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Heav'n calls us diff'rent ways, on these bestows
One proper gift, another grants to thofe : 41
Not every man's oblig'd to fell his store,
And give up all his fubftance to the poor;
Such as are perfect, may, I can't deny;
But, by your leaves, Divines, so am not I.


Full many a Saint, fince firft the world began, Liv'd an unfpotted maid, in fpite of man: Let fuch (a God's name) with fine wheat be fed, And let us honeft wives eat barley bread. For me, I'll keep the poft affign'd by heav'n, 50 And ufe the copious talent it has giv'n: Let my good spouse pay tribute, do me right, And keep an equal reck'ning ev'ry night : His proper body is not his, but mine;

For fo faid Paul, and Paul's a found divine.


Know then, of those five husbands I have had, Three were just tolerable, two were bad. The three were old, but rich and fond befide, And toil'd most piteously to please their bride: But fince their wealth (the best they had) was



The reft, without much lofs, I could refign.
Sure to be lov'd, I took no pains to please,
Yet had more Pleasure far than they had Ease.

Presents flow'd in apace: with show'rs of gold,
They made their court, like Jupiter of old. 65
If I but fmil'd, a fudden youth they found,
And a new palfy seiz'd them when I frown'd.


Ye fov'reign wives! give ear, and understand,
Thus fhall ye speak, and exercise command.
For never was it giv'n to mortal man,
To lye fo boldly as we women can :
Forfwear the fact, tho' feen with both his eyes,
And call your maids to witness how he lies.

Hark, old Sir Paul! ('twas thus I us'd to say) 74
Whence is our neighbour's wife fo rich and gay
Treated, carefs'd, where'er she's pleas'd to roam--
I fit in tatters, and immur'd at home.

Why to her house doft thou so oft repair?
Art thou fo am'rous? and is the fo fair?
If I but fee a coufin or a friend,


Lord! how you fwell, and rage like any fiend!
But you reel home, a drunken beastly bear,
Then preach till midnight in your easy chair;
Cry, Wives are falfe, and every woman evil,
And give up all that's female to the devil.


If poor (you fay) she drains her husband's purse; If rich, fhe keeps her prieft, or fomething worse; If highly born, intolerably vain,

Vapours and pride by turns poffefs her brain,


Now gayly mad, now fourly fplenetic,


Freakish when well, and fretful when she's fick.

If fair, then chaste she cannot long abide,
By preffing youth attack'd on ev'ry fide:
If foul, her wealth the lufty lover lures,
Or elfe her wit fome fool-gallant procures,
Or else she dances with becoming grace,
Or shape excuses the defects of face.
There swims no goofe fo grey, but foon or late,
She finds some honest gander for her mate.



Horses (thou fay'ft) and affes men may try, And ring fufpected veffels ere they buy: But wives, a random choice, untry'd they take, They dream in courtship, but in wedlock wake; Then, nor till then, the veil's remov'd away, And all the woman glares in open day.


You tell me, to preserve your wife's good grace, Your eyes must always languish on my face, Your tongue with conftant flatt'ries feed my ear, And tag each sentence with, My life! my dear! If by ftrange chance, a modeft blush be rais'd, Be fure my fine complexion must be prais'd. III My garments always must be new and gay, And feasts still kept upon my wedding-day、

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Then must my nurse be pleas'd, and fav'rite maid;
And endless treats, and endless vifits paid, 115
To a long train of kindred, friends, allies;
All this thou fay'st, and all thou say'st are lies,

On Jenkin too you caft a fquinting eye:
What! can your 'prentice raise your jealoufy?
Fresh are his ruddy cheeks, his forehead fair, 120
And like the burnish'd gold his curling hair.
But clear thy wrinkled brow, and quit thy forrow,
I'd fcorn your'prentice, should you die to-morrow.

Why are thy chefts all lock'd? on what design? Are not thy worldly goods and treasure mine? 125 Sir, I'm no fool: nor fhall you, by St. John, Have goods and body to yourself alone. One you fhall quit, in fpite of both your eyes-I heed not, I, the bolts, the locks, the spies. If you had wit, you'd fay, "Go where you will,130 "Dear spouse, I credit not the tales they tell : "Take all the freedoms of a marry'd life; "I know thee for a virtuous, faithful wife." Lord! when you have enough, what need


How merrily foever others fare?

Tho' all the day I give and take delight,

Doubt not, fufficient will be left at night.



'Tis but a just and rational defire,

To light a taper at a neighbour's fire.

There's danger too, you think, in rich array, And none can long be modeft that are gay: 141 The Cat, if you but finge her tabby skin, The chimney keeps, and fits content within; But once grown fleek, will from her corner run, Sport with her tail, and wanton in the fun; 145 She licks her fair round face, and frifks abroad, To fhow her furr, and to be catterwaw'd.

Lo thus, my friends, I wrought to my defires. These three right ancient venerable fires. I told 'em, Thus you fay, and thus you do, 159 And told 'em false, but Jenkin swore 'twas true. I, like a dog, could bite as well as whine, And firft complain'd, whene'er the guilt was mine. I tax'd them oft with wenching and amours, When their weak legs fcarce dragg'd 'em out of doors; 155 And fwore the rambles that I took by night, Were all to spy what damfels they bedight. That colour brought me many hours of mirth; For all this wit is giv'n us from our birth. Heav'n gave to woman the peculiar grace 160 To spin, to weep, and cully human race.

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