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Quoth RALPHO, Nothing but th' Abuse
Of Human Learning you produce;
Learning, that Cobweb of the Brain,
1340 Profane, erroneous, and vain;

A Trade of Knowledge, as replete
As others are with Fraud and Cheat:
An Art t'incumber Gifts and Wit,
And render both for nothing fit;

-1345 Makes Light unactive, dull, and troubled,
Like little DAVID in SAUL'S Doublet:
A Cheat that Scholars put upon
Other Men's Reason and their own;
A Fort of Error, to ensconce

1350 Abfurdity and Ignorance,

That renders all the Avenues
To Truth impervious and abftrufe,
By making plain Things, in Debate,
By Art, perplex'd, and intricate:
1355 For nothing goes for Senfe, or Light,

That will not with old Rules jump right:
As if Rules were not in the Schools
Deriv'd from Truth, but Truth from Rules.
This Pagan, Heathenifh Invention
1360 Is good for nothing but Contention.
For as, in Sword-and-Buckler Fight,
All Blows do on the Target light:
So, when Men argue, the great'ft Part
O' th' Conteft falls on Terms of Art,
1365 Until the Fuftian Stuff be spent,
And then they fall to th' Argument.
Quoth HUDIBRAS, Friend RALPH, thou haft
Out-run the Constable at last:

For thou art fallen on a new

1370 Difpute, as fenfeless as untrue,


But to the former oppofite, And contrary as Black to White; z Mere difparata, that concerning Prefbytery, this Human Learning; 1375 Two Things f'averfe, they never yet But in thy rambling Fancy met. But I fhall take a fit Occafion

T' evince thee by Ratiocination,

Some other Time in Place more proper 1380 Than this we're in; therefore let's ftop here, And reft our weary'd Bones a-while, Already tir'd with other Toil.



NOTES to Part I. Canto I.


WHEN civil Dudgeon, &c.] Dudgeon. Whe

made the Alterations in the laft Edition of this Poem, I know not, but they are certainly fometimes for the worfe; and I cannot believe the Author would have changed a Word so proper in that Place, as Dudgeon is, for that of Fury, as it is in the last Edition: To take in Dudgeon, is inwardly to refent fome Injury or Affront, a Sort of Grumbling in the Gizzard, and what is previous to actual Fury.

24 b That could as well, &c.] Bind over to the Seffions, as being a Justice of the Peace in his Country, as well as Colonel of a Regiment of Foot in the Parliament's Army, and a Committee-Man.


38 As MONTAIGNE, &c.] Montaigne, in his Effays, fuppofes his Cat thought him a Fool, for lofing his Time in playing with her.

62 To make fome, &c.] Here again is an Alteration without any Amendment; for the following Lines,

And truly fo he was, perhaps,

Not as a Profelyte, but for Claps,

Are thus changed:

And truly fo perhaps he was,

'Tis many a pious Chriftian's Cafe.

The Heathens had an odd Opinion, and have a ftrange Reason why Mofes impofed the Law of Circumcifion on the Jews, which, how untrue foever, I will give the learned Reader an Account of without Tranflation, as I

find it in the Annotations upon Horace, wrote by my worthy and learned Friend, Mr. William Baxter, the great Reftorer of the Ancient, and Promoter of Modern Learning.

Hor. Sat. 9. Sermon. Lib. I.

Curtis ; quia pellicula imminuti funt; quia Mofes rex Judæorum, cujus legibus reguntur, negligentia speaders medicinaliter exfectus eft, & ne folus effet notabilis, omnes circumcidi voluit. Vet. Schol. Vocem wbis quæ infcitia librarii exciderat repofuimus ex conjectura, uti & medicinaliter exfectus pro medicinalis effectus quæ nihil erant. Quis miretur ejufmodi convicia homini Epicureo atque Pagano excidiffe? Jure igitur Henrico Glareano Diaboli organum videtur. Etiam Satyra quinta hæc habet: Conftat omnia miracula certa ratione fieri, de quibus Epicurei pru dentiffime difputant.

66 Profoundly skill'd, &c.] Analytick is a Part of Logick, that teaches to decline and conftrue Reafon, as Grammar does Words.

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93 A Babylonish, &c.] A Confufion of Languages, fuch as fome of our modern Virtuoft ufed to exprefs themfelves in.

103 Or CERBERUS himself, &c.] Cerberus; a Name which Poets give a Dog with three Heads, which they feigned Door-keeper of Hell, that careffed the unfortunate Souls fent thither, and devoured them that would get out again; yet Hercules tied him up, and made him follow. This Dog with three Heads denotes the Paft, the Present, and the Time to come; which receive, and as it were devour all Things. Hercules got the better of him, which fhews that Heroick Actions are always victorious over Time, becaufe they are prefent in the Memory of Pofterity.

115 That had the, &c.] Demofthenes, who is faid to have a Defect in his Pronunciation, which he cured by ufing to speak with little Stones in his Mouth.

120 Than TYCHO BRAHE, &c.] Tycho Brache was


an eminent Danish Mathematician. Quer. in Collier's Dictionary, or elsewhere.

131 Whatever Sceptick, &c.] Sceptick; Pyrrho was the chief of Sceptick Philofophers, and was at firft, as Apollodorus faith, a Painter, then became the Hearer of Drifo, and at last the Disciple of Anaxagoras, whom he followed into India, to fee the Gymnofophifts. He pretended that Men did nothing but by Cuftom; that there was neither Honefty nor Difhonefty, Juftice nor Injuftice, Good nor Evil. He was very folitary, lived to be ninety Years old, was highly efteemed in his Country, and created Chief-Prieft. He lived in the Time of Epicurus and Theophraftus, about the 120th Olympiad. His Followers were called Pyrrhonians; befides which, they were named the Epheticks, and Aporeticks, but more generally Scepticks. This Sect made their chiefeft Good to consist in a Sedateness of Mind, exempt from all Paffions; in regulating their Opinions, and moderating their Paffions, which they called Ataraxia and Metriopathia; and in fufpending their Judgment in Regard of Good and Evil, Truth or Falfhood, which they called Epechi. Sextus Empiricus, who lived in the fecond Century, under the Emperor Antoninus Pius, writ ten Books against the Mathematicians or Aftrologers, and three of the Pyrrhonian Opinion. The Word is derived from the Greek axiñkodai, quod eft, confiderare, Speculari.

143 He could reduce, &c.] The old Philofophers thought to extract Notions out of Natural Things, as Chymias do Spirits and Effences; and, when they had refined them into the niceft Subtilties, gave them as infignificant Names, as thofe Operators do their Extractions: But (as Seneca fays) the fubtiler Things are, rendered, they are but the nearer to nothing. So are all their Definitions of Things, by Acts, the nearer to Nonfenfe.

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