« ZurückWeiter »
Our nation, with united interest blest,
THE YEAR OF WONDERS, 1666.
AN HISTORICAL POEM;
THE PROGRESS AND VARIOUS SUCCESSES OF OUR
NAVAL WAR WITH HOLLAND
UNDER THE CONDUCT OF HIS HIGHNESS PRINCE RUPERT AND
HIS GRACE THE DUKE OF ALBEMARLE,
AND DESCRIBING THE FIRE OF LONDON.
Multum interest res poscat, an honines latius imperare velint.'
Trajan Imperator ad Plin. (PLIN. Epist. x. 33.]
•Urbs antiqua ruit, multos dominata per annos.'-VIRG. (Æn. ii. 363.]
TO THE METROPOLIS OF GREAT BRITAIN,
THE MOST RENOWNED AND LATE FLOURISHING CITY OF LONDON, IN ITS
REPRESENTATIVES THE LORD MAYOR AND COURT OF ALDERMEN,
THE SHERIFFS AND COMMON COUNCIL OF IT.
As perhaps I am the first who ever presented a work of this 5 nature to the metropolis of any nation, so is it likewise consonant to justice, that he who was to give the first example of such a dedication should begin it with that City which has set a pattern to all others of true loyalty, invincible courage, and unshaken constancy. Other cities have been praised 10 for the same virtues, but I am much deceived if any have so dearly purchased their reputation: their fame has been won them by cheaper trials than an expensive though necessary war, a consuming pestilence, and a more consuming fire. To submit your selves with that humility to the judgments 15 of Heaven, and at the same time to raise your selves with that vigour above all human enemies; to be combated at once from above and from below; to be struck down and to triumph : I know not whether such trials have been ever paralleled in any nation, the resolution and successes of them 20 never can be. Never had prince or people more mutual reason to love each other, if suffering for each other can endear affection. You have come together a pair of matchless lovers, through many difficulties; he, through a long exile, various traverses of fortune, and the interposition of 25 many rivals, who violently ravished and withheld you from him; and certainly you have had your share in sufferings. But Providence has cast upon you want of trade, that you might appear bountiful to your country's necessities; and the rest of your afflictions are not more the effects of God's 30 displeasure (frequent examples of them having been in the reign of the most excellent princes) than occasions for the