Earth, thro' long preceding Rains,
(Which undermining sink below)
No more her wonted Strength retains;
Nor you so fix'd within her Bosom grow,
That for your sakes she can resolve to bear
These furious Shocks of hurrying Air;
But finding All your Ruin did conspire,
She soon her beauteous Progeny resign'd
To this destructive, this imperious Wind,
That check'd your nobler Aims, and gives you to the Fire.
Thus! have thy Cedars, Libanus, been struck
As the lythe Oziers twisted round;
Thus! Cadez, has thy Wilderness been shook,
When the appalling, and tremendous Sound
Of rattl'ing Tempests o'er you broke,
And made your stubborn Glories bow,
When in such Whirlwinds the Almighty spoke,
Warning Judea then, as our Britannia now.
Yet these were the remoter Harms,
Foreign the Care, and distant the Alarms:
Whilst but sheltring Trees alone,
Master'd soon, and soon o'erthrown,
Felt those Gusts, which since prevail,
And loftier Palaces assail;
Whose shaken Turrets now give way,
With vain Inscriptions, which the Freeze has borne
Through Ages past, t'extol and to adorn,
And to our latter Times convey;
Who did the Structures deep Foundation lay,
Forcing his Praise upon the gazing Croud,
And, whilst he moulders in a scanty Shroud,
Telling both Earth and Skies, he when alive was proud.
Now down at once comes the superfluous Load,
The costly Fret-work with it yields,
Whose imitated Fruits and Flow'rs are strew'd,
Like those of real Growth o'er the Autumnal Fields.
The present Owner lifts his Eyes,
And the swift Change with sad Affrightment spies:
The Cieling gone, that late the Roof conceal'd;
The Roof untyl'd, thro' which the Heav'ns reveal'd,
Exposes now his Head, when all Defence has fail'd.
What alas, is to be done!
Those, who in Cities wou'd from Dangers run,
Do but encreasing Dangers meet,
And Death, in various shapes, attending in the Street;
While some, too tardy in their Flight,
O'ertaken by a worse Mischance,
Their upward Parts do scarce advance,
When on their following Limbs th' extending Ruins light.
One half's interr'd, the other yet survives,
And for Release with fainting Vigour strives;
Implores the Aid of absent Friends in vain;
With fault'ring Speech, and dying Wishes calls
Those, whom perhaps, their own Domestick Walls
By parallel Distress, or swifter Death retains.
(1) O Wells! thy Bishop's Mansion we lament,
So tragical the Fall, so dire th'Event!
But let no daring Thought presume
To point a Cause for that oppressive Doom.
Yet strictly pious KEN! had'st Thou been there,
This Fate, we think, had not become thy share;
Nor had that awful Fabrick bow'd,
Sliding from its loosen'd Bands;
Nor yielding Timbers been allow'd
To crush thy ever-lifted Hands,
Or interrupt thy Pray'r.
Those Orizons, that nightly Watches keep,
Had call'd thee from thy Bed, or there secur'd thy Sleep.
Whilst you, bold Winds and Storms! his Word obey'd,
Whilst you his Scourge the Great Jehova made,
And into ruin'd Heaps our Edifices laid.
You South and West the Tragedy began,
As, with disorder'd haste, you o'er the Surface ran;
Forgetting, that you were design'd
(Chiefly thou Zephyrus, thou softest Wind!)
Only our Heats, when sultry, to allay,
And chase the od'rous Gums by your dispersing Play.
Now, by new Orders and Decrees,
For our Chastisement issu'd forth,
You on his Confines the alarmed North
With equal Fury sees,
And summons swiftly to his Aid
Eurus, his Confederate made,
His eager Second in th' opposing Fight,
That even the Winds may keep the Balance right,
Nor yield increase of Sway to arbitrary Might.
Meeting now, they all contend,
Those assail, while These defend;
Fierce and turbulent the War,
And in the loud tumultuous Jar
Winds their own Fifes, and Clarions are.
Each Cavity, which Art or Nature leaves,
Their Inspiration hastily receives;
Whence, from their various Forms and Size,
As various Symphonies arise,
Their Trumpet ev'ry hollow Tube is made,
And, when more solid Bodies they invade,
Enrag'd, they can no farther come,
The beaten Flatt, whilst it repels the Noise,
Resembles but with more outrageous Voice
The Soldier's threatning Drum:
And when they compass thus our World around,
When they our Rocks and Mountains rend,
When they our Sacred Piles to their Foundations send,
No wonder if our ecchoing Caves rebound;
No wonder if our list'ning Sense they wound,
When arm'd with so much Force, and usher'd with such Sound.
Nor scarce, amidst the Terrors of that Night,
When you, fierce Winds, such Desolations wrought,
When you from out his Stores the Great Commander brought,
Cou'd the most Righteous stand upright;
Scarcely the Holiest Man performs
The Service, that becomes it best,
By ardent Vows, or solemn Pray'rs addrest;
Nor finds the Calm, so usual to his Breast,
Full Proof against such Storms.
How shou'd the Guilty then be found,
The Men in Wine, or looser Pleasures drown'd,
To fix a stedfast Hope, or to maintain their Ground!
When at his Glass the late Companion feels,
That Giddy, like himself, the tott'ring Mansion reels!
The Miser, who with many a Chest
His gloomy Tenement opprest,
Now fears the over-burthen'd Floor,
And trembles for his Life, but for his Treasure more.
What shall he do, or to what Pow'rs apply?
To those, which threaten from on High,
By him ne'er call'd upon before,
Who also will suggest th' impossible Restore?
No; Mammon, to thy Laws he will be true,
And, rather than his Wealth, will bid the World adieu.
The Rafters sink, and bury'd with his Coin
That Fate does with his living Thoughts combine;
For still his Heart's inclos'd within a Golden Mine.
Contention with its angry Brawls
By Storms o'er-clamour'd, shrinks and falls;
Nor WHIG, nor TORY now the rash Contender calls.
Those, who but Vanity allow'd,
Nor thought, it reach'd the Name of Sin,
To be of their Perfections proud,
Too much adorn'd without, or too much rais'd within,
Now find, that even the lightest Things,
As the minuter parts of Air,
When Number to their Weight addition brings,
Can, like the small, but numerous Insects Stings,
Can, like th' assembl'd Winds, urge Ruin and Despair.
Thus You've obey'd, you Winds, that must fulfill
The Great disposer's Righteous Will:
Thus did your Breath a strict Enquiry make,
Thus did you our most secret Sins awake,
And thus chastis'd their Ill.
Whilst vainly Those, of a rapacious Mind,
Fields to other Fields had laid,
By Force, or by injurious Bargains join'd,
With Fences for their Guard impenetrable made;
The juster Tempest mocks the wrong,
And sweeps, in its directed Flight,
Th' Inclosures of another's Right,
Driving at once the Bounds, and licens'd Herds along.
The Earth agen one general Scene appears;
No regular distinction now,
Betwixt the Grounds for Pasture, or the Plough,
The Face of Nature wears.
Free as the Men, who wild Confusion love,
And lawless Liberty approve,
Their Fellow-Brutes pursue their way,
To their own Loss, and disadvantage stray,
As wretched in their Choice, as unadvis'd as They.
The tim'rous Deer, whilst he forsakes the Park,
And wanders on, in the misguiding Dark,
Believes, a Foe from ev'ry unknown Bush
Will on his trembling Body rush,
Taking the Winds, that vary in their Notes,
For hot pursuing Hounds with deeply bellowing Throats.
Th' awaken'd Birds, shook from their nightly Seats,
Their unavailing Pinions ply,
Repuls'd, as they attempt to fly
In hopes they might attain to more secure Retreats.
But, Where ye wilder'd Fowls wou'd You repair?
When this your happy Portion given,
Your upward Lot, your Firmament of Heaven,
Your unentail'd, your undivided Air,
Where no Proprietor was ever known,
Where no litigious Suits have ever grown,
Whilst none from Star to Star cou'd call the space his Own;
When this no more your middle Flights can bear,
But some rough Blast too far above conveighs,
Or to unquitted Earth confines your weak Essays.
Nor You, nor wiser Man cou'd find Repose,
Nor cou'd our Industry produce
Expedients of the smallest Use,
To ward our greater Cares, or mitigate your Woes.
(2) Ye Clouds! that pity'd our Distress,
And by your pacifying Showers
(The soft and usual methods of Success)
Kindly assay'd to make this Tempest less;
Vainly your Aid was now alas! employ'd,
In vain you wept o'er those destructive Hours,
In which the Winds full Tyranny enjoy'd,
Nor wou'd allow you to prevail,
But drove your scorn'd, and scatter'd Tears to wail
The Land that lay destroy'd.
Whilst You obey'd, you Winds! that must fulfill
The just Disposer's Righteous Will;
Whilst not the Earth alone, you disarray,
But to more ruin'd Seas wing'd your impetuous Way.
(3) Which to foreshew, the still portentious Sun
(4) Beamless, and pale of late, his Race begun,
Quenching the Rays, he had no Joy to keep,
In the obscure, and sadly threaten'd Deep.
Farther than we, that Eye of Heaven discerns,
And nearer plac'd to our malignant Stars,
Our brooding Tempests, and approaching Wars
When now, too soon the dark Event
Shews what that faded Planet meant;
Whilst more the liquid Empire undergoes,
More she resigns of her entrusted Stores,
The Wealth, the Strength, the Pride of diff'rent Shores
In one Devoted, one Recorded Night,
Than Years had known destroy'd by generous Fight,
Or Privateering Foes.
All Rules of Conduct laid aside,
No more the baffl'd Pilot steers,
Or knows an Art, when it each moment veers,
To vary with the Winds, or stem th'unusual Tide.
Dispers'd and loose, the shatter'd Vessels stray,
Some perish within sight of Shore,
Some, happier thought, obtain a wider Sea,
But never to return, or cast an Anchor more!
Some on the Northern Coasts are thrown,
And by congealing Surges compass'd round,
To fixt and certain Ruin bound,
Immoveable are grown:
The fatal Goodwin swallows All that come
Within the Limits of that dangerous Sand,
Amphibious in its kind, nor Sea nor Land;
Yet kin to both, a false and faithless Strand,
Known only to our Cost for a devouring Tomb.
Nor seemed the HURRICANE content,
Whilst only Ships were wreckt, and Tackle rent;
The Sailors too must fall a Prey,
Those that Command, with those that did Obey;
The best Supporters of thy pompous Stile,
Thou far Renown'd, thou pow'rful BRITISH Isle!
Foremost in Naval Strength, and Sov'reign of the Sea!
These from thy Aid that wrathful Night divides,
Plung'd in those Waves, o'er which this Title rides.
What art Thou, envy'd Greatness, at the best,
In thy deluding Splendors drest?
What are thy glorious Titles, and thy Forms?
Which cannot give Security, or Rest
To favour'd Men, or Kingdoms that contest
With Popular Assaults, or Providential Storms!
Whilst on th'Omnipotent our Fate depends,
And They are only safe, whom He alone defends.
Then let to Heaven our general Praise be sent,
Which did our farther Loss, our total Wreck prevent.
And as our Aspirations do ascend,
Let every Thing be summon'd to attend;
And let the Poet after God's own Heart
Direct our Skill in that sublimer part,
And our weak Numbers mend!
|(1)||The Bishop's Palace at Wells was blown down, and kill'd Bishop Kidder with his Lady.|
|(2)||We had a great Shower of Rain in the midd'st of the Storm.|
|(3)||The Ancients look'd upon the Sun (or Phoebus) as Prophetick.|
|(4)||One Day of the Summer before the Storm we had an unusual Appearance of the Sun (which was observ'd by many People in several Parts of Kent). It was of a pale dead Colour, without any Beams or Brightness for some Hours in the Morning, altho' obstructed by no Clouds; for the Sky was clear.|
Praise Him, you Angels that before him bow,
You Creatures of Celestial frame,
Our Guests of old, our wakeful Guardians now,
Praise Him, and with like Zeal our Hearts enflame,
Transporting then our Praise to Seats from whence you came!
Praise Him, thou Sun in thy Meridian Force;
Exalt Him, all ye Stars and Light!
Praise Him, thou Moon in thy revolving Course,
Praise Him, thou gentler Guide of silent Night,
Which do's to solemn Praise, and serious Thoughts invite.
Praise Him, ye humid Vapours, which remain
Unfrozen by the sharper Air;
Praise Him, as you return in Show'rs again,
To bless the Earth and make her Pastures fair:
Praise Him, ye climbing Fires, the Emblems of our Pray'r.
Praise Him, ye Waters petrify'd above,
Ye shredded Clouds that fall in Snow,
Praise Him, for that you so divided move;
Ye Hailstones, that you do no larger grow.
Nor, in one solid Mass, oppress the World below.
Praise Him, ye soaring Fowls, still as you fly,
And on gay Plumes your Bodies raise;
You Insects, which in dark Recesses lie,
Altho' th' extremest Distances you try,
Be reconcil'd in This, to offer mutual Praise.
Praise Him, thou Earth, with thy unbounded Store;
Ye Depths which to the Center tend:
Praise Him ye Beasts which in the Forests roar;
Praise Him ye Serpents, tho' you downwards bend,
Who made your bruised Head our Ladder to ascend.
Praise Him, ye Men whom youthful Vigour warms;
Ye Children, hast'ning to your Prime;
Praise Him, ye Virgins of unsullied Charms,
With beauteous Lips becoming sacred Rhime:
You Aged, give Him Praise for your encrease of Time.
Praise Him, ye Monarchs in supreme Command,
By Anthems, like the Hebrew Kings;
Then with enlarged Zeal throughout the Land
Reform the Numbers, and reclaim the Strings,
Converting to His Praise, the most Harmonious Things.
Ye Senators presiding by our Choice,
And You Hereditary Peers!
Praise Him by Union, both in Heart and Voice;
Praise Him, who your agreeing Council steers,
Producing sweeter Sounds than the according Spheres.
Praise Him, ye native Altars of the Earth!
Ye Mountains of stupendious size!
Praise Him, ye Trees and Fruits which there have birth,
Praise Him, ye Flames that from their Bowels rise,
All fitted for the use of grateful Sacrifice.
He spake the Word; and from the Chaos rose
The Forms and Species of each Kind:
He spake the Word, which did their Law compose,
And all, with never ceasing Order join'd,
Till ruffl'd for our Sins by his chastising Wind.
But now, you Storms, that have your Fury spent,
As you his Dictates did obey,
Let now your loud and threatning Notes relent,
Tune all your Murmurs to a softer Key,
And bless that Gracious Hand, that did your Progress stay.
From my contemn'd Retreat, obscure and low,
As Grots from when the Winds disperse,
May this His Praise as far extended flow;
And if that future Times shall read my Verse,
Tho' worthless in it self, let them his Praise rehearse.
Therefore farther now repeat;
What is Friendship when compleat?
Ard. 'Tis to share all Joy and Grief;
'Tis to lend all due Relief
From the Tongue, the Heart, the Hand;
'Tis to mortgage House and Land;
For a Friend be sold a Slave;
'Tis to die upon a Grave,
If a Friend therein do lie.
Eph. This indeed, tho' carry'd high,
This, tho' more than e'er was done
Underneath the rolling Sun,
This has all been said before.
Can ARDELIA say no more?
Ard. Words indeed no more can shew:
But 'tis to love, as I love you.
To Rest he there himself compos'd,
And in his Mind revolv'd,
How Great a Person it enclos'd,
How free from Danger he repos'd,
Though now in Ease dissolv'd!
Who Guard, nor Centinel did need,
Despising as a Jest
All whom the Forest else did feed,
As Creatures of an abject Breed,
Who durst not him molest.
But in the Air a Sound he heard,
That gave him some dislike;
At which he shook his grisly Beard,
Enough to make the Woods affeard,
And stretch'd his Paw to strike.
When on his lifted Nose there fell
A Creature, slight of Wing,
Who neither fear'd his Grin, nor Yell,
Nor Strength, that in his Jaws did dwell,
But gores him with her Sting.
Transported with th' Affront and Pain,
He terribly exclaims,
Protesting, if it comes again,
Its guilty Blood the Grass shall stain.
And to surprize it aims.
The scoffing Gnat now laugh'd aloud,
And bids him upwards view
The Jupiter within the Cloud,
That humbl'd him, who was so proud,
And this sharp Thunder threw.
That Taunt no Lyon's Heart cou'd bear;
And now much more he raves,
Whilst this new Perseus in the Air
Do's War and Strife again declare,
And all his Terrour braves.
Upon his haughty Neck she rides,
Then on his lashing Tail;
(Which need not now provoke his Sides)
Where she her slender Weapon guides,
And makes all Patience fail.
A Truce at length he must propose,
The Terms to be her Own;
Who likewise Rest and Quiet chose,
Contented now her Life to close,
When she'd such Triumph known.
You mighty Men, who meaner ones despise,
Learn from this Fable to become more Wise;
You see the Lyon may be vext with Flies.
With Heart's content th' unloaded Steed
Began to neigh, and frisk, and feed;
For nothing more he car'd,
Since none of all his Master's breed
E'er found such Pasture, at their need,
Or half so well had far'd.
When, in the turning of a Hand,
Out comes the Owner of the Land,
And do's the Trespass eye;
Which puts poor Bayard to a Stand,
For now his Master do's command
Him to return and fly.
But Hunger quick'ning up his Wit,
And Grass being sweeter than the Bit,
He to the Clown reply'd;
Shall I for you this Dinner quit,
Who to my Back hard Burdens fit,
And to the Death wou'd ride?
No; shou'd I as a Stray be found,
And seiz'd upon forbidden Ground,
I'll on this Spot stand still;
For tho' new Riders shou'd abound,
(Or did Mankind this Field surround)
They cou'd but use me ill.
Urge no Man to despair; lest in the Fit
He with some Counterblow thy Head may hit.
How smiling the World's Prospect lies
How tempting to go through!
Not Canaan to the Prophet's Eyes,
From Pisgah with a sweet Surprize,
Did more inviting shew.
How promising's the Book of Fate,
Till thoroughly understood!
Whilst partial Hopes such Lots create,
As may the youthful Fancy treat
With all that's Great and Good.
How soft the first Ideas prove,
Which wander through our Minds!
How full the Joys, how free the Love,
Which do's that early Season move;
As Flow'rs the Western Winds!
Our Sighs are then but Vernal Air;
But April–drops our Tears,
Which swiftly passing, all grows Fair,
Whilst Beauty compensates our Care,
And Youth each Vapour clears.
But oh! too soon, alas, we climb;
Scarce feeling we ascend
The gently rising Hill of Time,
From whence with Grief we see that Prime,
And all its Sweetness end.
The Die now cast, our Station known,
Fond Expectation past;
The Thorns, which former Days had sown,
To Crops of late Repentance grown,
Thro' which we toil at last.
Whilst ev'ry Care's a driving Harm,
That helps to bear us down;
Which faded Smiles no more can charm,
But ev'ry Tear's a Winter-Storm,
And ev'ry Look's a Frown.
Till with succeeding Ills opprest,
For Joys we hop'd to find;
By Age too, rumpl'd and undrest,
We gladly sinking down to rest,
Leave following Crouds behind.
The Tree of Knowlege we in Eden prov'd;
The Tree of Life was thence to Heav'n remov'd:
Hope is the growth of Earth, the only Plant,
Which either Heav'n, or Paradice cou'd want.
Hell knows it not, to Us alone confin'd,
And Cordial only to the Human Mind.
Receive it then, t'expel these mortal Cares,
Nor wave a Med'cine, which thy God prepares.
Would we attain the happiest State,
That is design'd us here;
No Joy a Rapture must create,
No Grief beget Despair.
No Injury fierce Anger raise,
No Honour tempt to Pride;
No vain Desires of empty Praise
Must in the Soul abide.
No Charms of Youth, or Beauty move
The constant, settl'd Breast:
Who leaves a Passage free to Love,
Shall let in, all the rest.
In such a Heart soft Peace will live,
Where none of these abound;
The greatest Blessing, Heav'n do's give,
Or can on Earth be found.
To keep the House from Rascals was my Charge;
The Task was great, and the Commission large.
Nor did your Worship e'er declare your Mind,
That to the begging Crew it was confin'd;
Who shrink an Arm, or prop an able Knee,
Or turn up Eyes, till they're not seen, nor see.
To Thieves, who know the Penalty of Stealth,
And fairly stake their Necks against your Wealth,
These are the known Delinquents of the Times,
And Whips and Tyburn. testify their Crimes.
But since to Me there was by Nature lent
An exquisite Discerning by the Scent;
I trace a Flatt'rer, when he fawns and leers,
A rallying Wit, when he commends and jeers:
The greedy Parasite I grudging note,
Who praises the good Bits, that oil his Throat;
I mark the Lady, you so fondly toast,
That plays your Gold, when all her own is lost:
The Knave, who fences your Estate by Law,
Yet still reserves an undermining Flaw.
These and a thousand more, which I cou'd tell,
Provoke my Growling, and offend my Smell.
Beauty, where Vanities abound,
No serious Passion claims;
Then, 'till a Phoenix can be found,
Do not admit the Flames.
But griev'd She finds, that his Replies
(Since prepossess'd when Young)
Take all their Hints from Silvia's Eyes,
None from ARDELIA's Tongue.
Thus, Cupid, of our Aim we miss,
Who wou'd unbend thy Bow;
And each slight Nymph a Phoenix is,
When Love will have it so.
Musick, which tunes the Soul for Love,
And stirs up all our soft Desires,
Do's but the glowing Flame improve,
Which pow'rful Beauty first inspires.
Thus, whilst with Art she plays, and sings
I to Miranda, standing by,
Impute the Music of the Strings,
And all the melting Words apply.
Still Swift to come, but when to go
Thou shou'd'st be more–Alas! how Slow.
Lord of the World must surely be
But thy bare Title at the most;
Since Jealousy is Lord of Thee,
And makes such Havock on thy Coast,
As do's thy pleasant Land deface,
Yet binds thee faster to the Place.
LOVE, thou art best of Human Joys,
Our chiefest Happiness below;
All other Pleasures are but Toys,
Musick without Thee is but Noise,
And Beauty but an empty Show.
Heav'n, who knew best what Man wou'd move,
And raise his Thoughts above the Brute;
Said, Let him Be, and let him Love;
That must alone his Soul improve,
Howe'er Philosophers dispute.
Quickly, Delia, Learn my Passion,
Lose not Pleasure, to be Proud;
Courtship draws on Observation,
And the Whispers of the Croud.
Soon or late you'll hear a Lover,
Nor by Time his Truth can prove;
Ages won't a Heart discover,
Trust, and so secure my Love.
'TIS strange, this Heart within my breast,
Reason opposing, and her Pow'rs,
Cannot one gentle Moment rest,
Unless it knows what's done in Yours.
In vain I ask it of your Eyes,
Which subt'ly would my Fears controul;
For Art has taught them to disguise,
Which Nature made t' explain the Soul.
In vain that Sound, your Voice affords,
Flatters sometimes my easy Mind;
But of too vast Extent are Words
In them the Jewel Truth to find.
Then let my fond Enquiries cease,
And so let all my Troubles end:
For, sure, that Heart shall ne'er know Peace,
Which on Anothers do's depend.
Unto Parnassus strait she sent,
And bid the Messenger, that went
Unto the Muses Court,
Assure them, she their Aid did need,
And begg'd they'd use their utmost Speed,
Because the Time was short.
The hasty Summons was allow'd;
And being well-bred, they rose and bow'd,
And said, they'd poste away;
That well they did ARDELIA know,
And that no Female's Voice below
They sooner wou'd obey:
That many of that rhiming Train,
On like Occasions, sought in vain
Their Industry t'excite;
But for ARDELIA all they'd leave:
Thus flatt'ring can the Muse deceive,
And wheedle us to write.
Yet, since there was such haste requir'd;
To know the Subject 'twas desir'd,
On which they must infuse;
That they might temper Words and Rules,
And with their Counsel carry Tools,
As Country-Doctors use.
Wherefore to cut off all Delays,
'Twas soon reply'd, a Husband's Praise
(Tho' in these looser Times)
ARDELIA gladly wou'd rehearse
A Husband's, who indulg'd her Verse,
And now requir'd her Rimes.
A Husband! eccho'd all around:
And to Parnassus sure that Sound
Had never yet been sent;
Amazement in each Face was read,
In haste th'affrighted (1) Sisters fled,
And unto Council went.
Erato cry'd, since Grizel's Days,
Since Troy-Town pleas'd, and Chivey-chace,
No such Design was known;
And 'twas their Bus'ness to take care,
It reach'd not to the publick Ear,
Or got about the Town:
Nor came where Evening Beaux were met
O'er Billet-doux and Chocolate,
Lest it destroy'd the House;
For in that Place, who cou'd dispence
(That wore his Cloaths with common Sense)
With mention of a Spouse?
'Twas put unto the Vote at last,
And in the Negative it past,
None to her Aid shou'd move;
Yet since ARDELIA was a Friend,
Excuses 'twas agreed to send,
Which plausible might prove:
That Pegasus of late had been
So often rid thro' thick and thin,
With neither Fear nor Wit;
In Panegyrick been so spurr'd
He cou'd not from the Stall be stirr'd,
Nor wou'd endure the Bit.
Melpomene had given a Bond,
By the new House alone to stand,
And write of War and Strife;
Thalia, she had taken Fees,
And Stipends from the Patentees,
And durst not for her Life.
Urania (2) only lik'd the Choice;
Yet not to thwart the publick Voice,
She whisp'ring did impart:
They need no Foreign Aid invoke,
No help to draw a moving Stroke,
Who dictate from the Heart.
Enough! the pleas'd ARDELIA cry'd;
And slighting ev'ry Muse beside,
Consulting now her Breast,
Perceiv'd that ev'ry tender Thought,
Which from abroad she'd vainly sought,
Did there in Silence rest:
And shou'd unmov'd that Post maintain,
Till in his quick Return again,
Met in some neighb'ring Grove,
(Where Vice nor Vanity appear)
Her FLAVIO them alone might hear,
In all the Sounds of Love.
For since the World do's so despise
Hymen's Endearments and its Ties,
They shou'd mysterious be;
Till We that Pleasure too possess
(Which makes their fancy'd Happiness)
Of stollen Secrecy.
|(1)||The Muses–Erato, Melpomene, Thalia, Urania, &c.|
|(2)||Urania is the Heavenly Muse, and suppos'd to inspire Thoughts of Virtue.|
The Trojan Prince did pow'rful Numbers join
To sing of War; but Love was the Design:
And sleeping Troy again in Flames was drest,
To light the Fires in pitying Dido's Breast.
Love without Poetry's refining Aid
Is a dull Bargain, and but coarsely made;
Nor e'er cou'd Poetry successful prove,
Or touch the Soul, but when the Sense was Love.
Oh! cou'd they both in Absence now impart
Skill to my Hand, but to describe my Heart;
Then shou'd you see impatient of your Stay
Soft Hopes contend with Fears of sad Delay;
Love in a thousand fond Endearments there,
And lively Images of You appear.
But since the Thoughts of a Poetick Mind
Will never be to Syllables confin'd;
And whilst to fix what is conceiv'd, we try,
The purer Parts evaporate and dye:
You must perform what they want force to do,
And think what your ARDELIA thinks of you.
October 21, 1690.
Tow'rds a more certain Station she aspires,
Unshaken by Revolts, and owns no less Desires.
But all in vain are Pray'rs, extatick Thoughts,
Recover'd Moments, and retracted Faults,
Retirement, which the World Moroseness calls,
Abandon'd Pleasures in Monastick (1) Walls: 
These, but at distance, towards that purpose tend,
The lowly Means to an exalted End;
Which He must perfect, who allots her Stay,
And That, accomplish'd, will direct the way.
Pity her restless Cares, and weary Strife,
And point some Issue to escaping Life;
Which so dismiss'd, no Pen or Human Speech
Th' ineffable Recess can ever teach:
Th' Expanse, the Light, the Harmony, the Throng,
The Bride's Attendance, and the Bridal Song,
The numerous Mansions, and th' immortal Tree,
No Eye, unpurg'd by Death, must ever see,
Or Waves which through that wond'rous City roll.
Rest then content, my too impatient Soul;
Observe but here the easie Precepts given,
Then wait with chearful hope, till Heaven be known in Heaven.
|(1)||Wye Colledge in Kent, formerly a Priory.|
A Song of Sion they require,
And from the neighb'ring Trees to take
Each Man his dumb, neglected Lyre,
And chearful Sounds on them awake:
But chearful Sounds the Strings refuse,
Nor will their Masters Griefs abuse.
How can We, Lord, thy Praise proclaim,
Here, in a strange unhallow'd Land!
Lest we provoke them to Blaspheme
A Name, they do not understand;
And with rent Garments, that deplore
Above whate'er we felt before.
But, Thou, Jerusalem, so Dear!
If thy lov'd Image e'er depart,
Or I forget thy Suff'rings here;
Let my right Hand forget her Art;
My Tongue her vocal Gift resign,
And Sacred Verse no more be mine!
Now bloody was the Day, and hard the Strife,
Wherein bold Warriors lost neglected Life;
But as, some Errors still we must commit,
Nor Valour always ballanc'd is by Wit;
Among the Rats some Officers appear'd,
With lofty Plumage on their Foreheads rear'd,
Unthinking they, and ruin'd by their Pride:
For when the Weazles prov'd the stronger Side,
A gen'ral Rout befell, and a Retreat,
Was by the Vanquish'd now implor'd of Fate;
To slender Crannies all repair'd in haste,
Where easily the undress'd Vulgar past:
But when the Rats of Figure wou'd have fled,
So wide those branching Marks of Honour spread,
The Feather in the Cap was fatal to the Head.
Away the Skilful Doctor comes
Of Recipes and Med'cines full,
To check the giddy Whirl of Nature's Fires,
If so th' unruly Case requires;
Or with his Cobweb-cleansing Brooms
To sweep and clear the over-crouded Scull,
If settl'd Spirits flag, and make the Patient dull.
But asking what the Symptoms were,
That made 'em think he was so bad?
The Man indeed, they cry'd, is wond'rous Mad.
You, at this Distance, may behold him there
Beneath that Tree in open Air,
Surrounded with the Engines of his Fate,
The Gimcracks of a broken Pate.
Those Hoops a Sphere he calls,
That Ball the Earth;
And when into his raving Fit he falls,
'Twou'd move at once your Pity, and your Mirth,
To hear him, as you will do soon,
Declaring, there's a Kingdom in the Moon;
And that each Star, for ought he knows,
May some Inhabitants enclose:
Philosophers, he says, may there abound,
Such Jugglers as himself be in them found;
Which if there be, the World may well turn round;
At least to those, whose Whimsies are so strange,
That, whilst they're fixt to one peculiar Place,
Pretend to measure far extended Space,
And 'mongst the Planets range.
Behold him now contemplating that Head,
From which long-since both Flesh, and Brains are fled;
Questioning, if that empty, hollow Bowl
Did not ere while contain the Human Soul:
Then starts a Doubt, if 't were not to the Heart
That Nature rather did that Gift impart.
Good Sir, employ the utmost of your Skill,
To make him Wiser, tho' against his Will;
Who thinks, that he already All exceeds,
And laughs at our most solemn Words and Deeds:
Tho' once amongst us he wou'd try a Cause,
And Bus'ness of the Town discuss,
Knowing as well as one of us,
The Price of Corn, and standing Market-Laws;
Wou'd bear an Office in his Turn,
For which good Purposes all Men were born;
Not to be making Circles in the Sand,
And scaling Heav'n, till they have sold their Land;
Or, when unstock'd below their Pasture lies,
To find out Bulls and Rams, amidst the Skies.
From these Mistakes his Madness we conclude;
And hearing, you was with much Skill endu'd,
Your Aid we sought. Hippocrates amaz'd,
Now on the Sage, now on the Rabble gaz'd;
And whilst he needless finds his artful Rules,
Pities a Man of Sense, judg'd by a Croud of Fools.
Then how can we with their Opinions join,
Who, to promote some Int'rest, wou'd define
The People's Voice to be the Voice Divine?
To future Ages may'st thou stand
Untouch'd by the rash Workman's hand;
'Till that large Stock of Sap is spent,
Which gives thy Summer's Ornament;
'Till the fierce Winds, that vainly strive
To shock thy Greatness whilst alive,
Shall on thy lifeless Hour attend,
Prevent the Axe, and grace thy End;
Their scatter'd Strength together call
And to the Clouds proclaim thy Fall;
Who then their Ev'ning-Dews may spare,
When thou no longer art their Care,
But shalt, like ancient Heroes, burn,
And some bright Hearth be made thy Urn.
Whilst Salisb'ry stands the Test of every Light,
In perfect Charms, and perfect Virtue bright:
When Odours, which declin'd repelling Day,
Thro' temp'rate Air uninterrupted stray;
When darken'd Groves their softest Shadows wear,
And falling Waters we distinctly hear;
When thro' the Gloom more venerable shows
Some ancient Fabrick, awful in Repose,
While Sunburnt Hills their swarthy Looks conceal,
And swelling Haycocks thicken up the Vale:
When the loos'd Horse now, as his Pasture leads,
Comes slowly grazing thro' th' adjoining Meads,
Whose stealing Pace and lengthen'd Shade we fear,
Till torn up Forage in his Teeth we hear:
When nibbling Sheep at large pursue their Food,
And unmolested Kine rechew the Cud;
When Curlews cry beneath the Village-walls,
And to her straggling Brood the Partridge calls;
Their shortliv'd Jubilee the Creatures keep,
Which but endures, whilst Tyrant-Man do's sleep;
When a sedate Content the Spirit feels,
And no fierce Light disturbs, whilst it reveals;
But silent Musings urge the Mind to seek
Something, too high for Syllables to speak;
Till the free Soul, to a compos'dness charm'd,
Finding the Elements of Rage disarm'd,
O'er all below a solemn Quiet grown,
Joys in th' inferiour World and thinks it like her Own:
In such a Night let Me abroad remain,
Till Morning breaks, and All's confus'd again;
Our Cares, our Toils, our Clamours are renew'd,
Or Pleasures, seldom reach'd, again pursu'd.
The general SCENES are Aristomenes's Camp near the Walls of Phærea; sometimes the Town of Phærea, and sometimes the Plains among the Shepherds.
A pleasant Plain by a Wood-side; beyond it are seen, on one side, some of the Shepherds Hamlets; on the other (at a distance) the Walls of Phærea, a Garrison of the Lacedemonians.
Enter Climander meeting Arcasius; both drest like Shepherds.
Clim. HAst thou provided me a Horse and Arms,
A Sword, Arcasius, that when Time has freed me
From the Severe Injunctions of a Father,
May fill my Hand, instead of this vile Hook,
And fit it for the Work, a Prince is born to?
Arca. Unwillingly, I have obey'd your Orders;
But, 'till to-morrow's, and the next day's Sun
Shall light the angry, and contentious World,
Your Promise to your Father is in Force;
As well as the Assurance, which you gave,
That in my Custody these Arms shou'd rest,
Until that fatal Time demands their Use.
Clim. Call it not Fatal; Oh! that 'twere arriv'd!
That Aristomenes, the Spartan Terrour,
Were leading me, this moment, bravely on
Through Dangers, equal to the Cause he fights for,
Preserving these free Plains from foreign Bondage!
Though in the Strife this Body strew'd the Ground,
To Fame, and Publick Good an early Victim.
Arca. O wretched Rhodes! Thy Ruin is pronounc'd,
And thou beneath th'impending Plagues may'st perish;
Since He, whom Oracles appoint to Aid thee
Thus wishes with his Own, to sell thy Safety,
For the rash Praise of an intruding Warriour.
Clim. No more of Oracles!
Which oftner we fulfil by heedless Chance,
Than the vain Study to pursue their Meaning;
Which makes me banish, from my lab'ring Thoughts,
Those Mystick Words, which serve but to perplex them.
Arc. From Mine they will not part, nor shou'd from Yours;
Which to prevent, ev'n now I will repeat them;
The Isle of Rhodes shall be of Peace bereft,
Unless it by the Heir thereof be left,
And that He wed, ere he returns agen,
The Beauteous Daughter of the Best of Men;
Whose Father's presence there shall save the State,
And smooth the threatning Brow of angry Fate.
Clim. But, Who this Man, or, Where his Daughter is,
Was left in Darkness, to employ our Search:
Yet, in Obedience, Hither did I come
To feed a Flock, and mix with simple Swains;
Because the Priests, who sway in Princes Courts,
Declar'd, that perfect Innocence, and Virtue
Was to be found but in their lowly Rank,
And There, the Best of Men was to be sought for.
Arc. 'Tis True, they did; and therefore urg'd our Prince;
That slighting (in a Case of such Importance)
The Pride of Titles, and of equal Birth,
You might espouse One of these Rural Maids,
Whose Parents harmless Presence in our Land
Might bring the Blessings of the Gods upon us;
And, lest the Wars (which still infest these Countries)
Shou'd tempt you from the Fates, and his Design,
How strictly did He Charge it on your Duty,
That, 'till the Time, which now, Two Days must end,
You shou'd not leave these Plains, to seek the Camp!
Clim. Nor have I done it, as Thyself can witness;
But here have spent the long and lazy Hours,
Carelessly stretch'd beneath some Sylvan Shade,
And only sent my Wishes to their Tents;
But ere the Battle (which is soon intended)
Shall meet in glorious Tryal of their Right,
I will be there, and side with the Messenians.
Arc.Oh! that you wou'd not!
That first your Native Country might be serv'd,
Think on her Danger, and your Sovereign's Will:
'Twas to the Reed, and not the wrangling Trumpet
He bid you listen, to secure his Peace;
Nor have you look'd with Love, as he requir'd,
On any Shepherdess, tho' ne'er so Fair,
Or born of Parents, harmless as their Flocks.
Low on my Knees, my Lord, let me prevail, [He Kneels.
That, when the Time, decreed you, do's expire,
You will not prosecute this rash Design;
But go with me yet farther on these Plains,
And seek to please your Father, and the Gods,
In such safe, humble ways, as they direct us.
Clim. Nay, prithee, do not kneel; it grates my Nature: [Raises him.
But trust me, when we have subdued these Countries
When Lacedemon's Kings shall sue for Peace,
And make great Aristomenes Returns
Agreeing to his Merits, and their Wrongs,
And I have gain'd such Honour as becomes me;
Whate'er thou doest request shall be observ'd:
And tho' my Soul finds such vast disproportion
Betwixt the Thoughts, with which she is inspir'd,
And those, that lodge in these poor Country Maids;
Yet shall my Duty o'er my Temper rise,
I'll trust (like Others) only to my Eyes,
And think, that Women in Perfection are,
Tho ne'er so Ignorant, if Young and Fair,
[A Noise is heard of distant Drums.
Sure I hear the distant Sound of Drums. [Aside.
Heav'n grant what I've been told, and kept so secret,
Of a Design this Day to end the War,
Be not a Truth too tempting for my Reasons!
Enter frighted, Thæta and Lamia, Shepherdesses.Lamia. Oh! may we here be safe, tell us Climander?
Arc. Oh! do not ask my Aid; but in this Tryal,
Call all your fainting Virtue to assist
And help you keep your Promise to your Father.
Clim. I did not promise him to be a Coward,
To let the Sound of War thus strike my Sense,
Yet keep my Heart in a cool, even Temper.
Hark! this way comes the Noise, and I will meet it.
[As he is going, a confus'd Noise and Cry is heard within.
Arc. They're Cries of Grief, and not the Shouts of Battle.
I hope All's past, lest He and Rhodes shou'd perish.
Enter meeting, Climander, Clinias, and other Shepherds.1st Shep. Ruin'd, Undone!
Which, 'tis believ'd, they'll use with utmost Rigour:
Pressing too far on the Auxiliary Troops,
The Foe surrounding bore him from his Horse,
Then with the Thongs of their curs'd Cretan Bows
Bound his strong Arms, and lead him off, in Triumph.
Clim. Convert, ye Powers, to Blood and Tears that Triumph!
Rescue from their vile Hands the noble Prey,
And send him warmer Friends than Demagetus, [Aside.
Who, knowing not his Person, lov'd his Valour!
O ill-tim'd Duty, how hast thou betray'd me!
Where is Aristor? Where's the brave Alcander? [To them.
Clim. The first may share in his great Father's Fate,
For ought, as yet, the Army can discover:
Alcander heads, but cannot lead them on,
And 'tis believ'd they quickly will forsake him;
Such cold Dismay and Terrour has possess'd 'em!
Yet ere we part, forever part from hence,
(If so the cruel Tyrant shou'd Decree)
Let us appoint one sad and solemn Meeting,
Where all the Ensigns of our former Mirth
May be defac'd and offer'd to his Praise.
That made our Nights secure, and bless'd our Days.
1st Shep. So let it be!
Again, one Ev'ning on these Plains we'll meet.
2nd Shep. But never tread them more with chearful Feet.
[Exeunt Shepherds and Shepherdesses.
Clim. Cruel Arcasius! How hast thou undone me,
Charming me, with thy Tears, to this soft Circle,
Whilst the bright Spirit, Honour is gone by,
And borne away on never-turning Pinions!
Why wou'd'st thou thus contrive against my Fame,
And rob my fiery Youth of this first War,
(For which it languish'd with a Lover's Fondness)
By saying still 'twou'd last, 'till Time had freed me?
But I will yet pursue it thro' Despair,
And share their Ruin, tho' deny'd their Glory.
[As he's going Arc. kneels.
Arc. Yet, this last time, behold my bended Knees,
Which if you slight shall of the Gods implore
A hasty Death, to fall on old Arcasius:
Nor think, this Posture means to cross your way;
For, by those Powers I swear; if they will Fight
As much, we hear 'tis doubted by the Shepherds,
I will not sue, to keep you from the Army,
Or bring on me your future Life's Reproaches.
Let me obtain but This, for all my Service,
To be first sent to sound their Disposition,
Which I'll relate with Truth, and help your Purpose:
In this Attempt Two Hours will not be lost;
Oh! give so much, to save his Life, that loves you.
Clim. Thou has obtain'd it, by thy promis'd Aid,
And my long Knowledge of the Truth that guides thee.
About it then, whilst, in that shady Grove,
I with impatience wait for thy Return.
Arc. Which shall not be prolong'd my Lord, believe me. [Exeunt severally.
Enter several Soldiers, running over the Stage, and throwing away their Arms.1st Sold. Away, away, haste to the Woods for Shelter.
Enter more, doing as the former.1st Sold. Farewell the Wars! Oh! never such a General!
Enter more.2nd Sold. What, is the Army all dispers'd, and broken! [To them.
Enter Alcander meeting them.Alcand. Why do ye fly my Friends, and cast these from ye?
Alcand. Go back, and keep a little while together;
At least, 'till there are Tydings from the Town:
Then, if he lives, we may attempt his rescue;
Or, if he's Dead, in a most just despair
Burn their accurst Phærea o'er their Heads,
And then disperse, when we're so far reveng'd.
Do this my Friends; Come, come, I know you will:
You lov'd the General–
1st Sold. Cursed be He, that did not!
2nd Sold. We will go back, but ne'er shall see him more.
3rd Sold. Then we will Fight no more, that's sure enough.
4th Sold. Howe'er, let's follow the brave Captain here,
And stay, 'till we're inform'd as he advises.
Alcand. Come, I will march before you.
Take up your Arms and trust, my Friends, to me:
Your Lives shall not be set on idle Hazards;
Lose no more time, but let us join the Army.
[They take up their Arms, and Exeunt.
Enter Herminia and Barina, Disguis'd like Shepherdesses.Herm. Alas! Barina, whither wilt thou lead me?
Herm. Thus far indeed thou'st brought me on to seek it,
Urging the Danger of a Virgin's Honour,
When left defenceless to the Conqueror's Will:
But dost thou think, we may not thro' these Woods
Find out some gloomy Cave to Men unknown,
And there expiring, sleep secure for ever?
Bar. Why shou'd we Dye,
Since Aristomenes may yet be Living?
Herm. Oh! that thou hads't not named him!
[She starts and weeps.
'Till we were lodg'd, where Grief
Might have its Course; for now 'twill flow
And stop our farther Passage, barring the Sight
Which shou'd conduct our Steps.
Bar. It must not Madam, nor must you indulge it,
But put on chearful Looks to suit this Habit,
And make the World believe you what you seem.
Herm. I cannot do it.
In the midst of Sport
I shou'd forget the gay, fantastick Scene,
And drop these Tears, when Smiles were most expected.
Bar. Then 'tis in vain farther to seek for Shelter:
Let us return and wait in your Pavilion,
'Till Anaxander shall command you thence
To serve the base Delight of some proud Spartan.
Herm. Oh! yet avert that Fate, ye angry Powers!
I yield, Barina; make me what thou wilt:
See, I no more am sad; look on this Brow;
Canst thou read here that I have lost a Father,
The best, the fondest, and the dearest Father?
Forgive the tender Thought, that breeds this Change;
I'll weep it off, and smile again to please thee.
Bar. No; I'll weep too, for his, that's past,
And your approaching Ruin.
Herm. Alas! I had forgot, but now am Calm:
What must I do? indeed I will observe thee.
Bar. Then not far hence, conceal'd within this Grove
Wait my Return, who must go find the Shepherds,
And frame some Story; that when you appear,
Thro' no Enquiries we become suspected:
And in my absence, be your Thoughts employ'd
To bend your Mind to what the Times require.
Herm. To Fate and thy Advice I will submit,
Suit to my alter'd State my low Desire;
My Fare be plain, and homely my Attire,
My Tresses with a simple Fillet bind,
Face the hot Sun, and wither in the Wind;
In my parch'd Hand a rural Crook be found,
The Trees my Curtains, and my Bed the Ground:
That Fortune (who at Greatness aims her Blow)
When thus disguis'd may not a Princess know. [Exeunt.
The SCENE changes to a Street in the Town of Phærea (the Lacedemonian Garrison) a Rabble and many common Soldiers in the Street.1st Sold. All's done, all's done my Fellows.
[Aristomenes bound and guarded is conducted over the Stage, the Rabble crouding and following him with confus'd Cries and Shouts, Exeunt.The SCENE changed, discovers a Council-Chamber in Anaxander's Palace: Anaxander, Clarinthus, and several Lords of Sparta.
Anax. Most, happily, my Lords, we now are met,
To see those Hands in servile Fetter's ty'd
Which broke the Bondage of the proud Messenians
Whom Sparta long had held in hard Subjection.
Ere yet their Captive General do's appear,
Be it amongst your selves, My Lords, resolved
What Course will answer best our Ends upon them.
Speak you, Clarinthus, for'most of the Assembly;
And then, let ev'ry one add what he pleases.
Clar. Short be my Speech, and plain, as is the way
Which must secure what Lacedemon toils for:
Let him resign that Country, kept by him
From the entire Subjection, to our Yoke;
Or let his speedy Death deliver to Us
What his too active Life has long kept back.
Anax. What say the rest?–
All the Sen. All, all agree to this.
Clar. No middle Course can be of use to Sparta.
A Lord. Bring in the Pris'ner; 'tis the King's Command.
Aristomenes is brought in by the Guard.
Aristor in a Spartan Dress presses in amongst the Croud, whilst Phila appears at the Door.
Have urg'd that Country, where you rule in Chief,
To break our Yoke, and make Incursions on us,
Since known to all, will justify our Sentence
Which is; That you shall meet the Death deserv'd,
Unless to keep our Quiet for the future,
You bring again Messenia to our Sway,
Paying such Tribute, as shall be impos'd
By Us, the Lords of that offensive State.
This is the Choice, we kindly set before you,
And wish, that you wou'd take the safest Part,
Aristom. Enslave my Country, to secure my Life!
That Pow'r forbid it, under whose Protection
I've often fought her Battles with Success,
And drove th' ill-grounded War home to your Sparta!
Clar.He braves us in his Bonds: then you wou'd Dye.
Aristom. I do not say I wou'd;
I am a Man, and Nature bars that saying:
Yet I dare Dye; no Spartan here, but knows it.
But since the Fates (whose Wills we best can read,
When thus unfolded in their dire Events)
Tell me by these vile Bonds I must submit;
Propose the gentlest Bargain you can make,
And if I find my Life bears equal Weight,
I am content to take it, else 'tis Yours.
Anax. 'Tis not for Us to wave, or change our Terms,
Mistaken Man, who think not of our Power,
And that we may command what we propose:
Since the first Sally, now, must take Possession
Of what your frighted Rout will soon abandon.
Aristom. My frighted Rout!
Ye basely wrong with foul reproachful Names
Those valiant Troops, which yet ye cannot Conquer:
For know, thou proud insulting Anaxander,
There's at their head a resolute young Man,
That will not 'bate thee in his strict Account
One Sigh or Groan, thy Tortures or thy Dungeons
Shall wrest in Dying from his Father's Bosom.
Anaxander and the Senate talk among themselves, whilst Aristor comes forward upon the Stage.But there he stands! [Aside seeing Aristor.
Phila. Help, Soldiers, help; seize that distracted Spartan.
Who now has got a Sword; Disarm, and take him.
[They disarm him.
Aristor. 'Tis false; stand off, ye Slaves, and know I am–
Phila. Oh! stop his Mouth; for if he raves, he Dyes.
[They stop his Mouth with a Handkerchief.
Aristom. As sure as now he Lives, had he spoke more [Aside.
Therefore be blest the Stratagem that stopt him!
Anax. What means this, Phila; speak, Who is this Madman?
Phila. One by a Friend entrusted to my Care,
Sent from the Country here to find a Cure;
But hearing, as the Croud pass'd by his Lodgings,
That Aristomenes wou'd soon be Sentenc'd,
He broke his Ward, and fancy'd He must save him.
I have pursu'd him, 'till I am faint with Crying,
And am confounded at his frantick Passion.
Oh! Royal Sir, forgive it–
Anax. We do, and pity him: remove him hence,
Then, to thy Mistress, my dear Daughter, Go
And say we now again shall soon see Sparta.
Phila. I shall my Lord!
Now follow me, I'll lead ye to his Lodgings. [To the Guards.
[Exit Phila with the Guards bearing off Aristor.
Aristom. Whoe'er she be,
May Heaven reward her, if she means his Safety. [Aside.
Now I can meditate on my own Fortunes,
And slight the worst can reach me.
Anax. He's deep in Thought which may produce a Change.
Again, I'll try him – [To Clar.
Now, Aristomenes, that this wild Chance
Has given you time to think upon our Sentence,
Have you enough consider'd of its Horror,
To bend your stubborn Will to our Demands?
Aristom. Yes, Anaxander, I have weigh'd it well:
That active Faculty, which we call Phancy,
Soon as you spoke, dragg'd me thus bound by Slaves
Thro' the throng'd Streets, exciting several Passions;
The Barb'rous Croud shouted their clamorous Joy,
Because unpunish'd they might sport with Blood;
Old Men and Matrons, destin'd long for Death,
With envious Pleasure saw me forc'd before them
To tread that Path, in spight of vigorous Nature,
Whilst tender Virgins turned aside their Heads,
And dropt, in Silence, the soft Tears of Pity:
But, Oh! the Soldiers; from the Soldier's hands
Methoughts I saw their Swords neglected thrown,
When Fortune shew'd they cou'd not save the Bravest
(If once she frown'd) from such a Fate as mine.
Clar. He'll move the Croud; urge him to speak directly.
Anax. All this is from the purpose; plainly tell
Whether you'll meet our Mercy, or the Dungeon.
Aristom. My Train of Thoughts to that dark Cave had led me;
I stood reclined upon the horrid Brim,
And gaz'd into it, 'till my baffl'd Sight
Piercing beyond the many jetting Rocks
That help to break by turns the falling Body,
Was lost in Shades, where it must rest for-ever:
And ready now to be pushed rudely off,
This was my last, and best Reflection on it,
That there dwelt Peace, which is not to be found
In his dark Bosom, that has sold his Country.
Anax. Away with him to instant Tryal of it:
See this obey'd, and plunge him headlong down;
There, he'll have Time, if Life, for such fine Thoughts.
Away, and bring me word it is perform'd.
[Exeunt Anax. and Lords.
Aristomenes born off.Rabble and Sold. Away, away; the Dungeon, the Dungeon.
A Room in the Palace. Aristor alone.Arist. I've torn with Cries the Roof of this vile Mansion.
Enter Amalintha, the Door by one without immediately lock'd after her.Amal. Where is this wretched Mourner?
With the sad Sound of my repeated Groans.
Ha! on the Ground! then be it too my Seat!
[Sits on the Ground by him.
For I will share in this Excess of Grief,
As well as in the Days of milder Fortune,
I bore a part in Love, that knew no Measure.
O Aristomenes! oh! my Aristor!
[She puts her Handkerchief before her Eyes weeping.
Aristor. Whoe'er thou art, repeat again that Sound:
Such groans shall hourly issue from his Dungeon,
And fright the bloody Spartans into Madness.
[He looks up.
Ha! sure I shou'd know that Form, that Shape, those Limbs,
That lab'ring Bosom, and those Locks dishevel'd:
But take not from thy Face that friendly Cloud;
Do not expose it, lest thro' all its Charms
My deep Revenge find out whose Stamp it bears,
And urge me on to something Dark and Fatal.
Amal. This from Aristor! this to Amalintha!
[She rises and shews her face.
Aristor. Why wou'd'st thou tempt me thus advent'rous Maid,
And bring the blood of Anaxander near me?
[Coming up fiercely to her.
Canst thou too fondly think, that Love's soft Bands,
His gentle Cords of Hyacinths and Roses,
Wove in the dewy Spring, when Storms are silent,
Can tye these Hands, provok'd by horrid Murther!
Oh! do not trust it–
But fly this Ground, while I have Power to bid thee.
Amal. Aristor, no; my Flight shall not preserve me:
The Life, I've kept but to indulge your Love,
Now to this loud, mistaken Rage I offer.
Take it, Oh! take it; Means cannot be wanting,
Altho' no Instrument of Death be near you:
This Hair, these flatter'd Locks, these once-lov'd Tresses
Round my sad Neck thus knit will soon perform it;
Or, on these trembling Lips your Hand but prest
Will send the rising Breath down to my Heart,
And break it, telling who deny'd it Passage.
Aristor. Tryal beyond the Strength of Man and Lover!
Amal. Or, if you wou'd be quicker in Dispatch,
Speak but a few such Words, as now you utter'd,
And my poor hov'ring Soul will fly before 'em.
Farewel Aristor, see! the Work is done:
I did but think I heard their killing Sound,
And the bare Fancy saves you farther Study.
[She faints, he catches her in his Arms.
Aristor. Oh! stop the glorious Fugitive a moment;
And I will whisper to it such Repentance,
Such Love, such Fondness, such unheard-of Passion,
As shall confine it to it's beauteous Mansion.
Thus let me hug, and press thee into Life,
And lend thee Motion from my beating Heart,
To set again the Springs of thine in working.
Amal. I hear your Summons, and my Life returns:
But tell me, ere again so firm 'tis fixt
That it must cost an Agony like this,
To let it out to Liberty and Ease,
Will you not hate me for my Father's Guilt?
Aristor. By the soft Fires of Love, that fill my Breast,
And dart through all the Horrors of my Soul,
Like Heaven's bright Flashes in a Night of Shadows,
I will not hate, or e'er reproach thee more:
Yet let me breathe so gently one Complaint,
So gently, that it may not break thy Peace,
Tho' it for ever has discarded mine,
And ask, why you thus cruelly wou'd use me,
Why, have me seiz'd, and bound with frantick Fetters,
Snatch'd from my Duty by a Woman's wile,
And here confin'd, whilst my great Father perish'd?
Amal. 'Twas none of mine, by your dear self I swear;
It was the Fates design and Phila's action;
She saw you thus disguis'd amongst the Croud,
And, ere she would acquaint me with your Danger,
Follow'd to watch the means how to prevent it.
Aristor. I will belief you to my Heart's relief,
Which must have broke, had your Consent been with her.
But, Amalintha, now my Rage is gone,
And Love thro' this mistake has forc'd his way,
It spreads before my Thoughts the gaudy Scene
Of those Delights, which have been once allow'd it;
Brings to my Phancy in their softest Dress
The gentle Hours, that told our private Meetings;
Shews me the Grove, where, by the Moon's pale Light
We've breath'd out tender Sighs, 'till coming Day
Has drawn them deeper, warning us to part,
Which ne'er we did, 'till some new Time was set
For the return of those transporting Pleasures.
Amal. And so again, Aristor, we'll contrive,
And so again, we'll meet, and sigh, and love.
Aristor. Oh! O', O', –Amalintha!
Amal. Oh! why that Groan, that deep, that deathlike Groan!
Aristor. When Soul and Body part, it can't be softer;
And I must leave thee, Soul to sad Aristor.
With all those Pleasures which I but repeated,
As dying Friends will catch one last Embrace
Of what they know, they must forego forever.
Amal. Indeed, you've call'd my wand'ring Fancy back
From those Delights, where 'twou'd have endless stray'd:
But, my Aristor! (for I'll call you mine,
Though all the Stars combine against my Title,
And bar fulfilling of the Vows they've witness'd)
Tell me, tho' we must ne'er in Nuptials join,
May we not meet, and at this distance sigh?
And when I've hoarded up a Stock of Tears,
Which in the Spartan's sight I dare not lavish,
Oh! tell me, if I may not seek you out,
And in large Showers thus pour them down before you?
Aristor. Cease to oppress me more; thou weeping Beauty,
And think with what vast Storms my Soul is toss'd!
[Comes up to hear earnestly.
Think too, that but to gaze upon thee thus,
To stand in reach of thy Ambrosial Breath,
And hear thy Voice, sweet as the Ev'ning Notes,
When in still Shades the Shepherds sooth their Loves,
I wou'd not mind an Army in my way,
Or stop at raging Seas, or brazen Towers.
Yet, Amalintha, tho' I Dye to speak it,
Yet we must part, we must, my Amalintha!
Amal. Never to meet agen? Tell me but that.
Aristor. Alas! not I, the Fates can only tell it:
Let them make even one Account betwixt us,
And give this Hand the Liberty to seal it.
And we'll in spight of vengeful Thunder join,
If then, thy Heart be as resolv'd as mine.
Amal. No: on those Terms you mean, we must not meet:
But since those Fates deny it to your Power,
The Will I to your mighty Wrongs forgive,
[From without the door.
Phila. Madam, you'll be surpriz'd; haste to return:
Your Father's now just going to your Lodgings.
Aristor. All Plagues and Curses meet him!
Amal. Oh! then I must be gone.
A little time will call the State to Council;
And when the Croud by that is thither drawn,
One I will send to wait on your Escape:
And if you tempt new Dangers, know Aristor
That Amalintha too will perish in them.
Aristor. Fear not, my Love.
Phila. Haste, Madam, haste, or we are all Undone.
Amal. So from his few short Moments calls away
A gasping Wretch, the cruel BIrd of Prey;
Bids him make haste th' Eternal Shades to find,
And leave like me, all that is Dear behind.
Aristor. Whilst, like the Friend that's sadly weeping by,
I see the much lov'd Spirit from me fly;
And with vain Cries pursue it to that Coast,
Where it must land, and my weak Hopes be lost.
[He leads her to the Door, and returns speaking as he's going out at the Other.Now, let Revenge awhile sustain my Heart,
The Stage darken'd represents the Inside of a Dungeon, Aristomenes lying down in it, and struggling as coming out of a Swoon.Aristom. At last 'tis vanquish'd; and my soaring Spirits
Wou'd ye thus cruelly restore my Senses,
To make me count my Woes by tedious Moments,
Dye o'er again, choak'd by unwholsome Damps,
Parch'd up with Thirst, or clung with pining Hunger,
Borne piecemeal to the Holes of lurking Adders,
Or mould'ring to this Earth, where thus I cast me?
[Throws himself on the Ground.
Musick is heard without the SCENE, after it has play'd awhile and ceases, He speaks.How, Harmony! nay then the Fiends deride me:
Aristom. Thou counsell'st rightly; show me but the way,
And with the Speed thou urgest I'll obey thee. [He rises.
The Voice Sings again.1st Voice. A pointed Rock with little pains
Aristom. I come, thou kind Provoker of Despair,
Which still is nearest Cure, when at the Highest.
I come, I come–
Going towards the Voice, another Sings at the other side, upon which He stops and listens.2nd Voice. Stay, oh! stay; 'tis all Delusion,
Mortal, on their Pleasures wait,
Nor rush into the arms of Fate. [The Voice ceases.
Aristom. To hope, is still the Temper of the Brave:
And tho' a just Despair had dispossess'd it,
Yet, thus encourag'd, will I trust the Gods
With those few Moments, Nature has to spare me;
Nor follow thee, thou bad persuading Spirit.
Yet tell me, who thou art, and why thou tempt'st me?
I thy evil Genius am,
To Phærea with thee came;
Hung o'er thee in the murd'ring Croud,
And clapp'd my dusky Wings aloud;
Now endeavour'd to deceive thee,
And will never, never, leave thee.
I'll protect him from thy Pow'r.
1st Voice. I shall find a careless Hour.
2d Voice. Laurels He again shall wear,
War and Honour's Trumpet hear.
1st Voice. For one fatal, famous Day,
He his dearest Blood shall pay.
Hear it ye repeating Stones,
And confirm it by your Groans!
[A dismal Groan is heard round the Dungeon.Aristom. What all this Bellowing for a Conqueror's Death!
The Field of Honour is his Bed of Ease;
He toils for't all the Day of his hard Life,
And lays him there at Night, renown'd and happy:
Therefore his Threat was vain malicious Fury.
Now away, away I fly;
For hated Good is rushing by.
[Here the Voice ceases quite.
A Machine, like a Fox, runs about the Dungeon smelling, and rushes against Aristomenes, who taking it for his evil Genius, catches at it, and speaks.Aristom. What! hast thou Substance too, and dar'st assault me!
The SCENE changes to the Plains by the Woodside.
Enter from the Wood Herminia alone and faint.
That my faint Limbs no longer can support me.
Oh! let me rest; and if 'tis Death I feel,
A Guest more welcome none yet entertain'd.
[She sits down, leaning against a Tree.
Enter Climander looking towards the Camp, as expecting the returns of Arcasius.Clim.He has exceeded much the time prefixt;
Enter again Climander with Water in a Pomegranate-Shell.Clim. Pan! if thou e'er did'st hear a Shepherd's Prayer,
She'd all Perfections, which make Others Proud,
Yet wore them, as she knew not they adorn'd her.
And be, in this, my Father's Praise exprest:
That by an Oracle He was confest
Of all the Græcian Race to be the Best.
Clim. The Best of Men! and you the Fairest Woman!
And in a Moment I the greatest Lover!
[He speaks this transportedly and seizes her Hand, which he kisses.
Whilst to complete my Bliss, by Heav'ns decree
These Beauties all are mine, and thus I claim them.
Herm. Protect me all ye Powers, that wait on Virtue,
From the dark Ends of such unruly Transports!
[She takes her Hand away hastily and rises.
Nor dare, presumptuous Swain, once to renew them,
Or tempt more Dangers than a Crook can answer!
Clim. A Man there lives not, shou'd have urg'd that to me,
Built round with Steel, or plung'd all o'er in Styx.
Then, let your Beauty's Triumphs be complete,
Which, after such a Threat, can bend my Knee,
And make me sue for Pardon, as for Life.
Herm. I can forgive, whilst I forbid such Language;
Since She, who yields to have her Beauty worshipp'd,
Must pay too much to him, that brings the Incense.
Clim. To Me, you cannot, 'tis a Debt to Fate.
Your Heart is mine; the amorous Stars ordain it,
Which smiling, hung o'er my auspicious Birth,
And not an angry Planet cross'd their Influence:
They bid me Love, and the Harmonious God
When askt, what Path shou'd lead me on to Glory,
Sent forth a Sound, that charm'd the hoary Priest,
And said, a Passion, soft as that, must bless me.
Then, do not strive to disappoint their Purpose,
Or quench Celestial Flames with Scorn or Coldness.
Oh! that a Smile might tell me, that you wou'd not,
A gentle Word, a Look, a Sigh confirm it,
Or any sign, that bears the stamp of Love!
But 'tis in vain, and some more happy Youth
Has drawn my Lot, and mock'd foretelling Phoebus.
Herm. I must not leave you with a Thought that wrongs me:
For know, no Passion e'er possess'd this Breast,
Nor will the mighty Griefs, that now have seiz'd it,
E'er yield to give a softer Guest admittance.
But my Companion comes; Shepherd farewell!
When next we meet, if Heav'n that Moment sends,
For your Assistance lent, we may be Friends.
Clim. Heav'n can't be true, if it no more affords,
Nor Oracles explain themselves by Words.
Let talking Age the Joys of Friendship prove,
Beauty for Youth was made, and Youth alone for Love.
A Myrtle-Grove with a Fountain belonging to Anaxander's Palace.
Enter Amalintha and Phila.
Since when, how often in this Place we've met,
And with what Pleasure, thou alone can'st tell,
The only Friend, and witness of our Passion.
But, prithee go, and keep off all Intruders,
Whilst with my Sorrows now I tread this Grove,
Which shou'd not thrive, when all our Hopes are blasted.
[She walks into the Grove.
From the other Door, the Fox runs over the Stage, follow'd soon after by Aristomenes, his Hands foul with Earth.Aristom. Farewell my wild Companion, and my Leader!
Re-enter Amalintha.Amal. Oh! 'tis all dismal, now that Love is absent,
Whilst thro' the Leaves the sad, and sighing Winds,
Methinks, all say, the Hours of Bliss are past;
And here, we ne'er shall meet each other more.
[Aristom. comes towards her.
Ha! What Intruder do my Eyes behold?
A Stranger, and invade my private Walks,
The Doors too all secur'd! Tell me how you came.
Aristom. As comes the Mole, by painful working upwards,
Till the sweet Air beat on my clammy Brows.
Amal. There's something mystical in what you utter;
Which (tho' offended with your Presence here)
I wou'd be glad farther to have Unriddl'd.
[ Draws her Dagger.
This be my Guard; and now you may proceed,
And, if you dare, discover who you are.
Aristom. I'd not deny my Name, to 'scape that Dungeon,
[Pointing behind the Scenes.
From whence these Hands have dug my way to Light.
'Tis Aristomenes that stands before you.
Amal. O blest and strange Surprise! [Aside.
Aristom. Now, if you have a Soul for noble Deeds,
As 'tis reported of you Spartan Ladies,
By my Escape your Fame shall rise so high,
That ne'er an ancient Heroes shall outsoar it:
If not, I know the Place from whence I came,
And 'twill be told with more uncommon Things,
Which shall make up the Story of my Fortunes,
That I alone liv'd to be there twice Bury'd.
[She looks about.
Nay, look not round; for if you fear you wrong me,
I wou'd not injure you, to gain my Safety.
Amal. Nor wou'd I fail to help you to secure it,
For all that Lacedemon holds most Precious.
I gaz'd about, lest any were in sight,
That might prevent my dear Design to save you.
Support me, as I walk, like one that serv'd me,
And when they have unlock'd that Postern-door,
I'll give you some Command before the Guard,
Which to perform they shall admit your Passage:
Or this must force it, if your evil Stars
[Gives him her Dagger.
Have plac'd such there, as know and wou'd detain you.
Aristom. As long as Life, I'll proudly wear this Favour.
Amal. Oh! haste, my Lord, lose not this precious moment.
Aristom. No, stay; and ere I take one step tow'rds Freedom,
Let me be told, to whose blest Aid I owe it;
And how I may discharge so vast a Debt:
Tho' I, and all that's dear to me shou'd perish,
I wou'd not stir, 'till satisfy'd in this.
Amal. Know then, my Lord–
Tho' whilst I speak, I tremble for your Danger,
That to declare my Name, might work my Ruin:
But since such Gratitude crowns your great Virtues,
I have a Blessing to implore from you,
When the full Time shall ripen and reveal it;
Harder, I fear, to grant, and much more dear
Than what I now assist you to preserve.
Aristom. By Liberty, which none like me can value,
By new-recovered Light, and what it shews me,
Your brighter Form, with yet a fairer Mind,
By all the ties of Honour, here I swear;
Be that untouch'd, and your Request is granted.
Amal. Of you, my Lord, and of the list'ning Gods
I ask no more–but, that you haste to 'scape:
Without that Gate the open Champain lies.
May Fortune, which the hardest Part has done,
Crown her great Work, and lead you safely on!
[Exit Aristom. leading her.
Enter Phila weeping.Phila. What shall I say, or how reveal this to her?
Amalintha returns.Amal. Oh! Phila, I such Tydings have to tell thee,
Phila. Yet he do's live:
But oh! that some free Tongue, that lov'd you less,
Cou'd tell how little time that Life must last
To you so precious, and I fear so fatal!
Amal. Go on: and if thou kill'st me with the Story,
Believe thou'st crown'd the Kindness of thy Life,
By giving endless Rest to her that wants it.
Phila. I cannot speak– [Weeping.
Amal.Then one, that can, I instantly must seek for.
Phila. Publick Enquiry pulls his Ruin on her.
Stay, Madam, stay, and since it must be told,
Know that Aristor, soon as free to do it,
Again into your Father's presence rush'd,
And makes a new attempt upon his Person,
But missed his Blow, was seiz'd, and in Confinement
Now waits but the assembling of the Council,
Throughly to be examin'd, and discover'd.
Amal. Darkness, and Night surround me.
With this Relief to my sad Bed I go,
[Siezes Phila's dagger.
There wrapt in horrid Shades will lay me down,
And, when thou com'st charg'd with the heavy News,
Beware, no tedious Circumstance detail,
No fruitless Pray'r, or word of Comfort 'scape thee;
But with a Voice, such as the Dying use,
Bid me expire–
–Then to my Father go,
And say, he kill'd his Daughter in his Foe;
Who knowing, she his Temper cou'd not move,
Th' excess of Hate paid with th' excess of Love.
[Exit weeping and leaning on Phila.
The SCENE changes to the Plains.
The Meaner sort cry out for aloud for Pay,
And mutiny to be discharg'd the Service.
Clim. Base, mercenary Slaves! Yet these I'll use:
The Gold and Jewels which my Father gave,
Will fire their Souls, insensible of Duty;
And by it's aid, I'll gain what most I thirst for.
A King his Claim but to one Kingdom lays,
Wide as the Universe is boundless Praise.
This shining Mass shall buy a glorious Name,
They purchase all the World, who purchase Fame.
[He is going.
Arcas. Since you're determin'd to attempt these Dangers,
Let me declare the Time to be expir'd,
Which bound you in your Promise to your Father:
By Artifice I wrought you to believe
Those Days remain'd, which are indeed run out.
Your Soul may now be free, and Heaven protect you!
Clim. For this discov'ry I'll return another
Worthy thy knowledge, when we meet again:
But now make haste, and from its deep concealment,
In the low Earth, fetch me the Wealth I mention'd.
About these Woods thy quick Return shall find me.
Enter Herminia and Barina.Bar. See we are come to soon; I said 'twou'd prove so.
Herm. It is no matter, long we shall not wait.
[Bar. looks out for the Shepherds.
I dare not tell her, that I like this Shepherd,
Nor yet indeed scarce own it to my self.
'Tis strange, my Mind shou'd sink thus with my Fortunes;
Yet he did talk above their humble strain,
And, as he knew that Nature had supply'd
What Fortune had deny'd him for Attraction,
Claim'd my weak Heart, and said he must possess it.
Bar. Sure, they've put off this melancholy Meeting
Design'd in Honour of their lost Protector,
In which our share (tho' secret) must be greatest.
I see none move, nor hear their mournful Notes.
Herm. Be not impatient: Where can we be better?
Have I not heard thee say sometimes, Barina,
That in a Dream, form'd by the Day's discourse
Of the sweet Life, that here they led in safety,
My Mother saw me wed one of these Swains,
And smil'd, tho' I had made a Choice below me?
Bar. She did; and therefore never wou'd consent
That you, like others, shou'd behold their Revels:
Nor have I, since her Death left you my Charge,
Allow'd it, till worse Dangers forc'd us hither;
Tho' of myself, I ne'er observe such Trifles,
Herm. D'ye call those nightly Visions then but Trifles?
Bar. No doubt our Dreams are so; the work of Phancy,
Where things of Yesterday are odly piec'd
With what had pass'd some twenty Years before,
Knit in a weak and disproportion'd Chain,
Which cannot hold to lead us to the Future.
Whate'er I've said, I wish this had no meaning,
And that some other Place cou'd give us shelter.
Herm. We'll walk a while–
Great Aristomenes, now cou'd I meet thee!
But that's a Blessing which I must not know,
'Till where thine is, my Spirit too shall go.
Oh! that my Grief wou'd force it to retire,
And Tears for him quench this new-kindl'd Fire!
[They go off the Stage.
Enter at the other Door Climander.Clim. Either my Eyes, indulgent to my Love,
Re-enter Herminia.Herm. She fears my Fate and fain wou'd have me go,
Untimely Caution! –
–'Tis too late to move,
When once o'ertaken by the wings of Love.
Enter Climander behind her.Clim. From those fair Lips no sooner fell that word,
Oh! yet, let me reflect upon my Birth,
And quit, in time, the Ground I can't maintain!
Clim. Nay, do not fly me, and I will be Speechless:
For if I speak, whilst on your Eyes I gaze,
It must be all of Love, and that offends you;
Yet since, perhaps, I ne'er may meet your more,
I wou'd have told the Story of my Heart,
And e'er it breaks, have mov'd you to Compassion.
Herm. Meet him no more! then, what can Crowns afford me,
Amidst the noisie Pomp, that waits their Lustre?
Still shou'd I vainly listen for the Sound [Aside.
Of such soft Words which charm my Sorrows from me.
Oh! that our Births were equal, as our Thoughts!
Yet I will pity him, and Fate be guilty.
[She stops and turns towards him.
Clim. Blest be the Thought, that thus retards your steps,
And turns again those gentle Lights upon me!
If Pity 'twas; Oh! yet indulge that warmth,
And Love 'twill soon produce, to meet my Wishes.
[She looks kindly on him.
'Tis done, 'tis done! be witness ye still skies,
That all her Looks are calm, and smooth as yours,
And not one Frown forbids my forward Hopes:
Let this fair Hand be added to confirm them,
And ease the mighty longings of my Passion.
[Kneels and kisses her Hand.
Herm. Take, freely take this first and last of Favours.
Now, Shepherd rise, and hear what I've to say;
And if a Sigh mix with the fatal Sentence,
Believe, 'tis from the Grief, with which I give it.
You must not love me– [She sighs.
Clim. I must not love you, tho' you Sigh to speak it!
Shou'd Pan pronounce it, in a Voice so loud
'Twou'd rive the knotty Oaks, that shade his Altars,
I wou'd to Syrinxes oppose your Beauties,
And ask the Gods, whose Loves had best Foundation?
Herm. Those Gods, who made our Births so disproportion'd,
Wou'd say, they ne'er design'd our Hands shou'd join.
But see! the Swains are gath'ring tow'rds this Place:
Yet, Shepherd, know that if a Prince wou'd Love,
'Tis in your Form he must successful prove.
Enter Arcasius with a Casket.Clim. Then in this happy Form, since you approve it,
Nor can the Blood, that breeds such Thoughts be abject.
But welcome good Arcasius with that Bait,
Which shall be soon dispers'd among the Soldiers:
And if it win them to my great Design,
'Tis worth the Kingdoms which its Price might ransom.
[Exeunt with the Casket follow'd by Arcasius.
Enter Thæta and Lamia.Lamia. The Dews are falling, and the Sun declin'd,
Lamia. A better can't be chose; haste to perform it,
Lest the sad Ceremony break our purpose.
Thæta. What Shouts are these!
Lamia. They're loud, and speak some Joy; and still repeated.
Enter Herminia and Barina.Lamia. Fair Stranger, know you whence these Shouts proceed?
Enter with great Signs of Joy Clinias with other Shepherds and Shepherdesses, &c.Clim. Swell, swell, Panisus, o'er thy spacious Bounds,
Clim. Just as a long stopt Current meets the sea,
And rushes on, when once't has forc'd a Passage.
2nd Shep. Heav'n has their Plumes; for high as that they toss 'em:
And not a dusty Soldier in the Host,
That has not hugged him to his swarthy Bosom.
Clim. No Voice is what it was an Hour ago;
And their hoarse Joy sounds like their distant Drums;
His Hands, as if the Cretan Thongs still held them,
Are useless made, and fetter'd now with Kisses;
Whilst neighing Steeds think that the War surrounds them,
And prance in Air light as their Master's Minds.
2d Shep. How he escap'd, all ask in such Confusion,
That their loud Questions drive his Answers back,
And will not let them reach the nearest to him.
Herm. It is enough, ye Powers that guard Messenia!
We now must change our Habits, and return.
[Aside to Bar.
What did I say, return! O yes, I must,
And never hope to see Climander more: [To herself
Yet will I give my Heart this last Relief
(Since Fate will have it bear th' unequal Passion)
To let him know my Love, and endless Flight,
And live on the dear Thought that he laments it.
[Exit with Bar.
Lam. Where is Aristor? Is he too return'd?
Clin. That question did the Gen'ral ask aloud;
And 'twas the only one that cou'd be heard:
But no reply was made; I think he is not.
Thæta. Then we're but half restor'd–
For he so heavily will take that Loss,
Our Joys will not be long, nor he amongst us.
Lamia. Fear not the worst–
2d Shep. I met a rumour of a stranger Prince,
That with large Sums new fir'd the trembling Host,
And from the Camp had led on some Design
A Party, that for Wealth wou'd risque their Lives,
Tho' cold and dull to Thoughts of gen'rous Duty.
Clin. 'Tis true; of Rhodes they say,
And some I heard that call'd him Demagetus.
Thick flew his Gold, as swarms of Summer-Bees,
And 'twas to succor or revenge the Gen'ral.
He asked their Aid–
But whither he has lead them, none can tell.
Ere Aristomenes return'd, he went
And is not heard of since.
2d Shep. The Gen'ral's safe, and that's enough for us:
Now therefore Clinias, you that guide our Sports,
Tell us what we're to do to shew our Joy.
Clin. To Laugh, to Sing, to Dance, to Play,
To rise with new appearing Day;
And ere the Sun has kiss'd 'em dry,
With various Rubans Nosegays tye.
Deckt with Flow'rs and cloath'd in Green,
Ev'ry Shepherdess be seen:
Ev'ry Swain with Heart and Voice
Meet him, meet him, and rejoice:
With redoubl'd Pæans sing him,
To the Plains, in Triumph bring him:
And let Pan and Mars agree,
That none's so kind and brave as He.
The General's Pavilion.
Enter Drest in the Habit of an Officer Demagetus with Arcasius.
Arca. Behold these Tokens, and let them retard you.
Dema. Tokens of Love, sent to the fond Climander.
Oh! thou hast found a way indeed to stay me.
Arca. Take that, to you directed; [A Letter.
And 'twas my Hopes from thence of some Discovery,
That kept me here 'till you had broke and read it.
Dema. Then thou shalt hear it.
[Reads the Direction.
This to Climander from the Nymph that leaves him
To everlasting Grief, shou'd have been added,
For so 'twill prove, if no more Comfort's here.
[He reads it.
To love, yet from the Object fly,
Harder is, than 'tis to Dye:
Yet, for ever I remove,
Yet, for ever will I love.
Shepherd, seek no more to find;
Fate, not I, has been Unkind.
We pluck on Fate, by striving to avoid it.
To shun the low Addresses of a Swain,
For ever has she left a Prince despairing.
Why didst thou not, as I at parting bid thee,
Find out, and let her know my fair Intentions,
And that my Birth was Noble as her Wishes?
Arca. I was not negligent, nor wou'd be thought so:
But full of Transports when I heard your Story,
Thinking the Fates wou'd now fulfill their Promise
Thro' her the Daughter to the best of Men,
Fled to discover what you gave in Charge,
Travers'd the Plains in a long fruitless Search,
But cou'd not find that Beauty born to Bless us.
Dema. I shew'd thee, as we pass'd, her new rais'd Hamlet.
Arca. Thither at last I went, but Oh! too late:
For ere I reach'd it, the fair Guest was vanish'd;
Upon the Floor lay her neglected Hook,
And o'er the Door hung Boughs of fading Willow,
To shew, as Shepherds use, the Place forsaken.
That Paper there I found, and near it lay,
This precious Gemm, that bears a well-cut Signet.
[Shews him a Ring.
By chance sure dropt, yet may assist your Purpose.
Dema. Give me that Emblem of my fatal Passion:
For without End is that, as is this Circle.
Oh! that my way to Bliss shou'd seem so plain,
Yet in a moment thus be lost and wilder'd!
Now in the midst of Crouds and loud Applauses,
That greet me for restoring them Aristor,
Must wretched Demagetus sigh for Love,
And hang his drooping Head tho' wreathed with Laurels.
[A sound of Drums and Trumpets.
But hark! the Gen'ral comes–
To him the Oracle I have reveal'd,
And all the Story of my rural Life.
I'll tell him too the Cause of my new Grief,
Which to relieve, I instantly must leave him.
Enter Aristomenes, Aristor, Alcander, and other Attendants.
Enter an Attendant to Aristomenes.Attend. The Princess is without, and waits your Pleasure.
Enter behind the Company Herminia and Barina.Aristor. My Lord, what you command I take in charge.
But ere I was advanc'd beyond the Camp,
The Voice of this Old Man
Cross'd my sad way, and cry'd, She's gone for ever.
Aristom. Perhaps 'tis some Mistake,
If other Proofs are wanting to confirm it.
Dema. Oh! far too many for Climander's Peace.
She own'd her Love, and with this Signet bound it,
And in the Folds of this dear Paper left
At once the tokens of my Joy and Ruin.
[Gives the Letter and Ring to Aristomenes.
Herm. The Character and Signet will betray me;
And now Necessity must make me Bold. [Aside.
Oh! yet, ere you proceed to view that Paper,
[She throws herself at Aristomenes Feet.
(Wrapt in Confusion) hear your Daughter speak,
[As he is opening the Letter.
And pity in her Fate all Women's Frailty.
Aristom. Ha! Thou dost much surprize me; but go on,
And, 'till she has finish'd, let no Word be utter'd.
Dema. By all my fleeting Sorrows 'tis my Love:
Nor cou'd I, but to hear her speak, be Silent.
Aristom. Proceed, and 'bate those Tears, that stay thy Speech.
Herm. That I have stoop'd below the Blood you gave me,
And cast my doating Love upon that Shepherd,
(For such he is, altho' a Plume adorns him)
My wretched Hand, and now my Tongue confesses:
For by that Paper, indiscreetly penn'd,
The Secret wou'd be told, shou'd I conceal it.
But Oh! my Lord, since you can ne'er forgive me;
A sad Recluse for ever let me live,
Or Dye for Love, to do my Birth more Justice.
Aristom. Be comforted, and farther yet unfold
How first you came acquainted with this Shepherd.
Herm. To 'scape the Fury of prevailing Foes,
Disguised, I in your absence sought the Plains,
And in that Habit heard the pow'rful Sighs
Of one that knew not then his own Presumption.
Aristom. Were he a Prince, and still wou'd urge his Suit
Wou'd'st thou receive 't, and bless the Pow'rs that sent him?
Herm. I shou'd not hide my Thoughts, or blush to own them.
Yes, I cou'd bless those Pow'rs which now undo me.
[Demagetus comes forward.
Dema. I cannot wait these Forms; Love plead my Pardon,
When, Sir, I disobey your order'd Silence,
And haste to tell her 'tis a Prince adores her,
That wou'd have sought her on the lowly Plains,
And for her Favour quitted all Dominion.
Aristom. Then take her, thou most worthy Prince of Rhodes!
[Giving her to him.
And know, Herminia, to encrease thy Passion,
Thou hold'st that noble Hand, that sav'd thy Brother,
And gives thy Father, in this new Alliance,
More Joy than when he first receiv'd and bless'd thee.
Dema. Let all the Joys of Earth give place to mine,
Whilst in deep, silent Raptures I possess them:
[Taking her from Aristomenes.
For Demagetus is above Discourse,
And will not wrong his Love with faint Expressions.
Herm. So let mine flow, and O Barina, see
I smiling give my Hand now to a Shepherd,
Yet fear not to offend my Mother's Ghost.
Bar. No; that smiles too, and all that love and serve you.
Arca. The Fate of Rhodes is clear and chearful now;
And old Arcasius has outliv'd his Cares.
Aristor. Now as a Brother, take this new Embrace;
Tho' all the Love, it shews, you had before.
Aristom. Conduct her, Demagetus, to her Tent:
I'll soon be there, and see those Rites perform'd,
That shall confirm her Yours; be Kind and Happy.
[Exeunt Herminiaand Demagetus leading her follow'd by Arcasius, Barina and others. Aristor is going too but is call'd back by his Father.Come back Aristor, and the rest withdraw:
And with a loud repeated Blessing pay
The pious Care, that brought it to such Dangers.
Oh! that the Love of Women shou'd be thought
To pass the Fondness which a Father feels,
When thus he grasps a Son of thy Perfections,
My Dear, my Lov'd Aristor!
Aristor. My Prince, my Gen'ral, and the Best of Fathers!
Aristom. Thy Heart speaks loud, and knocking at my Breast
Seems as 'twou'd close in conference with mine.
Aristor. It wou'd, my Lord, and strives to force its Passage.
[Aristomenes looses his Arms from embracing him.
Aristom. Oh, no my Son! for now I must be plain,
And tell thee, thou dost lock some Secret there
Which all my depth of Kindness ne'er cou'd fathom:
I see it in the Cloud, that shades thy Brow.
And still thy pensive Eyes are downwards cast,
As thou wou'd'st seek the Grave, or something lower:
Long have I this observed–
And thought whole Nights away to find the Cause,
Which now, my Son, I urge thee to reveal:
And think that He who best can love thee asks it.
Aristor. Oh! that you did not love, or wou'd not ask it!
I cannot speak, for speaking must offend:
Yet shou'd my Silence grieve such mighty Goodness,
'Twou'd break that Heart, which thus you seek to succour.
Upon my Knees a strange Request I make,
[Offering to Kneel but his Father takes him up.
That you wou'd quite forget and think me Dead;
Which the approaching Battle shou'd confirm,
And leave you to possess your other Comforts.
Aristom. My other Comforts! All are light to Thee:
And when I wou'd have shar'd amongst my Race
Impartial Kindess, as their Birthrights claim'd,
Still to my Heart Aristor wou'd be nearest,
Still, with a Merit not to be withstood,
Wou'd press beyond my cool and equal Purpose,
And seize a double Portion of my Love:
And wilt thou lose it now, to keep thy Silence?
Aristor. My Life I rather wou'd; but Oh! my Lord!
Aristom. Another Sigh, another yet, my Son!
And then, let Words relieve this mighty Passion:
They will, they will; the Sweetness of thy Temper
Will melt before a just and warm Persuasion.
Now, let me know it–
Aristor. Believe that it 'twere fit, it shou'd be told:
But Oh! my Lord, 'tis what you must not know.
Aristom. Not I, Aristor! if thy Soul were bare
As is thy faded Cheek now to thy Father,
It were most fit–
Oh! think, my Son, who 'twas that made it Noble,
And train'd it in the Paths of Truth and Honour:
Else, what had hinder'd, but thou might'st have been
(In spite of all the Virtues with thee born,
For Education is the stronger Nature)
A bragging Coward, or a base Detractor,
A Slave to Wealth, or false to Faith or Friendship
Lull'd in the common Arms of some Seducer,
And lost to all the Joys of Virtuous Love.
Aristor. Ha! Virtuous Love!
Aristom. What, dost thou start? why, so I meant thou shou'dst.
When hastily I press'd that Word upon thee,
To catch that flushing Witness in thy Face,
Was all this Bait contriv'd; no more, my Son,
No more dissembling of a Truth so plain:
I see 'tis Love, the best of all our Passions.
And fram'd like Thee; sure none cou'd e'er Despair,
Nor can I fear thou'd'st make a vulgar Choice.
Aristor. On Ida's Top not Paris made a nobler,
When of three Goddesses he chose the Fairest.
Aristom. Will she not hear thy Love?
Aristor. Oh yes! with all the softness of her Sex,
And answers it with Vows, more strong than Ours.
Aristom. If thus it be, what hast thou then to fear?
Aristor. A Father's Wrath, more dreadful to Aristor
Than is the frown of Jove, that shakes the Poles,
And makes the Gods forget they are Immortal.
Aristom. Thou wrong'st my Love in that mistaken Terror.
By all those Powers I swear, I will not cross thee;
Be she a Spartan Dame, 'bate me but One,
And tho' a Foe, I yield thou shou'd'st possess her.
Aristor. I dare not ask; my trembling Love forbids it.
Who is that One, so fatally excepted?
Aristom. Then, I'll by telling thee prevent that Trouble.
It is the Tyrant Anaxander's Daughter,
Whom, tho' I ne'er beheld, I must abhor,
As borrowing her Blood from such a Fountain.
Aristor. Take mine, my Lord, then to wash out that Stain
[Offers his Breast.
You'll think it has contracted by her Love:
For 'tis that Tyrant's Daughter I adore,
And ne'er, while Life is here, will change my Purpose.
Aristom. Confusion seize those Words, and Her that caus'd 'em!
Not Groans of Earthquakes, or the Burst of Thunder,
The Voice of Storms urging the dang'rous Billows,
E'er struck the Sense with sounds of so much Horror.
It must not, Oh! it must not, shall not be:
Sooner this Dagger, tho' my Soul lives in thee,
[Drawing Amalintha's Dagger.
Shou'd let out thine with this prepost'rous Passion.
Than I wou'd yield, it e'er shou'd meet Success.
Aristor. Of all the Instruments by Vulcan form'd,
That Poinard best is fitted to my Heart,
Since Her's it was, whose Eyes have deeper pierc'd it:
Quickly, my Lord, let me receive it here,
And see me proud in Death to wear that Favour.
[Aristomenes amaz'd looks on the Dagger, and speaks to himself.
Aristom. This Dagger Her's, this Anaxander's Daughter's!
Fate then is practicing upon my Soul
What sudden Turns and Tryals Man can bear.
Aristor. Oh! do not pause–
Lest fainting with the Weight of what I feel,
I poorly fall, unlike your Son or Soldier.
Aristom. If this were Her's, Her's were the grateful Vows,
With which I rashly charg'd the Life she gave me.
[Still to himself.
Aristor. Ha! not a Look, not one sad parting Word!
Then my own Hand thus sets me free for ever.
[Offers to Stab himself, but is stay'd by Aristomenes.
Aristom.Hold! by Love and Duty yet a moment hold!
Aristor. My Life they've sway'd, and must command a Moment
But let it not exceed, lest both I cancel,
And only listen to my wild Despair.
Aristom. Shall I perform them? shall I hear her plead?
And to a Woman's Claim resign my Vengeance?
No; let my Ear still fly the fatal Suit,
And from her Tears be turn'd my harden'd Face.
What did I say! a hasty Blush has seized it,
For but imagining a Thing so vile.
Turn back my Face from Her that shunn'd not mine,
When it was Death to know, and to preserve me!
No; let the Fiends be obstinate in Ill,
Revenge be their's, while Godlike Man is grateful.
Enter an Attendant.Attend. Pardon, my gracious Lord, this bold Intrusion.
Aristom. No; rise my Son, go meet and chear thy Love,
And to this Tent conduct the Royal Maid,
Whilst in that inner Part I stand conceal'd,
And hear her tell why thus she comes to seek us:
Thence will I issue, as occasion calls,
And giving thee, give all I hold most precious.
[ He goes into the inner Tent. Aristor goes out at the other Door and re-enters immediately leading Amalintha veil'd follow'd by Phila.Aristor.Dismiss that Cloud, and with it all your Fears,
Or what bold Danger break thro' his Protection?
Amal. 'Twas from Himself, and all the Lords of Sparta.
When Aristomenes they found escap'd,
High was their Rage as Billows in a Tempest;
And all the Arts of State were put in use
To find who had assisted in his Flight:
But still in vain, 'till subtle, vile Clarinthus –
Aristor. That Villain will be first in Blood and Mischief.
But cou'd he pry into thy generous Heart,
And find it there, that you had nobly done it?
And are not secret Thoughts secure against him?
Amal. I did believe them so, 'till he disprov'd it:
For 'twas his Counsel, when all others fail'd,
To know by speaking Gods the deep Contrivance;
And from the Oracle, in some few Moments,
The full Discov'ry will have reach'd Phærea.
Which ere it does, I was advis'd to leave,
By one that heard the horrid Voice accuse me,
And with a Speed unmark'd outflew the rest.
Aristor. As swiftly may the bounteous Gods reward him.
Amal. This, my Aristor, brings me to your Tents,
But not to save my Life, or 'scape their Fury:
For shou'd your Heart, which boldly I will claim,
Be yet deny'd me by your injur'd Father,
Not all his Army shou'd retard my Steps
From leading to the Town, and certain Ruin;
For they have sworn it (with this Imprecation,
That 'till 'tis done, no Victory may bless them)
To sacrifice the Soul that sav'd the Gen'ral.
Enter Aristomenes from the inward Tent.Aristom. That Army you have nam'd, shall first in Flames
And this War done, which we now soon shall finish
(For You not there, what God will fight for Sparta?)
I'll swear the Sun and radiant Light shall part,
Ere I will once be found from this lov'd Presence.
Amal. Confirm it, all ye soft and gentle Pow'rs!
And let the pattern of a Love so perfect
Reform Mankind, and bless believing Women.
But can I think it is Aristor speaks?
That I behold, and hear you safe from Danger,
Whom late I saw assaulted so with Death,
When from the Guard a Weapon you had snatched,
And but that brave Swords length cou'd keep him from you?
Hope and fond Expectation all had left me:
Arm'd with this Dagger full I stood in vain,
And from my Window watch'd the fatal Stroke,
Which soon was to be copy'd on my Heart;
Then, had I meant to own your noble Love,
And told mine Dying, whilst the Croud had trembl'd.
Aristor. I saw your dire Intent, and that preserv'd me:
For 'twas to stop your Arm, that mine perform'd
What else had been above the Force of Nature;
And when the Drums of Demagetus thunder'd,
As thro' the shiver'd Gates he rush'd to save me,
You may remember, that I wou'd not meet him,
Till I had told my Love what meant the Tumult,
Which since has given me Fears, cold as pale Death,
Lest some Observer might have charg'd it on you.
[ Trumpets sound.
Amal. No; for too much their own Concern engag'd them.
But Oh! already hark! the Trumpet calls,
And jealous Fame no longer lets me keep you.
Must you be gone, must you obey this Summons?
Aristor. Oh! yes, I must; it is the Voice of Honour.
Yet, do not weep–
Be this Embrace the Earnest of a Thousand.
Now let me lead you to Herminia's Tent
Then think, I go more to secure your Charms,
And fight to rest with Peace in these fair Arms.
[ He leads her off.
The SCENE is the Camp. A Noise of Drums and Trumpets. Enter Aristomenes, Aristor, Demagetus, Alcander, several Officers and Soldiers.
Enter an Officer from the other Door, and speaks to the General.
Now, my brave Followers, be your selves to Day,
And more I need not ask, that know your Valour;
Who've seen you at the backs of Spartans ride,
Till their long Flight, and not your Conquest, tir'd you.
[The Soldiers shout.
And Oh! my Sons, since they who bravely seek it,
May meet with Death, when all his Darts are flying,
Let me Embrace, and breathe my Blessings on ye.
Yet, Demagetus, if I 'scape him now,
And Victory attends my great Endeavour,
Thou shalt Triumphant lead me into Rhodes,
Where we'll obey the Gods, and save thy Country.
Dem. Still you're the Best of Men, as they declar'd you.
Aristom. Now let me fold thee thus, my Life's best Treasure!
[He embraces Aristor, but seems disorder'd, and not to feel him in his Arms, which he often clasps about him.Thou dost not fill my Arms, 'tis Air I grasp:
[His Voice seems to Aristomenes (still under his disorder) to be low and different to what it was usually.Aristom. From what far distant Valley comes thy Voice?
It seems so hollow, scarce my Ear receives it.
Aristor. What means my noble Father!
Aristom. Till now, my faithful Senses never fail'd me.
They talk of Omens, ha! I must not think on't;
Such chilling Damps wou'd blast a Day of Battle:
Yet let my evil Genius but be true,
And a fam'd End is all it can portend me.
Aristor. You reason with your self, and turn from us.
May we not know what thus disturbs your Thoughts?
Aristom. Nothinga Vapour crossed me, but 'tis gone:
And now the Field, the dusty Field, my Sons,
Must be the Scene, where we shall nobly act
What our great Spirits, and our Country urges.
The Trumpet calls, with the impatient Drum;
And He that loves his Honour, let him come.
[ He draws his Sword and goes off follow'd by the rest with their Swords drawn, Drums and Shouts of Battle immediately succeed.
The Noise continues, the SCENE changes to a fine Tent.
Enter Amalintha follow'd by Phila.
Where the false Trumpet flatters not to Death,
Nor the more noisy Drum outcries the Dying?
Oh! Phila, why shou'd Men with Hearts unmov'd
Seek the bold War, and leave ours trembling for them?
Now whilst I speak, a chilling Fear surrounds me;
And ev'ry Tread I hear, is hast'ning on,
Methinks, to tell me, all my Hopes are perish'd.
Phila. Why shou'd you, Madam, who have pass'd already,
Unhurt by Fortune, thro' more threat'ning Dangers,
Now faint, when Reason bids you think the best?
The Sound goes from us, and the lucky War
(Since you've the Promise of your Father's Life)
Proceeds, as we cou'd wish, for the Messenians.
Amal. So do's it seem; but yet my failing Spirits
Sink to my Heart, and bid it think of Ruin.
Last Night my Dreams shew'd me Aristor bleeding;
And o'er my Head a screaming Voice proclaim'd
That Amalintha's hasty Fate had kill'd him:
I clos'd my Eyes to catch another Vision,
That might interpret, or prevent the first;
But all in vain, no Help or Comfort found me,
And wrapt in Fears, I wak'd and still continue
For what's foretold so fatal to my Love.
Phila. Your Fate work his? it rather will protect him.
But here come Tydings, and the Bearer smiles;
Good let them be, and these vain Fears will vanish.
Enter an Officer.Amal. From Prince Aristor? Do's he live, and send you?
Enter Clarinthus with others disguis'd like Messenian Soldiers.Clar. You heard the King, and the chief Lords of Sparta
They follow him into the inner Tent and the conceal'd Officer comes out.Officer. Curst Conspiration, not to be prevented
That may o'ertake, and cross the bloody Purpose.
The Women shriek in the inner Tent, and Re-enter Clarintha &c. leading in Amalintha and Phila.Amal. Messenians are ye, and yet treat me thus!
[Just as Clarinthus is offering to take her Hand, she snatches Phila's Dagger, and then answers Clarinthus.Amal. No, stay Clarinthus; that I did not Promise.
And whilst my Hand holds this, I will not follow.
Clar. So swift and subtle? yet disarm and take her.
Amal. Hear me but speak, Clarinthus:
My Father's Life already I've secur'd;
And if you yet will quit this dang'rous Purpose,
Yours with Rewards, as great as your Desires,
Shall too be given you, and all Wrongs lie bury'd.
Clar. More than I love Rewards, I hate Messenia;
Therefore alive or dead will bear you from 'em.
[He offers to seize her, she keeping him off with her Dagger kneels.
Amal. Oh! Pity yet my Youth, and wretched Fortunes;
A Princess at your Feet behold in Tears,
And Spare the Blood, the Royal Blood of Sparta.
Clar. Yes, and be lost our selves to save a Trayt'ress?
For, such you've been to that high Blood you've boasted.
I will not spare nor pity, but thus seize you.
[ He wrests the Dagger from her, she rises hastily and follow'd by Phila escapes into the Tent, Clarinthus pursues her, and immediately the Cries of Women are heard.
Enter at the other Door Aristor and Soldiers.Aristor. Oh! we are come in time. Detested Villains,
Re-enter Clarinthus.Clar. The Victim's struck which could not be borne off.
Enter Amalintha wounded and supported by Phila.Amal. Phila thy Hand; help me to reach that Couch,
Dead in Aristor's Arms, who'll soon return,
Come forth, and tell him 'twas my last Request
(By all our Love, by all our Sighs and Sorrows,
By our new Vows, and swiftly faded Joys)
That He wou'd yet survive his Amalintha;
Nor let my fatal Vision prove a Truth,
That 'twas my Fate, my hasty Fate that kill'd him.
Phila. Let me but stay, at least 'till he's arriv'd.
Amal. 'Twou'd cross my Purpose, hark! I hear him coming.
Quickly retire and let me hide this Stream,
Lest he shou'd swell it with a Flood of Tears,
And waste in Grief my small remaining Life,
Which I design to lavish out in Love.
[Phila goes off. Amalintha pulls her Garment over her Wound.
About him let my dying Arms be thrown,
Whilst I deny my parting Life one Groan.
My failing Breath shall in soft Sighs expire,
And tender Words spend my last vital Fire;
That of my Death Men this account may give,
She ceas'd to Love, as others cease to Live.
Enter Aristor hastily, and sits down by her.Aristor. How fares my Love? sink not beneath your Fears,
Amal. Its dying Transports, did you say Aristor?
I wou'd be glad to know, that Death has Transports.
But are there none, none that do Live and Love?
That early meet, and in the Spring of Youth,
Uncross'd, nor troubl'd in the soft Design,
Set sweetly out, and travel on to Age
In mutual Joys, that with themselves expire?
Aristor. Indeed, there are but few, that are thus Happy.
But since our Lot it is, t'encrease the number;
Let us not lose a Thought on other's Fortunes,
But keep them still employ'd upon our own;
For in no Hearts, sure, Love e'er wrought more Wonders.
Amal. Oh! not, to mine I gladly did admit it
Thro' the stern hazards of a Father's Wrath,
And all the Hate of Sparta and Messenia.
If e'er I wept, 'twas Love that forc'd the Dew,
And not my Country, or my colder Friendships;
And on my Face (when Lacedemon mourn'd)
Suspected Smiles were seen to mock her Losses;
Because that Love was on the adverse Party.
Thus fond, thus doating have I pass'd my Hours,
And with their dear remembrance will I close
My Life's last Scene, and grasp you thus in Dying.
[ She embraces him.
Aristor. Far be that Hour; but Oh! my Amalintha,
Proceed thus to describe thy tender Soul,
And charm me with thy might Sense of Passion;
For know, 'twas that which fix'd me ever thine,
When with a Pleasure, not to be express'd,
I found no Language of my Love escap'd thee,
Tho' wrapped in Myst'ry to delude the Croud;
When ev'ry longing Look cou'd raise a Blush,
And every Sigh I breath'd heave this lov'd Bosom,
Which held such soft Intelligence with mine,
And now o'erflows with a like Tide of Pleasure.
Aristor. Oh! yes it do's; it meets the vast Delight,
And takes the Thoughts ev'n of Elysium from me.
Nor will I, as some peevish Beauty might,
Take light offence, that mine you did not mention;
Since 'tis my equalling Aristor's Love
Is all the Charm, I wou'd be proud to boast of.
Aristor. Believe not, that I slighted such Perfections.
I saw you Fair, beyond the Fame of Helen;
But Beauty's vain, and fond of new Applause,
Leaving the last Adorer in Despair
At his approach, who can but praise it better:
Whilst Love, Narcissus-like, courts his Reflection,
And seeks itself, gazing on other's Eyes.
When this I found in yours, it bred that Passion,
Which Time, nor Age, nor Death, shall e'er diminish.
Amal. For Time, or Age, I think not of their Power.
But, after Death, Aristor, cou'd you love me,
Still call to me your Thoughts, when so far absent,
And mourn me sleeping in that Rival's Arms?
Aristor. Yes; if I cou'd outlive my Amalintha,
Still shou'd I turn my Eyes to that cold Grave,
Still love thee there, and wish to lie as low.
But why do's ev'ry Period of thy Speech
Thus sadly close with that too mournful Subject?
Why, now I press this Question, dost thou weep,
Yet in my Bosom strive to hide thy Tears?
Paleness is on thy Cheek, and thy damp Brow
Strikes to my Heart such sympathizing Cold,
As quenches all its Fire, but that of Love.
Oh! speak my Life, my Soul, my Amalintha;
Speak, and prevent the boding Fears that tell me
Eternal Separation is at hand,
And after this, I ne'er shall clasp thee more.
[ Embraces her, and she starts and groans.
Amal. Oh! O', O', O'.
Aristor. Nay, if the gentle foldings of my Love,
The tender circling of these Arms can wound,
'Tis sure some inward Anguish do's oppress thee,
Which too unkindly thou wilt still keep secret.
Amal. Secret it shou'd have been, 'till Death had seal'd it;
Had not that Groan, and my weak Tears betray'd me:
[ Speaks faintly.
For Death, which from Clarinthus I receiv'd,
Is come to snatch my Soul from these Embraces.
Aristor. Oh fatal sound! but let me not suppose it,
Till Art is weary'd for thy Preservation.
Haste to procure it Phila: all that hear me
Fly to her Aid; or you more speedy Gods
The Cure be yours, and Hecatombs attend you.
But none approach; then let me haste to bring it,
Tho' thus to leave her is an equal Danger.
[ Endeavours to go.
Amal. Aristor stay; nor let my closing Eyes
One Moment lose the Sight that ever charm'd them.
No Art can bring relief; and melting Life
But lingers till my Soul receives th' Impression
Of that lov'd Form, which ever shall be lasting,
Tho' in new Worlds, new Objects wou'd efface it.
Aristor. No, Amalintha; if it must be so,
Together we'll expire, and trace those Worlds,
As fond, and as united as before:
For know, my Love the Sword of War has reach'd me;
And none wou'd I permit to bind the Wound,
Till to thy gentle Hand I cou'd reveal it.
The Blood uncheck'd shall now profusely flow,
And Art be scorn'd, that cou'd but half restore me.
Amal. Oh! let me plead in Death against that Purpose,
Employ my Hand, yet warm, to close the Wound,
And with my suppling Tears disperse the Anguish.
Your Country asks your stay, and more your Father:
This Blood is his, ally'd to all his Virtues,
By him more priz'd, than what supports his Frame,
Nor shou'd be lavish'd thus without his Licence.
Oh! Aristomenes haste to preserve it,
Since Life from me departs, and Love is useless
[ She dies.
Aristor. Her fleeting Breath has borne far hence my Name:
But soon my following Spirit shall o'ertake her.
My Godlike Father gave her to my Arms,
And then resign'd to her more powerful Claim
This purple Stream, which wafts me to possess her.
May every Power, that shields paternal Goodness,
Enfold his Person, and support his Sway:
His dear remembrance take these parting drops,
[ He weeps.
And then be free, my Soul, for ties more lasting,
Eternal Love, the faithful Lovers due,
In those blest Fields, which stand display'd before me.
[ He takes her in his Arms and dies.
Enter Phila.Phila. I shou'd have come, and urg'd his Preservation,
Shouts of Victory. Enter Demagetus, Arcasius, Alcander, and several officers, their Swords drawn as coming from Battle.Demag. A glorious Day, and warmly was it fought:
Stoop to the General's Valour –
Some Troops are order'd to secure Phærea;
And with to-morrow's Sun he enters there
To take the Homage of the conquer'd Spartans.
Alcand. They say, that Anaxander he has freed
As generously, as he'd ne'er known the Dungeon.
Demag. He did, at Prince Aristor's kind Request;
And now, with the high Marks of Conquest crown'd
Is coming to declare to Amalintha
That all her Wishes, and her Fears are ended.
[ Turning to go into the Tent, he sees the Bodies.
They are, indeed; for ever, ever ended.
Oh! turn and see where that pale Beauty lies,
And faithful, dead Aristor, bleeding by her!
Alcand. O sudden Horror! where's our Conquest now,
Our lofty Boasts, and brave expected Triumphs?
Lie there, my Sword, beneath my Leader's Feet;
[ Lays his sword at Aristor's Feet.
For under him I fought, and now weep for him.
Demag. We'll all join to encrease the mournful Shower.
A Soldier for a Soldier's Fall may weep,
And shed these Drops without unmanly Weakness.
[ A Sound of Trumpets.
But hark! the Gen'ral, how shall we receive him?
Awhile we'll with our Bodies shade this Prospect,
And tell him by our Looks, some Grief attends him;
Lest all his Fortitude shou'd not support
A Change so sudden in his wretched Fortune.
Nor can we learn from whence this Loss proceeds.
Phila. Yes, that you may from me: Life yet remains,
And will admit of the too dire Relation.
Demag. Then gently bear her hence, and hear it from her.
[ They lead off Phila.
That when the Sorrow, which at first must bar
All cold Enquiries, shall awhile be past,
The Gen'ral may be told to what he owes it.
But see! he enters; be we Sad and Silent:
For Oh! too soon this fading Joy must vanish.
[ They stand all together before the Bodies.
A FLOURISH of Drums and Trumpets, with Shouts of Joy.
Enter several Officers and Soldiers, the Shepherds and Shepherdesses strewing flowers, follow'd by Aristomenes, his Sword drawn in his Hand, and a Wreath of Victory on his Head.
Others. Live long and happy, Father of Messenia!
Aristom. Now to fair Amalintha wou'd I speak
The joyful Tydings of this Day's Atchievements:
Therefore let her be told, we wish her Presence.
[ Seeing none move.
Ha! what none stir! perhaps Aristor's with her:
Why let him tell it; from a Lover's mouth,
'Twill bear a Sound more welcome and harmonious.
And sure in Love and Battle none exceeds him,
The last you all can witness; you saw him Fight,
Saw the young Warrior with his Beaver up
Dart like the Bolt of Jove amongst their Ranks,
And scatter 'em like an Oak's far-shooting Splinters.
Will none confirm it? this is envious Silence.
[ Walks up and down.
Thou Demagetus, ha! thou'rt all in Tears,
And so are these that make a Wall about thee:
The Cause deliver, Oh! declare it quickly.
Demag. Enquire it not, my Lord; too soon 'twill find you.
Aristom. I must prevent it by my hasty Search.
Reveal it you, or you, since all partake it:
[ To Alcander, &c.
What silent still! –
If yet ye do not speak, ye do not love me;
I find you do not, since ye all are Speechless.
Aristor wou'd have spoke, had he been here.
Demag. Aristor's here, but Oh! he cannot speak.
You have it now, my Lord, and must weep with us.
Aristom. Thy Tongue has warn'd my Eyes to seek the Centre:
[ Looks down.
For round this Place I dare not let them stray,
Lest they explain too soon, thy fatal meaning.
Oh! Anaxander, had such Trembling seiz'd me,
When at the Army's Head I met thy Fury;
The poorest of thy Troops had cry'd me Coward.
Why so we're all, there's not a Man that is not;
We all dread something, and can shrink with Terror:
Yet he that comes a Conqu'ror from the Field,
Shall find a vain Applause to crown his Valour,
Tho' fainting thus, and sweating cold with Fear.
[ Pauses and leans on an Officer.
But didst thou say, Aristor cou'd not speak?
Oh! that I live to ask it! not answer to his Father!
Demag. Oh! never more!
Aristom. The Sun will keep his Pace, and Time revolve,
Rough Winters pass, and Springs come smiling on;
But Thou dost talk of Never, Demagetus:
Yet ere Despair prevails, retract that Word
Whose cloudy distance bars the reach of Thought,
Nor let one Ray of Hope e'er dawn beyond it.
Never, Oh never!
Demag. This Passion must rise higher, ere it falls.
Divide, and let him know the worst.
[ To the Officers.
Aristom. Where is my Son? my Grief has pass'd all Bounds,
All dallying Circumstance, and vain Delusion,
And will be told directly where to find him.
Demag. Oh! then behold him there!
[ They divide. He seeing the Bodies stands awhile amaz'd and speechless, drops his Sword, then speaks.Aristom. So look'd the World to Pyrrha, and her Mate;
[ He takes the Sword that lay at Aristor's Feet, and goes to fall upon it, Demagetus takes hold of it.
Demag. Oh! hold, my Lord; nor stab at once your Army.
[ All the Officers and Soldiers kneel, Alcander speaks.
Alcand. We're all your Sons; and if you strike, my Lord,
The Spartans may come back, and take our Bodies;
For when yours goes, our Spirits shall attend it.
[ They all prepare to fall on their Swords.
Aristom. Wou'd you then have me live, when thus unbowell'd,
Without the Charms of my Aristor's presence,
Without his Arm to second me in Fight,
And in still Peace his Voice to make it perfect?
[ He rises in a Passion and comes forward on the Stage.
Yea, I will live, ye Sov'reign Pow'rs, I will:
You've put my Virtue to its utmost Proof;
Yet thus chastis'd, I own superior Natures,
And all your fixt Decrees this Sword shall further,
'TIll Rhodes is rescu'd, and my Task completed.
Who knows, but that the Way to your Elysium
Is Fortitude in Ills, and brave Submission;
Since Heroes whom your Oracles distinguish,
Are often here amidst their Greatness wretched?
But yet my Heart! my lov'd, my lost Aristor!
Demag. Let me succeed him in his active Duty,
And join with all the Earth to bring you Comfort.
Aristom. Comfort on Earth! Oh! 'tis not to be found.
My Demagetus, thou hast far to travel;
The Bloom of Youth sits graceful on thy Brow,
And bids thee look for Days of might Pleasures,
For prosp'rous Wars, and the soft Smiles of Beauty,
For generous Sons, that may reflect thy Form,
And give thee Hopes, as I had, of their succour.
Demag. With these indeed my Thoughts have still been flatter'd.
Aristom. Then let me draw this flatt'ring Veil aside,
And bid thee here, here in this Face behold,
How biting Cares have done the work of Age,
And in my best of Strength mark'd me a Dotard.
Defeated Armies, slaughter'd Friends are here;
Disgraceful Bonds, and Cities laid in Ashes:
And if thou find'st, that Life will yet endure it,
Since what I here have lost–
So bow'd, so waining shalt thou see this Carcass,
That scarce thou wilt recall what once it was.
Then be instructed Thou, and All that hear me,
Not to expect the compass of soft Wishes,
Or constant Joys, which fly the fond Possessor.
Since Man, by swift returns of Good and Ill,
In all the Course of Life's uncertain still;
By Fortune favour'd now, and now opprest,
And not, 'till Death, secure of Fame, or Rest.
The copytext for this on-line edition is a corrected edition, of Anne Finch's Miscellany Poems, on Several Occasions, London: printed for J[ohn] B[arber] and sold by Benj. Tooke at the Middle-Temple-Gate, William Taylor in Pater-Noster-Row, and James Round, in Exchange-Alley, Cornhil, 1713. The proof copy belongs to the Special Collection of the Rare Book Room of the Hillman Library, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA. A scanned image of the Title Page
Long s's which appear in the original text have been transcribed here as short s's, both for readability and due to limitations in the available html diacriticals. With the exception of oe-ligatures, other diacriticals have been reproduced, as has the original spelling and use of fonts within the poems. Page breaks have been indicated through the use of text, by placing the notation [Page xx] at the start of each page.
Errata that were listed in the copytext have been corrected in this on-line edition. Hyperlinks connect the list of errata to the lines in the text where the corrections occur. The errata have been set off here as a table, rather than being presented as a single continuous paragraph as they were in the original edition.
The 1713 Miscellany Poems, on Several Occasions used two styles of footnotes. In some cases, footnotes were numbered and grouped together at the end of a poem. In other cases, markers (not numbers) were inserted and the notes placed at the bottom of the page they appeared on. (See the Sample Page
NOTES BY MYRA REYNOLDS
Myra Reynolds expanded the 1713 edition of Anne Finch's poems, in her collection The poems of Anne Countess of Winchilsea: from the original edition of 1713 and from unpublished manuscripts by Anne Kingsmill Finch, Countess of Winchilsea (1661-1720), edited by Myra Reynolds. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1903. In some cases, Myra Reynolds added notes to the 1713 poems in her 1903 edition. Those notes have been excerpted, reordered, and numbered here.
L. 41: "We faint beneath the Aromatick Pain."–
Mr. Saintsbury (Short History of Eng. Lit., p. 563) suggests that Lady Winchilsea borrowed her phrase "aromatic pain" from Dryden. The reference is probably to Dryden, Annus Mirabilis, st. 29., reads:
Amidst whole heaps of spices lights a ball,Mr. Gosse, in Ward's English Poets, called attention to the fact that Pope borrowed from Lady Winchilsea his phrase "aromatic pain." The line in Pope is (Essay on Man, 1:200):
Die of a rose in aromatic pain.Mr. Gosse now further calls my attention to the following lines in Shelley's Epipsychidion:
And from the mass violets and jonquils peep,This is almost certainly a conscious recollection of Ardelia's lines.
THE MARRIAGE OF EDWARD AND ELIZABETH HERBERT
|||Elizabeth Herbert, great-great-granddaughter of the fourth Earl of Pembroke, married Edward Herbert of Swansea, county Glamorgan. The "Worsley" of the poem is the Frances Worsley who became Lady Carteret in 1710. Hence the marriage of Edward and Elizabeth Herbert must have occurred before that date, or when Edward was nineteen and Elizabeth sixteen.|
THE OWL DESCRIBING HER YOUNG ONES
L. 50: "At length he cry'd, with Vultur's Becks."–
In Tusser, Husbandry, (1573) "bex" is the plural form, as in the lines, (chap. 34, st. 11):
So doing, more tender and greater they wexMurray (Dict.) gives "beck" as still in use in the eighteenth century.
|||L. 52-4: "Palatines" were fur tippets. Cent. Dict. quotes from Ladies Dictionary, 1694: "Palatine", that which used to be called a sable tippet, but that name is changed." Doily was a woolen stuff introduced for summer wear in the latter part of the seventeenth century. Dryden speaks of "Doily petticoats" (Limberham, Act IV, Sc. 1, 1678). Spectator 283, speaks of doily as stuff at once genteel and cheap. Arbuthnot (John Bull, I, vi) says: "His Children were reduced from rich silks to Doily stuffs," and Congreve speaks of "a fool and a doily stuff" (The Way of the World, Act III, Sc. 3), but Gay makes doily synonymous with silken drugget (Trivia, 1:43), and Lady Winchilsea classes her "Doily stuffs" with silks as opposed to calicoes. Dr. Johnson (Dict.) defines "calico" as "an Indian stuff made of cotton; sometimes stained with gay and beautiful colors." Murray (Dict.) quotes from J. Roberts, Spinster, 347 (1719): "A tawdry, pie-spotted, flabby, ragged, low-priced thing, called Callicoe, made by a parcel of Heathens and Pagans that Worship the Devil, and work for half a penny a day."|
A POEM FOR THE BIRTHDAY OF THE LADY CATHARINE TUFTON
|||In this ... poem "Serena" is Catharine Tufton, (born April 24, 1692, daughter of "Arminda", the Countess of Thanet).|
|||L. 19: "How Great that more distinguish'd Peer."– The sixth Earl of Thanet, known as "the good Lord Thomas." "He is a good country gentleman, a great assertor of the prerogatives of the monarchy and the church; a thin, tall, black, red-faced man, turned of sixty years old.– Of great piety and charity." Macky, Characters in the Court of Queen Anne (Swift's additional comment in italics).|
|||L. 33: "Of Her, whose Fav'rite she appears."– [The Lady Coventry.] Margaret Tufton, sister of the second Earl of Thanet, married to Lord Coventry in 1653.|
|||L. 63: "When Hothfeild shall (as heretofore)."– Hothfield, the family seat of the Tuftons in Kent. The five daughters of Thomas, the sixth Earl of Thanet, married early and into noble families, thus maintaining the reputation of the family for "illustrious Hymens."|
AN ENQUIRY AFTER PEACE
|||The title in the MS. is: Verses incerted in a Letter to my Lady Thanet; being an enquiry after Peace; and shewing that what the World generally persues, is contrary to it.|
ON THE DEATH OF THE HONOURABLE MR. JAMES THYNNE
L. 23: "And his renowned Ancestors repose."|
(a) "Coventry."– [Lord Keeper Coventry.] Lord Keeper Coventry's second wife had four daughters, one of whom, Mary, married Sir Henry Frederick Thynne, the grandfather of the young James Thynne of the poem.
|||(b) ".... his Paternal Predecessor."– Sir John Thynne, who bought Longleat in 1541, and was occupied in the years 1567-79 in building the mansion, said to have been the first well-built house in the kingdom. The whole of the outside and the interior from the hall to the chapel court were completed by him.|
|||(c) "Essex."– Robert Devereux, second Earl of Essex, had a daughter, Frances, who was married (April, 1618) to Sir William Seymour, afterward Marquis of Hertford and Duke of Somerset. Their daughter, Mary Seymour, the second wife of Heneage Finch, the second Earl of Winchilsea, was the mother of Frances Finch, who married Viscount Thynne.|
|||(d) "Somerset."– The Sir William Seymour of the preceding note. He was one of the three lords who prayed the court to lay upon them, as the advisors of Charles I., the entire responsibility for his acts. Upon his execution, they gained permission to bury his body at Windsor. At the Restoration the dukedom of Somerset and the barony of Seymour (declared forfeit in 1552) were revived and conferred upon Sir William Seymour by act of Parliament September 13, 1660. He died October 24 of the same year.|
|||(e) "....that matchless Female."– [The Lady Packington supposed by many to be the Author of The Whole Duty of Man.] Dorothy Coventry, daughter of Lord Keeper Coventry and wife of Sir John Packington, a lady of great learning and piety. The tradition connecting her name with The Whole Duty of Man was persistent. Her grandson caused to be engraved on her monument, "justly reputed the author of The Whole Duty of Man," but the proof seems strong that the book was really written by Richard Allestree. See Journal of Sacred Literature, July, 1864.|
AN EPISTLE FROM A GENTLEMAN TO MADAME DESHOULIERS
|||Madame Deshoulières (Antoinette de Ligier de la Garde) was one of the chief female poets of France. Her works were published in 1687-88, and again in 1695, the year after her death, by her daughter. The letter here translated is included in her works and is there entitled Lettre de M. De Senecé, premier valet-de-chambre de la Reine, à Mme Des Houlieres, en lui envoyant de l'argent qu'elle lui avoit prête à la Bassette.|
|||The "Theanor" of this poem, Henry Thynne (cf. A Description of one of the Pieces of Tapestry at Longleate), son of Viscount Weymouth, died, vita patris, 1708.; "Cleone" is his wife Grace, the daughter of Sir George Stroud. This poem was apparently written not long after the marriage of Henry Thynne and Grace Stroud, which took place in 1695.|
THE EAGLE, THE SOW, AND THE CAT
|||L. 27-9. "Lest Pettitoes should make," etc.– William King in Art of Cookery, chap. 9, in his pretended excerpts from a great work by Caelius Apicius, puts emphasis on the sumptuous dishes prepared by the ancients from "hog-meat" in various forms. Apicius is represented as lauding the "liver, lights, brains and pettitoes" of a black China pig, and as speaking of a dish much in favor with certain Roman emperors, one of the elements of this dish being "a wild sow's hock and udder."|
L. 46: "A Pestilential Sow, a meazled Pork."
"Measles" was a name for several diseases of swine or sheep. Butler (Hudibras, Part I, Canto II, l. 688) has: "As e'er in measled pork was hatched." Tusser (Good Husbandry, chap. 17) has:
Hog measled killWith evident derogatory estimate of the discrimination of the "Flemings".
After l. 17 in the MS. the following lines have been crossed out: |
Nor feeds a hope that boasts but mortal birth,
|||L. 23: Abandon'd Pleasures in Monastick Walls: – [Wye College in Kent, formerly a Priory.] The parish-church of Wye was, in 1447, endowed by Archbishop Kempe and converted into a college for the education of the youth of that district. At the close of the sixteenth century the site and buildings of the college were willed to the master of the grammar school and the master and mistress of Lady Joanna Thornhill's charity school. The manor of the vicarage of Wye had long been in the possession of the Finches of Eastwell. It is the children of the Free School of Wye whom Lady Winchilsea celebrates in Fanscomb Barn. See W. H. Ireland, History of the County of Kent (London, 1829.), Vol. II, p. 413.|