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Born to no pride, inheriting no strife,
O friend ! may each domestic bliss be thine!
A. Whether that blessing be denied or given, Thus far was right; the rest belongs to Heaven.
SATIRES AND EPISTLES OF HORACE,
ADVERTISEMENT. The occasion of publishing these Imitations was the clamour
raised on some of my Epistles. An answer from Horace was both more full, and of more dignity, than any I could have made in my own person; and the example of much greater freedom in so eminent a divine as Dr. Donne, seemed a proof with what indignation and contempt a Christian may treat vice or folly, in ever so low or ever so high a station. Both these authors were acceptable to the princes and ministers under whom they lived. The satires of Dr. Donne I versified at the desire of the Earl of Oxford, while he was lord treasurer, and of the Duke of Shrewsbury, who had been secretary of state; neither of whom looked upon a satire on vicious courts as any reflection on those they served in. And, indeed, there is not in the world a greater error, than that which fools are so apt to fall into, and knaves with good reason to encourage, the mistaking a satirist for a libeller; whereas, to a true satirist nothing is so odious as a libeller, for the same reason as to a man truly virtuous nothing is so hateful as a hypocrite.
Uni æquus virtuti atque ejus amicis. Whoever expects a paraphrase of Horace, or a faithful copy of his genius, or manner of writing, in these imitations, will be much disappointed. Our author, uses the Roman poet for little more than his canvass : and if the old design or colouring chance to suit his purpose, it is well; if not, he employs his own, without scruple or ceremony. Hence it is, he is so frequently serious where Horace is in jest, and at ease where Horace is disturbed. In a word, he regulates his movements no farther on his original, than was necessary for his concurrence in promoting their common plan of reformation of manners.
Had it been his purpose merely to paraphrase an ancient satirist, he had hardly made choice of Horace; with whom, as a poet, he held little in common, besides a comprehensive knowledge of life and manners, and a certain curious felicity of expression, which consists in using the simplest language with dignity, and the most ornamented with ease. For the rest, his harmony and strength of numbers, his force, and splendour of colouring, his gravity and sublimity of sentiment, would have rather led him to another model. Nor was his temper less unlike that of Horace, thin his talents. What Horace would only smile at, Mr. Pope would treat with the grave severity of Persius; and what Mr. Pope
would strike with the caustic lightning of Juvenal, Horace would content himself in turning into ridicule.
If it be asked then, why he took any body at all to imitate, he has informed us in his advertisement. To which we may add, that this sort of imitations, which are of the pature of parodies, adds reflected grace and splendour on original wit. Besides, he deemed it more modest to give the name of imitations to his satires, than, like Despreaux, to give the name of satires to his imitations.
BOOK II. SATIRE I.
TO MR. FORTESCUE.
F. I'd write no more.
Not write! but then I think;
F. You could not do a worse thing for your life.
fierce, With arms and George and Brunswick crowd the
vers, Rend with tremendous sound your ears asunder, With gun, drum, trumpet, blunderbuss, and thunder?
Or nobly wild, with Budgell's fire and force,
F. Then all your Muse's softer art display,
P. Alas! few verses touch their nicer ear;
F. Better be Cibber, I'll maintain it still, Than ridicule all taste, blaspheme quadrille, Abuse the city's best good men in metre, And laugh at peers that put their trust in Peter. E'en those you touch not, hate you. P.
What should ail 'em. F. A hundred smart in Timon and in Balaam : The fewer still you name, you wound the more; Bond is but one, but Harpax is a score.
P. Each mortal has his pleasure: none deny Scarsdale his bottle, Darty his ham-pie; Ridotta sips and dances, till she see The doubling lustres dance as fast as she: F- loves the senate, Hockley-hole his brother, Like in all else, as one egg to another. I love to pour out all myself, as plain As downright Shippen, or as old Montagne: In them, as certain to be loved as seen, The soul stood forth, nor kept a thought within ; In me what spots (for spots I have) appear, Will prove at least the medium must be clear. In this impartial glass my Muse intends Fair to expose myself, my foes, my friends; Publish the present age; but where my text Is vice too high, reserve it for the next: My foes shall wish my life a longer date, And every friend the less lament my fate. My head and heart thus flowing through my
quill, Verseman or proseman, term me which you will, Papist or Protestant, or both between, Like good Erasmus in an honest mean,
In moderation placing all my glory,
Satire's my weapon, but I'm too discreet
Slander or poison dread from Delia's rage;
Then, learned sir! (to cut the matter short)
F. Alas, young man! your days can ne'er be long,
P. What? arm'd for Virtue when I point the pen, Brand bo front of shameless guilty men ; Dash the proud gamester in his gilded car; Bare the mean heart that lurks beneath a star;