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And all who told it added fomething new, 470
And all who heard it, made enlargements too,
In ev'ry ear it spread, on ev'ry tongue it grew.
Thus flying east and weft, and north and south,
News travel'd with increase from mouth to mouth.
So from a spark, that kindled first by chance, 475
With gath'ring force the quick'ning flames advance;
Till to the clouds their curling heads aspire,
And tow'rs and temples fink in floods of fire.

When thus ripe lyes are to perfection fprung,
Full grown, and fit to grace a mortal tongue, 480
Thro' thousand vents, impatient, forth they flow,
And rush in millions on the world below.
Fame fits aloft, and points them out their course,
Their date determines, and prescribes their force:
Some to remain, and some to perish soon;
Or wane and wax alternate like the moon.

Around, a thousand winged wonders fly,


Born by the trumpet's blaft, and scatter'd thro' the fky.

There, at one paffage, oft you might furvey

A lye and truth contending for the way;

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And long 'twas doubtful, both fo closely pent,
Which first should iffue thro the narrow vent:
At laft agreed, together out they fly,

Infeparable now, the truth and lye;

The strict companions are for ever join'd,


And this or that unmix'd, no mortal e'er shall find.

While thus I ftood, intent to fee and hear,

One came, methought, and whisper'd in

my ear: What could thus high thy rash ambition raise? Art thou, fond youth, a candidate for praise? 500

'Tis true, faid I, not void of hopes I came, For who so fond as youthful bards of Fame? But few, alas! the cafual bleffing boast,

So hard to gain, so easy to be loft.

How vain that second life in others breath,


Th'eftate which wits inherit after death!


VER. 497. While thus I food, &c.] The hint is taken from a paffage in another part of the third book, but here more naturally made the conclufion, with the addition of a Moral to the whole. In Chaucer he only anfwers" he came to fee the place;" and the book ends abruptly, with his being furprized at the fight of a Man of great Authority, and awaking in a fright. P.


A lefing and a fad footh faw
That gonnen at adventure draw
Out of a window forth to pace -

And no man, be he ever fo wrothe,

Shall have one of these two, but bothe, etc. P.

Ease, health, and life, for this they must refign,
(Unfure the tenure, but how vaft the fine!)
The great man's curfe, without the gains, endure,
Be envy'd, wretched, and be flatter'd, poor; 510
All luckless wits their enemies profest,

And all fuccessful, jealous friends at best.
Nor Fame I flight, nor for her favours call;
She comes unlook'd for, if she comes at all,


But if the purchase costs so dear a price,

As foothing Folly, or exalting Vice:

Oh! if the Muse must flatter lawless fway,

And follow ftill where fortune leads the way;
Or if no bafis bear my rifing name,

But the fall'n ruins of another's fame;


Then teach me, heav'n! to fcorn the guilty bays,
Drive from my breast that wretched luft of praise,
Unblemish'd let me live, or die unknown;
Oh grant an honeft fame, or grant me none !

$ F2

January and May:





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