A Celebration of Women Writers

"The Philosopher, The Young Man, and His Statue" by Anne Kingsmill Finch, Countess of Winchilsea (1661 - 1720)
From Winchilsea, Anne (Kingsmill) Finch, Countess of. 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. pp. 109-110.

Editor: Mary Mark Ockerbloom

[Page 109]

The Philosopher, the Young Man, and his Statue.

A Fond Athenian Mother brought
A Sculptor to indulge her Thought,
  And carve her Only Son;
Who to such strange perfection wrought,
That every Eye the Statue caught
  Nor ought was left undone.

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.

[Page 109]

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.

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Editor: Mary Mark Ockerbloom