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Father of all ! in every age,

In every clime ador’d,
By saint, by savage, and by sage,

Jehovah, Jove, or Lord !
Thou Great First Cause, least understood,

Who all my sense confin'd
To know but this, that thou art good,

And that myself am blind :
Yet gave me, in this dark estate,

To see the good from ill:
And binding nature fast in fate,

Let free the human will.

What conscience dictates to be done,

Or warns me not to do ;
This teach me more than hell to shun,

That more than heaven pursue.
What blessings thy free bounty gives

Let me not cast away;
For God is paid when man receives ;

T' enjoy is to obey.
Yet not to earth's contracted span

Thy goodness let me bound,
Or think thee Lord alone of man,

When thousand worlds are round.



Let not this weak unknowing hand

Presume thy bolts to throw,
And deal damnation round the land

On each I judge thy foe.
If I am right, thy grace impart,

Still in the right to stay;
If I am wrong, o teach


To find that better way.
Save me alike from foolish pride

Or impious discontent,
At aught thy wisdom has denied,

Or aught thy goodness lent.
Teach me to feel another's woe,

To hide the fault I see :
That mercy I to others show,

show to me,
Mean though I am, not wholly so,

Since quicken'd by thy breath ;
O lead me, whereso'er I go,

Through this day's life or death!
This day be bread and peace my lot:

All else beneath the sun
Thou know'st if best bestow'd or not,

And let thy will be done.
To Thee, whose temple is all space,

Whose altar earth, sea, skies !
One chorus let all Being raise !

All nature's incense rise !



Est brevitate opus, ut currat sententia, neu se
Impediat verbis lassis onerantibus aures :
Et sermone opus est modo tristi, sæpe jocoso,
Defendente vicem modo rhetoris, atque poetæ
Interdum urbani, parcentis viribus, atque
Extenuantis eas consulto.




The Essay on Man was intended to be comprised in four books :

The first of which the author has given us under that title in four epistles.

The second was to have consisted of the same number: 1. Of the extent and limits of human reason. 2. Of those arts and sciences, and of the parts of them, which are useful, and therefore attainable; together with those which are unuseful, and therefore unattainable. 3. Of the nature, ends, use, and application of the different capacities of men. 4. Of the use of learning; of the science of the world ; and of wit ; concluding with a satire against the misapplication of them, illustrated by pictures, characters, and examples.

The third book regarded civil regimen, or the science of politics; in which the several forms of a republic were to be examined and explained ; together with the several modes of religious worship, as far forth as they affect society: between which the author always supposed there was the most interesting relation and closest connexion.

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