[Page 56]

ELEGY, On a favourite DOG, suppos'd to be poison'd.

To Miss Molly Clayton.

1 O All ye spotted brutes that guard the Fair,
2 Lie on their laps, or wait upon their chair;
3 Ye Cupids, Cloes, Phillis's, or Shocks,
4 Ye who defend the houshold, or the flocks:
5 But chiefly ye in ladies 'chambers nurst,
6 Who leap at sweetmeats, snifting at a crust,
7 Came and bemoan poor Sparky's poison'd dust.
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8 Hither your little whimp'ring offspring lead,
9 And join the dismal howl, to wail him dead.
10 Shame on the wretch, who dealt the deadly draught!
11 Thou human brute! whose very name's a blot.
12 O that kind fate would poison all thy life
13 With some smart vixen, very much a Wife!
14 And when the end of thy chastisement's near,
15 May'st thou want ratsbane then to poison Her.
16 Whilst the cold drug was struggling hard with life,
17 And sense awhile maintain'd the doubtful strife;
18 With much of gratitude and sorrow mix'd,
19 On me his scarce-perceiving eyes he fixt:
20 Then to these arms with stagg'ring steps did haste,
21 There, where he oft had slept, to sleep his last.
22 The tear was vain; nor will I blush to own
23 A heart of softer workmanship than stone:
24 Yet lest the wise my weakness should reprove,
25 The tear I dropt to gratitude, and love.
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26 Now die, O Tabby! all ye fav'rites fall!
27 Dogs, parrots, squirrels, monkeys, beaus and all!
28 For thou wert all those tender names in one;
29 That thou could'st yet survive! but thou art gone.
30 Ah! what avails thy honours now to trace!
31 Thy high descent, thy ancient royal race!
32 Thy length of ears proclaim'd the gen'rous seed,
33 Hereditary heir of Charles's breed;
34 And had not William chang'd the face of things,
35 Mightst still have bark'd beneath the throne of kings.
36 No more shalt thou, with each revolving day,
37 Expect the warm repast of milk and tea;
38 Nor when the balmy slumber I prolong,
39 Ascend the stairs, and wake me with thy tongue:
40 No more shall thy discerning nose descry
41 They sav'ry steams, that speak the dinner nigh.
42 Soon didst thou wake, and ev'ry cat assail,
43 Then, strutting, shake the honours of thy tail.
44 With look importunate, and begging face,
45 Scarce could he wait the tediousness of grace:
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46 But that perform'd, he barks exulting round;
47 The cats are scar'd, the neighb'ring roofs resound.
48 Whether by instinct, or by reason taught,
49 His just conclusions spoke the use of thought.
50 When smart toupèe exhal'd the soft perfume,
51 He smelt a Beau, and sullen left the room.
52 Or when the ruddy 'Squire grew loud and vain,
53 And practis'd all the noises of the plain;
54 With sneaking step, at distance he'd retire,
55 Then mount his tail, and ev'n out-bark the well-mouth'd' Squire.
56 But most the Fool was his invet'rate foe,
57 That thing all over talk, all over beau:
58 Well he distinguish'd 'twixt brocade and sense,
59 And growl'd contempt beneath the sev'n-fold fence.
60 O ever-watchful! ever-faithful guard!
61 No more shall I thy gratitude reward.
62 That cream, that bread and butter soak'd in tea,
63 Is now lapp'd up as puss's lawful fee:
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64 While she, proud vixen! often seems to say,
65 "Peace to his shade! each dog must have his day."
66 Yet Thou, his mistress once, and late his friend,
67 Awhile the softly-falling tear suspend:
68 And think, whene'er your Lark shall be no more,
69 How vain are tears, since Spark was wept before.
70 Or rather, how uncertain life's short date,
71 Since ev'n your fav'rites must submit to fate.
72 But could your smile, which sure gives life to all,
73 Back from the grave his much-lov'd form recal;
74 Then should these hands the welcome office pay,
75 To wipe the dust from his reviving clay:
76 With pleasure guard him from a world of ill,
77 And aid his vengeance at the pois'ner's heel
78 Ah! smile then; try, exert your saving pow'r!
79 Be Spark your present now, as once before.


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Title (in Source Edition): ELEGY, On a favourite DOG, suppos'd to be poison'd. To Miss Molly Clayton.
Author: Mary Jones
Themes: manners; animals; death
Genres: heroic couplet; elegy; mock elegy
References: DMI 23681

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Jones, Mary, d. 1778. Miscellanies in Prose and Verse. By Mary Jones. Oxford: Printed; and delivered by Mr. Dodsley in Pall-Mall, Mr. Clements in Oxford, and Mr. Frederick in Bath, MDCCL., 1750, pp. 56-60. vi,[1],xlv,[1],405p. (ESTC T115196) (Page images digitized from a copy in the Bodleian Library [Harding C 1723].)

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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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