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This granted, we may boldly thence
Lay claim t' a nobler inference,
And make this great phænomenon
(Were there no other) serve alone
To clear the grand hypothesis
Of the motion of the earth from this.
With this they all were satisfy'd,
As men are wont o' th' bias'd side,
Applauded the profound dispute,
And grew more gay and resolute,
By having overcome all doubt,
Than if it never had fall'n out;
And, to complete their narrative,
Agreed t' insert this strange retrieve.
But while they were diverted all
With wording the memorial,
The foot-boys, for diversion too,
As having nothing else to do,
Seeing the telescope at leisure,
Turn'd virtuosos for their pleasure;
Began to gaze upon the Moon,
As those they waited on had done,
With monkeys' ingenuity,
That love to practise what they see;
When one, whose turn it was to peep,
Saw something in the engine creep,
And, viewing well, discover'd more
Than all the learn'd had done before.
Quoth he, A little thing is slunk
Into the long star-gazing trunk,
And now is gotten down so nigh,
I have him just against mine eye.
This being overheard by one
Who was not so far overgrown
In any virtuous speculation,
To judge with mere imagination,
Immediately he made a guess
At solving all appearances,
A way far more significant
Than all their hints of th' Elephant,
And found upon a second view,
His own hypothesis most true;
For he had scarce apply'd his eye
To th' engine, but immediately
He found a mouse was gotten in
The hollow tube, and, shut between
The two glass windows in restraint,
Was swell'd into an Elephant,
And proved the virtuous occasion
Of all this learned dissertation :
And, as a mountain heretofore
Was great with child, they say, and bore
A silly mouse; this mouse, as strange,
Brought forth a mountain in exchange.
THE SOLILOQUY OF AN AUTHOR.
To print, or not to print-that is the question.
Whether 'tis better in a trunk to bury
The quirks and crotchets of outrageous Fancy,
Or send a well-wrote copy to the press,
And, by disclosing, end them. To print, to doubt
No more; and by one act to say we end
The head-ach, and a thousand natural shocks
Of scribbling frenzy 'tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wish'd. To print-to beam
From the same shelf with Pope, in calf well bound:
To sleep, perchance, with Quarles-Ay, there's the rub-
For to what class a writer may be doom'd,
When he hath shuffled off some paltry stuff,
Must give us pause. There's the respect that makes
Th' unwilling poet keep his piece nine years.
For who would bear th' impatient thirst of fame,
The pride of conscious merit, and 'bove all,
The tedious importunity of friends,
When as himself might his quietus make
With a bare inkhorn? Who would fardles bear?
To groan and sweat under a load of wit?
But that the tread of steep Parnassus' hill,
That undiscover'd country, with whose bays
Few travellers return, puzzles the will,
And makes us rather bear to live unknown,
Than run the hazard to be known, and damn'd.
Thus critics do make cowards of us all.
And thus the healthful face of many a poem
Is sicklied o'er with a pale manuscript;
And enterprizers of great fire and spirit,
With this regard from Dodsley turn away,
And lose the name of Authors.
THE PROGRESS OF DISCONTENT.
WHEN now mature in classic knowledge,
The joyful youth is sent to college,
His father comes, a vicar plain,
At Oxford bred-in Anna's reign,
And thus in form of humble suitor,
Bowing, accosts a rev'rend tutor :
" Sir, I'm a Glo'stershire divine, And this my eldest son of nine;
My wife's ambition and my own
Was that this child should wear a gown:
I'll warrant that his good behaviour
Will justify your future favour;
And for his parts, to tell the truth,
My son's a very forward youth;
Has Horace all by heart-you'd wonderAnd mouths out Homer's Greek like thunder. If you'd examine-and admit him,
A scholarship would nicely fit him; . That he succeeds 'tis ten to one;
Your vote and interest, Sir !'-'tis done.
Our pupil's hopes, though twice defeated,
Are with a scholarship completed.
A scholarship but half maintains,
And college rules are heavy chains:
In garret dark he smokes and puns,
A prey to discipline and duns;
But now, intent on new designs,
Sighs for a fellowship-and fines.
When nine full tedious winters past,
That utmost wish is crown'd at last :
But the rich prize no sooner got,
Again he quarrels with his lot: