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His fortune squander'd, leaves his virtue bare Your power is fixt, your farne through time con. To every bribe, and blind to every snare:
vey'd, Clodio for bread his indolence must quit,
And Britain Europe's queen-if I am paid." Or turn a soldier, or commence a wit.
A statesman has bis answer in a tree; Such heroes have we! all, but life, they stake; Sir, such a genius is beyond all price; How must Spain tremble, and the German shake! What man can pay for this?"-Away be turns : Such writers have we! all, but sense, they print; His work is folded, and bis bosoan burns: E'en George's praise, is dated from the Mint. His patron he will patronise no more; In arms contemptible, in arts profane,
But rushes like a tempest out of door. Such swords, such pens. disgrace a monarch's reign. Lost is the patriot, and extinct his name! Reform your lives before you thus aspire,
Out comes the piece, another, and the same; And steal (for you can steal) celestial fire.
For A, his magic pen erokes an 0. 0! the just contrast ! 0! the beauteous strife! And turns the tide of Europe on the foe: 'T wixt their cool writings, and Pindaric life : He rams bis quill with scandal and with scoff; They write with phelgın, but then they live with But 't is so very foul, it won't go off: fire ;
Dreadful his thunders, while uoprinted, roar; They cheat the lender, and their works the buyer. But, when once publish'd, ther are heard do more. I reverence misfortune, not deride;
Thus distant bugbears fright; but, nearer draw, I pity poverty, but laugh at pride :
The block 's a block, and turns to mirth your are. For who so sad, but must some mirth ccnfess Can those oblige, whose beads and hearts are At gay Castruchio's miscellaneous dress?
such ? Though there's but one of the dull works he wrote, No; every party 's tainted by their touch. There's ten editions of his old lac'd coat,
Infected persons As each public place; These, Nature's commoners, who want a home, And none, or eneinies alone, embrace: Claim the wide world for their majestic dome; To the foul fiend their every passion's sold: They make a private study of the street ;
They love, and hate, extempore, for gold: And, looking full on every man they meet, What image of their fıry can we form? Run souse against his chaps; who stands amaz'd Dulness and rage, a puddle in a storm. To find they did not see, but only gaz'd.
Pest they in peace? If you are pleas'd to łuy, How must these bards be rapt into the skies? To suell your sails, like Lapland winds, they by: You need not read, you feel their ecstasies. Write they with rage? The tempest quickly tags;
Will they persist ? 'T' is madness ; Lintot, run, A state-Ulysses tames them with bis bags; See then confin'd—“), that's already done." Let him be what he will, Turk, Pagan, Jew; Most, as by leases, by the works they print, For Christian ministers of state are few. Have took, for life, po-se-sion of the Mint.
Behind the curtain lurks the fountain head, If you mistake, and pity these poor inen,
That pours his politics through pipes of lead; Est ulubris, they cry, and write again.
Which far and near ejaculate, and spout Such wits their nuisance manfully expose, O'er tea and coffee, poison to the roat : And then pronounce just judges Icarning's foes; But when they have bespatter'd all they may, O frail conclusion ! the reverse is true;
The statesinan thrours his filthy squirts away! If foes to learning, they'd be friends to you: With golden forceps, these, another takes, Treat them, ye judges ! with an honest scorn, And state elixirs of the vipers makes. And weed the cockle from the generous corn: The richest statesman wants wherewith to pay There's true good-nature in your disrespect; A servile scycophant, if well they weigh In justice to the good, the bad neglect:
How much it costs the wretch to be se base ; For iminoitality, if hardships plead,
Nor can the greatest powers enough disgrace, It is not theirs who write, but ours who read. Enough chustise, such prostitute applause,
But, O! what wisdomn can convince a fool, If well they weigh how much it stains their cause But that 't is dulness to conceive him dull?
But are our writers ever in the wrong? 'T is sad experience takes the censor's part, Does virtue ne'er seduce the venal tongue? Conviction, not from reason, but from smart. Yes; if well brib’d, for virtue's self they fight;
A virgin-author, recent from the press, Still in the wrong, though champions for the right: The sheets yet wet, applauds his great success; Whoe'er their crimes for interest only quit, Surveys them, reads them, takes their charnis to Sin on in virtue, and good deeds commit. bed,
Nought but inconstancy Britannia nieets, Those in his hand, and glory in his head :
And broken faith in their abandon'd sheets ; 'T is joy too great; a ferer of delight !
From the same hand how various is the page!
In vain advertisements the town o'erspread; How justly Proteus' transmigrations fit
As seldoin rises to the verge of sense ;
Now, by mad rage, transform'd into a flame, Of his immortal work displays the plan,
Which yet fit engines, well apply'd, can tame; And says, “Sir, I'm your friend; all fears dismiss; Now, on icomodest trash, the swine obscente Yuur glory, and my own, shall live by this; luvites the town to sup at Drury-lane ;
A dreadful lion, now he roars at
power, Which sends him to his brothers at the Tower;
All write at London ; shall the rage abate
Here, where it most should shine, the Muses' seat?
Where, mortal, or immortal, as they please,
Has not a royal patron' wisely strove
To woo the Muse in her Atheniao grove? When the brain's perish'd in a human head.
Added new strings to her harmonious shell, Yegrov'lling, trodden, whipt, stript, turncoat things, Let these instruct with truth's illustrious ray,
And given new tongues to those who spoke so well? Made up of venom, volumes, stains, and stings! Thrown from the tree of knowledge, like you,
Awake the world, and scare our owls away.
Mean while, O friend ! indulge me, if I give curst To scribble in the dust, was Snake the first.
Some needful precepts how to write, and live; What is the figure should in fact prove true ?
Serious should be an author's final views; It did in Elkenab', why not in you?
Who write for pure amusement, ne'er amuse. Poor Elkenah, all other changes past,
An author ! 'Tis a venerable name! For bread in Smithfield dragons hiss'd at last,
How few deserve it, and what numbers claim ! Spit streams of fire to make the butchers gape,
Unblest with sense above their peers refin'd, And found his manners suited to his shape :
Who shall stand up, dictators to mankind ? Such is the fate of talents misapply'd ;
Nay, who dare shine, if not in virtue's cause, So liv'd your prototype; and so he died.
That sole proprietor of just applause? Th'abandon'd manners of our writing train
Ye restless men, who pant for letter'd praise, May tempt mankind to think religion vain;
With whom would you wonsult to gain the bays ?But in their fate, their babit, and their mien,
With those great authors whose fam'd works you
read? That gods there are is eminently seen: Heaven stands absolv'd by vengeance on their pen,
'T is well : go, then, consult the laurel'd shade, And marks the murderers of fame from men:
What answer will the laurel'd shade return? Through meagre jaws they draw their venal breath, Hear it, and tremble! he commands you burn As ghastly as their brothers in Macbeth :
The noblest works bis envy'd genius writ, Their feet through faithless leather meet the dirt,
That boast of naught more excellent than wit. And oftener chang'd their principles than shirt.
If this be true, as 't is a truih most dread, The transient vestinent of these frugal men
Woe to the page which has not that 10 plead! Hastens to paper for our mirth again :
Fontaine and Charcer, dying, wish'd unwrote Too soon (O merry-melancholy fate!)
The sprightliest eiforts of their wanton thought: "They beg in rhyme, and warble through a grate :
Sidney and Waller, brightest sons of fame, The man lampoon'd forgets it at the sight;
Condemn the charm of ages to the fame ;
And in one point is all true wisdom cast,
Immortal wits, e'en dead, break Nature's laws,
Injurious still to virtue's sacred cause;
And their guilt growing, as their bodies rot,
(Revers'd ambition !) pant to be forgot. And Saturday's the learning of the week :
Thus ends your courted fame : does lucre then, These labouring wits, like paviers, mend our ways,
The sacred thirst of gold, betray your pen? With heavy, huge, repeated, fat essays;
In prose 't is blameable, in verse 't is worse, Ram their coarse nonsense down, though ne'er so
Provokes the Muse, extorts Apollo's curse;
His sacred influence nerer should be sold; And hem at every thump upon your scull:
'T is arrant simony to sing for gold: These stanch-bred writing hounds begin the cry,
"T is immortality should fire your mind; And honest folly echoes to the lie.
Scorn a less payınaster than all mankind. O how I laugh, when I a blockbead see,
If bribes ye seck. know this, ye writing tribe ! Thanking a villain for his prolity!
Who writes for viriue has the largest bribe: Who stretches out a most respectful ear,
All's on the party of the virtuous man; With snares for woodcocks in his holy leer :
The good will surely serve bim, if they can; It tickles through my soul to hear the cock's
The bad, when interest or ambition guide, Sincere encomium on his friend the for,
And 't is at once their interest and their pride :
But should both fail to take him to their care, Sole patron of his liberties and rights !
He boasts a greater friend, and both may spare. While graceless Reynard listens till he bites. As, when the trumpet sounds, th' o'erloaded
Letters to man uncommon light dispense;
And what is virtue, but superior sense? state Discharges all her poor and profligate ;
In parts and learning ye who place your pride, Crimes of all kinds dishonour'd weapons wield,
Your faults are crimes, your crimes are doubleAnd prisons pour their filth into the field;
dy'd. Thus Nature's refuse, and the dregs of men,
What is a scandal of the first renown,
But letter'd knaves, and atheists in a gown?
King George I.
'Tis harder far to please than give offence; Our age demands correctness; Addison
He that strikes out, and strikes not out the best, On those that o'er a page of Milton sleep :
Pours lustre in, and dignifies the rest : Nor in their dulness think to save your shame, Gire e'er so little, if what's right be there, True, these are fools; but wise men say the same. We praise for what you burn, and what you spare : Wits are a despicable race of men,
The part you burn smells sweet before the shrine, If they confine their talents to the pen;
And is as incense to the part divine. When the man shocks us, while the writer shines, Nor frequent write, though you can do it well; Our scorn in life, our envy in his lines.
Men may tvo of), though not too much, excel. Yet, proud of parts, with prudence some dispense, A few gowd works gain fame; more sink their price; And play the fool, because they 're men of sense. Mankind are fickle, and hate paying twice: What instances bleed recent in each thought, They granted you writ well: what can they more, Of men to ruin by their genius brought!
L'nless you let them praise for giving o'er ? Against their wills what numbers ruin hun,
Do boldly what you do; and let your page Purely through want of wit to be undone!
Smile, if it smiles, and if it rages, rage. Nature has shown, by making it so rare,
So faintly Lucius censures and cominends, That wit's a jewel which we need not wear. That Lucius has no foes, except bis friends. Of plain sound sense life's current coin is made; Let satire less engage you than applause ; With that we drive the most substantial trade. It shows a generous mind to wink at tlaws:
Prudence protects and guides us, wit betrays; Is genius yours? Be yours a glorious end, A splendid source of ill ten thousand ways; Be your king's, country's, truth's
, religion's friend; A certain snare to miseries immense ;
The public glory by your own beget;
Run nations, run posterity, in debt.
First hare that glory you presume to give.
Round your own fame the fatal splinters fly. As it is great to seize the golden prize
As the soft plume gives swiftness to the dart, Of place or power; but greater to despise. Good-breeding sends the satire to the beart. If still you languish for an author's name,
Painters and surgeons may the structure scan; Think private merit less than public fainc,
Genius and morals be with you the man: And fancy not to write is not to live;
Defaults in those alone should give offence; Deserve, and take, the great prerogative,
Who strikes the person, pleads his innocence. Brit ponder what it is; how dear 't will cost, My narrow-minded satire can't extend To write one pare which you may justly boast. To Codrus' form ; I'm not so much bis friend :
Sense may be good, yet not deserve the press ; Himself should publish that the world agree) Who write, an awful character profess;
Before his works, or in the pillory. The world as pupil of their wisdom clair,
Let him be black, fair, tall, short, thin, or fat, And for their stipend an immortal fame :
Dirty or clean, I find no theme in that. Nothing but what is solid or relin'd
Is that callid humour It bas this pretence, Should dare ask public amlience of mankind. "Tis neither virtue, breeding, wit, or sense.
Severely weigh your learning and your uit: Unless you boast the genius of a Swift, Keep down your pride by what is nobly writ: Beware of humour, the dull mogue's last shirt. No writer, fam'd in your own way, pass o'er; Can others write like you? Your task give o'er, Much trost example, but reflection more:
'T is printing what was publish'd long before. More had the antients art, they more had taught; If naught peculiar through your labours run, Which shows some work is left for inodern thought. They're duplicates, and twenty are but one.
This weigh'd perfection know; and, know Think frequently, think close, read nature, turn 'Toil, burn for that; but do not aim at more ; Men's manners o'er, and half your volumes burn; Abore, beneath it, the just limits fix;
To nurse with quick retlection be your strife, And zealously prefer four lines to six.
'Thoughts born from present objects, warm from life; Write, and re-write, blot out, and write again, When most unsought, such inspirations rise, And for its swiftness ne'er applaud pour pen. Slighteal by fouls, and cherish'd by the wise : Leave to the jockeys that Newmarket praise, Expect peculiar fame from these alone; Slow runis the Pegasus that wins the bays.
l'hese make an author, these are all your own. Much time for immortility to pay,
Life, like their Bibles, coully men turn v'er; Is just and wise; for less is throun away.
Hence unexperienc'd children of threescore. Time only can mature the labouring brain;
True, all men think of conrse, as all men dream; Time is the father, and the mida ife pam:
And if they slightly think, 't is much the same,
No work e'er gain'd true fame, or erer can,
But what did honour to the name of man. Crense no fault; though beautiful, 't will harm; Weighty the sulject, cogent the discourse, One fault shocks more tban twenty beau'ics charm. | Clear be the style, the very sound of force ;
EPISTLE TO SIR ROBERT WALPOLE.
517 Easy the conduct, simple the design,
As when the rapid Rhone, o'er swelling tides,
Te grace old Ocean's court, in triumph rides,
So thou shalt, bence, absorb each feeble ray,
Each dawn of meaning, in thy brighter day; And when your genius exquisitely shines,
Shalt like, or, where thou canst not like, excuse,
Since no mean interest shall profane the Muse,
Nor dattery taint the freedom of the friend.
When first a generous mind surveys the great,
“Who's this with nonsense, nonsense would re- Thinks, till he tries, 't is godlike to dispose,
But those who long the paths of state pave trod,
Which cramm’d, yet craving still, their gates beAnd darken reason with dogmatic rage ?
siege, As if, one tedious volume writ in rhyme,
'Tis easier far to give, than to oblige. In prose a duller could excuse the crime?
This of thy conduct seems the nicest part, Sure, next to writing, the most idle thing
The chief perfection of the statesman's art, Is gravely to harangue on what we sing.
To give to fair assent a fairer face, At that tribunal stands the writing tribe,
Or soften a refusal into grace :
But few there are that can be truly kind,
And while they make the fortune, lose the friend;
Still give, unthankd; still squander, not hestow; While snarlers strive with proud but fruitless pain, For great men want not, what to give, but how. To wound immortals, or to slay the slain.
The race of men that follow courts, 't is true, Sore prest with danger, and in awful dread Think all they get, and more than all, their due; Of twenty pamphlets level'd at my head,
Still ask, but ne'er consult their own deserts,
And measure by their interest, not their parts:
But ill become the thing they wish'd to be ;
More power, more favour in the great man's eyes;
And, when he gives them places, gives them parts.
May sell their favoar at too dear a rate;
And long attachment waits among the berd;
When no distinction, where distinction 's due,
When strong cabal constrains them to be just,
And makes them give at last-because they inust;
What hopes that men of real worth should prize,
What neither friendship gires, nor merit buys?
The man who justly o'er the whole presides,
His well-weigh'd choice with wise affection guides;
Knows when to stop with grace, and when ad
Nor gives through importunity or chance ;
When, safe on shore ourselves, we see the crowd
To drive the man of real worth to ask :
'T is hard for great men, rightly to bestow ; For friendship, sometimes, want of parts supplies, From hence so few are skill'd, in either case, The heart may furnish what the head denies. To ask with dignity, or give with grace,
Sometimes the great, seduc'd by love of parts, In awful ruin, like Rome's senate, fall, Consult our genius, and neglect our hearts; The prey and worship of the wondering Gaul. Pleas'd with the glittering sparks that genius flings, No doubt, to genius some reward is due, They lift us, towering on their eagle's wings, (Excluding that, were satirizing you ;) Mark out the flights by which themselves begun, But yet, believe thy undesigning friend, And teach our dazzled eyes to bear the sun; When truth and genius for thy choice contend, Till we forget the hand that made us great, Though both have weight when in the balance cast, And grow to envy, not to emulate :
Let probity be first, and parts the last. To emulate, a generous warmth implies,
On these foundations if thou dar'st be great, To reach the virtues, that make great men rise; And check the growth of folly and deceit; But envy wears a mean malignant face,
When party rage shall droop through length of days, And aims not at their virtues--but their place. And calumpy be ripen'd into praise,
Such to oblige, how rain is the pretence ! Then future times shall to thy worth allow When every favour is a fresh offence,
That fame, which envy would call flattery now. By which superior power is still imply'd,
Thus far my zeal, though for the task unfit, And, while it helps ineir fortune, hurts their pride. Has pointed out the rocks where others split; Slight is the hate, neglect or hardships breed; By that inspir’d, though stranger to the Nine, But those who hate from en y, hate indeed. And negligent of any fame—but thine, “Since su pe plex'd the choice, whom shall we I take the friendly, but superfluous part; trust?"
You act from nature what I teach from art.
THE OLD MAN'S RELAPSE.
OCCASIONED BY THE FOREGOING EPISTLE. To ibink that knaves can be of real use.
The man, who contradicts the public voice, And strives to dignify a worthless choice,
---Sopitos suscitat ignes. VIRG. Attempts a lask that on that choice reflects, And leads us light to point out new defects. From man's too curious and impatient sight, One worthless man, that gains what he pretends, The future, Heaven involves in thickest night. Disgusts a thousand unpretending friends : Credit gray hairs: though freedom much we boast, And since no art can make a counterpass,
Some least perform, what they determine most. Or add the weight of gold to mimic brass,
What sudden changes our resolves betray! When princes to bad ore their image join,
To morrow is a satire on to day, They more debase the stamp, than raise the coin. And shows its weakness. Whom shall men believe,
Be thine the care, true merit to reward, When constantly themselves, themselves deceive ? And gain the good-nor will that task be hard; Souls form’d alike so quick by nature blend,
Long bad l bid my once-lov’d Muse adieu ; An honest man is more than half thy friend.
You warm old age; my passion burns anew. Hiin, no inean views, or haste to rise, shall
How sweet your verse! how great your force of mind!
What power of words! what skill in dark mankind! sway, Thy choice to sully, or thy trust betray :
Polite the conduct; generous the design; Ainbition, here, shall at due distance stand;
And beauty files, and strength sustains, each line, Nor is wit dangerous in an honest hand :
Thus Mars and Venus are, once more, beset;
Your wit has caught them in its golden net.
But what strikes home with most exalted grace
And, where worth shines, its humbled crest to bend, Let others barter servile faith for goll,
With zeal devoted to that godlike end. His friendship is not to be bought or sold :
When we discern so rich a vein of sense, Fierce opposition he, upinov'd, shall face, Through the smooth flow of purest eloquence; Modest in favour, daring in disgrace,
T is like the limpid streams of Tagus rollid To share thy adverse fate alone, pretend; O'er boundless wealth, o'er shining beds of gold. In power, a servant; out of power, a friend. But whence so finish’d, so refin'd a piece ? Here pour thy favours in an ample food,
The tongue denies it to old Rome and Greece; Indulge thy boundless thirst of doing good :
The genius bids the moderns doubt their claim, Nor think that good to him alone contin'd; And slowly take possession of the fame. Such to oblige, is to oblige mankind.
But I nor know, nor care, by whom 't was writ, If thus thy mighty master's steps thou trace, Enough for me that 't is froin human wit, The brave to cherish, and the good to grace; That sooths my pride: all glory in the pon Long shalt thou stand from rage and factiou free, Which has done honour to the race of men, And teach us long to lose the king, through thee: Orjall a victim dingerous to the foe,
But this have others done; a like applause And make bim tremble when he strikes the blow;
An ancient and a modern Horace draws'. While honour, gratitude, affection join
But they to glory by degrees arose, To deck thy cluse, and brighten thy decline;
Meridian lustre you at once disclose. (Nu-trious duom!) the great, when thus displac'd, With friendship guarded, and with virtue gracid,