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Decay of Parts, alas! we all muft feel
5 Why now, this moment, don't I see you steal? "T'is all from Horace; Horace long before ye Said, “Tories call'd him Whig, and Whigs a Tory;" And taught his Romans, in much better metre, " To laugh at Fools who put their trust in Peter."
But Horace, Sir, was delicate, was nice ; Bubo observes, he lash'd no sort of Vice: Horace would say, Sir Billy fercu'd the Crown, Blunt could do Bus’ness, H-ggins knew the Town ; In Sappho touch the Failings of the Sex, 15 In rev'rend Bishops note some small Negleits, And own, the Spaniard did a waggisl thing, Who cropt our Ears, and sent them to the King. His fly, polite, infinuating style Could pleafe at Court, and make AUGUSTUS smile:
P. Sir what I write, should be correctly writ,
Beldes, you grow too moral for a Wit..
VER. 12. Bubo observes,] Some guilty person very fond of making such an observation.
VER, 14. H-ggins] Formerly Jaylor of the Fleet prison, enriched himself by many exactions, for which he was tried ané expelled,
VIR. 18. Who cropt our Ears,] Said to be executed by the Captain of a Spanish ship on one Jenkins a Captain of an Eng.
He cut off his ears, and bid him carry them to the King his master,
An artful Manager, that crept between
P. See Sir Ro ERT!humi
VER, 22. Screen.]
Omne vafer vitium ridenti Flaecus amico
Tangit, et admiffus circum præcordia ludit Perfo Ibid. Screen.] A metaphor peculiarly appropriated to a certain person in power.
VER, 24. Patriots there are, etc.] This appellation was genes rally given to those in opposition to the Court. Though some of them (which our author hints at) had views too mean and interested to deserve that name.
VER. 26. The Great man] A phrase, by common use, appropriated to the first minifter,
VER.31. Seen bim, uncumber'd] These two verses were origin. ally in the poem, though omitted in all the firft editions.
VER. 34. wbat be thinks mankind.] This request seems fomewhat abfurd: but nct more so than the principle it refers tcx That great Minister, it seems, thought all mankind Rogues ; and that every one had his price, It was usually given as a
Come, come, at all I laugh he laughs, no doubt; The only diff'rence is, I dare laugh out.
F. Why yes: with Scripture Itill you may be free; A Horse-laugh, if you please, at Honefty; A Joke on Jekyl, or some odd Old Whig Who never chang'd his Principle, or Wig:
40 A Patriot is a Fool in ev'ry age, Whom all Lord Chamberlains allow the Stage : These nothing hurts; they keep their Fashion ftill, And wear their strange old Virtue, as they will. If any
" Who's the Man, so near 45 “ His Prince, that writes in Verse, and has his ear?” and you
proof of his penetration, and extensive knowledge of the world, Others, perhaps would think it an instance of a narrow underftanding, that, from a few of Rochefaucault's maxims, and the corrupt practice of those he commonly conversed with, would thus boldly pronounce upon the character of his Species. It is certain, that a Keeper of Newgate, who should make the fame conclufion, would be heartily laughed at.
VÉR. 37. Why yes: with Scripture etc.] A scribler, whose only chance for reputation is the falling in with the fashion, is apt to employ this infamous expedient for the preservation of his fleeting existence. But a true Genius could not do a foolisher thing, or sooner defeat his own aim. The fage Boileau used to say on this occafion, “ Une ouvrage severe peut bien plaire
aux libertins ; mais un ouvrage trop libre ne plaira jamais “ aux personnes severes." VER.
R. 39. A Joke on Jekyl ] Sir Joseph Jekyl, Master of the Rolls, a true Whig in his principles, and a man of the utmat probity. He sometimes voted against the Court, which drew upon him the laugh here described of ONE who bestowed it equally upon Religion and Honesty. He died a few months after the publication of this poem.
Why, answer, LYTTELTON, and I'll engage.
Laugh then at any, but at Fools or Foes ;
mend not those.
54 Laugh at your friends, and, if your Friends are sore, So much the better, you may laugh the more, ' To Vice and Folly to confine the jest, Sets half the world, God knows, against the rest; Did not the Sneer of more impartial men At Sense and Virtue, balance all agen.
60 Judicious Wits spread wide the Ridicule, And charitably comfort Knave and Fool.
P. Dear Sir, forgive the Prejudice of Youth: Adieu Distinction, Satire, Warmth, and Truth!
Ver. 47. Wby, answer, Lyttelton,] George Lyttelton, Secretary to the Prince of Wales, distinguished both for his writings and speeches in the spirit of Liberty.
VER. 51. Sejanus, Wolsey,] The one the wicked minister of Tiberius: the other, of Henry VIII. The writers against the Court usually bestowed these and other odious names on the Minister, without distinction, and in the most injurious manner. See Dial. II. ver. 137.
Ibid. Fleury,] Cardinal: and Minister to Louis XV. It was a Patriot-fashion, at that time, to cry up his wisdom and honesty.
Come, harmless Characters that no one hit;
VIR. 66. Henley-Ofborn,] See them in their places in the Dunciad.
VER. 69. Tbe gracions Dere] Alludes to fome court fermons, and florid panegyrical speeches : ' particularly one very full of puerilities and flatteries; which afterwards got into an address in the fame pretty style; and was lastly served op in an Epitaph, between Latin and Englifh, published by its author.
VER. 78. Nation's Sense;] The cant of Politics at that time.
VER, 80. Carolina.] Queen consort to King George II. She died in 1737. Her death gave occasion, as is observed above, to many indifcreet and mean performances unworthy of her memory, whose last moments manifefted the utmost courage and resolution.