[Page 298]


1 ARTIST, who underneath my table
2 Thy curious texture hast display'd;
3 Who, if we may believe the fable,
4 Wert once a fair ingenious maid:
5 Insidious, restless, watchful spider,
6 Fear no osficious damsel's broom,
7 Extend thy artful fabric wider,
8 And spread thy banners round my room.
9 Swept from the rich man's costly ceiling,
10 Thou'rt welcome to my homely roof;
11 Here may'st thou find a peaceful dwelling,
12 And undisturb'd attend thy woof.
13 Whilst I thy wond'rous fabric stare at,
14 And think on hapless poet's fate;
15 Like thee confin'd to lonely garret,
16 And rudely banish'd rooms of state.
17 And as from out thy tortur'd body
18 Thou draw'st thy slender string with pain,
19 So does he labour, like a noddy,
20 To spin materials from his brain.
[Page 299]
21 He for some fluttering tawdry creature,
22 That spreads her charms before his eye;
23 And that's a conquest little better
24 Than thine o'er captive butterfly.
25 Thus far 'tis plain we both agree,
26 Perhaps our deaths may better shew it;
27 'Tis ten to one but penury
28 Ends both the spider and the poet.


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About this text

Title (in Source Edition): On a SPIDER.
Themes: advice; moral precepts; animals; poetry; literature; writing
References: DMI 12631

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Source edition

Dodsley, Robert, 1703-1764. A Collection of Poems in Six Volumes. By Several Hands. Vol. VI. London: printed by J. Hughs, for R. and J. Dodsley, 1763 [1st ed. 1758], pp. 298-299. 6v.: music; 8⁰. (ESTC T131163; OTA K104099.006) (Page images digitized by the Eighteenth-Century Poetry Archive from a copy in the archive's library.)

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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.