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The good man heaps up nothing but mere metre,
Enjoys his garden and his books in quiet;
And then—a perfect hermit in his diet.

Of little use the man you may suppose
Who says in verse what others say in prose;
Yet let me show, a poet's of some weight,
And (though no soldier) useful to the state.
What will a child learn sooner than a song? •
What better teach a foreigner the tongue ?
What's long or short, each accent where to place,
And speak in public with some sort of grace?
I scarce can think him such a worthless thing,
Unless he praise some monster of a king;
Or virtue or religion turn to sport,
To please a lewd or unbelieving court.
Unhappy Dryden !—In all Charles's days,
Roscommon only boasts unspotted bays;
And in our own (excuse some courtly stains)
No whiter page than Addison remains.
He, from the taste obscene reclaims our youth,
And sets the passions on the side of truth,
Forms the soft bosom with the gentlest art,
And pours each human virtue in the heart.
Let Ireland tell, how wit upheld her cause,
Her trade supported, and supplied her laws;
And leave on Swift this grateful verse engraved:
“The rights a court attacked, a poet saved."
Behold the hand that wrought a nation's cure,
Stretched to relieve the idiot and the poor,
Proud vice to brand, or injured worth adorn,
And stretch the ray to ages yet unborn.

Dorset. He lived abroad, and entrusted the management of his estates to Peter Walter. Peter went down only once a year to Shroton to receive the annual rents, at the sanie time he visited his own estate in Dorsetshire, yet he had £400 a year for his trouble, and then charred £800 for extra expenses.- Bowles.

1 Horace had not acquitted himself much to his credit in this capacity (non bene relicta parmula) in the battle of Philippi: It is manifest he alludes to himself, in this whole account of a poet's character; but with an intermixture of irony: Vivit siliquis et pane secundo has a relation to this epicurism; Os tenerum pueri, is ridicule: the nobler office of a poet follows, Torquet ab obscơnis-Mox etiam pectus-Recte facta refert, &c., which the imitator has applied where he thinks it more due than to himself. He hopes to be pardoned, if, as he is sincerely inclined to praise what deserves to be praised, he arraigns what deserves to be arraigned, in the 210, 211, and 212th verses.- Pope.

2 A foundation for the maintenance of idiots, and a fund for assisting the poor, by lending small sums of money on demand.--Pope.

Not but there are, who merit other palms;
Hopkins and Sternhold' glad the heart with psalms:
The boys and girls whom charity maintains,
Implore your help in these pathetic strains:
How could devotion touch the country pews,
Unless the gods bestowed a proper muse?
Verse cheers their leisure, verse assists their work,
Verse prays for peace, or sings down Pope and Turk.
The silenced preacher yields to potent strain,
And feels that grace his pray’r besought in vain;
The blessing thrills through all the lab'ring throng,
And heaven is won by violence of song.

Our rural ancestors, with little blest,
Patient of labour when the end was rest,
Indulged the day that housed their annual grain,
With feasts, and off'rings, and a thankful strain:
The joy their wives, their sons, and servants share,
Ease of their toil, and partners of their care:
The laugh, the jest, attendants on the bowl,
Smoothed ev'ry brow, and opened ev'ry soul:
With growing years the pleasing license grew,
And taunts alternate innocently flew.
But times corrupt, and nature, ill-inclined,
Produced the point that left a sting behind;
Till friend with friend, and families at strife,
Triumphant malice raged through private life.
Who felt the wrong, or feared it, took th' alarm,
Appealed to law, and justice lent her arm.
At length by wholesome dread of statutes bound,
The poets learned to please, and not to wound:
Most warped to flatt'ry's side; but some, more nice,
Preserved the freedom, and forebore the vice.
Hence Satire rose, that just the medium hit,
And heals with morals what it hurts with wit.

We conquered France, but felt our captive's charms; Her arts victorious triumphed o'er our arms; Britain to soft refinements less a foe, Wit grew polite, and numbers learned to flow.

1 In the year 1570 Clement Marot made a musical French version of the Psalms, with the hope of substituting them for the chansons d'amour, then fashionable at the court of Francis I. He was perfectly successful, and even Diane de Poitiers had her favourite Psalm, “How pants the hart!" Thomas Sternhold, groom of the bedcban.ber to Edward VI., hoped to do the same for the English Court, and assisted by John Hopkins, a school-master in Suffolk, translated the Psalms into Euglish. This translation is called the old version.

Waller was smooth;' but Dryden taught to join
The varying verse, the full-resounding line,
The long majestic march, and energy divine.
Though still same traces of our rustic vein
And splay-foot verse, remained, and will remain.
Late, very late, correctness grew our care,
When the tired nation breathed from civil war.
Exact Racine,' and Corneille's noble fire,
Showed us that France had something to admire.
Not but the tragic spirit was our own,
And full in Shakespeare, fair in Otway: shone:
But Otway failed to polish or refine,
And fluent Shakespeare scarce effaced a line.
Even copious Dryden wanted, or forgot,
The last and greatest art,—the art to blot.

Some doubt, if equal pains, or equal fire
The humbler muse of comedy require.
But in known images of life, I guess
The labour greater, as th' indulgence less.
Observe how seldom even the best succeed:
Tell me if Congreve's fools are fools indeed ?
What pert, low dialogue has Farquhar writ!5
How Van wants grace, who never wanted wit?
The stage how loosely does Astræa tread,

? Mr. Waller, about this time with the Earl of Dorset, Mr Godolphin, and others, translated the “ Pompey” of Corneille; and the more cor. rect Freuch poets began to be in reputation.--Pope.

2 Jean Racine, tbe great French dramatist, was born 1639 and died 1699. His “Phædre," "Britannicus,” “Athalie,” &c., are well known.

Pierre Corneille was born 1606. He was an earlier dramatist than Racine, and is thought by the French more sublime. His “Cid," "Les Horaces,” &c., are as famous as our own Shakespeare's plays on the Continent. He died 1684.

3 Thomas Otway was born 1651. His master pieces were “The Orphan," and "Venice Preserved." It is said this poor genius died of want, 1685. There is a sad story told of his begging a shilling of a gentleman, who gave him a guinea. Otway bought a roll, and eating too eagerly was choked by the first mouthful.

4 William Congrove was a popular comic dramatist, born 1670. 1 immoral tone of his comedies drew on him the censure of Jeremy Collier, the zealous reformer of the stage. Congreve made a good for. tune, but despised the profession in which he had been so successful. He died 1729. Voltaire said that Congreve had raised the glory of English comedy to a greater height than any dramatist who had preceded him.

5 Pope alludes to the characters of Brisk and Witwood. George Farquhar, boru 1678, died 1707. His comedies were witty but very indelicate.

Sir John Vanbrugh, died 1726. He was a witty but immoral dramatist.

? A namo taken by Mrs. Behn, authoress of several obscene plays, &c.-Pope, ..

Who fairly puts all characters to bed!
And idle Cibber, how he breaks the laws,
To make poor Pinky eat with vast applause !?
But fill their purse, our poet's work is done,
Alike to them, by pathos or by pun.

O you! whom vanity's light bark conveys.
On fame's mad voyage by the wind of praise,
With what a shifting gale your course you ply,
For ever sunk too low, or borne too high!
Who pants for glory finds but short repose,
A breath revives him, or a breath o’erthrows.
Farewell the stage! if just as thrives the play,
The silly bard grows fat, or fails away.

There still remains, to mortify a wit,
The many-headed monster of the pit;
A senseless, worthless, and unhonoured crowd;
Who, to disturb their betters mighty proud,
Clatt'ring their sticks before ten lines are spoke.
Call for the farce, the bear, or the black-joke.
What dear delight to Britons farce affords!
Ever the taste of mobs, but now of lords;
(Taste, that eternal wanderer, which flies
From heads to ears, and now from ears to eyes!)
The play stands still; d—t action and discourse,
Back fly the scenes, and enter foot and horse;
Pageants on pageants, in long order drawn,
Peers, heralds, bishops, ermine, gold and lawn;
The champion too! and, to complete the jest,
Old Edward's armour beams on Cibber's breast.
With laughter sure Democritus* had died,
Had he beheld an audience gape so wide.
Let bear or elephant be e'er so white,
The people, sure, the people are the sight!
Ah, luckless poet! stretch thy lungs and roar,
That bear or elephant shall heed thee more;
While all its throats the gallery extends,
And all the thunder of the pit ascends!

1 William Pinkethman, a comedian. ? From plays to operas, and from operas to pantomimes.— Warburton.

3 Tho coronation of Henry VIII. and Queen Anne Boleyn, in which the play-houses vied with each other to represent all the pomp of a coronation. In this noble contention, the armour of one of the kings of England was borrowed from the Tower, to dress the champion. l'ope.

4 The Greek laughing philosopher. '

Loud as the wolves on Orca's stormy steep,
Howl to the roarings of the northern deep.
Such is the shout, the long-applauding note,
At Quin's high plume, or Oldfield's petticoat;a
Or when from court a birth-day suit bestowed,
Sinks the lost actor in the tawdry load.
Booth enters—hark! the universal peal!
“But has he spoken?” Not a syllable.
What shook the stage, and made the people stare ?
Cato's long wig, flow'red gown, and laquered chair.

Yet lest you think I rally more than teach,
Or praise malignly arts I cannot reach,
Let me for once presume t instruct the times,
To know the poet from the man of rhymes:
'Tis he who gives my breast a thousand pains,
Can make me feel each passion that he feigns;
Enrage, compose, with more than magic art,
With pity, and with terror, tear my heart;
And snatch me, o'er the earth, or through the air,
To Thebes, to Athens, when he will, and where.

But not this part of the poetic state Alone, deserves the favor of the great; Think of those authors, sir, who would rely More on a reader's sense, than gazer's eye. Or who shall wander where the muses sing? Who climb their mountain, or who taste their spring? How shall we fill a library with wit, When Merlin's cave is half unfinished vet?4

My liege! why writers little claim your thought, I guess; and, with their leave, will tell the fault: We poets are (upon a poet's word) Of all mankind, the creatures most absurd: The season, when to come, and when to go, To sing, or cease to sing, we never know; And if we will recite nine hours in ten, You lose your patience, just like other men. Then too we hurt ourselves, when to defend A single verse, we quarrel with a friend;

1 The farthest northern promontory of Scotland, opposite to the Orcades.—Pope.

2 Quin and Oldfield were a celebrated actor and actress.
3 The Palatine Library then building by Augustus.—Pope.

4 A building in the royal gardens at Richmond, where is a small, but choice collection of books.-Pope.

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