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Fr. Alas! alas! pray end what you began, And write next winter more Effays on Man.

VARIATIONS.

VER. 255, in the MS.

Quit, quit these themes, and write Effays on Man.

255

NOTES.

VER. ult.) This was the laft poem of the kind printed by our author, with a refolution to publifh no more; but to enter thus, in the most plain and folemn manner he could, a fort of PROTEST against that infuperable corruption and depravity of manners, which he had been fo unhappy as to live to fee. Could he have hoped to have amended any, he had continued thofe attacks; but bad men were grown fo fhameless and fo pow. erful, that Ridicule was become as unfafe as it was ineffectual, The Poem raised him, as he knew it would, fome enemies; but he had reafon to be fatisfied with the approbation of good men, and the teftimony of his own conscience. P.

ON

Receiving from the Right Hon. the Lady FRANCES SHIRLEY

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YES, I beheld th'Athenian Queen

Defcend in all her fober charins;

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And take (fhe faid, and finil'd ferene) "Take at this hand celestial arins :

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A STANDISH and TWO PENS.

Secure the radiant weapons wield; This golden lance fhall guard Defert, "And if a Vice dares keep the field, "This fteel fhall ftab it to the heart."

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Aw'd, on my bended knees I fell,

Receiv'd the weapons of the sky; And dipt them in the fable Well, The fount of Fame or Infamy.

301

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"What Well? what Weapon? (Flavia cries) “A standish, steel and golden pen!

"It came from Bertrand's, not the fkies; "I gave it you to write again.

The Lady Frances Shirley) A Lady whofe great Merit Mr. Pope took a real pleasure in celebrating.

NOTES.

1 A famous toy-fhop at Bath.

“But, Friend, take heed whom you attack:
"You'll bring a Houfe (I mean of Peers)
“Red, Blue, and Green, nay white and black,
and all about your ears.

"L

*

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"You'd write as finooth again on glass, "And run, on ivory, fo glib,

"As not to stick at fool or afs 2,

"Nor ftop a Flattery or Fib 3.

"Athenian Queen! and fober charms !
"I tell ye, fool, there's nothing in't:
""Tis Venus 4, Venus gives these arms;
"In Dryden's Virgil fee the print 5.

"Come, if you'll be a quiet foul,

"That dares tell neither Truth nor Lies 6, "I'll lift you in the harmlets roll

"Of those that fing of these poor eyes."

2 The Dunciad.

3 The Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot.

4 Such toys being the ufual prefents from lovers to their miftreffes.

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NOTES.

5 When she delivers Aneas a fuit of heavenly armour.

6 i. e. If you have neither the courage to write Satire, nor the application to attempt an Epic poem. He was then meditating on such a work.

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