[Page 22]

The Prevalence of Custom.

1 A Female, to a Drunkard marry'd,
2 When all her other Arts miscarry'd,
3 Had yet one Stratagem to prove him,
4 And from good Fellowship remove him;
5 Finding him overcome with Tipple,
6 And weak, as Infant at the Nipple,
7 She to a Vault transports the Lumber,
8 And there expects his breaking Slumber.
9 A Table she with Meat provided,
10 And rob'd in Black, stood just beside it;
11 Seen only, by one glim'ring Taper,
12 That blewly burnt thro' misty Vapor.
13 At length he wakes, his Wine digested,
14 And of her Phantomship requested,
15 To learn the Name of that close Dwelling,
16 And what offends his Sight and Smelling;
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17 And of what Land she was the Creature,
18 With outspread Hair, and ghastly Feature?
19 Mortal, quoth she, (to Darkness hurry'd)
20 Know, that thou art both Dead and Bury'd;
21 Convey'd, last Night, from noisie Tavern,
22 To this thy still, and dreary Cavern.
23 What strikes thy Nose, springs from the Shatters
24 Of Bodies kill'd with Cordial Waters,
25 Stronger than other Scents and quicker,
26 As urg'd by more spirituous Liquor.
27 My self attend on the Deceas'd,
28 When all their Earthly Train's releas'd;
29 And in this Place of endless Quiet,
30 My Bus'ness is, to find them Diet;
31 To shew all sorts of Meats, and Salades,
32 Till I'm acquainted with their Palates;
33 But that once known, then less suffices.
34 Quoth he (and on his Crupper rises)
35 Thou Guardian of these lower Regions,
36 Thou Providor for countless Legions,
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37 Thou dark, but charitable Crony,
38 Far kinder than my Tisiphony,
39 Who of our Victuals thus art Thinking,
40 If thou hast Care too of our Drinking,
41 A Bumper fetch: Quoth she, a Halter,
42 Since nothing less thy Tone can alter,
43 Or break this Habit thou'st been getting,
44 To keep thy Throat in constant wetting.


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About this text

Title (in Source Edition): The Prevalence of Custom.
Themes: drink; marriage; vice
Genres: mock heroic; fable

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Source edition

Winchilsea, Anne Kingsmill Finch, Countess of, 1661-1720. Miscellany poems, on several occasions: Written by the Right Honble Anne, Countess of Winchilsea. London: printed for J. B. and sold by Benj. Tooke, William Taylor, and James Round, 1713, pp. 22-24. [8],390p. ; 8⁰. (ESTC T94539; Foxon pp. 274-5; OTA K076314.000) (Page images digitized from a copy in the Bodleian Library [Buxton 100].)

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The text has been typographically modernized, but without any silent modernization of spelling, capitalization, or punctuation. The source of the text is given and all editorial interventions have been recorded in textual notes. Based on the electronic text originally produced by the TCP project, this ECPA text has been edited to conform to the recommendations found in Level 5 of the Best Practices for TEI in Libraries version 4.0.0.

Other works by Anne Finch (née Kingsmill), countess of Winchilsea