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THE SOFA. I sing the Sofa. I who latelysang Truth, Hope, and Charity, and touch'd with awe The solemn chords, and with a trembling hand, Escaped 2 with pain from that adventurous flight, Now seek repose upon an humbler theme; The theme though humble, yet august and proud The occasion,-for the Fair commands the song.
Time was when clothing, sumptuous or for use, Save 3 their own painted skins, our sires had none,
" I who erewbile the happy garden sung
Paradise Regained, i. 1.
Paradise Lost, i. 13. 2 Thee I revisit now with bolder wing,
Escaped the Stygian pool. Par. Lost, iii. 13. 3. A painted vest Prince Vortiger had on, Which from a naked Pict his grandsire won.
Howard's British Princes. Yet in another of his poems Cowper saysTaught thee to clothe thy pink'd and painted hide.
As yet 4 black breeches were not, sattin smooth, 10
At length a generation more refined Improved the simple plan, made three legs four, Gave them a twisted form vermicular, And o'er the seat with plenteous wadding stuffd Induced a splendid cover green and blue, Yellow and red, of tapestry richly wrought And woven close, or needle-work sublime. There might ye see the piony spread wide, 35 The full-blown rose, the shepherd and his lass, Lap-dog and lambkin with black staring eyes, And parrots with twin cherries in their beak.
Now came the cane from India, smooth and bright With Nature's varnish; sever'd into stripes 40
* As yet this world was not. Par. Lost, v. 577.
That interlaced each other, these supplied
The other shape,
Pur. Lost, iii. 666. 6 The arch'd and ponderous roof; by its own weight Made steadfast and immoveable.
Congreve. Mourning Bride. S. C.-9.