Page images

The mighty Stagyrite first left the shore,
Spread all his fails, and durft the deeps explore ;
He steer'd fecurely, and discover'd far,
Led by the light of the Mæonian star.
Poets, a race long unconfin'd and free,
Still fond and proud of savage liberty,
Receiv'd his laws, and stood convinc'd 'twas fit,
Who conquer'd Nature should prefide o'er Wit.

IBID. P, 97•

LONGINU S. THEE, bold Longinus! all the Nine inspire, And bless their Critic with a Poet's fire ; An ardent judge, who, zealous in his truft, With warmth gives sentence, yet is always jqft; Whose own example strengthens all his laws, And is himself that great Sublime he draws.

IBID. p. 100.

PROGRESS OF POETRY. BUT foon, by impious arms from Latium chac'd, Their ancient bounds the banish'd Muses pafs’d; Thence Arts o'er all the Northern world advance, But Critic-Learning flourish'd most in France : The rules, a nation. born to serve obeys; And Boileau still in right of Horace fways: But we, brave Britons, foreign laws despis’d, And kept unconquer'd, and unciviliz'd;


D 3

Fierce for the liberties of wit, and bold,
We still defy'd the Romans, as of old :
Yet some there were among the founder few,
Of those who less presum'd and better knew,
Who durft assert the jufter ancient cause,
And here reftor'd Wit's fundamental laws.
Suci was the Muse, whose rules and practice tell,
“ Nature's chief master-piece is writing well.”
Such was Roscommon, not more learn’d than good,
With manners gen'rous as his noble blood ;
To him the Wit of Greece and Rome was known,
And ev'ry author's merit but his own.
Such late was Walsh--the Muse's judge and friend,
Who justly knew to blame, or to commend;
To failings mild, but zealous for desert;
The clearest head, and the sincereft heart.
This humble praise, lamented shade! receive,
This praise at leaft a grateful Muse may give :
The Mufe whose early voice you taught to fing,
Prescrib'd her heights, and prun'd her tender wing,
(Her guide now loft) no more attempts to rise,
But in low numbers short excursions tries ;
Content, if hence th’unlearn'd their wants may

The learn'd reflect on what before they knew :
Careless of censure, nor too fond of fame;
Still pleas'd to praise, yet not afraid to blame;
Averse alike to flatter or offend;
Not 'free-from faults, nor yet too vain to mend.

IBID. p. 101.

[merged small][ocr errors]

THE SYLPH'S ADDRESS. Sol through white curtains shot a tim'rous ray, And ope'd those eyes that must eclipse the day: Now lap-dogs gave themselves the rousing shake, And sleepless lovers, just at twelve, awake: Thrice rung the bell, the Nipper knock'd the

ground, And the press’d watch return'd a silver found. Belinda still her downy pillow prest, Her guardian Sylph prolong'd the balmy reft: 'Twas he had summon'd to her filent bed The morning dream that hover'd o'er her head. A Youth more glitt'ring than a birth-night Beau', (That e'en in slumber caus'd her cheek to glow) Seem'd to her ear his winning lips to lay, And thus in whispers faid, or seem'd to say:

Faireit of mortals ! thou distinguish'd care Of thousand bright inhabitants of air ! If e'er one vision touch thy infant thought, Of all the Nurse and all the Priest have taught; Of airy Elves by moon-light fhadows feen, The silver token, and the circled green, Or virgins visited by Angel-pow'rs, With golden crowns and wreaths of heav'nly

flow'rs! Hear and believe! thy own importance know, Nor bound thy narrow views to things below.


Some secret truths, from learned pride conceal'd,
To Maids alone and Children are reveal'd :
What though no credit doubting Wits may give;
The Fair and Innocent shall still believe.
Know then, unnumber'd Spirits round thee fly,
The light militia of the lower ky:
These, though unseen, are ever on the wing,
Hang o'er the Box, and hover round the Ring.
Think what an equipage thou haft in air,
And view with scorn two pages and a chair.
As now your own, our beings were of old,
And once inclos'd in Woman's beauteous mould ;
Thence, by a soft transition, we repair
From earthly vehicles to these of air.
Think not, when Woman's tranfient breath is fled,
That all her vanities at once are dead;
Succeeding vanities the still regards,
And though she plays no more, o'erlooks the cards.
Her joy in gilded chariots, when alive,
And love of Ombre, after death survive.
For when the Fair in all their pride expire,
To their first elements their Souls retire:
The sprites of fiery Termagants in flame
Mount up, and take a Salamander's name :
Soft yielding Minds to Water glide away,
And sip, with Nymphs, their elemental tea :

graver Prude finks downward to a Gnome,
In search of mischief still on earth to roam :
The light Coquettes in Sylphs aloft repair,
And sport and flutter in the fields of air.
THE RAPE OF THE LOCK, V.2, p. 110.


THE TOILET. AND now, unveil'd, the Toilet stands display'd, Each silver vase in mystic order laid. First, rob'd in white, the Nymph intent adores, With head uncover'd, the cosmetic pow'rs. A heav'nly Image in the glass appears; To that she bends, to that her eyes she rears : Th’inferior Priestess, at her altar's side, Trembling, begins the facred rites of Pride. Unnumber'd treasures ope at once, and here The various off 'rings of the world appear : From each she nicely culls with curious toil, And decks the Goddess with the glitt’ring spoil. This casket India's glowing gems unlocks, And all Arabia breathes from yonder box: The Tortoise here and Elephant unite, Transform'd to combs, the speckled and the white; Here files of Pins extend their shining rows, Puffs, Powders, Patches, Bibles, Billet-doux. Now awful Beauty puts on all its arms ; The Fair each moment rises in her charms, Repairs her fmiles, awakens ev'ry grace, And calls forth all the wonders of her face ; Sees by degrees a purer blush arise, And keener lightnings quicken in her eyes. The busy Sylphs surround their darling care ; These set the head, and those divide the hair; Some fold the fleeve, whilst others plait the gown ; And Betty's prais'd for labours not her own.

IBID. p. 113


« EelmineJätka »