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The man who by his labour gets

His bread, in independent state,
Who never begs, and seldom eats,
Himself can fix, or change his fate.

The Old Gentry.

Smile on the work, be to her merits kind,
And to her faults, whate'er they are, be blind.

Prologue to the Royal Mischief. *

Now fitted the halter, now travers'd the cart,
And often took leave, but was loth to depart.†

The Thief and the Cordelier. A Ballad.

Who breathes must suffer; and who thinks, must mourn ;
And he alone is bless'd, who ne'er was born.
Solomon on the Vanity of the World.

Lines 240, 241.

Book it.

Nobles and heralds by your leave,

Here lies what once was Matthew Prior;

* “ The Royal Mischief," a Tragedy, was written by Mrs. Manley, authoress of “ The Lost Lover," and other plays, all unknown on the modern stage.

+ This ballad does not appear in all editions of Prior's works. It is quoted here from a 12mo edition, entitled, “ Poems on several occasions by the late Matthew Prior, Esq., London. Printed for J. and R. Tonson and S. Draper and H. Lintot, 1754.

The son of Adam and of Eve,
Can Bourbon or Nassau claim higher ?

Epitaph on Himself.

To John I owed great obligation ;

But John unhappily thought fit
To publish it to all the nation ;
Sure John and I are more than quit.

An Epigram.

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Tired Nature's sweet restorer, balmy sleep!
He, like the world, his ready visit pays
Where fortune smiles ; the wretched he forsakes.

Night i.

Lines 1-3

Night, sable goddess ! from her ebon throne,
In rayless majesty now stretches forth
Her leaden sceptre o'er a slumb'ring world.

Lines 18-20.

The bell strikes one.

We take no note of time
But from its loss : to give it then a tongue
Is wise in man.

Lines 55-57

And can eternity belong to me,
Poor pensioner on the bounties of an hour.

Lines 66, 67.

Insatiate archer! could not one suffice ?
Thy shaft flew thrice, and thrice my peace was slain ! *

Night 1. Lines 212, 213.

Be wise to-day ; 'tis madness to defer ;
Next day the fatal precedent will plead;
Thus on, till wisdom is push'd out of life.
Procrastination is the thief of time-
Year after

year it steals, till all are fled, And to the mercies of a moment leaves The vast concerns of an eternal scene.

Lines 390-396.

At thirty, man suspects himself a fool,
Knows it at forty, and reforms his plan ;
At fifty, chides his infamous delay,
Pushes his prudent purpose to resolve,
In all the magnanimity of thought ;
Resolves, and re-resolves, then dies the same.
And why? because he thinks himself immortal.
All men think all men mortal but themselves.

Lines 417-424

Who does the best his circumstance allows,
Does well, acts nobly; angels could no more.

Night II.

Lines 90, 91.

* Alluding to three deaths in his own family, which had occurred within a short time of each other.


The man who consecrates his hours By vig'rous effort and an honest aim, At once he draws the sting of life and death ; He walks with Nature, and her paths are peace.

Night II. Lines 185-188.

Time flies, death urges, knells call,
Hell threatens, Heaven invites.

Lines 291, 292.

Lovely in death the beauteous ruin lay;
And if in death still lovely, lovelier there,
Far lovelier! Pity swells the tide of love.

Night III. Lines 104-106.

Man wants but little, nor that little long : *
How soon must he resign his very

dust, Which frugal nature lent him for an hour !

Night 10. Lines 118-120.

A God all mercy is a God unjust.

Line 2340

'Tis impious in a good man to be sad.

Line 676.

* “Man wants but little here below,

Nor wants that little long."
See Quotations from Goldsmith.

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