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He has tympanies of business in his face,
And can forget men's names, with a great grace.
He will both argue, and discourse in oaths,
Both which are great : and laugh at ill-made clothes ;
That's greater, yet: to cry his own up neat.
He doth at meals, alone, his pheasant eat,
Which is main greatness; and at his still board,
He drinks to no man : that's, too, like a lord.
He keeps another's wife, which is a spice
Of solemn greatness; and he dares, at dice,
Blaspheme God greatly; or some poor hind beat,
That breathes in his dog's way : 9 and this is great.
Nay more, for greatness sake, he will be one
May hear my epigrams, but like of none.
Surly, use other arts, these only can
Style thee a most great fool, but no great man.

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say 'tis fit

ILTER, the most may admire thee, though

not I ;
And thou, right guiltless, may’st plead to it,

Why ?
For thy late sharp device.

I
All brains, at times of triumph, should run wit :
For then our water-conduits do run wine ;
But that's put in, thou'lt say. Why, so is thine.

9 That breathes in his dog's way.] Breathes (Whalley says) is intended to express what Shakspeare means when he describes such as 'breathe in their watering.'

There is no end to this nonsense, since Steevens first set it abroach. I have already relieved Shakspeare from the obloquy of so filthy a meaning (vol. ii. p. 32,) and to take away every possible plea for its being charged upon him again, I will now add the following decisive passage. The words of Shakspeare are: “They call drinking deep dying scarlet, and when you breathe in your watering,” (stop to take breath in your

XXX.

cold Hisoit wuld

To PERSON GUILTY.

UILTY, be wise; and though thou know'st

the crimes Be thine, I tax, yet do not own my rhymes : 'Twere madness in thee, to betray thy fame, And person to the world, ere I thy name.

XXXI.

ON BANKS THE USURER.

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ANKS feels no lameness of his knotty gout, D. His monies travel for him in and out :

And though the soundest legs go every day, He toils to be at hell, as soon as they.

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XXXII.

1

ON Sir John Roe.
SHAT two brave perils of the private sword

Could not effect, nor all the Furies do,
That self-divided Belgia did afford ;

What not the envy of the seas reach'd to, draught,) “they cry hem ! and bid you play it off.” The parallel passage follows:

“Fill Will his beaker, he will never flinch
To give a full quart pot the emptie pinch.
He'll looke unto your waters well enough,
And hath an eye that no man leaves a snuffe :
A pox of piece-meale drinking! William sayes,
Play it away; will have no stoppes and stayes;
Blown drink is odious,” &c.

S. Rowland, Sat. 6.
Jonson appears to have sincerely loved and lamented this ex-

1

The cold of Mosco, and fat Irish air,

His often change of clime, though not of mind, All could not work ; at home, in his repair,

Was his blest fate, but our hard lot to find. Which shews, wherever death doth please t'appear, Seas, sérenes," swords, shot, sickness, all are there.

XXXIII.

TO THE SAME.

'LL not offend thee with a vain tear more, Glad-mention'd Roe; thou art but gone

before, Whither the world must follow : and I, now, Breathe to expect my When, and make my How.

cellent person,

of whose actions I can give the reader no account He seems to have followed the business of a merchant-venturer at first, like his father, and subsequently, in imitation of many gallant spirits in those days, to have embarked in the wars of the Netherlands. He died, however, in peace, at home.

Among Whalley's loose papers, I find another memorial of our author's regard for him. It seems to be taken from the blank leaf of a Persius, with which he had presented him. Why Whalley chose to give us vile English instead of copying the elegant Latin of the original, I cannot tell.

"To sir John Roe, his most approved friend, this his love and delight, the most learned of satirists, PERSIUS, with a most learned commentary, is consecrated by Ben. Jonson, who willingly, deservedly, gives and dedicates it. Nor is a parent more to be preferred by me than a friend.”

Seas, serenes, &c.] i.e. a blast of warm air; a blight, or mildew, vol. iii. p. 248. The most miserable pun on record, (which yet was repeated at every table in Paris,) was made by the marquis of Bievre on this word. Mad. d'Angivilliers had a favourite serin, (a canary-bird,) and the marquis, on coming into her drawing-room, gravely put on his hat, with this notable piece of wit: “I beg your ladyship's pardon-but I am afraid of the serein !” The marquis was a great reader of Joe Miller-so were not the French in general : his second wit therefore was in high request.

2

Which if most gracious heaven grant like thine,
Who wets my grave, can be no friend of mine.

XXXIV.

OF DEATH.

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E that fears death, or mourns it, in the just,

Shews of the Resurrection little trust.

XXXV.

To KING JAMES.

HO would not be thy subject, James, t' obey
A prince that rules by example, more than

sway?

Whose manners draw, more than thy powers con

strain. And in this short time of thy happiest reign, Hast purg’d thy realms, as we have now no cause Left us of fear, but first our crimes, then laws. Like aids 'gainst treasons who hath found before, And than in them, how could we know God more? First thou preserved wert our king to be; And since, the whole land was preservd for thee."

3 Who wets my grave, &c.] This is a beautiful little valediction; there is a simple grandeur of thought, a high moral dignity in all the addresses of Jonson, (for there are more to come) to this distinguished family, which does no less honour to them than to the poet.

4 And since the whole land was preserv'd for thee.] This epigram was probably written in 1604, as the last allusion is to the plague, which broke out in London soon after the death of Elizabeth. The “ treasons" spoken of just above, are probably those of the Gowries and sir Walter Raleigh.

XXXVI.

TO THE GHOST OF MARTIAL.

ARTIAL, thou gav’st far nobler epigrams

To thy Domitian, than I can my, James ;

But in my royal subject I pass thee,
Thou flatter'dst thine, mine cannot flatter'd be.

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O cause, nor client fat, will Cheveril leese,
But as they come, on both sides he takes

fees,
And pleaseth both : for while he melts his grease,
For this; that wins, for whom he holds his peace.

ON

XXXVIII.

To PERSON GUILTY.

5

UILTY, because I bade you late be wise,
And to conceal your ulcers, did advise,
You laugh when you are touch'd, and long

before
Any man else, you clap your hands and roar,
And cry, good ! good! this quite perverts my sense,
And lies so far from wit, 'tis impudence.
Believe it, Guilty, if you lose your shame,
I'll lose my modesty, and tell your name.

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• Guilty, because I bade you late be wise.] See Epig. XXX. This is an excellent epigram; replete with strong sense, and keen observation of mankind.

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