[Page 104][Page 105]
FABLE  XXXI.
The Universal Apparition.
1 A Rake, by ev'ry passion rul'd,
2 With ev'ry vice his youth had cool'd;
3 Disease his tainted blood assails,
4 His spirits droop, his vigor fails,
5 With secret ills at home he pines,
6 And, like infirm old-age, declines.
7 As, twing'd with pain, he pensive sits,
8 And raves, and prays, and swears by fits,
9 A ghastly phantome, lean and wan,
10 Before him rose, and thus began.
11 My name perhaps hath reach'd your ear;
12 Attend, and be advis'd by Care.
13 Nor love, nor honour, wealth nor power
14 Can give the heart a cheerful hour,
15 When health is lost. Be timely wise:
16 With health all taste of pleasure flies.
17 Thus said, the phantome disappears.
18 The wary counsel wak'd his fears;
19 He now from all excess abstains,
20 With physick purifies his veins;
21 And to procure a sober life
22 Resolves to venture on a wife.
23 But now again the sprite ascends,
24 Where'er he walks his ear attends,
25 Insinuates that beauty's frail,
26 That perseverance must prevail,[Page 106]
27 With jealousies his brain inflames,
28 And whispers all her lovers names;
29 In other hours she represents
30 His houshold charge, his annual rents,
31 Encreasing debts, perplexing duns,
32 And nothing for his younger sons.
33 Strait all his thought to gain he turns,
34 And with the thirst of lucre burns;
35 But when possest of fortune's store,
36 The spectre haunts him more and more,
37 Sets want and misery in view,
38 Bold thieves and all the murd'ring crew,
39 Alarms him with eternal frights,
40 Infests his dream, or wakes his nights.
41 How shall he chase this hideous guest?
42 Power may perhaps protect his rest;
43 To pow'r he rose. Again the sprite
44 Besets him morning, noon and night,
45 Talks of ambition's tott'ring seat,
46 How envy persecutes the great,[Page 107]
47 Of rival hate, of treach'rous friends,
48 And what disgrace his fall attends.
49 The court he quits to fly from Care,
50 And seeks the peace of rural air;
51 His groves, his fields amus'd his hours,
52 He prun'd his trees, he rais'd his flowers;
53 But Care again his steps pursues,
54 Warns him of blasts, of blighting dews,
55 Of plund'ring insects, snails and rains,
56 And droughts that starve the labour'd plains.
57 Abroad, at home, the spectre's there:
58 In vain we seek to fly from Care.
59 At length he thus the ghost addrest.
60 Since thou must be my constant guest,
61 Be kind, and follow me no more,
62 For Care by right should go before.
About this text
Author: John Gay
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Gay, John, 1685-1732. FABLES. By Mr. GAY. London: Printed for J. Tonson and J. Watts, MDCCXXVII., 1727, pp. 104-107. ,173,p.: ill.; 4°. (ESTC T13818)
Typography, spelling, capitalization, and punctuation have been cautiously modernized. The source of the text is given and all significant editorial interventions have been recorded in textual notes. 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 John Gay
- [FABLE ] INTRODUCTION TO THE FABLES. The Shepherd and the Philosopher. ()
- FABLE  I. The Lyon, the Tyger, and the Traveller. ()
- FABLE  II. The Spaniel and the Cameleon. ()
- FABLE  III. The Mother, the Nurse, and the Fairy. ()
- FABLE  IV. The Eagle, and the Assembly of Animals. ()
- FABLE  V. The Wild Boar and the Ram. ()
- FABLE  VI. The Miser and Plutus. ()
- FABLE  VII. The Lyon, the Fox, and the Geese. ()
- FABLE  VIII. The Lady and the Wasp. ()
- FABLE  IX. The Bull and the Mastiff. ()
- FABLE  X. The Elephant and the Bookseller. ()
- FABLE  XI. The Peacock, the Turkey, and Goose. ()
- FABLE  XII. Cupid, Hymen, and Plutus. ()
- FABLE  XIII. The tame Stag. ()
- FABLE  XIV. The Monkey who had seen the World. ()
- FABLE  XV. The Philosopher and the Pheasants. ()
- FABLE  XVI. The Pin and the Needle. ()
- FABLE  XVII. The Shepherd's Dog and the Wolf. ()
- FABLE  XVIII. The Painter who pleased No body and Every body. ()
- FABLE  XIX. The Lyon and the Cub. ()
- FABLE  XX. The Old Hen and the Cock. ()
- FABLE  XXI. The Rat-catcher and Cats. ()
- FABLE  XXII. The Goat without a beard. ()
- FABLE  XXIII. The Old Woman and her Cats. ()
- FABLE  XXIV. The Butterfly and the Snail. ()
- FABLE  XXV. The Scold and the Parrot. ()
- FABLE  XXVI. The Cur and the Mastiff. ()
- FABLE  XXVII. The Sick Man and the Angel. ()
- FABLE  XXVIII. The Persian, the Sun and the Cloud. ()
- FABLE  XXIX. The Fox at the point of death. ()
- FABLE  XXX. The Setting-dog and the Partridge. ()
- FABLE  XXXII. The two Owls and the Sparrow. ()
- FABLE  XXXIII. The Courtier and Proteus. ()
- FABLE  XXXIV. The Mastiffs. ()
- FABLE  XXXV. The Barley-mow and the Dung-hill. ()
- FABLE  XXXVI. Pythagoras and the Countryman. ()
- FABLE  XXXVII. The Farmer's Wife and the Raven. ()
- FABLE  XXXVIII. The Turkey and the Ant. ()
- FABLE  XXXIX. The Father and Jupiter. ()
- FABLE  XL. The two Monkeys. ()
- FABLE  XLI. The Owl and the Farmer. ()
- FABLE  XLII. The Jugglers. ()
- FABLE  XLIII. The Council of Horses. ()
- FABLE  XLIV. The Hound and the Huntsman. ()
- FABLE  XLV. The Poet and the Rose. ()
- FABLE  XLVI. The Cur, the Horse, and the Shepherd's Dog. ()
- FABLE  XLVII. The Court of Death. ()
- FABLE  XLVIII. The Gardener and the Hog. ()
- FABLE  XLIX. The Man and the Flea. ()
- FABLE  L. The Hare and many Friends. ()