Smart, Christopher, 1722-1771. Poems on several occasions: By Christopher Smart, A. M. Fellow of Pembroke-Hall, Cambridge. London: printed for the author, by W. Strahan; and sold by J. Newbery, at the Bible and Sun, in St. Paul’s Church-Yard, MDCCLII., 1752. [16],230p.,plates; 4⁰. (ESTC T42626; OTA K041581.000)

  • [Illustration]

    BY CHRISTOPHER SMART, A. M. Fellow of Pembroke-Hall, Cambridge.

    — nonumque prematur in annum. HOR.

    LONDON: Printed for the AUTHOR, by W. STRAHAN; And sold by J. NEWBERY, at the Bible and Sun, in St. Paul's Church-yard. MDCCLII.


    My LORD,

    THE Critics will, undoubtedly, expect, when they see your Name prefixed to this Volume, that I should address your Lordship, as the Judge of Science, and the hereditary Patron of learned Men; but I shall take the Liberty of disappointing them, having, as I presume, a stronger and more natural Claim to your Protection from a lucky Accident, than from any real Excellence I can pretend to, either as a Writer or a Scholar.

    This lucky Accident, my Lord, is the Honour (I had almost said Merit) of being born within a few Miles of your Lordship; and tho' I have too much Diffidence to ask your Patronage[Page] as a Poet, I have Assurance enough to demand it as a Man of Kent.

    I shall not imitate, in this Dedication (if such an homely Epistle may aspire to so polite a Name) the Conduct of most modern Authors, who are always particularly fulsome, at the very Time they, with the utmost Solemnity, protest against Flattery — What I sincerely believe of you I have said already, and you will find it in the introductory Ode on Good-nature, which I beg Leave, in an especial Manner, not only to inscribe, but to apply to the Earl of Middlesex.

    I am,my Lord, with the utmost Respect,
    Your Lordship's most obedient, and most obliged humble Servant, CHRISTOPHER SMART.

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    ODES. — Page 7, Line 8, after to read the. Page 19, Line 6, for foft read soft. HOP-GARDEN, Book I. Page 114, Line 3, for to read too. Page 115, Line 3, after uplift place a comma, and dele that after arms. — Ibid. Line 26, for fome read some. Page 117, Line 9, for lab'rours read labours. Page 120, Line 11, for will read with. — Ibid. Line 12, after boast, instead of a full Stop, place a Comma. Book II. Page 127, Line 10, for Heav'ns read Heavens. Page 128, Line 2, for Zeinth read Zenith. Page 131, Line 10, instead of for read far. Page 133, Line 1, for felfish read selfish. Page 142, Vers. 38, pro rescucitat lege resuscitat. Page 158, Vers. 38, pro sordit lege sordet.

    JUDGMENT of MIDAS, Page 223, Line 7, for Scen'ry read Scenery. Page 229, Line 16, for Glow-worw read Glow-worm.

    ESSAY on CRITICISM, Verse 251, for wonder'd read wonder. Verse 261, for triviel read trivial. Verse 426, for steems read teems. Verse 540, after at dele a.

    DE ARTE CRITICA, Vers. 159, pro cituis lege citius. Vers. 295, pro Norman lege Normam. Vers. 307, pro redundet lege redundat. Vers. 319, pro suavitur lege suaviter. Vers. 360, pro celabrabitur lege celebrabitur. Vers. 361, pro qui lege hi. Vers. 448, pro stubito lege subito. Vers. 495, pro insequerenter lege insequerentur. Vers. 573, pro supeaddita lege superaddita. Vers. 643, pro infamen lege infamem.

    〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉, Vers. 14, pro Ephrosyne lege Euphrosyne. Vers. 48, pro sylvestibus lege sylvestribus.

    — aut incuria fudit
    Aut humana parum cavit Natura. HOR.
  • THE INTRODUCTION. BEING TWO ODES.The former on Good-Nature, the latter against Ill-Nature.

    [Page 4]
  • Against ILL-NATURE.
  • [Page][Page 16][Page 17][Page 19][Page 23][Page 25][Page 27][Page 30]
  • A NOON-PIECE; OR, The MOWERS at Dinner. ODE II.
  • On the sudden Death of a CLERGYMAN. ODE IV.
  • On the Fifth of December, being the Birth-day of a beautiful young Lady. ODE V.
  • The PRETTY CHAMBERMAID: In Imitation of Ne sit Ancillae tibi amor pudori, &c. of Horace. ODE VI.
  • To the reverend and learned Dr. WEBSTER, Occasioned by his Dialogues on ANGER and FORGIVENESS. ODE VIII.
  • ODE IX. The Author apologizes to a Lady, for his being a little man.
  • On Miss * * * *. ODE X.
  • To ETHELINDA, On her doing my Verses the honour of wearing them in her bosom. Written at Thirteen.
  • On an EAGLE confined in a College-Court. ODE XIII.

    Nec me animi fallit —
    Difficile illustrare Latinis versibus esse
    (Multa novis verbis praesertim cum sit agendum)
    Propter egestatem linguae, & rerum novitatem. LUCRET.
    [Page 34]


    'TIS hard to say, if greater want of skill
    Appear in writing, or in judging ill;
    But of the two, less dang'rous is th' offence
    To tire our patience, than mislead our sense.
    Some few in that, but numbers err in this,
    Ten censure wrong, for one who writes amiss.
    A fool might once himself alone expose,
    Now one in verse makes many more in prose.
    'Tis with our judgments as our watches, none
    Go just alike, yet each believes his own.
    In poets as true genius is but rare,
    True taste as seldom is the critic's share;
    Both must alike from heav'n derive their light,
    These born to judge, as well as those to write.
    Qui scribit artificiose. ab aliis commode scripta facile intelligere poterit. CIC. ad Herenn. b. 4.
    Let such teach others who themselves excel,
    And censure freely who have written well.
    [Page 36]
    Authors are partial to their wit, 'tis true;
    But are not criticks to their judgment too?
    Yet if we look more closely, we shall find,
    Omnes tacito quodam sensu, sine ullâ arte, aut ratione, quae fint in artibus ac rationibus recta ac prava dijudicant. Cic. de Orat. lib. 3.
    Most have the seeds of judgment in their mind:
    Nature affords at least a glimm'ring light;
    The lines, tho' touch'd but faintly, are drawn right.
    But as the slightest-sketch, if justly trac'd,
    Is by ill-colouring but the more disgrac'd,
    So by false learning is good sense defac'd.
    Some are bewilder'd in the maze of schools,
    And some made coxcombs, nature meant but fools.
    In search of wit, those lose their common sense,
    And then turn criticks in their own defence.
    Each burns alike, who can, or cannot write,
    Or with a rival's, or an eunuch's spite.
    All fools have still an itching to deride,
    And fain wou'd be upon the laughing side:
    If Maevius scribble in Apollo's spight,
    There are, who judge still worse than he can write.
    Some have at first for wits, then poets past,
    Turn'd criticks next, and prov'd plain fools at last.
    Some neither can for wits or criticks pass,
    As heavy mules are neither horse, nor ass.
    [Page 38]
    Those half-learn'd witlings num'rous in our isle,
    As half-form'd insects on the banks of Nile,
    Unfinish'd things one knows not what to call,
    Their generation's so equivocal:
    To tell 'em, wou'd a hundred tongues require,
    Or one vain wit's, that might a hundred tire.
    But you who seek to give and merit Fame,
    And justly bear a critick's noble name,
    Be sure yourself and your own reach to know,
    How far your genius, taste, and learning go.
    Launch not beyond your depth, but be discreet,
    And mark that point where sense and dulness meet.
    Nature to all things fix'd the limits fit,
    And wisely curb'd proud man's pretending wit.
    As on the land while here the ocean gains,
    In other parts it leaves wide sandy plains.
    Thus in the soul, while memory prevails,
    The solid pow'r of understanding fails;
    Where beams of warm imagination play,
    The memory's soft figures melt away.
    One science only will one genius fit;
    So vast is art, so narrow human wit:
    Not only bounded to peculiar arts,
    But oft in those confin'd to single parts.
    Like kings, we lose the conquests gain'd before,
    By vain ambition still to make them more.
    [Page 40]
    Each might his several province well command,
    Would all but stoop to what they understand.
    First follow Nature, and your judgment frame
    By her just standard, which is still the same.
    Unerring Nature, still divinely bright,
    One clear, unchang'd, and universal light,
    Life, force, and beauty must to all impart,
    At once the source, and end, and test of art.
    Art from that fund each just supply provides,
    Works without show, and without pomp presides:
    In some fair body thus th' informing soul
    With spirits feeds, with vigour fills the whole,
    Each motion guides, and ev'ry nerve sustains;
    Itself unseen, but in th' effect, remains.
    There are whom heav'n has blest with store of wit,
    Yet want as much again to manage it;
    For wit and judgment ever are at strife,
    Tho' meant each other's aid, like man and wife.
    'Tis more to guide, than spur, the Muse's steed;
    Restrain his fury, than provoke his speed;
    The winged courser, like a gen'rous horse,
    Shows most true Mettle when you check his course.
    Those rules of old discover'd, not devis'd,
    Are Nature still, but Nature methodiz'd:
    [Page 42]
    Nature, like monarchy, is but restrain'd
    By the same laws, which first herself ordain'd.
    Hear how learn'd Greece her useful rules indites,
    When to suppress, and when indulge our flights!
    High on Parnassus' top her sons she show'd,
    And pointed out those arduous paths they trod,
    Held from afar, aloft, th' immortal prize,
    And urg'd the rest by equal steps to rise.
    Nec enim artibus editis factum est ut argumenta inveniremus, sed dicta sunt omnia antequam preciperentur, mox ea scriptores observata & collecta ediderunt. QUINTIL.
    precepts thus from great examples giv'n,
    She drew from them what they deriv'd from heav'n.
    The generous critic fann'd the poet's fire,
    And taught the world with reason to admire.
    Then Criticism the Muse's handmaid prov'd,
    To dress her charms, and make her more belov'd:
    But following wits from that intention stray'd:
    Who could not win the mistress woo'd the maid:
    Against the poets their own arms they turn'd,
    Sure to hate most the men from whom they learn'd.
    So modern 'pothecaries taught the art,
    By doctor's bills to play the doctor's part,
    Bold in the practice of mistaken rules,
    Prescribe, apply, and call their masters fools.
    Some on the leaves of ancient authors prey,
    Nor time, nor moths e'er spoil'd so much as they.
    [Page 44]
    Some dryly plain, without invention's aid,
    Write dull receipts how poems should be made.
    These lose the sense their learning to display,
    And those explain the meaning quite away.
    You then whose judgment the right course wou'd steer,
    Know well each Ancient's proper character,
    His fable, subject, scope of ev'ry page,
    Religion, country, genius of his age:
    Without all these at once before your eyes,
    Cavil you may, but never criticize
    Be Homer's works your study and delight,
    Read him by day and meditate by night.
    Thence form your judgment, thence your notions bring,
    And trace the Muses upward to their spring.
    Still with itself compar'd, his text peruse;
    Or let your comment be the Mantuan muse.
    Cum canerem Reges & Praelia, Cynthius aurem vellit —VIRG. Ecl. 6.
    When first young Maro sung of kings and wars,
    Ere warning Phoebus touch'd his trembling ears,
    Perhaps he seem'd above the critic's law,
    And but from nature's fountains scorn'd to draw;
    But when t'examine every part he came,
    Nature and Homer were, he found, the same;
    Convinc'd, amaz'd, he checks the bold design,
    And rules as strict his labour'd work confine,
    As if the Stagyrite o'erlook'd each line.
    [Page 46]
    Learn hence for ancient rules a just esteem,
    To copy nature, is to copy them.
    Some beauties yet, no precepts can declare,
    For there's a happiness as well as care.
    Music resembles poetry, in each
    Are nameless graces which no methods teach,
    And which a master-hand alone can reach.
    Neque tam sancta sunt ista praecepta, sed hoc quicquid est, utilitas excogitavit; non negabo autem sic utile est plerumque; verum si eadem illa nobis aliud suadebit utilitas, hanc, relictis magistrorum autoritatibus, sequemur. QUINT. lib. 2. cap. 13.
    If where the rules not far enough extend,
    (Since rules were made but to promote their end)
    Some lucky licence answers to the full
    Th' intent propos'd, that licence is a rule.
    Thus Pegasus a nearer way to take,
    May boldly deviate from the common track.
    Great wits sometimes may gloriously offend,
    And rise to faults true criticks dare not mend;
    From vulgar bounds with brave disorder part,
    And snatch a grace beyond the reach of art,
    Which, without passing thro' the judgment, gains
    The heart, and all its end at once attains
    In prospects thus some objects please our eyes,
    Which out of nature's common order rise,
    The shapeless rock, or hanging precipice.
    But care in poetry must still be had,
    It asks discretion ev'n in running mad:
    [Page 48]
    And tho' the antients thus their rules invade,
    (As kings dispense with laws themselves have made)
    Moderns beware! or if you must offend
    Against the precept, ne'er transgress its end.
    Let it be seldom, and compell'd by need,
    And have, at least, their precedent to plead.
    The critic else proceeds without remorse,
    Seizes your fame, and puts his laws in force.
    I know there are, to whose presumptuous thoughts
    Those freer beauties, even in them, seem faults.
    Some figures monstrous, and miss-shap'd appear,
    Consider'd singly, or beheld too near,
    Which, but proportion'd to their light, or place,
    Due distance reconciles to form and grace.
    A prudent chief not always must display
    His pow'rs in equal ranks, and fair array;
    But with th' occasion, and the place comply,
    Conceal his force, nay, sometimes seem to fly.
    Those oft are stratagems which errors seem,
    Nor is it Homer nods, but we that dream.
    Still green with bays each ancient altar stands,
    Above the reach of sacrilegious hands;
    Secure from flames, from envy's fiercer rage,
    Destructive war, and all-devouring age.
    See, from each clime the learn'd their incense bring;
    Hear in all tongues consenting paeans ring!
    [Page 50]
    In praise so just let ev'ry voice be join'd,
    And fill the general chorus of mankind!
    Hail, bards triumphant! born in happier days,
    Immortal heirs of universal praise!
    Whose honours with increase of ages grow,
    As streams roll down enlarging as they flow!
    Nations unborn your mighty names shall sound,
    And worlds applaud that must not yet be found!
    Oh! may some spark of your celestial fire
    The last, the meanest of your sons inspire,
    (That on weak wings from far pursues your flights,
    Glows while he reads, but trembles as he writes)
    To teach vain wits a science little known,
    T'admire superior sense and doubt their own.
    Of all the causes which conspire to blind
    Man's erring judgment, and misguide the mind;
    What the weak head with strongest bias rules,
    Is pride, the never-failing vice of fools.
    Whatever nature has in worth deny'd,
    She gives, in large recruits of needful pride;
    For as in bodies, thus in souls we find,
    What wants in blood and spirits, swell'd with wind:
    Pride, where wit fails, steps in to our defence,
    And fills up all the mighty void of sense!
    If once right reason drives that cloud away,
    Truth breaks upon us with resistless day;
    [Page 52]
    Trust not yourself by your defects to know,
    Make use of ev'ry friend — and ev'ry foe.
    A little learning is a dang'rous thing,
    Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring;
    There shallow draughts intoxicate the brain,
    And drinking largely sobers us again.
    Fir'd at first sight with what the muse imparts,
    In fearless youth we tempt the heights of arts,
    While from the bounded level of our mind,
    Short views we take, nor see the lengths behind;
    But more advanc'd, behold with strange surprize
    New distant scenes of endless science rise!
    So pleas'd at first the tow'ring Alps we try,
    Mount o'er the vales, and seem to tread the sky,
    Th' eternal snows appear already past,
    And the first clouds and mountains seem the last;
    But those attain'd, we tremble to survey
    The growing labour of the lengthen'd way,
    Th' increasing prospect tires our wond'ring eyes,
    Hills peep o'er hills, and Alps on Alps arise!
    Diligenter legendum est, ac pene ad scribendi sollicitudinem; nec per partes modo scrutanda sunt omnia; sed perlectus liber utique ex integro refumendus. QUINTIL.
    A perfect judge will read each work of wit
    With the same spirit that its author writ,
    [Page 54]
    Survey the whole, nor seek slight faults to find,
    Where nature moves, and rapture warms the mind;
    Nor lose, for that malignant, dull delight,
    The gen'rous pleasure to be charm'd with wit:
    But in such lays as neither ebb nor flow,
    Correctly cold, and regularly low,
    That shunning faults, one quiet temper keep,
    We cannot blame indeed — but we may sleep.
    In wit, as nature, what affects our hearts
    Is not th' exactness of peculiar parts:
    'Tis not a lip, nor eye, we beauty call,
    But the joint force, and full result of all.
    Thus when we view some well-proportion'd dome,
    (The world's just wonderd, and ev'n thine, O Rome!)
    No single parts unequally surprize,
    All comes united to the admiring eyes;
    No monstrous height, or breadth, or length appear;
    The whole at once is bold and regular.
    Whoever thinks a faultless piece to see,
    Thinks what ne'er was, nor is, nor e'er shall be.
    In ev'ry work regard the writer's end,
    Since none can compass more than they intend;
    And if the means be just, the conduct true,
    Applause, in spight of trivials faults, is due.
    As men of breeding, sometimes men of wit,
    T'avoid great errors, must the less commit.
    [Page 56]
    Neglect the rules each verbal critic lays,
    For not to know some trifles is a praise.
    Most critics fond of some subservient art,
    Still make the whole depend upon a part,
    They talk of principles, but notions prize,
    And all to one lov'd folly sacrifice.
    Once, on a time, la Mancha's knight, they say,
    A certain bard encount'ring on the way,
    Discours'd in terms as just, in looks as sage,
    As e'er cou'd Dennis, of the Grecian stage;
    Concluding all were desp'rate sots, and fools,
    That durst depart from Aristotle's rules.
    Our author happy in a judge so nice,
    Produc'd his play, and begg'd the knight's advice;
    Made him observe the subject, and the plot,
    The manners, passions, unities, what not?
    All which, exact to rule, were brought about,
    Were but a combat in the lists left out
    "What! leave the combat out?" exclaims the knight;
    Yes, or we must renounce the Stagyrite.
    "Not so, by heav'n! (he answers in a rage)
    " Knights, squires, and steeds, must enter on the stage. "
    The stage can ne'er so vast a throng contain.
    " Then build a-new, or act it on a plain. "
    Thus critics of less judgment than caprice,
    Curious, not knowing, not exact, but nice,
    [Page 58]
    Form short ideas, and offend in arts
    (As most in manners) by a love to parts.
    Some to conceit alone their taste confine,
    And glitt'ring thoughts struck out at ev'ry line;
    Pleas'd with a work, where nothing's just or fit,
    One glaring chaos, and wild heap of wit.
    Poets like painters, thus unskill'd to trace
    The naked nature, and the living grace,
    With gold and jewels cover ev'ry part,
    And hide with ornaments their want of art.
    Naturam intueamur, hanc sequamur; id facillime accipiunt animi quod agnoscunt. QUINTIL. lib. 8. cap. 3.
    wit is nature to advantage dress'd,
    What oft was thought, but ne'er so well express'd;
    Something, whose truth convinc'd at sight, we find,
    That gives us back the image of our mind.
    As shades more sweetly recommend the light,
    So modest plainness sets off sprightly wit:
    For works may have more wit than does them good,
    As bodies perish through excess of blood.
    Others, for language all their care express,
    And value books, as women men, for dress:
    Their praise is still — the style is excellent;
    The sense they humbly take upon content.
    [Page 60]
    Words are like leaves, and where they most abound,
    Much fruit of sense beneath is rarely found.
    False eloquence, like the prismatic glass,
    Its gaudy colours spreads on ev'ry place;
    The face of nature we no more survey,
    All glares alike, without distinction gay;
    But true expression, like th' unchanging sun;
    Clears and improves whate'er it shines upon,
    It gilds all objects but it alters none.
    Expression is the dress of thought, and still
    Appears more decent, as more suitable;
    A vile conceit in pompous words express'd,
    Is like a clown in regal purple dress'd;
    For diff'rent styles with diff'rent subjects sort,
    As sev'ral garbs, with country, town, and court.
    * Abolita et abrogata retinere, insolentiae cujusdam est, et frivolae in parvis jactantiae. QUINTIL. lib. 1. cap. 6.Opus est ut verba a vetustate repetita neque creba sint, neque manifesta; quia nil est odiosus affectatione, nec utique ab ultimis repetita temporibus. Oratio, cujus summa virtus est perspicuitas; quam sit vitiosa, si egeat interprete? Ergo ut novorum optima erunt maxime vetera, ita veterum maxime nova. Ibidem.
    by old words to fame have made pretence,
    Ancients in phrase, meer moderns in their sense!
    Such labour'd nothings in so strange a style,
    Amaze the unlearn'd, and make the learned smile.
    Unlucky, as Fungoso in the
    Ben Johnson's Every Man in his humour.
    These sparks with aukward vanity display
    What the fine gentleman wore yesterday.
    [Page 62]
    And but so mimic ancient wits at best,
    As apes our grandsires in their doublets drest.
    In words, as fashions, the same rule will hold;
    Alike fantastic, if too new, or old;
    Be not the first by whom the new are try'd,
    Nor yet the last to lay the old aside.
    Quis populi sermo est? quis enim? nisi carmine molli
    Nunc demum numero fluere ut per laeve severos
    Effugit junctura ungues; scit tendere versum,
    Nec secus ac si oculo rubricam dirigat uno. PERSIUS. Stat. 1.
    But most by numbers judge a poet's song,
    And smoth, or rough, with them, is right or wrong;
    In the bright muse tho' thousand charms conspire,
    Her voice is all these tuneful fools admire;
    Who haunt Parnassus but to please the ear,
    Not mend their minds, as some to church repair,
    Not for the doctrine, but the music there.
    These equal syllables alone require,
    Fugiemus crebras vocalium concursiones, quae vastam atque hiantem orationem reddunt. Cic. ad Herenn. lib. 4.
    oft the ear the open vowels tire;
    While expletives their feeble aid do join,
    And ten low words oft creep in one dull line;
    While they ring round the same unvary'd chimes,
    With sure returns of still-expected rhymes.
    Where'er you find, the cooling western breeze,
    In the next line, it whispers thro' the trees,
    [Page 64]
    If crystal streams, with pleasing murmurs creep,
    The reader's threat'ned, not in vain, with sleep.
    Then at the last, and only couplet fraught
    With some unmeaning thing they call a thought,
    A needless Alexandrine ends the song,
    That like a wounded snake, drags its slow length along.
    Leave such to tune their own dull rhymes, and know
    What's roundly smooth, or languishingly slow,
    And praise the easy vigour of a line
    Where Denham's strength, and Waller's sweetness join.
    True ease in writing comes from art not chance,
    As those move easiest who have learn'd to dance.
    'Tis not enough no harshness gives offence,
    The sound must seem an echo to the sense.
    Soft is the strain when Zephyr gently blows,
    And the smooth stream in smoother numbers flows,
    But when loud billows lash the sounding shore,
    The hoarse rough verse should like the torrent roar.
    When Ajax strives, some rock's vast weight to throw,
    The line too labours, and the words move slow,
    Not so, when swift Camilla scours the plain,
    Flies o'er th' unbending corn, and skims along the main.
    Hear how
    * Alexander's feast, or the power of music; an ode by Mr. Dryden.
    Timotheus various lays surprize,
    And bid alternate passions fall and rise!
    [Page 66]
    While at each change the son of Lybian Jove,
    Now burns with glory, and then melts with love;
    Now fierce his eyes with sparkling fury glow!
    Now sighs steal out, and tears begin to flow;
    Persians and Greeks like turns of nature found,
    And the world's victor stood subdu'd by sound!
    The pow'r of music all our hearts allow,
    And what Timotheus was, is Dryden now.
    Avoid extremes, and shun the fault of such,
    Who still are pleas'd too little, or too much.
    At ev'ry trifle scorn to take offence,
    That always shows great pride, or little sense.
    Those heads, as stomachs, are not sure the best,
    Which nauseate all, and nothing can digest.
    Yet let not each gay turn thy rapture move;
    For fools admire, but men of sense approve.
    As things seem large which we thro' mists descry,
    Dulness is ever apt to magnify.
    Some the French writers, some our own despise;
    The ancients only, or the moderns prize.
    (Thus wit, like faith, by each man is apply'd
    To one small sect, and all are damn'd beside,)
    [Page 68]
    Meanly they seek the blessing to confine,
    And force that sun but on a part to shine,
    Which not alone the southern wit sublimes,
    But ripens spirits in cold northern climes,
    Which from the first has shone on ages past,
    Enlights the present, and shall warm the last.
    (Tho' each may feel increases and decays,
    And see now clearer and now darker days)
    Regard not then if wit be old or new,
    But blame the false and value still the true.
    Some ne'er advance a judgment of their own,
    But catch the speading notion of the town;
    They reason and conclude by precedent,
    And own stale nonsense, which they ne'er invent.
    Some judge of authors names, not works, and then
    Nor praise, nor blame the writings, but the men.
    Of all this servile herd, the worst is he
    Who in proud dulness joins with quality,
    A constant critic at the great man's board,
    To fetch and carry nonsense for my lord.
    What woful stuff this madrigal wou'd be,
    In some starved hackney sonneteer, or me?
    But let a lord once own the happy lines,
    How the wit brightens, how the style refines!
    [Page 70]
    Before his sacred name flies ev'ry fault,
    And each exalted stanza teems with thought!
    The vulgar thus thro' imitation err,
    As oft the learn'd by being singular;
    So much they scorn the croud, that if the throng
    By chance go right, they purposely go wrong:
    So schismatics the plain believers quit,
    And are but damn'd for having too much wit.
    Some blame at morning what they praise at night;
    But always think the last opinion right.
    A muse by these is like a mistress us'd,
    This hour she's idoliz'd, the next abus'd;
    While their weak heads like towns unfortify'd,
    'Twixt sense and nonsense daily change their side.
    Ask them the cause, they're wiser still they say;
    And still to-morrow's wiser than to-day.
    We think our fathers fools, so wise we grow;
    Our wiser sons, no doubt, will think us so.
    Once school-divines this zealous isle oe'erspread;
    Who knew most sentences, was deepest read;
    [Page 72]
    Faith, gospel, all, seem'd made to be disputed,
    And none had sense enough to be confuted:
    Scotists and Thomists, now in peace remain,
    Amidst their kindred cobwebs in Duck-lane.
    If faith itself has diff'rent dresses worn,
    What wonder modes in wit shou'd take their turn?
    Oft leaving what is natural and fit,
    The current folly proves the ready wit;
    And authors think their reputation safe,
    Which lives as long as fools are pleas'd to laugh.
    Some valuing those of their own side or mind,
    Still make themselves the measure of mankind;
    Fondly we think we honour merit then,
    When we but praise ourselves in other men.
    Parties in wit attend on those of state,
    And public faction doubles private hate.
    Pride, malice, folly, against Dryden rose,
    In various shapes of parsons, critics, beaus;
    But sense surviv'd when merry jests were past;
    For rising merit will buoy up at last.
    Might he return and bless once more our eyes,
    New Blackmores and new Milbournes must arise;
    Nay, shou'd great Homer lift his awful head,
    Zoilus again wou'd start up from the dead.
    [Page 74]
    Envy will merit, as its shade pursue,
    But like a shadow proves the substance true;
    For envy'd wit, like Sol eclips'd, makes known
    Th' opposing body's grossness, not its own.
    When first the sun too pow'rful beams displays,
    It draws up vapours which obscure the rays;
    But ev'n those clouds at last adorn its way,
    Reflect new glories and augment the day.
    Be thou the first true merit to befriend,
    His praise is lost who stays till all commend.
    Short is the date, alas! of modern rhymes,
    And 'tis but just to let them live betimes.
    No longer now that golden age appears,
    When patriarch-wits surviv'd a thousand years;
    Now length of fame (our second life) is lost,
    And bare threescore, is all ev'n that can boast;
    Our sons their fathers failing language see,
    And such as Chaucer is, shall Dryden be.
    So when the faithful pencil has design'd
    Some bright idea of the master's mind,
    Where a new world leaps out at his command,
    And ready nature waits upon his hand;
    [Page 76]
    When the ripe colours soften and unite,
    And sweetly melt into just shade and light,
    When mellowing years their full perfection give,
    And each bold figure just begins to live,
    The treach'rous colours the fair art betray,
    And all the bright creation fades away.
    Unhappy wit, like most mistaken things,
    Attones not for the envy which it brings.
    In youth alone its empty praise we boast,
    But soon the short-liv'd vanity is lost!
    Like some fair flow'r the early spring supplies,
    That gaily blooms, but ev'n in blooming dies.
    What is this wit which most our cares employ?
    The owner's wife, that other men enjoy;
    Still most our trouble, when the most admir'd;
    The more we give, the more is still requir'd:
    The fame with pains we gain, but lose with ease,
    Sure some to vex, but never all to please;
    'Tis what the vicious fear; the virtuous shun,
    By fools 'tis hated, and by knaves undone!
    [Page 78]
    If wit so much from ign'rance undergo,
    Ah, let not learning too commence its foe!
    Of old, those met rewards who cou'd excel,
    And such were prais'd, who but endeavour'd well;
    Tho' triumphs were to gen'rals only due,
    Crowns were reserv'd to grace the soldier too.
    Now they who reach Parnassus lofty crown,
    Employ their pains to spurn some others down;
    And while self-love each jealous writer rules,
    Contending wits become the sport of fools.
    But still the worst with most regret commend,
    For each ill author is as bad a friend.
    To what base end, and by what abject ways,
    Are mortals urg'd thro' sacred lust of praise!
    Ah, ne'er so dire a thirst of glory boast,
    Nor in the critic let the man be lost:
    Good-nature, and good-sense must ever join;
    To err is human, to forgive divine.
    But if in noble minds some dregs remain,
    Not yet purg'd off, of spleen and sour disdain;
    Discharge that rage on more provoking crimes,
    Nor fear a dearth in these flagitious times.
    No pardon vile obscenity shou'd find,
    Tho' wit and art conspire to move your mind:
    [Page 80]
    But dulness with obscenity must prove,
    As shameful sure as impotence in love.
    In the fat age of pleasure, wealth and ease,
    Sprung the rank weed, and thriv'd with large increase;
    When love was all an easy monarch's care,
    Seldom at council, never in a war:
    Jilts rul'd the state, and statesmen farces writ;
    Nay wits had pensions, and young lords had wit:
    The fair sate panting at a courtier's play,
    And not a mask went unimprov'd away:
    The modest fan was lifted up no more,
    And virgins smil'd at what they blush'd before —
    The following licence of a foreign reign
    Did all the dregs of bold Socinus drain;
    Then unbelieving priests reform'd the nation,
    And taught more pleasant methods of salvation;
    Where heaven's free subjects might their rights dispute,
    Lest God himself should seem too absolute.
    Pulpits their sacred satire learn'd to spare,
    And vice admir'd to find a flatt'rer there!
    Encourag'd thus, wit's Titans brav'd the skies,
    And the press groan'd with licenc'd blasphemies —
    [Page 82]
    These monsters, critics, with your darts engage,
    Here point your thunder, and exhaust your rage!
    Yet shun their fault, who scandalously nice,
    Will needs mistake an author into vice;
    All seems infected that th' infected spy,
    As all looks yellow to the jaundic'd eye.
    Learn then what morals critics ought to show,
    For 'tis but half a judge's task to know.
    'Tis not enough wit, art, and learning join;
    In all you speak, let truth and candour shine:
    That not alone what to your judgment's due
    All may allow; but seek your friendship too.
    Be silent always when you doubt your sense;
    And speak, tho' sure, with seeming diffidence;
    Some positive, persisting fops we know,
    That if once wrong, will needs be always so;
    But you with pleasure own your errors past,
    And make each day, a critic on the last.
    'Tis not enough your counsel still be true,
    Blunt truths more mischief than nice falshoods do;
    Men must be taught as if you taught 'em not,
    And things unknown propos'd as things forgot.
    [Page 84]
    Without good-breeding, truth is disapprov'd;
    That only makes superior sense belov'd.
    Be niggards of advice on no pretence;
    For the worst avarice is that of sense.
    With mean complacence ne'er betray your trust,
    Nor be so civil as to prove unjust;
    Fear most the anger of the wise to raise,
    Those best can bear reproof who merit praise.
    'Twere well, might critics still this freedom take,
    But Appius reddens at each word you speak,
    And stares, tremendous with a threat'ning eye,
    Like some fierce tyrant in old tapestry!
    Fear most to tax an honourable fool,
    Whose right it is uncensur'd to be dull;
    Such without wit are poets when they please,
    As without learning they can take degrees.
    Leave dang'rous truths to unsuccessful satyrs,
    And flattery to fulsome dedicators,
    Whom, when they praise, the world believes no more,
    Than when they promise to give scribbling o'er.
    'Tis best sometimes your censure to restrain
    And charitably let the dull be vain.
    [Page 86]
    Your silence there is better than your spite,
    For who can rail so long as they can write?
    Still humming on their drowsy course they keep,
    And lash'd so long, like tops, are lash'd asleep.
    False steps but help them to renew the race,
    As after stumbling, jades will mend their pace:
    What crouds of these, impertinently bold,
    In sounds, and jing'ling syllables grown old,
    Still run on poets in a raging vein,
    Ev'n to the dregs, and squeezings of the brain:
    Strain out the last dull droppings of their sense,
    And rhyme with all the rage of impotence.
    Such shameless bards we have, and yet 'tis true,
    There are as mad abandon'd critics too.
    The book-full blockhead, ignorantly read,
    With loads of learned lumber in his head,
    With his own tongue, still edifies his ears,
    And always listning to himself appears —
    All books he reads, and all he reads assails
    From Dryden's fables, down to Durfy's tales.
    With him most authors steal their works, or buy;
    Garth did not write his own dispensary.
    Name a new play, and he's the poet's friend,
    Nay, show'd his faults — but when wou'd poets mend?
    [Page 88]
    No place so sacred from such fops is barr'd,
    Nor is Paul's-church more safe than Paul's-church-yard;
    Nay fly to altars; there he'll talk you dead;
    For fools rush in where angels fear to tread.
    Distrustful sense with modest caution speaks,
    It still looks home, and short excursions makes,
    But rattling nonsense in full vollies breaks,
    And never shock'd, and never turn'd aside,
    Bursts out, resistless, with a thund'ring tide!
    But where's the man, who counsel can bestow,
    Still pleas'd to teach, and yet not proud to know?
    Unbias'd, or by favour, or by spite;
    Not dully prepossess'd, or blindly right,
    Tho' learn'd, well-bred; and tho' well-bred, sincere,
    Modestly bold, and humanely severe?
    Who to a friend his faults can freely show,
    And gladly praise the merit of a foe?
    Blest with a taste exact and unconfin'd;
    A knowledge both of books and human kind;
    Gen'rous converse; a soul exempt from pride,
    And love to praise, with reason on his side?
    Such once were critics; such the happy few,
    Athens and Rome in better ages knew.
    The mighty Stagyrite first left the shore,
    Spread all his sails, and durst the deep explore;
    [Page 90]
    He steer'd securely, and discover'd far,
    Led by the light of the Maeonian star.
    Poets, a race long unconfin'd and free,
    Still fond and proud of savage liberty,
    Receiv'd his laws, and stood convinc'd 'twas fit,
    Who conquer'd nature, should preside o'er wit.
    Horace still charms with graceful negligence,
    And without method talks us into sense,
    Will like a friend, familiarly convey
    The truest notions in the easiest way;
    He, who supreme in judgment, as in wit,
    Might boldly censure, as he boldly writ;
    Yet judg'd with coolness, tho' he sung with fire,
    His precepts teach but what his works inspire.
    Our critics take a contrary extreme
    They judge with fury, but they write with phlegm;
    Nor suffers Horace more in wrong translations
    By wits, than critics in as wrong quotations.
    See Dionysius
    * Dionysius of Halicarnassus.
    Homer's thoughts refine,
    And call new beauties forth from ev'ry line.
    Fancy and art in gay Petronius please,
    The scholar's learning, with the courtier's ease.
    In grave Quintilian's copious work we find
    The justest rules, and clearest method join'd;
    [Page 92]
    Thus useful arms in magazines we place,
    All rang'd in order, and dispos'd with grace.
    Nor thus alone the curious eye to please,
    But to be found when need requires with ease.
    Thee, bold Longinus! all the Nine inspire,
    And bless their critic with a poet's fire;
    An ardent judge, who zealous in his trust
    With warmth gives sentence, yet is always just;
    Whose own example strengthens all his laws,
    And is himself that great sublime he draws.
    Thus long succeeding critics justly reign'd
    Licence repress'd, and useful laws ordain'd.
    Learning and Rome alike in empire grew,
    And arts still follow'd where her eagles flew;
    From the same foes, at last, both felt their doom,
    And the same age saw learning fall and Rome.
    With tyranny, then superstition join'd,
    As that the body, this enslav'd the mind;
    Much was believ'd, but little understood,
    And to be dull was constru'd to be good;
    A second deluge learning thus o'er-run,
    And the Monks finish'd what the Goths begun.
    At length Erasmus, that great injur'd name,
    (The glory of the priest-hood, and the shame)
    [Page 94]
    Stemn'd the wild torrent of a barb'rous age,
    And drove those holy Vandals off the stage.
    But see each muse in Leo's golden days,
    Starts from her trance, and trims her wither'd bays!
    Rome's ancient genius, o'er its ruins spread,
    Shakes off the dust, and rears his rev'rend head!
    Then Sculpture and her sister arts revive,
    Stones leap'd to form, and rocks began to live;
    With sweeter notes each rising temple rung;
    A Raphael painted, and a
    * Hieronymus Vida, an excellent Latin poet, who writ an art of poetry in verse. He flourish'd in the time of Leo the tenth.
    Vida sung!
    Immortal Vida! on whose honour'd brow
    The poets bays, and critics ivy grow:
    Cremona now shall ever boast thy name,
    As next in place to Mantua, next in fame!
    But soon by impious arms from Latium chac'd,
    Their ancient bounds the banish'd muses past;
    Thence arts o'er all the northern world advance;
    But critic learning flourish'd most in France:
    The rules, a nation born to serve obeys;
    And Boileau still in right of Horace sways;
    But we, brave Britons, foreign laws despis'd,
    And kept unconquer'd, and unciviliz'd,
    [Page 96]
    Fierce for the liberties of wit, and bold,
    We still desy'd the Romans, as of old.
    Yet some there were among the founder few
    Of those who less presum'd, and better knew,
    Who durst assert the juster ancient cause,
    And here restor'd wit's fundamental laws.
    Such was the muse, whose rules and practice tell,
    * Essay on poetry, by the duke of Buckingham.
    chief master-piece is writing well.
    Such was Roscommon — not more learn'd than good,
    With manners gen'rous as his noble blood;
    To him the wit of Greece and Rome was known,
    And ev'ry author's merit but his own.
    Such late was Walsh — the muse's judge and friend;
    Who justly knew to blame, or to commend;
    To failings mild, but zealous for desert;
    The clearest head, and the sincerest heart.
    This humble praise, lamented shade! receive,
    This praise at least a grateful muse may give!
    The muse, whose early voice you taught to sing,
    Prescrib'd her heights, and prun'd her tender wing;
    (Her guide now lost) no more pretends to rise,
    But in low numbers short excursions tries;
    Content, if hence th' unlearn'd their wants may view,
    The learn'd reflect on what before they knew:
    [Page 98]
    Careless of censure, nor too fond of fame,
    Still pleas'd to praise, yet not afraid to blame:
    Averse alike to flatter or offend,
    Not free from faults, nor yet too vain to mend.
    [Page 35]


    DICTU difficile est, an sit dementia major
    Egisse invitâ vatem criticumne Minervâ;
    Ille tamen certe venia tibi dignior errat
    Qui lassat, quam qui seducit in avia, sensus.
    Sunt, qui absurda canunt; sed enim stultissima stultos
    Quam longe exuperat oriticorum natio vates;
    Se solum exhibuit quondam, melioribus annis
    Natus hebes, ridendum; at nunc musa improba prolem
    Innumeram gignit, quae mox sermone soluto
    Aequiparet stolidos versus, certetque stupendo.
    Nobis judicium, veluti quae dividit horas
    Machina, construitur, motus non omnibus idem,
    Non pretium, regit usque tamen sua quemque. Poetas
    Divite perpaucos venâ donavit Apollo,
    Et criticis recte sapere est rarissima virtus;
    Arte in utraque nitent felices indole soli,
    Musaque quos placido nascentes lumine vidit.
    Ille alios melius, qui inclaruit ipse, docebit,
    Jureque quam meruit, poterit tribuisse coronam.
    [Page 37]
    Scriptores (fateor) fidunt propriae nimis arti,
    Nonne autem criticos pravus favor urget ibidem?
    At vero propius si stemus, cuique fatendum est,
    Judicium quoddam natura inseverit olim:
    Illa diem certe dubiam diffundere callet
    Et, strictim descripta licet, sibi linea constat.
    Sed minimum ut specimen, quod pictor doctus adumbrat,
    Deterius tibi fiat eo mage, quo mage vilem
    Inducas isti fucum, sic mentis honestae
    Doctrina effigiem maculabit prava decoram.
    His inter caecas mens illaqueata scholarum
    Ambages errat, stolidisque supervenit illis
    (Diis aliter visum est) petulantia. Perdere sensum
    Communem hi sudant, dum frustra ascendere Pindum
    Conantur, mox, ut se defensoribus ipsis
    Utantur, critici quoque fiunt: omnibus idem
    Ardor scribendi, studio hi rivalis aguntur,
    Illis invalida Eunuchi violentia gliscit.
    Ridendi proprium est fatuis cacoethes, amantque
    Turbae perpetuo sese immiscere jocosae.
    Maevius invito dum sudat Apolline, multi
    Pingue opus exuperant (si diis placet) emendando.
    Sunt qui belli homines primo, tum deinde poetae,
    Mox critici evasêre, meri tum denique stulti.
    Est, qui nec criticum nec vatem reddit, inersque
    Ut mulus, medium quoddam est asinum inter equmuque.
    [Page 39]
    Bellula semihominum vix poene elementa scientum
    Primula gens horum est, premitur quibus Anglia, quantum
    Imperfecta scatent ripis animalcula Nili,
    Futile, abortivum genus, & prope nominis expers,
    Usque adeo aequivoca est, e quâ generantur, origo.
    Hos centum nequeunt linguae numerare, nec una
    Unius ex ipsis, quae centum sola fatiget.
    At tu qui famam simul exigis atque redonas
    Pro meritis, criticique affectas nobile nomen.
    Metitor te ipsum, prudensque expendito quae sit
    Judicii, ingenii tibi, doctrinaeque facultas;
    Si qua profunda nimis cauto vitentor, & ista
    Linea, quâ coeunt stupor ingeniumque, notator.
    Qui finem imposuit rebus Deus omnibus aptum,
    Humani vanum ingenii restrinxit acumen.
    Qualis ubi oceani vis nostra irrumpit in arva
    Tunc desolatas alibi denudat arenas;
    Sic animae reminiscendi dum copia restat,
    Consilii gravioris abest plerumque potestas;
    Ast ubi Phantasiae fulgent radiantia tela,
    Mnemosyne teneris cum formis victa liquescit.
    Ingenio tantum Musa uni sufficit una,
    Tanta ars est, tantilla scientia nostra videtur:
    Non solum ad certas artes astricta sequendas,
    Saepe has non nisi quâdam in simplice parte sequatur.
    Deperdas partos utcunque labore triumphos,
    Dum plures, regum instar, aves acquirere laurus;
    [Page 41]
    Sed sua tractatu facilis provincia cuique est,
    Si non, quae pulchre sciat, ut vulgaria, temnat.
    Naturam sequere imprimis, atque illius aequâ
    Judicium ex normâ fingas, quae nescia flecti:
    Illa etenim, sine labe micans, ab origine divâ,
    Clarâ, constanti, lustrantique omnia luce,
    Vitamque, specimque, & vires omnibus addat,
    Et fons, & finis simul, atque criterion artis.
    Quaerit opes ex hoc thesauro ars, & sine pompâ
    Praesidet, & nullas turbas facit inter agendum.
    Talis vivida vis formoso in corpore mentis,
    Laetitiam toti inspirans & robora massae,
    Ordinat & motus, & nervos sustinet omnes,
    Inter opus varium tamen ipsa abscondita fallit.
    Saepe is, cui magnum ingenium Deus addidit, idem
    Indigus est majoris, ut hoc benè calleat uti;
    Ingenium nam judicio velut uxor habendum est
    Atque viro, cui fas ut pareat, usque repugnat.
    Musae quadrupedem labor est inhibere capistro,
    Praecipites regere, at non irritare volatus.
    Pegasos, instar equi generosi, grandior ardet
    Cum sentit retinacula, nobiliorque tuetur.
    Regula quaeque vetus tantum observata peritis
    Non inventa fuit criticis, debetque profectò
    Naturae ascribi, sed enim quam lima polivit;
    [Page 43]
    Nullas naturae divina monarchia leges,
    Exceptis solum quas sanxerit ipsa, veretur.
    Qualibus, audistin' resonat celeberrima normis
    Graecia, seu doctum premit, indulgetve furorem?
    Illa suos sistit Parnassi in vertice natos,
    Et, quibus ascendêre docet, salebrosa viarum,
    Sublimique manu dona immortalia monstrat,
    Atque aequis reliquos procedere passibus urget.
    Sic magnis doctrinâ ex exemplaribus haustâ,
    Sumit ab hisce, quod haec duxerunt ab Jove summo.
    Ingenuus judex musarum ventilat ignes,
    Et fretus ratione docet praecepta placendi.
    Ars critica officiosa Camoenae servit, & ornat
    Egregias veneres, pluresque irretit amantes.
    Nunc vero docti longè diversa sequentes,
    Contempti dominae, vilem petiêre ministram;
    Propriaque in miseros verterunt tela poetas,
    Discipulique suos pro more odêre magistros.
    Haud aliter sanè nostrates pharmacopolae
    Ex medicûm crevit quibus ars plagiaria chartis,
    Audaces errorum adhibent sine mente medelas,
    Et verae Hippocratis jactant convicia proli.
    Hi veterum authorum scriptis vescuntur, & ipsos
    Vermiculos, & tempus edax vicêre vorando.
    [Page 45]
    Stultitiâ simplex ille, & sine divite venà,
    Carmina quo fiant pacto miserabilè narrat.
    Doctrinam ostentans, mentem alter perdidit omnem,
    Atque alter nodis vafer implicat enodando.
    Tu quicunque cupis judex procedere rectè,
    Fac veteris cujusque stylus discatur ad unguem;
    Fabula, materies, quo tendat pagina quaevis;
    Patria, religio quae sint, queis moribus aevum:
    Si non intuitu cuncta haec complecteris uno,
    Scurra, cavilator — criticus mihi non eris unquam.
    Ilias esto tibi studium, tibi sola voluptas,
    Perque diem lege, per noctes meditare serenas;
    Hinc tibi judicium, hinc ortum sententia ducat,
    Musarumque undas sontem bibe laetus ad ipsum.
    Ipse suorum operum sit commentator, & author,
    Maeonidisve legas interprete scripta Marone.
    Cum caneret primum parvus Maro bella virosque,
    Nec monitor Phoebus tremulas jam velleret aures,
    Legibus immunem criticis se fortè putabat,
    Nil nisi naturam archetypam dignatus adire:
    Sed simul ac cautè mentem per singula volvit,
    Naturam invenit, quacunque invenit Homerum.
    Victus, & attonitus, malesani desinit ausi,
    Jamque laboratum in numerum vigil omnia cogit,
    Cultaque Aristotelis metitur carmina normâ.
    [Page 47]
    Hinc veterum discas praecepta vererier, illos
    Sectator, sic naturam sectaberis ipsam.
    At vero virtus restat jam plurima, nullo
    Describenda modo, nullâque parabilis arte,
    Nam felix tam fortuna est, quam cura canendi.
    Musicam in hoc reddit divina poesis, utramque
    Multae ornant veneres, quas verbis pingere non est,
    Quasque attingere nil nisi summa peritia possit.
    Regula quandocunque minus diffusa videtur
    (Quum tantum ad propriam collinet singula metam)
    Si modo consiliis inserviat ulla juvandis
    Apta licentia, lex enim ista licentia fiat.
    Atque ita quo cituis procedat, calle relicto
    Communi musae sonipes benè devius erret.
    Accidit interdum, ut scriptores ingenium ingens
    Evehat ad culpam egregiam, maculasque micantes
    Quas nemo criticorum audet detergere figat;
    Accidit ut linquat vulgaria claustra furore
    Magnanimo, rapiatque solutum lege dccorem,
    Qui, quum judicium non intercedat, ad ipsum
    Cor properat, finesque illic simul obtinet omnes.
    Haud aliter si forte jugo speculamur aprico,
    Luminibus res arrident, quas Daedala tellus
    Parcior ostentare solet, velut ardua montis
    Asperitas, scopulive exesi pendulus horror.
    Cura tamen semper magna est adhibenda poesi,
    Atque hic cum ratione insaniat author, oportet:
    [Page 49]
    Et, quamvis veteres pro tempore jura refigunt,
    Et leges violare suas regalitèr audent,
    Tu caveas, moneo, quisquis nunc scribis, & ipsam
    Si legem frangas, memor ejus respice finem.
    Hoc semper tamen evites, nisi te gravis urget
    Nodus, praemonstrantque authorum exempla priorum.
    Ni facias, criticus totam implacabilis iram
    Exercet, turpique notâ tibi nomen inurit.
    Sed non me latuêre, quibus sua liberiores
    Has veterum veneres vitio dementia vertit.
    Et quaedam tibi signa quidem monstrosa videntur,
    Si per se vel perpendas, propiorave lustres,
    Quae rectâ cum constituas in luce locoque,
    Formam conciliat distantia justa venustam.
    Non aciem semper belli dux callidus artis
    Instruit aequali serie ordinibusque decoris,
    Sed se temporibusque locoque accomodat, agmen
    Celando jam, jamque fugae simulachra ciendo.
    Mentitur speciem erroris saepe astus, & ipse
    Somniat emunctus judex, non dormit Homerus.
    Aspice, laurus adhuc antiquis vernat in aris,
    Quas rabidae violare manus non amplius audent;
    Flammarum a rabie tutas, Stygiaeque veneno
    Invidiae, Martisque minis & morsibus aevi.
    Docta caterva, viden! fert ut fragrantia thura;
    Audin ut omnigenis resonant praeconia linguis!
    [Page 51]
    Laudes usque adeo meritas vox quaeque rependat,
    Humanique simul generis chorus omnis adesto.
    Salvete, O vates! nati melioribus annis,
    Munus & immortale aeternae laudis adepti!
    Queis juvenescit honos longo maturior aevo,
    Ditior ut diffundit aquas, dum defluit amnis!
    Vos populi mundique canent, sacra nomina, quos jam
    Inventrix (sic diis visum est) non contigit aetas!
    Pars aliqua, o utinam! sacro scintillet ab igne
    Illi, qui vestra est extrema & humillima proles!
    (Qui longe sequitur vos debilioribus alis
    Lector magnanimus, sed enim, sed scriptor inaudax)
    Sic critici vani, me praecipiente, priores
    Mirari, arbitrioque suo diffidere discant.
    Omnibus ex causis, quae animum corrumpere junctis
    Viribus, humanumque solent obtundere acumen,
    Pingue caput solita est momento impellere summo
    Stultitiae semper cognata superbia; quantum
    Mentis nascenti fata invidere, profuso
    Tantum subsidio fastûs superaddere gaudent;
    Nam veluti in membris, sic saepe animabus, inanes
    Exundant vice
    Animalium scilicet.
    spirituum, vice sanguinis aurae
    Suppetias inopi venit alma superbia menti,
    Atque per immensum capitis se extendit inane!
    Quod si recta valet ratio hanc dispergere nubem
    Naturae verique dies sincera refulget.
    [Page 53]
    Cuicunque est animus penitus cognoscere culpas,
    Nec sibi, nec sociis credat, verum omnibus aurem
    Commodet, apponatque inimica opprobria lucro.
    Ne musae invigiles mediocritèr, aut fuge fontem
    Castalium omnino, aut haustu te prolue pleno:
    Istius laticis tibi mens abstemia torpet
    Ebria, sobrietasque redit revocata bibendo.
    Intuitu musae primo, novitateque capta
    Aspirat doctrinae ad culmina summa juventus
    Intrepida, & quoniam tunc mens est arcta, suoque
    Omnia metitur modulo, malè lippa labores
    Ponè secuturos oculis non aspicit aequis:
    Mox autem attonitae jam jamque scientia menti
    Crebrescit variata modis sine limite miris!
    Sic ubi desertis conscendere vallibus Alpes
    Aggredimur, nubesque humiles calcare videmur,
    Protinus aeternas superâsse nives, & in ipso
    Invenisse viae laetamur limine finem:
    His vero exactis tacito terrore stupemus
    Durum crescentem magis & magis usque laborem,
    Jam longus tandem prospectus laesa fatigat
    Lumina, dum colles assurgunt undique faeti
    Collibus, impositaeque emergunt Alpibus Alpes.
    Ingeniosa leget judex perfectus eâdem
    Quâ vates scripsit studiosus opuscula curâ,
    [Page 55]
    Totum perpendet, censorque est parcus, ubi ardor
    Exagitat naturae animos & concitat oestrum;
    Nec tam servili generosa libidine mutet
    Gaudia, quae bibulae menti catus ingerit author.
    Verum stagnantis mediocria carmina musae,
    Quae reptant sub limâ & certâ lege stupescunt,
    Quae torpent uno erroris secura tenore,
    Haec equidem nequeo culpare — & dormio tantum.
    Ingenii, veluti naturae, non tibi constant
    Illecebrae formâ, quae certis partibus insit;
    Nam te non reddit labiumve oculusve venustum,
    Sed charitum cumulus, collectaque tela decoris.
    Sic ubi lustramus perfectam insignitèr aedem,
    (Quae Roman splendore, ipsumqne ita perculit orbem)
    Laeta diu non ullâ in simplice parte morantur
    Lumina, sed sese per totum errantia pascunt;
    Nil longum latumve nimis, nil altius aequo
    Cernitur, illustris nitor omnibus, omnibus ordo.
    Quod consummatum est opus omni ex parte, nec usquam
    Nunc exstat, nec erat, nec erit labentibus annis.
    Quas sibi proponat metas adverte, poeta
    Ultra aliquid sperare, illas si absolvat, iniquum est;
    Si recta ratione utatur, consilioque
    Perfecto, missis maculis, vos plaudite clamo.
    Accidit, ut vates, veluti vafer Aulicus, erret
    Soepius errorem, ut vitet graviora, minorem.
    [Page 57]
    Neglige, quas criticus, verborum futilis auceps,
    Leges edicit: nugas nescire decorum est.
    Artis cujusdam tantum auxiliaris amantes
    Partem aliquam plerique colunt vice totius; illi
    Multa crepant de judicio, nihilominus istam
    Stultitiam, sua quam sententia laudat, adorant.
    QUIXOTUS quondam, si vera est fabula, cuidam
    Occurrens vati, criticum certamen inivit
    Docta citans, graviterque tuens, tanquam arbiter alter
    DENNISIUS, Graii moderatus fraena theatri;
    Acriter id dein asseruit, stultum esse hebetemque,
    Quisquis Aristotelis posset contemnere leges.
    Quid? — talem comitem nactus felicitèr author,
    Mox tragicum, quod composuit, proferre poema
    Incipit, et critici scitari oracula tanti.
    Jam〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉que &
    Caetera de genere hoc equiti describat hianti,
    Quae cuncta ad norman quadrarent, inter agendum
    Si tantum prudens certamen omitteret author.
    "Quid vero certamen omittes? excipit heros;
    Sic veneranda Sophi suadent documenta. " Quid ergo,
    Armigerumque equitum que cohors scenam intret, oportet, "
    Forsan, at ipsa capax non tantae scena catervae est:
    " OEdificave aliam — vel apertis utere campis. "
    Sic ubi supposito morosa superbia regnat
    Judicio, criticaeque tenent fastidia curae
    [Page 59]
    Vana locum, curto modulo aestimat omnia censor,
    Atque modo perversus in artibus errat eodem,
    Moribus ac multi, dum parte laborat in unâ.
    Sunt, qui nil sapiant, salibus nisi quaeque redundet
    Pagina, perpetuoque nitet distincta lepore,
    Nil aptum soliti justumve requirere, latè
    Si micet ingenii chaos, indiscretaque moles.
    Nudas naturae veneres, vivumque decorem
    Fingere, qui nequeunt, quorundam exempla secuti
    Pictorum, haud gemmis parcunt, haud sumptibus auri,
    Ut sese abscondat rutilis inscitia velis.
    Vis veri ingenii, natura est cultior, id quod
    Senserunt multi, sed jam scite exprimit unus,
    Quod primo pulchrum intuitu, rectumque videtur
    Et mentis menti simulachra repercutit ipsi.
    Haud secus ac lucem commendant suavitur umbrae,
    Ingenio sic simplicitas superaddit honorem:
    Nam fieri possit musa ingeniosior aequo,
    Et pereant tumidae nimio tibi sanguine venae.
    Nonnulli vero verborum in cortice ludunt,
    Ornatusque libri solos muliebriter ardent.
    Egregium ecce! stylum clamant! sed semper ocellis
    Praetereunt malé, si quid inest rationis, inunctis.
    [Page 61]
    Verba, velut frondes, nimio cum tegmine opacant
    Ramos, torpescunt mentis sine germine. Prava
    Rhetorice, vitri latè radiantis ad instar
    Prismatici, rutilos diffundit ubique colores;
    Non tibi naturae licet amplius ora tueri,
    At malè discretis scintillant omnia flammis:
    Sed contra veluti jubar immutabile solis,
    Quicquid contrectat facundia, lustrat et auget,
    Nil variat, sed cuncta oculo splendoris inaurat.
    Elòquium mentis nostrae quasi vestis habenda est,
    Quae si sit satis apta, decentior inde videtur
    Scommata magnificis ornata procacia verbis
    Indutos referunt regalia syrmata faunos;
    Diversis etenim diversa vocabula rebus
    Appi gi fas est, aulae velut aulica vestis,
    Alteraque agricolis, atque altera congruit urbi.
    Quidam scriptores, antiquis vocibus usi,
    Gloriolam affectant, veterum aemula turba sonorum,
    Si mentem spectes juvenentur more recentûm.
    Tantula nugamenta styloque operosa vetusto,
    Docti derident soli placitura popello.
    Hi nihilo magè felices quam comicus iste
    FUNGOSO, ostentant absurdo pepla tumore,
    Qualia nescio quis gestavit nobilis olim;
    [Page 63]
    Atque modo veteres doctos imitantur eodem,
    Ac hominem veteri in tunicâ dum simia ludit.
    Verba, velut mores, a justis legibus errant,
    Si nimium antiquae suerint, nimiumve novatae;
    Tu cave ne tentes insueta vocabula primus,
    Nec vetera abjicias postremus nomina rerum.
    Laevis an asper eat versus plerique requirunt
    Censores, solosque sonos damnantve probantve;
    Mille licet veneres formosam Pierin ornent,
    Stultitiâ vox argutâ celabrabitur una:
    Qui juga Parnassi non ut mala corda repurgent,
    Auribus ut placeant, visunt: sic saepe profanos
    Impulit ad resonum pietas aurita sacellum.
    His solum criticis semper par syllaba cordi est,
    Vastâ etsi usque omnis pateat vocalis hiatu;
    Expletivaque saepe suas quoque suppetias dent,
    Ac versum unum oneret levium heu! decas en! pigra vocum;
    Dum non mutato resonant malé cymbala planctu,
    Atque augur miser usque scio, quid deinde sequatur.
    Quacunque aspirat clementior aura Favonî,
    Mox (nullus dubito) graciles vibrantur aristae
    [Page 65]
    Rivulus ut molli serpit per laevia lapsu,
    Lector, non temerè expectes, post murmura, somnos.
    Tum demum qua latè extremum ad distichon, ipsa
    Magnificum sine mente nihil, SENTENTIA splendet,
    Segnis Hypermeter, audin? adest, et claudicat, instar
    Anguis saucia terga trahentis, prorepentisque.
    Hiproprias stupeant nugas, tu discere tentes,
    Quae tereti properant venâ, vel amabilè languent.
    Istaque fac laudes, ubi vivida Denhamii vis
    Walleriae condita fluit dulcedine musae.
    Scribendi numerosa facultas provenit arte,
    Ut soli incessu faciles fluitare videntur,
    Plectro morigeros qui callent fingere gressus.
    Non solum asperitas teneras cave verberet aures,
    Sed vox quaeque expressa tuae sit mentis imago.
    Lenè edat Zephyrus suspiria blanda, politis
    Laevius in numeris labatur laeve fluentum;
    At reboat, furit, aestuat aemula musa, sonoris
    Littoribus cum rauca horrendum impingitur unda.
    Quando est saxum Ajax vastâ vi volvere adortus,
    Tardè incedat versus, multum perque laborem.
    Non ita sive Camilla cito salis aequora rasit,
    Sive levis levitèrque terit, neque flectit aristas.
    Audin! Timothei coelestia carmina, menti
    Dulcibus alloquiis varics suadentia motus!
    [Page 67]
    Audin! ut alternis Lybici Jovis inclyta proles
    Nunc ardet famam, solos nunc spirat amores,
    Lumina nunc vivis radiantia volvere flammis,
    Mox furtim suspiria, mox effundere fletum!
    Dum Persae, Graecique pares sentire tumultus
    Discunt, victricemque lyram rex orbis adorat.
    Musica quid poterit corda ipsa fatentur, et audit
    Timotheus nostras merita cum laude Drydenus.
    Tu servare modum studeas benè cautus, et istos
    Queis aut nil placuisse potest, aut omnia, vites.
    Exiguas naso maculas suspendere noli,
    Namque patent nullo stupor atque superbia mentis
    Clariùs indicio; neque mens est optima certè,
    Non secus ac stomachus, quaecunque recusat et odit
    Omnia, difficilisque nihil tibi concoquit unquam.
    Non tamen idcirco vegeti vis ulla leporis
    Te tibi surripiat; mirari mentis ineptae est,
    Prudentis vero tantum optima quaeque probare.
    Majores res apparent per nubila visae,
    Atque ita luminibus stupor ampliat omnia densis.
    His Galli minus arrident, illisque poetae
    Nostrates, hodierni aliis, aliisque vetusti.
    * Christianae scilicet.
    fidei simile, ingenium sectae arrogat uni
    Quisque suae; solis patet illis janua coeli
    [Page 69]
    Scilicet, inque malam rem caetera turba jubentur.
    Frustra autem immensis cupiunt imponere metam
    Muneribus Divûm, atque illius tela coarctant
    Solis, hyperboreas etiam qui temperat auras,
    Non solum australes genios foecundat et auget.
    Qui primis laté sua lumina sparsit ab annis,
    Illustrat praesens, summumque accenderit oevum.
    (Cuique vices variae tamen; et jam saecula soeclis
    Succedunt pejora, et jam meliora peractis)
    Pro meritis musam laudare memento, nec unquam
    Neglige quod novitas distinguit, quodve vetustas.
    Sunt qui nil proprium in medium proferre suërunt,
    Judiciumque suum credunt popularibus auris;
    Tum vulgi quò exempla trahunt retrahuntque sequuntur,
    Tolluntque expositas latè per compita nugas.
    Turba alia authorum titulos et nomina discit
    Scriptoresque ipsos, non scripta examinat. Horum
    Pessimus iste cluet, si quem servilitèr ipsos
    Visere magnates stupor ambitiosus adegit.
    Qui critice ad mensam domino ancillatur inepto,
    Futilis ardelio, semper referensque ferensque
    Nuntia nugarum. Quam pinguia, quam male nata
    Carmina censentur, quaecunque ego fortè vel ullus
    Pangere Apollineae tentat faber improbus artis!
    At siq is vero, siquis vir magnus adoptet
    Felicem musam, quantus nitor ecce! venusque
    [Page 71]
    Ingenio accedunt! quam prodigialitèr acer
    Fit stubito stylus! omnigenam venerabile nomen
    Praetexit sacris culpam radiis, & ubique
    Carmina culta nitent, & pagina parturit omnis.
    Stultula plebs doctos studiosa imitarier errat,
    Ut docti nullos imitando saepius ipsi;
    Qui, si sorte unquam plebs rectum viderit, (illis
    Tanto turba odio est) consultò lumina claudunt.
    Talis schismaticus Christi, grege soepe relicto,
    Coelos ingenii pro laude paciscitur ipsos.
    Non desunt quibus incertum mutatur in horas
    Judicium, sed semper eos sententia ducit
    Ultima palantes. Illis miseranda camaena
    More meretricis tractatur, nunc Dea certè,
    Nunc audit vilis lupa: dum praepingue cerebrum,
    Debilis & male munitae stationis ad instar,
    Jam recti, jam stultitiae pro partibus astat.
    Si causam rogites, aliquis tibi dicat eundo
    Quisque dies tenerae praebet nova pabula menti,
    Et sapimus magis atque magis. Nos docta propago
    Scilicet et sapiens proavos contemnimus omnes,
    Heu! pariter nostris temnenda nepotibus olim.
    Quondam per nostros dum turba scholastica fines
    Regnavit, si cui quam plurima clausula semper
    In promptu, ille inter doctissimus audiit omnes;
    [Page 73]
    Religiosa fides simul ac sacra omnia nasci
    Sunt visa in litem; sapuit sat nemo refelli
    Ut se sit passus. Jam gens insulsa Scotistae,
    Intactique abaci Thomistae pace fruentes
    Inter araneolos pandunt sua retia fratres.
    Ipsa fides igitur cum sit variata, quid ergo,
    Quid mirum ingenium quoque si varia induat ora?
    Naturae verique relictis finibus amens
    Saepius insanire parat popularitèr author,
    Expectatque sibi vitalem hoc nomine famam,
    Suppetit usque suus plebi quia risus ineptae.
    Hic solitus propriâ metirier omnia normâ,
    Solos, qui secum sunt mente et partibus iisdem
    Approbat, at vanos virtuti reddit honores,
    Cui tantum sibi sic larvata superbia plaudit.
    Partium in ingenio studium quoque regnat, ut aulâ,
    Seditioque auget privatas publica rixas.
    DRYDENO obstabant odium atque superbia nuper
    Et stupor omnigenae latitans sub imagine formae,
    Nunc criticus, nunc bellus homo, mox deinde sacerdos;
    Attamen ingenium, joca cum siluêre, superstes
    Vivit adhuc, namque olim utcunque sepulta profundis
    Pulchrior emerget tenebris tamen inclyta virtus.
    Mllbourni, rursus si fas foret ora tueri,
    Blackmorique novi reducem insequerenter; HOMERUS
    Ipse etiam erigeret vultus si sorte verendos
    ZOILUS ex orco gressus revocaret. Ubique
    [Page 75]
    Virtuti malus, umbra velut nigra, livor adhaeret,
    Sed verum ex vanâ corpus cognoscitur umbrâ.
    Ingenium, solis jam deficientis ad instar
    Invisum, oppositi tenebras tantum arguit orbis,
    Dum claro intemerata manent sua lumina divo.
    Sol prodit cum primum, atque intolerabilè fulget
    Attrahit obscuros flammâ magnete vapores;
    Mox vero pingunt etiam invida nubila callem
    Multa coloratum, & crescentia nubila spargunt
    Uberiùs, geminoque die viridaria donant.
    Tu primus meritis plaudas, nihil ipse meretur,
    Qui serus laudator adest. Brevis, heu! brevis aevi
    Participes nostri vates celebrantur, et aequum est
    Angustam quam primum assuescant degere vitam.
    Aurea nimirum jamjudum evanuit aetas,
    Cum vates patriarchae extabant mille per annos:
    Jam spes deperiit, nobis vita altera, famae,
    Nostraque marcescit sexagenaria laurus!
    Aspicimus nati patriae dispendia linguae,
    Et vestis CHAUCERI olim gestanda DRYDENO est.
    Sic ubi parturuit mens dives imagine multâ
    Pictori, calamoque interprete coepit acuti
    Concilium cerebri narrare coloribus aptis,
    Protinus ad nutum novus emicat orbis, et ipsa
    Evolvit manui sese natura disertae;
    [Page 77]
    Dulcia cum molles coeunt in faedera fuci
    Tandem maturi, liquidamque decentèr obumbrant
    Admistis lucem tenebris, et euntibus annis,
    Quando opus ad summum perductum est culmen, & audent
    E vivâ formae extantes spirare tabellâ:
    Perfidus heu! pulchram color aevo prodidit artem,
    Egregiusque decor jam nunc fuit omnis, et urbes,
    Et fluvii, pictique homines, terraeque fuerunt!
    Heu! dos ingenii, veluti quodcunque furore
    Caeco prosequimur, nihil unquam muneris adfert,
    Quod redimat comitem invidiam! juvenilibus annis
    Nil nisi inane sophos jactamus, et ista voluptas
    Vana, brevis, momento evanuit alitis horae!
    Flos veluti veris peperit quem prima juventus,
    Ille viret, periitque virens sine falce caducus.
    Quid verò ingenium est quaeso? Quid ut illius ergo
    Tantum insudemus? nonne est tibi perfida conjux
    Quam dominus vestis, vicinia tota potita est;
    Quo placuisse magis nobis fors obtigit, inde
    Nata magis cura est. Quid enim? crescentibus almae
    Musae muneribus populi spes crescit avari.
    Laus ipsa acquiri est operosa, et lubrica labi;
    Quin quosdam irritare necesse est; omnibus autem
    Nequaquam fecisse satis datur; ingeniumque
    Expallet vitium, devitat conscia virtus,
    Stulti omnes oderê, scelesti perdere gaudent.
    [Page 79]
    Quando adeo infestam sese ignorantia praestet,
    Absit, ut ingenium bello doctrina lacessat!
    Praemia proposuit meritis olim aequa vetustas,
    Et sua laus etiam conatos magna secuta est;
    Quanquam etenim fortis dux solus ovabat, at ipsis
    Militibus crines pulchrae impediere corollae.
    At nunc qui bifidi superarunt improba montis
    Culmina, certatim socios detrudere tentant;
    Scriptorem, quid enim! dum quemque philautia ducit
    Zelotypum, instaurant certamina mutua vates,
    Et sese alterni stultis ludibria praebent.
    Fert aegrè alterius, qui pessimus audit honores,
    Improbus improbuli vice fungitur author amici;
    En saedis quam faeda viis mortalia corda
    Cogit persequier famae malesuada libido!
    Ah! ne gloriolae usque adeo sitis impia regnet,
    Nec critici affectans, hominis simul exue nomen;
    Sed candor cum judicio conjuret amicè,
    Peccare est hominum, peccanti ignoscere, divûm.
    At vero si cui ingenuo praecordia bilis
    Non despumatae satis acri saece laborant,
    In scelera accensas pejora exerceat iras,
    Nil dubitet, segetem praebent haec tempora largam.
    Obscaeno detur nulla indulgentia vati,
    Ars licet ingenio supeaddita cerea flecti
    [Page 81]
    Pectora pelliciat. Verum, hercule, juncta stupori
    Scripta impura pari vano molimine prorsus
    Invalidam aequiparant eunuchi turpis amorem.
    Tunc ubi regnavit dives cum pace voluptas
    In nostris flos iste malus caput extulit oris.
    Tunc ubi rex facilis viguit, qui semper amore,
    Consiliis rarò, nunquam se exercuit armis:
    Scripserunt mimos proceres, meretricibus aulae
    Successit regimen; nec non magnatibus ipsis
    Affuit ingenium, stipendiaque ingeniosis.
    Patriciae in scenis spectavit opuscula musae
    Multa nurus, lasciva tuens, atque auribus hausit
    Omnia larvato secura modestia vultu.
    Machina, virginibus quae ventilat ora, pudicum
    Dedidicit clausa officium, ad ludicra cachinnus
    Increpuit, rubor ingenuus nihil amplius arsit.
    Deinde ex externo traducta licentia regno
    Audacis faeces Socini absorbuit imas,
    Sacrilegique sacerdotes tum quemque docebant
    Conati efficere, ut gratis paradison adiret;
    Ut populus patriâ cum libertate sacratis
    Assererent sua jura locis, ne scilicet unquam
    (Crediderim) Omnipotens foret ipse potentior aequo.
    Templa sacram satiram jam tum violata silebant:
    Et laudes vitii, vitio mirante, sonabant!
    Accensi hinc musae Titanes ad astra ruerunt,
    Legeque sancitum quassit blasphemia praelum. —
    [Page 83]
    Haec monstra, O critici, contra haec convertite telum,
    Huc fulmen, tonitruque styli torquete severi,
    Et penitus totum obnixi exonerate furorem!
    At tales fugias, qui, non sine fraude severi,
    Scripta malam in partem, livore interprete, vertunt;
    Pravis omnia prava videntur, ut omnia passim
    Ictericus propriâ ferrugine tingit ocellus.
    Jam mores critici proprios, adverte, docebo;
    Dimidiata etenim est tibi sola scientia virtus.
    Non satis est ars, ingenium, doctrinaque vires,
    Quaeque suas jungant, si non quoque candor honestis,
    Et veri sincerus amor sermonibus insint.
    Sic tibi non solum quisque amplos solvet honores,
    Sed te, qui criticum probat, exoptabit amicum,
    Mutus, quando animus dubius tibi fluctuat, esto;
    Sin tibi confidis, dictis confide pudentèr.
    Quidam hebetes semper perstant erroribus; at tu
    Praeteritas laetus culpas fateare, dies-que
    Quisque diesredimat, criticoque examine tentet.
    Hoc tibi non satis est, verum, quod praecipis, esse,
    Veridici mala rusticitas magè saepe molesta est
    Auribus, ingenuam quam verba ferentia fraudem;
    Non ut praeceptor, cave des praecepta, reique
    Ignaros, tanquam immemores, catus instrue: verax
    [Page 85]
    Ipse placet, sinon careat candore, nec ullos
    Judicium, urbanis quod fulget moribus, urit.
    Tu nulli invidias monitus, rationis avarus
    Si sis, prae reliquis sordes miserandus avaris.
    Ne vili obsequio criticorum jura refigas,
    Nec fer judicium nimis officiosus iniquum;
    Prudentem haud irritabis (ne finge) monendo,
    Qui laude est dignus patiens culpabitur idem.
    Consultum meliùs criticis foret, illa maneret
    Si nunc culpandi libertas. Appius autem,
    Ecce! rubet, quoties loqueris, torvoque tremendus
    Intuitu, reddit saevi trucia ora gigantis
    Jam picta in veteri magè formidanda tapete.
    Fac mittas tumidum tituloque et stemmate stultum,
    Cui quaedam est data jure licentia saepe stupendi;
    Tales ad libitum vates absque indole, eâdem,
    Quâ sine doctrinâ doctores lege creantur.
    Contemptis prudens satiris res linque tacendas,
    Assentatorumque infamen exerceat artem,
    Nominibus libros magnis gens gnara dicandi,
    Quae cum mendaci laudes effutiat ore,
    Non magè credenda est, quam quando pejerat olim
    Non iterum pingues unquam conscribere versus.
    Non raro est satius bilem cohibere suëscas,
    Humanusque sinas hebetem sibi plaudere: prudens
    [Page 87]
    Hic taceas monco, nihil indignatio prodest,
    Fessus eris culpando, ea gens haud sessa canendo:
    Nam temnens stimulos, tardum cum murmure cursum
    Continuat, donec jam tandem, turbinis instar
    Vapulet in torporem, & semper eundo quescat.
    Talibus ex lapsu vis est reparata frequenti,
    Ut tardi titubata urgent vestigia manni.
    Horum pleraque pars, cui nulla amentia desit,
    Tinnitu numerorum et amore senescit inani,
    Perstat difficili carmen deducere venâ,
    Donec inexhausto restat faex ulla cerebro,
    Relliquias stillat vix expressae malè mentis,
    Et miseram invalidâ exercet prurigine musam.
    Sunt nobis vates hoc de grege, sed tamen idem
    Affirmo, criticorum ejusdem sortis abunde est.
    Helluo librorum, qui sudat, hebetque legendo,
    Cui mens nugarum doctâ farragine turget
    Attentas propriae voci malè recreat aures,
    Auditorque sibi solus miser ipse videtur.
    Ille omnes legit authores, omnesque lacessit
    Durseio infestus pariter magnoque Drydeno.
    Judice sub tali semper furatur, emitve
    Quisque suum bonus author opus: (non Garthius illi
    Si credas) proprium contexuit ipse poema.
    In scenis nova si comoedia agatur, "amicus
    " Hujus scriptor (ait) meus est, cui non ego paucas
    "Ostendi maculas; sed mens est nulla poetis."
    [Page 89]
    Non locus est tam sanctus, ut hunc expellere possit,
    Nec templum in tuto est, plusquam via; quin pete sacras
    Aufugiens aras, & ad aras iste sequetur
    Occidetque loquendo; etenim stultus ruet ultro
    Nil metuens, ubi ferre pedem vix angelus audet.
    Diffidit sibimet sapientia cauta, brevesque
    Excursus tentans in se sua lumina vertit;
    Stultitia at praeceps violento vortice currit
    Nonunquam tremefacta, nec unquam e tramite cedens,
    Flumine fulmineo se totam invicta profundit.
    Tu vero quisnam es monita instillare peritus,
    Qui, quod scis, laetus monstras, neque scire superbis,
    Non odio ductus pravove favore, nec ulli
    Addictus sectae, ut pecces, neque coecus, ut erres;
    Doctus, at urbanus, sincerus, at aulicus idem,
    Audactèrque pudens mediâque humanus in irâ.
    Qui nunquam dubites vel amico ostendere culpas,
    Et celebres inimicum haud parcâ laude merentem.
    Purgato ingenio felix, sed & infinito,
    Et quod librorumque hominumque scientia ditat;
    Colloquium cui come, animus summissus & ingens,
    Laudandique omnes, ratio cum praecipit, ardor!
    Tales extiterunt critici, quos Graecia quondam,
    Romaque mirata est nato; melioribus annis.
    Primus Aristoteles est ausus solvere navem,
    Atque datis velis vastum explorare profundum.
    [Page 91]
    Tutus iit, longèque ignotas attigit oras
    Lumina Maeoniae observans radiantia stellae.
    Jam vates, gens illa, diu quae lege soluta est,
    Et saevae capta est malè libertatis amore,
    Laetantes dominum accipiunt, atque omnis eodem,
    Qui domuit naturam, exultat praeside musa.
    Nusquam non grata est incuria comis Horatî,
    Qui nec opinantes nos erudit absque magistro,
    Ille suas leges, affabilis instar amici
    Quam veras simul & quam claro more profundit!
    Ille licet tam judicio quam divite venâ
    Maximus, audacem criticum, non scriptor inaudax,
    Praestaret se jure, tamen sedatus ibidem
    Censor, ubi cecinit divino concitus aestro,
    Carminibusque eadem inspirat, quae tradidit Arte.
    Nostrates homines planè in contraria currunt,
    Turba, stylo vehemens critico, sed frigida Phoebo:
    Nec malè vertendo Flaccum torsere poetae
    Absurdi, magè quam critici sine mente citando.
    Aspice, ut expoliat numeros Dionysius ipsi
    Maeonidae, veneresque accersat ubique recentes!
    Conditam ingenio jactat Petronius artem,
    Cui doctrina scholas redolet simul & sapit aulam.
    Cum docti Fabii cumulata volumina versas,
    Optima perspicuâ in serie documenta videre est,
    [Page 93]
    Haud secus utilia ac apothecis condimus arma,
    Ordine perpetuo sita juncturâque decorâ,
    Non modo ut obtineat quo sese oblectet ocellus,
    Verum etiam in promptu, quando venit usus, habenda.
    Te solum omnigenae inspirant, Longine, Camaenae,
    Et propriam penitus tibi mentem animumque dederunt;
    En! tibi propositi criticum fideique tenacem,
    Qui vehemens sua jura, sed omnibus aequa ministrat;
    Quo probat exemplo, quas tradit acumine leges,
    Semper sublimi sublimior argumento!
    Successere diù sibi tales, pulsaque fugit
    Barbara praescriptas exosa licentia leges.
    Româ perpetuo crescente scientia crevit,
    Atque artes aquilarum equitâre audacibus alis;
    Sed tandem superata îîsdem victoribus uno
    Roma triumphata est musis comitantibus aevo.
    Dira superstitio & comes est bacchata tyrannis,
    Et simul illa animos, haec corpora sub juga misit.
    Credita ab omnibus omnia sunt, sed cognita nullis,
    Et stupor est ausus titulo pietatis abuti!
    Obruta diluvio sic est doctrina secundo,
    Et Monachis finita Gothorum exorsa fuerunt.
    At vero tandem memorabile nomen Erasmus,
    (Cuique sacerdoti jactandus, cuique pudendus)
    [Page 95]
    Barbariae obnixus torrentia tempora vincit,
    Atque Gothos propriis sacros de finibus arcet.
    At Leo jam rursus viden' aurea secula condit,
    Sertaque neglectis revirescunt laurea musis!
    Antiquus Romae Genius de pulvere sacro
    Attollit sublime caput. Tunc coepit amari
    Sculptura atque artes sociae, caelataque rupes
    Vivere, et in pulchras lapides mollescere formas;
    Divinam harmoniam surgentia templa sonabant,
    Atque stylo & calamo Raphael & Vida vigebant;
    Illustris vates! cui laurea serta poetae
    Intertexta hederis critici geminata refulgent:
    Jamque aequat claram tibi, Mantua, Vida Cremonam,
    Utque loci, sic semper erit vicinia famae.
    Mox autem profugae metuentes improba musae
    Arma, Italos fines linquunt, inque Arctica migrant
    Littora; sed criticam sibi Gallia vendicat artem.
    Gens ullas leges, docilis servire, capessit,
    Boiloviusque vices domini gerit acer Horatî.
    Atfortes spernunt praecepta externa Britanni,
    Moribus indomiti quoque; nam pro jure furendi
    [Page 97]
    Angliacus pugnat genius, Romamque magistram,
    Romanumque jugum semper contemnere pergit.
    At vero jam tum non defuit unus & alter
    Corda, licet tumefacta minûs, magis alta gerentes,
    Ingenii partes veri studiosa fovendi
    Inque basi antiquâ leges & jura locandi.
    Talis, qui cecinit doctrinae exemplar & author,
    "Ars bene scribendi naturae est summa potestas."
    Talis Roscommon — bonus & doctissimus idem,
    Nobilis ingenio magè nobilitatus honesto;
    Qui Graios Latiosque authores novit ad unguem,
    Dum veneres texit pudibunda industria privas.
    Talis Walshius ille fuit — judex & amicus
    Musarum, censurae aequus laudisque minister,
    Mitis peccantûm censor, vehemensque merentûm
    Laudator, cerebrum sine mendo, & cor sine fuco!
    Haec saltem accipias, lacrymabilis umbra, licebit,
    Haec debet mea musa tuae munuscula famae,
    Illa eadem, infantem cujus tu fingere vocem,
    Tu monstrare viam; horridulas componere plumas
    Tu saepe es solitus — duce jam miseranda remoto
    Illa breves humili excursus molimine tentat,
    Nec jam quid sublime, quid ingens amplius audet.
    Illi hoc jam satis est — si hinc turba indocta docetur,
    Docta recognoscit studii vestigia prisci:
    [Page 99]
    Censuram haud curat, famam mediocritèr ardet,
    Culpare intrepida, at laudis tamen aequa ministra;
    Haud ulli prudens assentaturve notetve;
    Se demum mendis haud immunem esse fatetur,
    At neque fastidit limâ, quando indiget, uti.



    UNDE labor novus hic menti? Quae cura quietam
    Sollicitat, rapiensque extra confinia terrae,
    Coelestes sine more jubet volitare per ignes?
    Scilicet impatiens angusto hoc orbe teneri,
    Fontinelle, tuos audax imitarier ausus
    Gestio, & insolitas spirant praecordia flammas.
    Fallor, an ipse venit? Delapsus ab aethere summo
    Pegason urget eques, laterique flagellifer instat:
    Me vocat; & duris desiste laboribus, inquit,
    "Me duce, carpe viam facilem, tibi singula clarè
    " Expediam, tibi cernere erit, quos sidera nôrunt,
    "Indigenas cultusque virûm, moresque docebo."
    Nec mora, pennipedem conscendo jussus, ovansque
    (Quanquam animus secum volvens exempla priorum
    Bellerophonteae pallet dispendia famae)
    [Page 140]
    Post equitem sedeo, liquidumque per aëra labor.
    — Mercurium petimus primum: Dux talibus infit,
    "Aspicias vanae malesana negotia gentis,
    " Quam mens destituit Titane exusta propinquo.
    "Stramineis viden '? Hic velatus tempora sertis
    " Emicat, & solos reges crepat atque tetrarchas.
    "Ille suam carbone Chloen depingit amator
    " Infelix, aegram rudia indigestaque mentem
    "Carmina demulcent, indoctaque tibia musas.
    " En! sedet incomptus crines barbataque menta
    "Astrologus, nova qui venatur sidera, solus
    " Semper in obscuro penetrali; multaque muros
    "Linea nigrantes, & multa triangula pingunt.
    " Ecce! sed interea curru flamante propinquat
    "Titan. — Clamo, O me! gelidâ sub rupe, sub umbrâ
    " Siste precor: tantos nequeo perferre calores. "
    Pegason inde tuo genius felicior astro
    Appulit, alma Venus. Spirant quam molliter aurae!
    [Page 142]
    Ridet ager, frugum facilis, lascivaque florum
    Nutrix; non Euri ruit hic per dulcia Tempe
    Vis fera, non Boreae; sed blandior aura Favonî,
    Lenis agens tremulo nutantes vertice sylvas,
    Usque fovet teneros, quos usque resuscitat, ignes.
    Hic laetis animata sonis Saltatio vivit:
    Hic jam voce ciet cantum, jam pectine, dulces
    Musica docta modos: pulchrae longo ordine nymphae
    Festivas ducunt choreas, dilecta juventus
    Certatim stipant comites: latè halat amomo
    Omne nemus, varioque aeterni veris odore:
    Cura procul: circumvolitant risusque jocique:
    Atque amor est, quodcunque vides. Venus ipsa volentes
    Imperio regit indigenas, hic innuba Phoebe,
    Innuba Pallas amet, cupiant servire Catones.
    Jamque datum molimur iter, sedesque beatas
    Multa gemens linquo; & lugubre rubentia Martis
    [Page 144]
    Arva, ubi sanguineae dominantur in omnia rixae,
    Advehimur, ferro riget horrida turba, geritque
    Spiculaque, gladiosque, ferosque in bella dolones.
    Pro choreà, & dulci modulamine, Pyrrhicus illis
    Saltus, & horribiles placet aere ciere sonores.
    Hic conjux viduata viro longo effera luctu
    Flet noctem, solumque torum sterilesque Hymenaeos
    Deplorans, lacerat crines, & pectora plangit:
    Nequicquam — sponsus ni fortè appareat, hospes
    Heu! brevis, in somnis, & ludicra fallat imago.
    Immemor ille tori interea ruit acer in hostem:
    Horrendum strepit armorum fragor undique campis;
    Atque immortales durant in saecula pugnae.
    Hinc Jovis immensum delati accedimus orbem.
    Illic mille locis exercet saeva tyrannus
    Imperia in totidem servos, totidemque rebelles:
    Sed brevis exercet: parat illi fata veneno
    [Page 146]
    Perjurus, populosque premit novus ipse tyrannus.
    Hi decies pacem figunt pretio atque refigunt:
    Tum demum arma parant: longe lateque cohortes
    Extenduntur agris; simul aequora tota teguntur
    Classibus, & ficti celebrantur utrinque triumphi.
    Faedera mox ineunt nunquam violanda; brevique
    Belli iterum simulachra cient; referuntur in altum
    Classes, pacificoque replentur milite campi.
    Filius hic patri meditatur, sponsa marito,
    Servus hero insidias. Has leges scilicet illis
    Imposuit natura locis, quo tempore patrem
    Jupiter ipse suum solio detrusit avito.
    Inde venena viris, perjuria, munera, fraudes
    Suadet opum sitis, & regnandi dira cupido.
    Saturni tandem nos illaetabilis ora
    Accipit: ignavum pecus hic per opaca locorum
    Pinguescunt de more, gravi torpentque veterno.
    Vivitur in specubus: quis enim tam sedulus, arces
    Qui struat ingentes, operosaque maenia condat?
    [Page 148]
    Idem omnes stupor altus habet, sub pectore fixus.
    Non studia ambitiosa Jovis, variosqve labores
    Mercurii, non Martis opus, non Cyprida nôrunt.
    Post obitum, ut perhibent, sedes glomerantur in istas
    Qui longam nullas vitam excoluêre per artes;
    Sed Cerere & Baccho pleni, somnoque sepulti
    Cunctarum duxêre aeterna oblivia rerum.
    Non avium auditur cantus, non murmur aquarum,
    Mugitusve boum, aut pecorum balatus in agris:
    Nudos non decorant segetes, non gramina campos.
    Sylva, usquam si sylva, latet sub monte nivali,
    Et canet viduata comis: hic noctua tantùm
    Glisque habitat, bufoque & cum testudine, talpa.
    Flumina dum tardè subterlabentia terras
    Pigram undam volvunt, & sola papavera pascunt:
    Quorum lentus odor, lethaeaque pocula somnos
    Suadent perpetuos, circumfusaeque tenebrae.
    [Page 150]
    Horrendo visu obstupui: quin Pegason ipsum
    Defecêre animi; sensit dux, terque flagello
    Insonuit clarùm, terque altâ voce morantem
    Increpuit: secat ille cito pede laevia campi
    AEtherei, terraeque secundâ allabitur aurâ.

    A VOYAGE to the PLANETS.Translated by the Rev. Mr. FAWKES, A. M.

    SAY, what uncommon cares disturb my rest,
    And kindle raptures foreign to my breast?
    From earth's low confines lift my mind on high,
    To trace new worlds revolving in the sky?
    Yes — I'm impatient of this orb of clay,
    And boldly dare to meditate my way,
    Where Fontinelle first saw the planets roll,
    And all the God tumultuous shakes my soul.
    'Tis He! He comes! and thro' the sun-bright skies
    Drives foaming Pegasus, and thus he cries:
    "Cease, cease, dear youth, too studiously employ'd,
    " And wing with me the unresisting void;
    "'Tis thine with me round other worlds to soar,
    " And visit kingdoms never known before;
    "While I succinctly shew each various race,
    " The manners and the genius of the place. "
    I (tho' my mind with lively horror fraught,
    Thinks on Bellerophon, and shudders at the thought)
    [Page 141]
    Mount quick the winged steed; he springs, he flies,
    Shoots thro' the yielding air, and cleaves the liquid skies!
    — First, swift Cyllenius, circling round the sun,
    We reach, when thus my friendly guide begun:
    " Mark well the genius of this fiery place,
    "The wild amusements of the brainsick race,
    " Whose minds the beams of Titan, too intense,
    "Affect with frenzy, and distract the sense.
    " A monarch here gives subject princes law,
    "A mighty monarch, with a crown of straw.
    " There fits a lover, sad in pensive air,
    "And like the dismal image of despair,
    " With charcoal paints his Chloe heav'nly fair.
    "In sadly-soothing strain rude notes he sings,
    " And strikes harsh numbers from the jarring strings.
    "Lo! an astrologer, with filth besmear'd,
    " Rough and neglected, with a length of beard,
    "Pores round his cell for undiscover'd stars,
    " And decks the wall with triangles and squares.
    "Lo! — But the radiant car of Phoebus nigh
    " Glows with red ardour, and inflames the sky —
    "Oh! waft me, hide me in some cool retreat;
    " I faint, I sicken with the fervent heat. "
    Thence to that milder orb we wing our way,
    Where Venus governs with an easy sway.
    [Page 143]
    Soft breathes the air; fair Flora paints the ground,
    And laughing Ceres deals her gifts around.
    This blissful Tempe no rough blasts molest,
    Of blust'ring Boreas, or the baleful East;
    But gentle Zephyrs o'er the woodlands stray,
    Court the tall trees, and round the branches play,
    AEtherial gales dispensing as they flow,
    To fan those passions which they teach to glow.
    Here the gay youth in measur'd steps advance,
    While sprightly music animates the dance;
    There the sweet melody of sound admire,
    Sigh with the song, or languish to the lyre:
    Fair nymphs and amorous youths, a lovely band,
    Blend in the dance, light-bounding hand in hand.
    From ev'ry grove the buxom Zephyrs bring
    The rich ambrosia of eternal spring.
    Care dwells not here, their pleasures to destroy,
    But Laughter, Jest, and universal joy:
    All, all is love; for Venus reigns confest
    The sole sultana of each captive breast:
    Cold Cynthia here wou'd Cupid's victim prove,
    Or the chaste daughter of imperial Jove,
    And Cato's virtue be the slave of love.
    But now thro' destin'd fields of air we fly,
    And leave those mansions, not without a sigh:
    [Page 145]
    Thence the dire coast we reach, the dreary plains,
    Where Mars, grim god, and bloody discord reigns.
    The host in arms embattled sternly stands,
    The sword, the dart, the dagger, in their hands.
    Here no fair nymphs to silver sounds advance,
    But buskin'd heroes form the Pyrrhic dance.
    And brazen trumpets, terrible from far,
    With martial music fire the soul to war.
    Here the lone bride be wails her absent lord,
    The sterile nuptials, the deserted board,
    Sighs the long nights, and, frantic with despair,
    Beats her bare breast, and rends her flowing hair:
    In vain she sighs, in vain dissolves in tears —
    In sleep, perhaps, the warrior lord appears,
    A fleeting form that glides before her sight,
    A momentary vision of the night.
    Mean while, regardless of her anxious pray'r,
    The hardy husband sternly stalks to war;
    Our ears the clang of ringing armour rends,
    And the immortal battle never ends.
    Hence thro' the boundless void we nimbly move,
    And reach the wide-extended plains of Jove.
    Here the stern tyrant sways an iron rod;
    A thousand vassals tremble at his nod.
    How short the period of a tyrant's date!
    The pois'nous phial speeds the work of fate:
    [Page 147]
    Scarce is the proud, imperious tyrant dead,
    But, lo! a second lords it in his stead.
    Here peace, as common merchandize, is sold,
    Heav'n's first best blessing for pernicious gold:
    War soon succeeds, the sturdy squadrons stand
    Wide o'er the fields a formidable band;
    With num'rous fleets they croud the groaning main,
    And triumph for the victories they feign:
    Again in strict alliances unite,
    Till discord raise again the phantom of a fight;
    Again they sail; again the troops prepare
    Their falchions for the mockery of war.
    The son inhuman seeks his father's life,
    The slave his master's, and her lord's the wife.
    With vengeance thus their kindling bosoms fire,
    Since Jove usurp'd the sceptre of his fire.
    Thence poisons, perjuries, and bribes betray;
    Nor other passions do their souls obey
    Than thirst of gold, and avarice of sway.
    At length we land, vast fields of aether crost,
    On Saturn's cold uncomfortable coast;
    Here in the gloom the pamper'd sluggards lull
    The lazy hours, lethargically dull.
    In caves they live; for who was ever known
    So wise, so sedulous to build a town?
    [Page 149]
    The same stupidity infects the whole,
    Fix'd in the breast, and center'd in the soul.
    These never feel th' ambitious fires of Jove,
    To Industry not Mercury can move,
    Mars cannot spur to war, nor Venus woo to love.
    Here rove those souls, 'tis said, when life departs,
    Who never cultivated useful arts;
    But stupify'd with plenty and repose,
    Dreamt out long life in one continued dose!
    No feather'd songsters, with sweet-warbled strains
    Attune to melting melody the plains,
    No flocks wide-past'ring bleat, nor oxen low,
    No fountains musically murm'ring flow;
    Th' ungenial waste no tender herbage yields,
    No harvests wave luxuriant in the fields.
    Low lie the groves, if groves this land can boast,
    Chain'd in the fetters of eternal frost,
    Their beauty wither'd, and their verdure lost.
    Dull animals inhabit this abode,
    The owl, mole, dormouse, tortoise, and the toad.
    Dull rivers deep within their channels glide,
    And slow roll on their tributary tide:
    Nor aught th' unvegetative waters feed,
    But sleepy poppy and the slimy reed;
    Whose lazy fogs, like Lethe's cups, dispense
    Eternal slumbers of dull indolence.
    [Page 151]
    Agast I stood, the drowsy vapours lull
    My soul in gloom, ev'n Pegasus grew dull.
    My guide observ'd, and thrice he urg'd his speed,
    Thrice the loud lash resounded from the steed;
    Fir'd at the strokes, he flies with slacken'd rein
    Swift o'er the level of the liquid plain,
    Glides with the gentle gale, and lights on earth again.


    Materies gaudet vi Inertiae.

    VErvecum in patria, quà latè Hibernica squalent
    Arva inarata, palus horrenda voragine crebrâ
    Ante oculos jacet; haud illic impune viator
    Per tenebras iter instituat; tremit undique tellus
    Sub pedibus malefida, vapores undique densos
    Sudat humus, nebulisque amicitur tristibus herba.
    Huc fato infelix si quando agiteris iniquo,
    Et tutò in medium liceat penetrare, videbis
    Attonitus, nigrâ de nube emergere templum,
    Templum ingens, immane, altum penetrale Stuporis.
    Plumbea stat turris, plumbum sinuatur in arcus,
    Et solido limosa tument fundamina plumbo.
    Hanc, pia Materies, Divo aedem extruxit inerti,
    Stultitiae impulsu — quid enim? Lethargica semper
    [Page 156]
    Sponte-suà nihil aggreditur, dormitat in horas,
    Et, sine vi, nullo gaudet Dea languida motu.
    Hic ea monstra habitant, quae olim sub luminis auras
    Materies peperit somno patre, lividus iste
    Zoilus, & Bavio non impar Maevius; audax
    Spinoza, & Pyrrho, cumque Hobbesio Epicurus.
    Ast omnes valeat quae musa referre? frequentes
    Usque adeo videas Hebetes properare? — nec adfert
    Quidquam opis Anglorum doctae vicinia gentis.
    Sic quondam, ut perhibent, stupuit Boeotica tellus
    Vicina licet Antycirâ, nihil inde salutis,
    Nil tulit hellebori Zephyrus, cum saepe per aequor
    Felicem ad Lesbon levibus volitaverit alis,
    Indigenae mellita ferens suspiria Florae.
    Porticus illa vides? Gothicis suffulta columnis,
    Templi aditus, quàm laxa patet! custodia qualis
    [Page 158]
    Ante fores! quatuor formae sua tollere miris
    Ora modis! en! torva tuens stat limine in ipso
    Personam Logices induta Sophistica, denis
    Cincta Categoriis, matrem quae maxima natu
    Filia materiem agnoscit — quantum instar in ipsâ est!
    Grande caput, tenues oculi, cutis arida produnt
    Fallacem: rete una manus tenet, altera fustem.
    Vestis arachneis sordet circumdata telis,
    Queis gaudet labyrinthaeos Dea callida nodos.
    Aspicias jam funereo gradientem incessu —
    Quàm lentè caelo Saturni volvitur astrum,
    Quàm lentè saltaverunt post Orphea montes,
    Quàm lentè, Oxonii, solennis pondera caenae
    Gestant tergeminorum abdomina bedellorum.
    Proxima deinde tenet loca sorte insana Mathesis,
    Nuda pedes, chlamydem discincta, incompta capillos,
    Immemor externi, punctoque innixa reclinat.
    [Page 160]
    Ante pedes vario inscriptam diagrammate arenam
    Cernas, rectis curva, atque intertexta rotunda
    Schemata quadratis — queis scilicet abdita rerum
    Pandere se jactat solam, doctasque sorores
    Fastidit, propriaeque nihil non arrogat arti.
    Illàm olim, duce Neutono, tum tendit ad astra,
    AEtheriasque domos superûm, indignata volantem
    Turba mathematicûm retrahit, poenasque reposcens
    Detinet in terris, nugisque exercet ineptis.
    Tertia Microphile, proles furtiva parentis
    Divinae; produxit enim commixta furenti
    Diva viro Physice — muscas & papiliones
    Lustrat inexpletum, collumque & tempora rident
    Floribus, & fungis, totâque propagine veris.
    Rara oculis nugarum avidis animalia quaerit
    Omne genus, seu serpit humi, seu ludit in undis,
    Seu volitans tremulis liquidum secat aëra pennis.
    [Page 162]
    O! ubi littoribus nostris felicior aura
    Polypon appulerit, quanto cava templa Stuporis
    Mugitu concussa trement, reboabit & ingens
    Pulsa palus! Plausu excipiet Dea blanda secundo
    Microphile ante omnes; jam non crocodilon adorat;
    Non bombyx, conchaeve juvant: sed Polypon ardet,
    Solum Polypon ardet, — & ecce! faceta feraci
    Falce novos creat assidue, pascitque creatos,
    Ah! modo dilectis pascit nova gaudia muscis.
    Quartam Materies peperit conjuncta Stupori,
    Nomen Atheia illi, monstrum cui lumen ademptum,
    Atque aures; cui sensus abest; sed mille trisulcae
    Ore micant linguae, refugas quibus inficit auras.
    Hanc Stupor ipse parens odit, vicina nefandos
    Horret sylva sonos, neque surda repercutit Echo
    [Page 164]
    Mendacem natura redarguit ipsa, Deumque
    Et coelum, & terrae, veraciaque Astra fatentur.
    Se simul agglomerans surgit chorus omnis aquarum,
    Et puro sublimè sonat grave fulmen olympo.
    Fonte ortus Lethaeo, ipsius ad ostia templi,
    Ire soporifero tendit cum murmure rivus,
    Huc potum Stolidos Deus evocat agmine magno:
    Grebri adsunt, largisque sitim restinguere gaudent
    Haustibus, atque iterant calices, certantque stupendo.
    Me, me etiam, clamo, occurrens; — sed vellicat aurem
    Calliope, nocuasque vetat contingere lymphas.


    IN Ireland's wild, uncultivated plains,
    Where torpid sloth, and foggy dulness reigns,
    Full many a fen infests the putrid shore,
    And many a gulph the melancholy moor.
    Let not the stranger in these regions stray,
    Dark is the sky, and perilous the way;
    Beneath his foot-steps shakes the trembling ground,
    Dense fogs and exhalations hover round,
    And with black clouds the tender turf is crown'd.
    Here shou'd'st thou rove, by Fate's severe command,
    And safely reach the center of the land;
    Thine eyes shall view, with horror and surprize,
    The fane of Dulness, of enormous size,
    Emerging from the sable cloud arise.
    A leaden tow'r upheaves its heavy head,
    Vast leaden arches press the slimy bed,
    The soft soil swells beneath the load of lead.
    Old Matter here erected this abode,
    At Folly's impulse, to the Slothful God.
    [Page 157]
    And here the drone lethargic loves to stay,
    Slumb'ring the dull, inactive hours away;
    For still, unless by foreign force imprest,
    The languid Goddess holds her state of rest.
    Their habitation here those monsters keep,
    Whom Matter father'd on the God of Sleep:
    Here Zoilus, with cank'ring envy pale,
    Here Maevius bids his brother Bavius, hail;
    Spinoza, Epicure, and all those mobs
    Of wicked wits, from Pyrrho down to Hobbes.
    How can the Muse recount the numerous crew
    Of frequent fools that crowd upon the view?
    Nor can learn'd Albion's sun that burns so clear,
    Disperse the dulness that involves them here.
    Boeotia thus remain'd, in days of yore,
    Senseless and stupid, tho' the neighb'ring shore
    Afforded salutary hellebore:
    No cure exhal'd from Zephyr's buxom breeze,
    That gently brush'd the bosom of the seas,
    As oft to Lesbian fields he wing'd his way,
    Fanning fair Flora, and in airy play
    Breath'd balmy sighs, that melt the soul away.
    Behold that portico! how vast, how wide!
    The pillars Gothic, wrought with barb'rous pride:
    [Page 159]
    Four monstrous shapes before the portal wait,
    Of horrid aspect, centry to the gate:
    Lo! in the entrance, with disdainful eye,
    In Logick's dark disguise, stands Sophistry:
    Her very front would common sense confound,
    Encompass'd with ten categories round:
    She from Old Matter, the great mother, came,
    By birth the eldest — and how like the dame!
    Her shrivel'd skin, small eyes, prodigious pate,
    Denote her shrewd, and subtle in debate:
    This hand a net, and that sustains a club,
    T' entangle her antagonist, or drub.
    The spider's toils, all o'er her garment spread,
    Imply the mazy errors of her head.
    Behold her marching with funereal pace,
    Slow as old Saturn rolls thro' boundless space,
    Slow as the mighty mountains mov'd along,
    When Orpheus rais'd the lyre-attended song:
    Or, as at Oxford, on some Gaudy day,
    Fat Beadles, in magnificent array,
    With big round bellies bear the pond'rous treat,
    And heavily lag on, with the vast load of meat.
    The next, mad Mathesis; her feet all bare,
    Ungirt, untrim'd, with dissoluted hair:
    No foreign object can her thoughts disjoint;
    Reclin'd she sits, and ponders o'er a point.
    [Page 161]
    Before her, lo! inscrib'd upon the ground,
    Strange diagrams th' astonish'd sight confound,
    Right lines and curves, with figures square and round
    With these the monster, arrogant and vain,
    Boasts that she can all mysteries explain,
    And treats the sacred Sisters with disdain.
    She, when great Newton sought his kindred skies,
    Sprung high in air, and strove with him to rise,
    In vain — the mathematic mob restrains
    Her flight, indignant, and on earth detains;
    E'er since the captive wretch her brains employs
    On trifling trinkets, and on gewgaw toys.
    Microphile is station'd next in place,
    The spurious issue of celestial race;
    From heav'nly Physice she took her birth,
    Her sire a madman of the sons of earth;
    On flies she pores with keen, unwearied sight,
    And moths and butterflies, her dear delight;
    Mushrooms and flow'rs, collected on a string,
    Around her neck, around her temples cling,
    With all the strange production of the spring.
    With greedy eyes she'll search the world to find
    Rare, uncouth animals of every kind;
    Whether along the humble ground they stray,
    Or nimbly sportive in the waters play,
    Or thro' the light expanse of aether fly,
    And with fleet pinions cleave the liquid sky.
    [Page 163]
    Ye gales, that gently breathe upon our shore,
    O! let the Polypus be wasted o'er;
    How will the hollow dome of Dulness ring,
    With what loud joy receive the wond'rous thing?
    Applause will rend the skies, and all around
    The quivering quagmires bellow back the sound;
    How will Microphile her joy attest,
    And glow with warmer raptures than the rest?
    This will the curious crocodile excell,
    The weaving worm, and silver-shining shell;
    No object e'er will wake her wonder thus
    As Polypus, her darling Polypus.
    Lo! by the wounds of her creating knife,
    New Polypusses wriggle into life,
    Fast as they rise, she feeds with ample store
    Of once rare flies, but now esteem'd no more.
    The fourth dire shape from mother Matter came,
    Dulness her sire, and Atheism is her name;
    In her no glimpse of sacred Sense appears,
    Depriv'd of eyes, and destitute of ears:
    And yet she brandishes a thousand tongues,
    And blasts the world with air-infecting lungs.
    Curs'd by her sire, her very words are wounds,
    No grove re-ecchoes the detested sounds.
    [Page 165]
    Whate'er she speaks all nature proves a lye,
    The earth, the heav'ns, the starry-spangled sky
    Proclaim the wise, eternal Deity:
    The congregated waves in mountains driven
    Roar in grand chorus to the Lord of Heaven;
    Thro' skies serene the glorious thunders roll,
    Loudly pronounce the God, and shake the sounding Pole.
    A river, murmuring from Lethaean source,
    Full to the fane directs its sleepy course;
    The Pow'r of Dulness, leaning on the brink,
    Here calls the multitude of fools to drink.
    Swarming they crowd to stupify the skull,
    With frequent cups contending to be dull.
    Me, let me taste the sacred stream, I cry'd,
    Without-stretch'd arm — the Muse my boon deny'd,
    And sav'd me from the sense-intoxicating tide.



    MOMUS, scurra, procax superûm, quo tempore Pallas
    Exiluit cerebro Jovis, est pro more jocatus
    Nescio quid stultum de partu: excanduit irâ
    Jupiter, asper, acerba tuens; "et tu quoque, dixit,
    " Garrule, concipies, faetum{que} ex ore profundes: "
    Haud mora, jamque supinus in aulâ extenditur ingens
    Derisor; dubiâ velantur lumina nocte;
    Stertit hians immane; — e naso Gallica clangunt
    Classica, Germani{que} simul sermonis amaror:
    Edita vix tandem est monstrum Polychasmia, proles
    Tanto digna parente, aviae{que} simillima Nocti.
    [Page 170]
    Illa oculos tentat nequicquam aperire, veterno
    Torpida, & horrendo vultum distorta cachinno.
    AEmulus hanc Jovis aspiciens, qui fictile vulgus
    Fecerat infelix, imitarier arte Prometheus
    Audet — nec flammis opus est coelestibus: aurae
    Tres Stygiae flatus, nigrae tria pocula Lethes
    Miscet, & innuptae suspiria longa puellae,
    His adipem suis & guttur conjungit aselli,
    Tensaque cum gemitu somnisque sequacibus ora.
    Sic etiam in terris Dea, quae mortalibus aegris
    Ferret opem, inque hebetes dominarier apta, creata est.
    Nonne vides, ut praecipiti petit oppida cursu
    Rustica plebs, stipatque forum? sublime tribunal
    Armigerique equitesque premunt, de more parati
    Justitiae lances proferre fideliter aequas,
    Grande capillitium induti, frontemque minacem.
    Non temerè attoniti caupones, turbaque furum
    Aufugiunt, gravidaeque timent trucia ora puellae.
    At mox fida comes Polychasmia, matutinis
    Quae se miscuerat poc'lis Cerealibus, ipsum
    Judicis in cerebrum scandit — jamque unus & alter
    Caeperunt longas in hiatum ducere voces:
    Donec per cunctos Dea jam solenne, profundum
    Sparserit Hum — nutant taciti, tum brachia magno
    Extendunt nisu, patulis & faucibus hiscunt.
    [Page 172]
    Intereà legum Caupones jurgia miscent,
    Queis nil Rhetorice est, nisi copia major hiandi:
    Vocibus ambiguis certant, nugasque strophasque
    Alternis jaculantur, & irascuntur amicè,
    Donantque accipiuntque stuporis missile plumbum.
    Vos, Fanatica turba, nequit pia musa tacere.
    Majoremne aliunde potest diducere rictum?
    Ascendit gravis Orator, miserâque loquelâ
    Expromit thesin; in partes quam deinde minutas
    Distrahit, ut connectat, & explicat obscurando:
    Spargitur heu! pigris verborum somnus ab alis,
    Grex circùm gemit, & plausum declarat hiando.
    Nec vos, qui falso matrem jactatis Hygeian
    Patremque Hippocratem, taceam — Polychasmia, vestros
    Agnosco natos: tumidas sine pondere voces
    In vulgum eructant; emuncto quisque bacillum
    Applicat auratum naso, graviterque facetus
    Totum se in vultum cogit, medicamina pandens —
    Rusticus haurit amara, atque insanabile dormit;
    [Page 174]
    Nec sensus revocare queant fomenta, nec herbae,
    Non ars, non mirae magicus sonus ABRACADABRAE.
    Ante alios summa es, Polychasmia, cura Sophistae:
    Ille Tui caecas vires, causamque latentem
    Sedulus exquirit — quo scilicet impete fauces
    Invitae disjungantur; quo vortice aquosae
    Particulae fluitent, comitesque ut fulminis imbres,
    Cum strepitu erumpant; ut deinde vaporet ocellos
    Materies subtilis; ut in cutis insinuet se
    Retia; tum, si forte datur contingere nervos
    Concordes, cunctorum ora expanduntur hiulca.
    Sic ubi, Phoebe pater, sumis chelyn, harmoniamque
    Abstrusam in chordis simul elicis, altera, siquam
    AEqualis tenor aptavit, tremit aemula cantûs,
    Memnoniamque imitata lyram sine pollicis ictu
    Divinum resonat proprio modulamine carmen.
    Me quoque, mene tuum tetigisti, ingrata, Poetam?
    Hei mihi! totus hio tibi jam stupefactus; in ipso
    Parnasso captus longè longèque remotas
    Prospecto Musas, sitioque, ut Tantalus alter,
    [Page 176]
    Castalias situs inter aquas, inhiantis ab ore
    Nectarei fugiunt latices — hos Popius urnâ
    Excipit undanti, & fontem sibi vendicat omnem.
    Hand aliter Socium esuriens Sizator edacem
    Dum videt, appositusque cibus frustratur hiantem,
    Dentibus infrendens nequicquam lumine torvo
    Saepius exprobrat; nequicquam brachia tendit
    Sedulus officiosa, dapes removere paratus.
    Olli nunquam exempta fames, quin frusta suprema
    Devoret, & peritura immani ingurgitet ore:
    Tum demum jubet auferri; nudata capaci
    Ossa sonant, lugubre sonant, allisa catino.


    WHEN Pallas issued from the brain of Jove,
    Momus, the Mimic of the Gods above,
    In his mock mood impertinently spoke,
    About the birth, some low, ridiculous joke:
    Jove, sternly frowning, glow'd with vengeful ire,
    And thus Indignant said th' Almighty Sire,
    "Loquacious Slave, that laugh'st without a cause,
    " Thou shalt conceive, and bring forth at thy jaws. "
    He spoke — stretch'd in the hall the Mimic lies,
    Supinely dull, thick vapours dim his eyes:
    And as his jaws a horrid chasm disclose,
    It seem'd he made a trumpet of his nose;
    Tho' harsh the strain, and horrible to hear,
    Like German jargon grating on the ear.
    At length was Polychasmia brought to light,
    Worthy her sire, a monster of a sight,
    Resembling her great grandmother, Old Night.
    [Page 171]
    Her eyes to open oft in vain she try'd,
    Lock'd were the lids, her mouth distended wide.
    Her when Prometheus happen'd to survey
    (Rival of Jove, that made mankind of clay)
    He form'd without the aid of heav'nly ray.
    To three Lethaean cups he learnt to mix
    Deep sighs of virgins, with three blasts from Styx,
    The bray of asses, with the fat of brawn,
    The sleep-preceding groan, and hideous yawn.
    Thus Polychasmia took her wond'rous birth,
    A Goddess helpful to the sons of earth.
    Lo! how the rustic multitude from far
    Haste to the town, and crowd the clam'rous bar.
    The prest bench groans with many a squire and knight,
    Who weight out justice, and distribute right:
    Severe they seem, and formidably big,
    With front important, and huge periwig.
    The little villains skulk aloof dismay'd,
    And panic terrors seize the pregnant maid.
    But soon friend Polychasm' , who always near,
    Herself had mingled with their morning beer,
    Steals to the judges brain, and centers there.
    Then in the court the horrid yawn began,
    And Hum, profound and solemn, went from man to man:
    Silent they nod, and with prodigious strain
    Stretch out their arms, then listless yawn again:
    [Page 173]
    For all the flow'rs of rhetoric they can boast,
    Amidst their wranglings, is to gape the most:
    Ambiguous quirks, and friendly wrath they vent,
    And give and take the leaden argument.
    Ye too, Fanaticks, never shall escape
    The faithful muse; for who so greatly gape?
    Mounted on high, with serious care perplext,
    The miserable preacher takes his text;
    Then into parts minute, with wondrous pain,
    Divides, connects, and then divides again,
    And does with grave obscurity explain:
    While from his lips lean periods lingring creep,
    And not one meaning interrupts their sleep,
    The drowsy hearers stretch their weary jaws
    With lamentable groan, and yawning gape applause.
    The Quacks of Physic next provoke my ire,
    Who falsely boast Hippocrates their sire:
    Goddess! thy sons I ken — verbose and loud,
    They puff their windy bubbles on the crowd:
    With look important, critical, and vain,
    Each to his nose applies the gilded cane;
    And as he nods, and ponders o'er the case,
    Gravely collects himself into his face,
    Explains his med'cines — which the rustic buys,
    Drinks the dire draught, and of the doctor dies;
    [Page 175]
    No pills, no potions can to life restore;
    ABRACADABRA, necromantic pow'r
    Can charm, and conjure up from death no more.
    But more than aught that's marvellous and rare,
    The studious Soph makes Polychasm' his care;
    Explores what secret spring, what hidden cause,
    Distends with hideous chasm th' unwilling jaws,
    What latent ducts the dewy moisture pour
    With sound tremendous, like a thunder-show'r:
    How subtile matter, exquisitely thin,
    Pervades the curious net-work of the skin,
    Affects th' accordant nerve — all eyes are drown'd
    In drowsy vapours, and the yawn goes round.
    When Phoebus thus his flying fingers flings
    Across the chords, and sweeps the trembling strings;
    If e'er a lyre at unison there be,
    It swells with emulating harmony,
    Like Memnon's harp, in ancient times renown'd,
    Breathing, untouch'd, sweet-modulated sound.
    But oh! ungrateful! to thy own true bard,
    Oh! Polychasm', is this my just reward?
    Thy drowsy dews upon my head distill,
    Just at the entrance of th' Aonian hill;
    Listless I gape, unactive, and supine,
    And at vast distance view the sacred Nine:
    [Page 177]
    Wistful I view — the streams increase my thirst,
    In vain — like Tantalus, with plenty curst,
    No draughts nectareous to my portion fall,
    These godlike Pope exhausts, and greatly claims them all.
    Thus the lean Sizar views, with gaze agast,
    The hungry Tutor at his noon's repast;
    In vain he grinds his teeth — his grudging eye,
    And visage sharp, keen appetite imply;
    Oft he attempts, officious, to convey
    The lessening relicks of the meal away —
    In vain — no morsel 'scapes the greedy jaw,
    All, all is gorg'd in magisterial maw;
    Till at the last, observant of his word,
    The lamentable waiter clears the board,
    And inly-murmuring miserably groans,
    To see the empty dish, and hear the sounding bones.

    〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉HOM.


    HENCE, loathed Melancholy,
    Of Cerberus, and blackest Mid-night born,
    In Stygian cave forlorn,
    Mongst horrid shapes, and shrieks, and sights unholy,
    Find out some uncouth cell,
    Where brooding Darkness spreads his jealous wings,
    And the night-raven sings;
    There under ebon shades, and low-brow'd rocks,
    As ragged as thy locks,
    In dark Cimmerian desart ever dwell.
    But come thou Goddess fair and free,
    In Heav'n yclep'd Euphrosyne,
    And by men, heart-easing Mirth,
    Whom lovely Venus at a birth
    With two sister Graces more
    To ivy-crowned Bacchus bore;
    Or whether (as some Sages sing)
    The frolick wind, that breathes the spring,
    [Page 182]
    Zephyr with Aurora playing,
    As he met her once a Maying,
    There on beds of violets blue,
    And fresh blown roses wash'd in dew,
    Fill'd her with thee, a daughter fair,
    So buxom, blith, and debonair;
    Haste thee, Nymph, and bring with thee
    Jest and youthful Jollity,
    Quips and cranks, and wanton wiles,
    Nods and becks, and wreathed smiles,
    Such as hang on Hebe's cheek,
    And love to live in dimple sleek;
    Sport, that wrinkled Care derides,
    And Laughter holding both his sides;
    Come, and trip it, as you go,
    On the light fantastic toe:
    And in thy right hand lead with thee
    The mountain Nymph, sweet Liberty;
    And if I give thee honour due,
    Mirth, admit me of thy crew,
    To live with her, and live with thee,
    In unreproved pleasures free;
    To hear the lark begin his flight,
    And singing startle the dull night,
    From his watch-tow'r in the skies,
    Till the dappled dawn doth rise;
    [Page 184]
    Then to come in spight of sorrow,
    And at my window bid good-morrow,
    Thro' the sweet-briar, or the vine,
    Or the twisted eglantine:
    While the cock with lively din
    Scatters the rear of darkness thin;
    And to the stack, or the barn-door,
    Stoutly struts his dames before.
    Oft list'ning how the hounds and horn
    Chearly rouse the slumb'ring morn,
    From the side of some hoar hill,
    Thro' the high wood echoing shrill.
    Sometimes walking not unseen
    By hedge-row elms, on hillocks green,
    Right against the eastern gate,
    Where the great sun begins his state,
    Rob'd in flames, and amber light,
    The clouds in thousand liveries dight.
    While the plowman near at hand,
    Whistles o'er the furrow'd land,
    And the milkmaid singeth blithe,
    And the mower whets his seythe,
    And every shepherd tells his tale
    Under the hawthorn in the dale.
    Strait mine eye hath caught new pleasures,
    Whilst the landskip round it measures,
    [Page 186]
    Russet lawns, and fallows gray,
    Where the nibbling flocks do stray
    Mountains, on whose barren breast
    The labouring clouds do often rest,
    Meadows trim with daizies pide,
    Shallow brooks, and rivers wide:
    Tow'rs and battlements it sees
    Bosom'd high in tufted trees,
    Where perhaps some beauty lies
    The Cynosure of neighbouring eyes.
    Hard by a cottage chimney smokes,
    From betwixt two aged oaks,
    Where Corydon and Thyrsis met,
    Are at their favory dinner set
    Of herbs and other country messes,
    Which the neat-handed Phillis dresses;
    And then in haste her bower she leaves
    With Thestylis to bind the sheaves;
    Or if the earlier season lead
    To the tann'd hay-cock in the mead,
    Sometimes with secure delight
    The up-land Hamlets will invite,
    When the merry bells ring round,
    And the jocund rebecks sound
    To many a youth and many a maid,
    Dancing in the chequer'd shade;
    [Page 188]
    And young and old come forth to play
    On a sun-shine holy-day,
    Till the live-long day-light fail,
    Then to the spicy nut-brown ale,
    With stories told of many a feat,
    How fairy Mab the junkets eat;
    She was pinch'd, and pull'd, she said,
    And by the Friar's lanthorn led;
    Tells how the drudging goblin sweat,
    To earn his cream-bowl duly set,
    When in one night, ere glimpse of morn,
    His shadowy flail hath thresh'd the corn
    That ten day-labourers could not end,
    Then lies him down the lubbar fiend,
    And stretch'd out all the chimny's length,
    Basks at the fire his hairy strength;
    And crop-full out of doors he flings,
    Ere the first cock his mattin sings.
    Thus done the tales, to bed they creep,
    By whispering winds soon lull'd asleep.
    Towred cities please us then,
    And the busy humm of men,
    Where throngs of knights and barons bold,
    In weeds of peace high triumph hold,
    With store of ladies, whose bright eyes
    Rain influence, and judge the prize
    [Page 190]
    Of wit or arms, while both contend
    To win her grace whom all commend.
    There let Hymen oft appear,
    In saffron robe, with taper clear,
    And pomp, and feast, and revelry,
    With mask and antique pageantry,
    Such sights as youthful poets dream
    On summer eves by haunted stream.
    Then to the well-trod stage anon,
    If Johnson's learned sock be on,
    Or sweetest Shakespear, Fancy's child,
    Warble his native wood-notes wild,
    And ever against eating cares
    Lap me in soft Lydian airs,
    Married to immortal verse,
    Such as the meeting soul may pierce
    In notes, with many a winding bout
    Of linked sweetness long drawn out
    With wanton heed, and giddy cunning,
    The melting voice thro' mazes running;
    Untwisting all the chains that tye
    The hidden soul of harmony:
    [Page 192]
    That Orpheus self may heave his head
    From golden slumber on a bed
    Of heap'd Elysian flow'rs, and hear
    Such strains as would have won the ear
    Of Pluto, to have quite set free
    His half-regain'd Eurydice.
    These delights, if thou canst give,
    Mirth, with thee I mean to live.


    PROCUL hinc, O procul esto informis AEgrimonia,
    Quam janitori Obscuritas nigerrima
    Suscepit olim Cerbero,
    Desertam in cavea Stygis profundâ,
    Horribiles inter formas, visusque prosanos,
    Obscoenosque ululatus,
    Incultam licet invenire sedem,
    Nox ubi parturiens
    Zelotypis furtim nido superincubat alis
    Queriturque tristis noctua,
    Sub densis illic ebenis scopulisque cavatis,
    Vestri rugosis more supercilii,
    AEternùm maneas Cimmeriâ in domo.
    Sed huc propinquet comis et pulcherrima,
    Quae nympha divis audit Ephrosyne choris,
    Patiens tamen vocatur a mortalibus
    Medicina cordis hilaritas, quam candida
    Venus duabus insuper cum Gratiis
    Dias Lyaeo patri in auras edidit:
    Sive ille ventus (caeteri ut Mystae canunt)
    Jocundus aurâ qui ver implet melleâ,
    [Page 183]
    Zephyrus puellam amplexus est Tithoniam
    Quondam calendis feriatam Maiis,
    Tunc pallidis genuit super violariis,
    Super et rosarum roscidâ lanugine,
    Alacrem, beatam, vividamque filiam.
    Agedum puella, quin pari vadant gradu
    Jocus et Juventas, Scommata et Protervitas,
    Dolusque duplex, nutus et nictatio,
    Tenuisque risus huc et huc contortilis;
    Qualis venustâ pendet Hebes in genâ,
    Amatque jungi laevibus gelasinis;
    Curae sequatur Ludus infestus nigrae, et
    Laterum Cachinnus pinguium frustra tenax.
    Agite caterva ludat exultim levis,
    Pedesque dulcis sublevet lascivia;
    Dextrumque claudat alma Libertas latus,
    Oreadum palantium suavissima;
    Et, si tuis honoribus non defui,
    Me scribe vestrae, laeta Virgo, familiae,
    Ut illius simul et tui consortio
    Liberrimâ juvenemur innocentiâ;
    Ut cum volatus auspicatur concitos,
    Stupidamque alauda voce noctem territat;
    Levata coelestem in pharon diluculò,
    Priùsque gilvum quam rubet crepusculum.
    [Page 185]
    Tunc ad fenestras (anxii nolint, velint)
    Diem precemur prosperam viciniae,
    Caput exerentes e rosis sylvestibus,
    Seu vite, sive flexili cynosbato.
    Dum Martius clamore Gallus vivido
    Tenuem lacessit in fugâ caliginem,
    Graditurve farris ad struem, vel horreum,
    Dominae praeeuns, graduque grandi glorians.
    Saepe audiamus ut canes et cornua
    Sonore laeto mane sopitum cient,
    Dum quà praealti clivus albescit jugi,
    Docilis canora reddit Echo murmura.
    Mox, teste multo, quà virent colles, vager,
    Ulmosque sepes ordinatas implicat,
    Eoa stans apricus ante limina,
    Ubi sol coruscum magnus instaurat diem
    Vestitus igni, lucidoque succino,
    Inter micantûm mille formas nubium.
    Vicinus agrum dum colonus transmeat,
    Atque aemulatur ore fistulam rudi,
    Mulctramque portat cantitans puellula,
    Falcique cotem messor aptat stridulae,
    Suamque pastor quisque garrit fabulam,
    Reclinis in convalle, subter arbuto.
    Mox illecebras oculus arripuit novas,
    Dum longus undiquaque prospectus patet,
    [Page 187]
    Canum novale, et fusca saltûs aequora,
    Quà pecora gramen demetunt vagantia,
    Sublimium sterilia terga montium,
    Qui ponderosa saepe torquent nubila,
    Maculosa vernis prata passim bellibus,
    Amnes vadosi, et latiora flumina.
    Pinnasque murorum, atque turres cernere est
    Cristata circùm quas coronant robora,
    Ubi forte quaedam nympha fallit, cui decor
    Viciniam (cynosura tanquam) illuminat.
    Juxta duarum subter umbrâ quercuum,
    Culmis opertâ fumus emicat casâ,
    Qua jam vocati Thyrsis et Corydon sedent,
    Famemque odoro compriment convivio,
    Herbis, cibisque rusticis, nitidissimâ
    Quae sufficit succincta Phillis dexterâ:
    Mox Thestyli morem gerens jacentia
    Aureis catenis cogit in fasces sata:
    Vernisve in horis, sole tostum virgines
    Faenum recenti pellicit fragrantiâ;
    Est et serenis quando faeta gaudiis
    Excelsiora perplacent magalia;
    Utcunque juxta flumen in numerum sonant
    Campanae, et icta dulcè barbitos strepit,
    Dum multa nympha, multa pubes duritèr
    Pellunt trementes ad canorem cespites
    Dubias per umbras; qua labore liberi
    [Page 189]
    Juvenesque ludunt, et senes promiscui,
    Melius nitente sole propter ferias.
    Jam quando vesperascit, omnes allicit
    Auro liquenti Bacchus hordiaceus,
    Phyllisque narrat fabulosa facinora,
    Lamia ut paratas Mabba consumpsit dapes,
    Se vapulasse, et esse pressam ab Incubo,
    Fatuoque tritâ ab igne seductam viâ;
    Ut et laborem subiit Idolon gravem,
    Floremque lactis meritus est stipendium;
    Unius (inquit) ante noctis exitum
    Tot grana frugis fuste trivit veneficus,
    Quot expedire rustici nequeunt decem,
    Quo jam peracto plumbeum monstrum cubat,
    Focumque totum latere longo metiens
    Crinita membra fessus igne recreat;
    Dein, priusquam gallus evocat diem,
    Tandem satur phantasma sese proripit.
    Sic absolutis fabulis ineunt toros,
    Atque ad susurros dormiunt favonii,
    Turrita deinde perplacebunt oppida,
    Et gentis occupatae mixta murmura,
    Equitumque turba, nobilesque spendidi,
    Qui pacis ipsâ vel triumphant in togâ,
    Nurusque, quarum lumen impetus viris
    Jaculatur acres, praemiumque destinat
    [Page 191]
    Marti aut Minervae, quorum uterque nititur
    Nymphae probari, quae probatur omnibus:
    Hymenaeus illic saepe praetendat facem
    Clarissimam, croceumque velamen trahat,
    Spectac'la, mimi, pompa, commissatio,
    Veterumque ritu nocte sint convivia,
    Talesque visus, quos vident in somniis
    Juvenes poetae, dum celebris rivuli
    Securi ad oram vespere aestivo jacent.
    Tunc ad theatra demigrem frequentia
    Johnsone, si tu, docte soccum proferas;
    * Shakespear.
    Ille musae filius fundat sonos,
    Quam dulcè, quam felicitèr temerarios!
    Curaeque carmen semper antidotos modis
    Mentem relaxet involutam Lydiis;
    Oh! sim perenni emancipatus carmini,
    Quod tentet usque ad intimum cor emicans,
    Auresque gratis detinens ambagibus
    Pedibus ligatis suaviter nectat moras,
    Dum liquida vox, labyrinthus ut, deflectitur
    Dolo perita et negligenti industriâ,
    Variàque caecos arte nodos explicat,
    Animam latentem qui coercent musices;
    [Page 193]
    Adeo ut quiete expergefactus aureâ
    Toros relinquat ipse Thrax amaranthinos,
    Medioque tales captet Elysio sonos,
    Quales avaram suadeant Proserpinam
    Nullâ obligatam lege sponsam reddere.
    His si redundes gaudiis, prudentis est,
    Laetitia, tecum velle vitam degere.

    Adhuc supersunt multa, quae possim loqui,
    Et copiosa abundat rerum varietas.
    [Page][Page][Page 200][Page 205][Page 208][Page 210][Page 216]
  • The LASS with the golden Locks. BALLAD II.
  • To Miss — one of the Chichester Graces. BALLAD IX.
  • FINIS.