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PROLOGUE

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Mr. ADDISON's Tragedy

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O wake the foul by tender strokes of art, To raife the genius, and to mend the heart; To make mankind, in confcious virtue bold, Live c'er each scene, and be what they behold: For this the Tragic Muse first trod the stage, Commanding tears to stream thro' ev'ry age; Tyrants no more their favage nature kept, And foes to virtue wonder'd how they wept. Our author fhuns by vulgar springs to move The hero's glory, or the virgin's love; In pitying Love, we but our weakness show, And wild Ambition well deferves its woe. Here tears fhall flow from a more gen❜rous cause, Such Tears as Patriots fhed for dying Laws: He bids your breafts with ancient ardour rife, And calls forth Koman drops from British eyes.

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Virtue

Virtue confefs'd in human fhape he draws,
What Plato thought, and godlike Cato was:
No common object to your fight displays,
But what with pleasure Heav'n itself surveys,
A brave man struggling in the ftorms of fate,
And greatly falling with a falling state.
While Cato gives his little Senate laws,
What bofom beats not in his Country's cause?
Who fees him act, but envies ev'ry deed?

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Who hears him groan, and does not wish to bleed? Ev'n when proud Cæfar, 'midft triumphal cars, The fpoils of nations, and the pomp of wars, Ignobly vain, and impotently great,

Show'd Rome her Cato's figure drawn in ftate; 30 As her dead Father's rev'rend image past,

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The pomp was darken'd, and the day o'ercaft;
The Triumph ceas'd, tears gufh'd from ev'ry eye;
The World's great Victor pafs'd unheeded by;
Her laft good man dejected Rome ador'd,
And honour'd Cæfar's lefs than Cato's fword.
Britons, attend: be worth like this approv❜d,
And fhow, you have the virtue to be mov'd.
With honeft fcorn the first fam'd Cato view'd
Rome learning arts from Greece, whom she subdu'd;
Your

VER. 20. But what with pleasure] This alludes to a famous paffage of Seneca, which Mr. Addison afterwards ufed as a motto to his play, when it was printed.

VER. 37. Britons, attend] Mr. Pope had written it arife, in the fpirit of Poetry and Liberty; but Mr. Addifon frightend at fo daring an expreffion, which, he thought, fquinted at rebellion, would have it alter'd, in the fpirit of Profe and Politics, to attend.

Your scene precariously fubfifts too long
On French tranflation, and Italian fong.
Dare to have fense yourselves; affert the stage,
Be juftly warm'd with your own native rage:
Such Plays alone should win a British ear,
As Cato's felf had not difdain'd to hear.

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VER. 46. As Cato felf, etc.] This alludes to the fas mous ftory of his going into the Theatre, and imme diately coming out again.

EPI.

EPILOGUE

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Mr. RowE'S JANE SHORE.

Defigned for Mrs. OLDFIELD.

Rodigious this! the Frail-one of our Play From her own Sex fhould mercy find to-day! You might have held the pretty head afide, Peep'd in your fans, been serious, thus, and cry'd, The Play may pass--but that strange creature, Shore, I can't-indeed now-I fo hate a whoreJuft as a blockhead rubs his thoughtlefs skull, And thanks his ftars he was not born a fool; So from a fifter finner you fhall hear,

"How ftrangely you expofe yourself, my dear?"
But let me die, all raillery apart,

Our sex are ftill forgiving at their heart;
And did not wicked cuftom fo contrive,
We'd be the beft, good-natur'd things alive.

There are, 'tis true, who tell another tale,
That virtuous ladies envy while they rail;
Such rage without betrays the fire within ;
In fome close corner of the foul, they fin;
Still hoarding up, most scandalously nice,
Amidft their virtues a reserve of vice.
The godly dame, who fleshly failings damns,
Scolds with her maid, or with her chaplain crams.

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Would

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Would you enjoy foft nights and folid dinners?
Faith, gallants, board with faints, and bed with finners.
Well, if our Author in the Wife offends,
He has a Hufband that will make amends:
He draws him gentle, tender, and forgiving,
And fure fuch kind, good creatures may be living.
In days of old, they pardon'd breach of vows,
Stern'd Cato's felf was no relentless spouse:
Plu -Plutarch, what's his name, that writes his life?
Tells us, that Cato dearly lov'd his Wife:
Yet if a friend, a night or fo, fhould need her,
He'd recommend her as a special breeder.
To lend a wife, few here would fcruple make,
But, pray, which of you all would take her back?
Tho' with the Stoic Chief our stage may ring,
The Stoic Husband was the glorious thing.
The man had courage, was a fage, 'tis true,
And lov'd his country-but what's that to you?
Those strange examples ne'er were made to fit ye,
But the kind cuckold might inftruct the City:
There, many an honeft man might copy Cato,

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Who ne'er faw naked fword, or look'd in Plato.
If, after all, you think it a disgrace,
That Edward's Mifs thus perks it in your face;

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To fee a piece of failing flesh and blood,

In all the rest fo impudently good;

Faith, let the modeft Matrons of the town

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Come here in crouds, and ftare the ftrumpet down.

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