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A name still to be atter'd with a sigh.
“ Virtue, the strength and beauty of the soul, Your last ungraceful scene has quite effac'd | Is the best gift of Heaven: a happiness All sense and memory of your former worth. That even above the smiles and frowns of fate
How to live happiest? how avoid the pains, Exalts great Nature's favourites; a wealth The disappointments, and disgusts of those That ne'er encumbers, nor can be transferr'd. Who would in pleasure all their hours employ; Riches are oft by guilt and baseness carn'd; The precepts here of a divine old man
Or dealt by chance to shield a lucky knave, I could recite. Tho' old, he still retain'd
Or throw a cruel sunshine on a fool. His manly sense, and energy of mind.
But for one end, one much-neglected use, Virtuous and wise he was, but not severe;
Are riches worth your care; (for nature's wants He still remember'd that he once was young; Are few, and without opulence supply'd ;) His easy presence check':l no lecent joy.
This noble end is, to produce the soul; Him even the dissolute admir'd; for be
To show the virtues in their fairest light; A graceful looseness when he pleas'd put on, To make bumanity the minister And laughing could instruct. Much had he read, Of bounteous Providence; and teach the breast Much more had seen: he studied from the life, That generous luxury the gods enjoy." And in th'origioal.erus'd mankind.
Thus, in his graver vein, the friendly sage Vers'd in the woes and vanities of life,
Sometimes declaim'd. Of right and wrong he He pitied man: and much he pitied those
taught Whom falsely-smiling fate has curs'd with Truths as refin'd as ever Athens heard; means
And (strange to tell!) he practis'd what he To dissipate their days in quest of joy.
preach'd. “6 Our aim is happiness; 'tis yours, 'tis mine," Skill'd in the passions, how to check their sway, He said, “ 'tis the pursuit of all that live : He knew, as far as reason can control Yet few attain it, if 'twas ere attain'd.
The lawless powers. But other cares are mino: But they the widest wander from the mark, Form'd in the school of Pæon, I relate Who thro' the flowery paths of sauntering joy What passions hurt the body, what improve : Seek this coy goddess : that from stage to stage Avoid them, or invite them as you may. Invites us still, but shifts as we pursue.
Know then, whatever cheerful and serene Por, not to name the pains that pleasure brings Supports the mind, supports the body too. To connterpoise itself, releniless fate
Hence, the most vital movement mortals feel Forbids that we thro' gay voluptuous wilds Is hope: the balm and life-blood of the soul. Should ever roam: and were the lates more kind, It pleases, and it lasts. Indulgent Heaven Our narrow luxuries would soon grow stale: Sent down the kind delusion, through the paths Were these exhaustle: s, nature would grow sick, of rugged life to lead us patient on; And, cloy'd with pleasure, squeamishly complain And make our happiest state no tedious thing. That all is vanity, and life a dream.
Our greatest good, and what we least can spare, Let nature rest : be busy for yourself,
Is hope: the last of all our evils, fear. And for your friend; be busy even in vain,
But there are passions grateful to the breast, Rather than tease her sated appetites.
And yet no friends to life : perhaps they please Who never fasts, no banquet e'er enjoys;
Or to excess, and dissipate the soul; Who never toils or watches, never sleeps. Or while they please, torment. The stubborn Let nature rest : and when the taste of joy
clown, Giows keen, indulge; but shun satiety.
The ill-tam'd ruffian, and pale usurer,
Or pains or pleases. But ye finer souls,
That beauty gives; with caution and reserve
Indulge the sweet destroyer of repose, 'Tis sometimes angry, and ics frown confounds; Nor court too much the queen of charming cares. 'Tis even viudictive, but in vengeance just. For, while the cherish'd poison in your breast Koares fain would laugh at it; some great ones Ferments and maddens; sick with jealousy, dare;
Absence, distrust, or even with anxious joy, But at his heart the most undaunted son
The wholesome appetites and powers of life Of fortune dreads its name and awful charms. Dissolve in languor. The coy stomach loathes To noblest uses this determines wealth ;
The genial board : your cheerful days are gone; This is the solid pomp of prosperous days; The generous bloom that flush'd your cheeks is The peace and shelter of adversity,
And waste your youth in musing. Musing first The gawdy gloss of fortune only strikes
Toy'd into care your unsuspecting heart : The vulgar eye; the suffrage of the wise
It found a liking there, a sportful fire, The praise that's worth ambition, is attain'd And that fomented into serious love; By sense alone, and dignity of mind.
Which musing daily strengthens and improves
Thro all the heights of fondness and romance: And shakes to ruins proud philosophy.
Desperate, and arm'd with more than human Each manly virtue, and grows dead to fame.
strength. Sweet Heaven, from such intoxicating charms How soon the calm, bnmane, and polish'd man Defend all worthy breasts ! not that I deem Forgets compunction, and starts up a fiend ! Love always dangerous, always to be shund'd. Who pines in love, or wastes with silent cares, Love well repaid, and not too weakly sunk Envy, or ignominy, or tender grief, In wanton and unmanly tenderness,
Slowly descends, and ling'ring, to the shades : Adds bloom to health; o'er ev'ry virtue sheds But he whom anger stings, drops, if he dies, A gay, humane, a sweet, and generous grace, At once, and rushes apoplectic down; And brightens all the ornaments of man.
Or a fierce fever hurries him to Hell. But fruitless, hopeless, disappointed, rack'd | Por, as the body thro' yunumber'd strings With jealousy, fatigu'd with hope and fear, Reverberates each vibration of the soul; Too serious, or too languishingly fond,
As is the passion, such is still the pain Upperves the body and unmans the soul.
The body feels: or chronic, or acute. And some have died for love; and some run And oft a sudden storm at once d'erpowers mad;
The life, or gives your reason to the winds. And some with desperate hands themselves have such fates attend the rash alarm of fear, slain.
And sudden grief, and rage, and sudden joy. Some to extinguish, others to prevent,
There are, meantime, to whom the bojstrous A mad devotion to one dangerous fair,
Is health, and only fills the sails of life. (fil Court all they meet ; in hopes to dissipate For where the mind a torpid winter leads, The cares of love amongst an hundred brides. | Wrapt in a body corpulent and cold, Th' event is doubtful : for there are who find | And each clogg'd function Jazily nores on; A cure in this; there are who God it not.
Agenerous sally spurns th' incumbent load, 'Tis no relief, alas ! it rather galls
Unlocks the breast, and gives a cordial glor. The wound, to those who are sincerely sick. But if your wrathful blood is apt to buil, For while from feverish and tumultuous joys Or are your nerves too irritably strung, The nerves grow lauguid and the soul subsides, Wave all dispute ; be cautious, if you joke; The tender fancy smarts with every sting, Keep Lent for ever, and forswear the bowl, And what was love before is madness now. For one rash moment sends you to the shades, is health your care, or luxury your aim,
Or shatters ev'ry bopeful scheme of life, Pe ternperate still : when Nature bids, obey ; And gives to horrour all your days to come. Her wild impatient sallies bear no curb:
Fate, arm'd with thunder, fire, and ev'ry plague But when the prurient habit of delight,
That ruins, tortures, or distracts mankind, Or loose imagination spurs you on
And makes the happy wretched in an hour, Tu deeds above your strength, impute it not O'erwhelms you not with woes so horrible To Nature : Nature all compulsion hates. As your own wrath, por gives more sudden blows Ah! let not luxury nor vain renown
While choler works, good friend, you may Urge you to feats you well might sleep without;
be wrong. To make what should be rapture a fatigue, Distrust yourself, and sleep before yon fight. A tedious ta-k; nor in the wanton arms
"T'is not too late to morrow to be brave; Oftwining Lais melt your manhood down. If honour bids, to morrow kill or die. For from the colliquation of soft joys [was! But calm advice against a raging lit llow chang'd you rise! the ghost of what you | Arails too little ; and it brates the power Languid, and inclancholy, and gaunt, and wan; Of all that ever taught in prose or song, Your veins exhausted, and your nerves unstrung. ! To tame the fiend, that sleeps a gentle lamb, Spoil'd of its balm and sprightly zest, the bluod | And wakes a lion. Unprovok'd and cala, Grows vapid phlegm; along the tender nerves You reason well; see as you ought to see, (To each slight impulse treinblingly awake) And wonder at the madness of mankind: A subtle fiend that mimics all the plagues, Seiz'd with the common rage, you soon forget Rapid and restless springs from part to part. The speculations of your wiser hours. The blooming honours of your youth are fallen : Beset with furies of all deadly shapes, Your rigour pines; your vital powers decay; Fierce and insidious, violent and slow : Diseases haunt you; and untimely age
Witb all that urge or lore us on to fate: Creeps on; unsocial, impotent, and lewd.
What refuge shall we seek. what arms prepare? Infatuate, impious epicure! to waste
Where reason proves 100 weak, or yoid of wiles The stores of pleasure, cheerfulness, and health! | To cope with subtle or impetuous powers, Infatuate all who make delight their trade, | I would invoke new passions to your aid: And coy penition every hour pursue.
| With indignation would extinguish fear; who pin is with love, or in lascivious flames | With fear, or generons pity, vanquish rage ; Consumes, is with his own consent undone ; And love with pride; and force to force oppose He chooses to be wretched, to be mad;
There is a oharm, a power, that graps tle And warp'd, proceeds, and wilful to his fate. I Bids every passion revel or be still; (breast; But there's a passion, whose tempestuous sway, Inspires with rage, or all your cares dissoltos, Tears up each virtue planted in his breast," Can sooth distraction, and almost despair.
That power is music: far beyond the stretch Unhappy still our poets will rehearse
With you, whom nought that's moral can Good Heaven! we praise them : we, with loud. With you I venture, in plaio home-spun sense, - est peals
What I imagine of Benevolence.
What strikes you most is the low selfish mind. Of ideot notes impertinently long.
You wonder how, without one liberal joy, But he the Muse's laurel justly shares,
The steady miser can his years employ ; A poet he, and touch'd with Heaven's own fire, Without one friend, howe'er his fortunes thrive, Who, with bold rage or solemn pomp of sound, | Despis'd and hated, how he bears to live. Inflames, exalts, and ravishes the soul;
With honest warmth of heart, with some degree
'Tis all but taste, howe'er we sift the case ;
Thou likewise mad'st the high seraphic soul,
Than the dull monarch of a continent. Music exalts each joy, allays each grief, Without this bounty which the Gods bestow, Expels diseases, softens every pain,
Can Fortune make one favourite happy ? -No. Subdues the rage of poison and of plague ; As well might Fortune in her frolic vein, ; And hence the wise of ancient days ador'd
Proclaim an ovster Sovereign of the main.
Without fine nerves, and bosom justly warm'd,
Blank as pale stucco Rubens lines the room :
Lost are the raptures of bold Handel's strain ;
Great Tully storms, sweet Virgil sings, in vain. AN EPISTLE TO EUMENES.'
The beauteous forms of Nature are effac'd;
Tempe's soft charms, the raging wat'ry waste; 1751.
Each greatly-wild, each sweet romantic scene, Kind to my frailties still, Eumenes, hear;
Unbeeded rises, and almost upseen.
Yet these are joys, with some of better clay, Once more I try the patience of your ear.
To sooth the toils of life's embarrass'd way. Not oft I sing : the happier for the town,
These the fine frame with charming horrours chill, So stunn'd already they're quite stupid grown
And give the nerves delightfully to thrill. With monthly, daily-charming things I own.
But of all taste the noblest and the best, Happy for them, I seldom court the Nine ;
The first enjoyment of the generous breast, Another art, a serious art is mine.
Is to behold in man's obnoxious state Of nauseous verses offer'd once a week, ** You cannot say I did it,” if you're sick.
Scenes of content, and happy turns of fate. 'Twas ne'er my pride to shine by Aashy fits
Fair views of Nature, shining works of art,
Amuse the fancy : but those touch the heart. Amongst the daily, weekly, monthly wits.
Chiefly for this proud epic song delights, Content if some few friends indulge my name,
For this some riot on th' Arabian Nights. So slightly am I stung with love of fame,
Each case is ours : aud for the human mind I would not scrawl one hundred idle lines-
'Tis monstrous not to feel for all mankind. Not for the praise of all the magazines.
Were all mankind unhappy, who conld taste Yet once a moon, perhaps, I steal a night;
Elysium? or be solitarily blest? And, if our sire Apollo pleases, write. [follow,
: Shock'd with surrounding shapes of human woe, You smile : but all the train the Muse that Christians and duces, still we quote Apollo.
All that or sense or fancy could bestow, | You would reject with sick and coy disdain,
And pant to see one cheerful face again. i This little piece was addressed to a worthy But if life's better prospects to behold gentleman, as an expression of gratitude for bis so much delight the man of generous mould; kind endeavours to do the author a great piece How happy they, the great, the godlike few, of service.
| Who daily cultivate this pleasing view!
This is a joy possess'd by few indeed!
TASTE. Dame Fortune has so many fools to feed,
AN EPISTLE TO A YOU AGOCRITIC. 1753. She cannot oft afford, with all her store,
Proferre quæ sentiat cur quisquam I ber dubi. To yield her smiles where Nature smil'd before.
| tet? -Malim, me hercule, solus insanire, quam To sipking worth a cordial hand to lend; With better fortune to surprize a friend ;
sobrius aut plebis aut patrum delirationibus ig. To cheer the modest stranger's lonely state ;
Autor anonym. Fragin. Or snatch au orphan family from fate ; To do, possess'd with virtue's noblest fire,
| Range from Tower-hill all London to the Fleet, Such generous deeds as we with tears admire; I
Thence round the Temple l'utmost GrosvenorDeeds that, above ambition's vulgar aim,
street: Secure an amiable, a solid fame :
seize: | Take in your route both Gray's and Lincoln's Ion: Those are such joys as Heaven's first farourites | Miss not, be sure, my lords and gentlemen ; These please you now, and will for ever please.
You'll hardly raise, as I with Petty 'guess, 'Too seldom we great moral deeds admire;
Above twelve thousand men of taste ; unless The will, the power, th' occasion must conspire. In desperate times a connoisseur may pass. Yet few there are so impotent and low,
"A connoisseur! what's that?" 'Tis hard But can some small good offices bestow.
But you must oft amidst the fair and gay to say: Small as they are, however cheap they come,
Have seen a wou'd-be rake, a Aultering fool, They add still something to the general sum :
Who swears he loves the sex with all his soul. And him who gives the little in his power,
Alas, vain youth! dost thou admire sweet Jones? The world acquits; and Heaven demands no more.
Thou be gallant without cr blood ur bones! Unhappy he! who feels each neighbour's wue. | You'd split to hear th' insipid coxcomb cry Yet no relief, no comfort can bestow.
| “Ab, charming Nancy! 'tis tuo much! I die!" Inhappy too, who feels each kind essay.
“Die and bed-n'd," says one; “ but let me tell ye And for great favours has but words to pay;
I'll pay the loss if ever rapture kill ve." Who, scorpful of the flatterer's fawning art,
Tis easy learnt the art to talk by rote: Dreads even to ponr his gratitude of heart ;
| At Nando's 'twill but cost you half a groat; (sir; And with a distant lorer's silent pain
The Bedford school at three pence is not dear, Must the best inovevnents of his soul restrain. At White's the stars instruct you for a teter, But men sagacious to explore mankind
But he, wbom Nature never meant to share Trace even the cuyest passions of the inind.
| One spark of taste, will never catch it there :Not only to the good we owe rood-will;
Nor no where else; howe'er tbe booby beau In good and bad distress demands it still.
Grows great with Pope, and Horace, and Boileau, This with the generous lays distinction low,
Good native taste, though rude, is seldur Endears a friend, and recommends a foe.
Be it in music, painting, or in song. [wrong, Not that resentment ever ought to rise;
But this, as well as other faculties,
You like Voiture, you think him wondrous bright: No laws th' ungenerous crime world reprehend
But even years hence, your relish more matur'd, Could I forget Eumenes was my friend :
What now delights will hardly be endurd. In vain the gibbet or the pillory claim
| The boy may live to taste Racine's fine charms, The wretch who blasts a helpless virgin's fame.
Whom Lee's bald orb or Rowe's dry rapture W'bere laws are dup'd, 'tis nor injust nor mean
warms. . To seize the proper time for hopest spleen.
But he, enfranchis'd from his tutor's care, An open candid foe I could not hate,
Who places Butler near Cervantes' chair ; Nor even insult the base in humbled state;
Or with Erasmus can adinit to vie But thriving malice tamely to forgive
Brown of Squab-hall of merry memory; "Tis somewhat late to be so primitive.
Will die a Goth: and nod at Woden's feast? But I detain you with these tedious lays,
Th' eternal winter long, on Gregory's breast. Which few perhaps would read, but fewer praise.
I Long may he swill, this patriarch of the dull, No matter : could I please the polish'd few
The drowsy mum-But touch not Maro's skull! Who taste the serious or the gay like yon,
His holy barbarous dotage sought to doom, The squeamish mob may find my verses bare
Good Heaven! th' immortal classics to the Of every grace--but curse me if I care.
tomb ! Besides, I little court Parnassian fame ;
Those sacred lights shall bid new genios rise There's yet a better than a poet's name.
When a' Rome's saints bave rotted from the skies. 'Twould more indulge my pride to hear it said, Sir William Petty, anthor of the Political That I with you the paths of honour tread, Arithinetic. Than that amongst the proud poetic train
2 Alluding to the Gothic Hearen, Woden's hall; No modern boasted a more classic vein ;
where the bappy are for ever employed in drink. Or that in numbers I let loose my song,
ing beer, mum, and other comfortable liquors out Smooth as the Tweed, and as the Severn strong. of the skulls of those whom they had slain in battle.
3 Pope Gregory the Ith, distinguished by the name of St. Gregory; whose pious zeal in the cause of barbarous ignorance and priestly tyranny, exerted itself in demolishing, to lhe ut. most of his power, all the remains of beathea genius.
Be these your guides, if at the ivy crown 1 Read boldly, and unprejudic'd peruse
The great stupendous genius of our stage,
Boast of our island, pride of human-kind, Soon starts, the dash o: Methuen in his cup. Had faults to which the boxes are not blind,
Those sovereign masters of the Muses skill His frailties are to ev'ry gossip known: Are the true patterns of good writing still. Yet Milton's pedantries not shock the town. Their ore was rich and seven times purg'al of lead. Ne'er be the dupe of names, however high ; Their art seem'd nature, 'twas so finely hid. For some outlive good parts, some misapply. Though born with all the powers of writing well, Each elegant Spectator you admire; What pains it cost they did not blush to tell But must you therefore swear by Cato's fire ? Their ease (my lords !) ne'er loung'd for want of | Masques for the court, and oft a clumsey jest, Nor did their rage through affectation tire, [fire, Disgrac'd the Muse that wrought the Alchemist. Free from all iawdry and imposing glare
“ But to the ancients.”-Faith! I am not clear, They trusted to their native grace of air. | For all the smooth round type of Elzevir, Rapt'rous and wild the trembling soul they seize, That every work which lasts in prose or song Or sly coy beauties steal it by degrees ;
Two thousand years, deserves to last so long, The more you view them still the more they For not to mention some eternal blades please.
Known only now in th' academic shades, Yet there are thousands of scholastic merit (Those sacred groves where raptur'd spirits stray, Who worm their sense out but ne'er taste their And in word-hunting waste the live-long day) spirit.
Ancients whom none but curious critics scan, Witness each pedant under Bentely bred ; Do read Messalas' * praises if you can. Each commentator that e'er coinmented.
Ah! who but feels the sweet contagious smart (You scarce can seize a spot of classic ground, While soft Tibullus pours his tender heart? With leagues of Dutch morass so floated round.) With bim the Loves and Muses melt in tears ; Witness—but sir, I hold a cautious pen,
But not a word of some hexameters. Lest I should wrong some « honourable men.” “You grow so squeamish and so dev'lish dry, They grow enthusiasts too_"'Tis true! 'tis pity!" You'll call Lucretius vapid next." Not I. But 'is not every lunatic that's witty.
Some find him tedious, others think him lame :: Some have run Maro—and some Milton-mad, But if he lags, his subject is to blame. stried, Ashley once turn'd a solid barber's head: Rough weary roads through barren wilds he Hear all that's said or printed if you can, Yet still be marches with true Roman pride : Ashley has turn'd more solid heads than one. Sometimes a meteor, gorgeous, rapid, bright,
Let such admire each great or specious name; He streams athwart the philosophic night. For right or wrong the joy to them's the same. I Find you in Horace no insipid odes? “Right !” Yes, a thousand times.-Each fool He dar'd to tell us Homer sometimes nods; has heard
And but for such a critic's hardy skill That Homer was a wonder of a bard.
Homer might slumber unsuspected still. Despise them civilly with all my heart
Tasteless, implicit, indolent, and tame, But to convince them is a desperate part.
At second-hand we chiefly praise or blame. Why should you tease one for what secret cause Hence'tis, for else one knows not why or how, One doats on Horace, or on Huclibras?
Some authors flourish for a year or two: 'Tis cruel, sir, 'tis needless, to endeavour
for many some, more wond'rous still to tell; To teach a sot of taste he knows no flavonr. Farquhar yet lingers on the brink of Hell. To disunite I neither wish nor hope
Of solid merit others pine unknown ; . A stubborn block bead from his fav'rite fop. At first, though Carlos S swimmingly went down, Yes --fop ( say, were Maro's self before 'em: Poor Belvidera fail'd to melt the town. For Maro's self grows dull as they pure o'er him. Suok in dead night the giant Milton lay, But hear their raptures o'er soine specious 'Till Sommer's hand produc'd him to the day. rhyme
But, thanks to Heav'n and Addison's good grace, Dubb'd by the musk'd and greasy mobsubiime. Now ev'ry fop is charm'd with Chevy Chace. For spleen's dear sake bear how a coxcomb prates Specious and sage, the sovereign of the flock As clam'rous o'er his joys as fifty cats;
| Led to the downs, or from the wave-worn rock “Music has charms to sooth a savage breast, Reluctant hurl'd, the tame implicit train To soften rocks, and oaks," -and all the rest : Or crop the downs, or headlong seek the main. "l're heard”- Bless these long ears :- "Heav'ns | As blindly we our solemn leaders follow, what a strain!
| And good, and bad, and execrable swallow. Good God! what thunders burst in this Campaign! Hark! Waller warbles ! ah! how sweetly killing! 14 A poem of Tibullus's in hexameter verse ; Then that inimitable Splendid Shilling !
| as yawniog and insipid as his elegies are tender Rowe breathes all Shakespeare here! That ode and natural. of Prior
5 Don Carlos, a tragedy of Otway's, now long Is Spenser quite! egad his very fire!, and justly forgotten, went off with great applause; As like”_Yes faith! as gum-flowers to the rose, I while his Orphan, a somewhat better performance, Or as to claret flat Minorca's dose;
and what is yet inore strange, his Venice PreAs like as (if I am not grossly wrong)
served, according to the theatrical anecdotes of Erle Robert's Mice to augbt c'er Chaucer sung those times, met with a very cold reception,