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The rich buffet well-coloured serpents grace,
Yet hence the poor are clothed, the hungry fed;*
Another age shall see the golden ear Embrown the slope, and nod on the parterre, Deep harvests bury all his pride has planned, And laughing Ceres re-assume the land.
Who then shall grace, or who improve the soil ?
His father's acres who enjoys in peace,
1 Taxes the incongruity of ornaments (though sometimes practised by the ancients) where an open mouth ejects the water into a fountain, or where the shocking images of serpents, &c., are introduced in grottoes or buffets.-Pope.
2 The proud festivals of some men are here set forth to ridicule, where pride destroys the ease, and formal regularity all the pleasurable enjoyment of the entertainment.-Pope
3 See “ Don Quixote.”—Pope.
4 The moral of the whole, where Providence is justified in giving wealth to those who squander it in this manner. A had taste employs more hands, and diffuses expense more than a good one. This recurs to what is laid down in Book I. Ep. ii, ver. 230--7; and in the Epistle preceeding this, ver, 161, &c.—Pope,
Whose rising forests, not for pride or show,
You too proceed! make falling arts your care,
TO MR. ADDISON.
OCCASIONED BY HIS DIALOGUES ON MEDALS. SEE the wild waste of all-devouring years! How Rome her own sad sepulchre appears, With nodding arches, broken temples spread! The very tombs now vanished like their dead ! Imperial wonders raised on nations spoiled, Where, mixed with slaves, the groaning martyr toiled: Huge theatres, that now unpeopled woods, Now drained a distant country of her floods: Fanes, which admiring gods with pride survey, Statues of men, scarce less alive than they!
i This was originally written in the year 1715, when Mr. Addison intended to publish his book of Medals; it was some time before he was Secretary of State; but not published till Mr. Tickell's edition of his works; at which time the verses on Mr. Craggs, which con. wlude the poem, were added, viz, in 1720,-Pope
Some felt the silent stroke of. mould'ring age,
Ambition sighed: she found it vain to trust
to shore, Their ruins perished, and their place no more! Convinced, she now contracts her vast design, And all her triumphs shrink into a coin. A narrow orb each crowded conquest keeps; Beneath her palm here sad Judea weeps: Now scantier limits the proud arch confine, And scarce are seen the prostrate Nile or Rhine; A small Euphrates through the piece is rolled, And little eagles wave their wings in gold.
The medal, faithful to its charge of fame, Through climes and ages bears each form and name: In one short view subjected to our eye Gods, emp’rors, heroes, sages, beauties, lie. With sharpened sight pale antiquaries pore, The inscription value, but the rust adore. This the blue varnish, that the green endears, The sacred rust of twice ten hundred years! To gain Pescennius? one employs his schemes, One grasps a Cecrops in ecstatic dreams. Poor Vadius," long with learned spleen devoured, Can taste no pleasure since his shield was scoured; And Curio, restless by the fair one's side, Sighs for an Otho, and neglects his bride.5
Theirs is the vanity, the learning thine:
1 This is a collection of silver, that of brass coins.- Warburton.
2 The rare medal of the Emperor Pescennius Niger, who succeeded Pertinax, 193: killed, 195.
3 The Athenian lawgiver.
4 See his history, and that of his shield, in the “Memoirs of Scriblerus." - Warburton.. Vadius was Dr. Woodward, an antiquary and naturalist.
6 Charles Patin was banished from the court because he sold Louis XIV, an Otho that was not genuine. ---Warton,
Touched by thy hand, again Rome's glories shine ;
Oh, when shall Britain, conscious of her claim,
1 James Craggs had raised himself from an inferior position to be Secretary of State to George I. When in power he offered Pope o pension of £300 a year.
EPISTLE TO DR. ARBUTHNOT
ADVERTISEMENT. This paper is a sort of bill of complaint, begun many years since, and drawn up by snatches, as the several occasions offered. I had no thoughts of publishing it, till it pleased some persons of rank and fortune (the authors of “Verses to the Imitator of Horace,” and of an “Epistle to a Doctor of Divinity from a Nobleman at Hampton Court") to attack, in a very extraordinary manner, not only my writings, (of which, being public, the public is judge,) but my person, morals, and family,' whereof, to those who know me not, a truer information may be requisite. Being divided between the necessity to say something of myself, and my own lazıness to undertake so awkward a task, I thought it the shortest way to put the last hand to this epistle. If it have anything pleasing, it will be that by which I am most desirous to please, the truth, and the sentiment; and if anything offensive, it will be only to those I am least sorry to offend, the vicious or the ungenerous.
Many will know their own pictures in it, there being not a circumstance but what is true ; but I have for the most part spared their names, and they may escape being laughed at, if they please.
I would have some of them know, it was owing to the request of the learned and candid friend to whom it is in
1 Lady Mary W. Montagu this addressed him in her “Address te Mr. Pope on his Imitation of the First Satire of the Second Book of Horace:"
Thine is just such an image of his pen
That is at once resemblance and disgrace.
His style is elegant: his diction pure,
Hard as thy heart, and as thy birth obscure.