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The Father and Jupiter.

1 The Man to Jove his suit preferr'd;
2 He begg'd a wife; his prayer was heard.
3 Jove wonder'd at his bold addressing.
4 For how precarious is the blessing!
5 A wife he takes. And now for heirs
6 Again he worries heav'n with prayers.
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7 Jove nods assent. Two hopeful boys
8 And a fine girl reward his joys.
9 Now more solicitous he grew,
10 And set their future lives in view;
11 He saw that all respect and duty
12 Were paid to wealth, to power, and beauty.
13 Once more, he cries, accept my prayer,
14 Make my lov'd progeny thy care:
15 Let my first hope, my fav'rite boy,
16 All fortune's richest gifts enjoy.
17 My next with strong ambition fire,
18 May favour teach him to aspire,
19 'Till he the step of power ascend,
20 And courtiers to their idol bend.
21 With ev'ry grace, with ev'ry charm
22 My daughter's perfect features arm.
23 If Heav'n approve, a father's blest.
24 Jove smiles, and grants his full request.
25 The first, a miser at the heart,
26 Studious of ev'ry griping art,
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27 Heaps hoards on hoards with anxious pain,
28 And all his life devotes to gain.
29 He feels no joy, his cares encrease,
30 He neither wakes nor sleeps in peace,
31 In fancy'd want, (a wretch compleat)
32 He starves, and yet he dares not eat.
33 The next to sudden honours grew,
34 The thriving art of courts he knew;
35 He reach'd the height of power and place,
36 Then fell, the victim of disgrace.
37 Beauty with early bloom supplies
38 His daughter's cheek, and points her eyes:
39 The vain coquette each suit disdains,
40 And glories in her lovers pains.
41 With age she fades, each lover flies,
42 Contemn'd, forlorn, she pines and dies.
43 When Jove the father's grief survey'd,
44 And heard him Heav'n and Fate upbraid,
45 Thus spoke the God. By outward show
46 Men judge of happiness and woe:
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47 Shall ignorance of good and ill
48 Dare to direct th' eternal will?
49 Seek virtue; and of that possest,
50 To Providence resign the rest.


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About this text

Title (in Source Edition): FABLE [39] XXXIX. The Father and Jupiter.
Author: John Gay
Themes: animals
Genres: fable

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Source edition

Gay, John, 1685-1732. FABLES. By Mr. GAY. London: Printed for J. Tonson and J. Watts, MDCCXXVII., 1727, pp. 130-133. [14],173,[1]p.: ill.; 4°. (ESTC T13818)

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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.

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