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Are such men rare! perhaps they would abound, 700
Were occupatiou easier to be found,
Were education, else so sure to fail,
Conducted on a manageable scale,
And schools, that have outliv'd all just esteem,
Exchang’d for the secure domestick scheme.- 705
But, having found him, be thou duke or earl,
Show thou hast sense enough to prize the pearl,
And, as thou wouldst th' advancement of thine heir
In all good faculties beneath his care,
Respect, as is but rational and just,

A man deem'd worthy of so dear a trust.
Despis’d by thee, what more can he expect
From youthful folly than the same neglect?
A flat and fatal negative obtains,
That instant, upon all his future pains;

715 His lessons tire, his mild rebuke offend, And all th' instructions, of thy son's best friend Are a stream chok'd, or trickling to no end. Doom him not then to solitary meals; But recollect that he has sense, and feels;

720 And that, possessor of a soul refin'd, An upright heart and cultivated mind, His post not mean, his talents not unknown, He deems it hard to vegetate alone. And, if admitted at thy board he sit,

726 Account him no just mark for idle wit; Offend not him, whom modesty restrains From repartee, with jokes that he disdains; Much less transfix his feelings with an oath; Nor frown, unless he vanish with the cloth. 1730 And, trust me, his utility may reach To more than he is hir'd or bound to teach: Much trash unutter'd, and some ills undone, Through rev’rence of the censor of thy son. But, if thy table be indeed unclean,

735 Foul with excess, and with discourse obscene,

And thou a wretch, whom, foll'wing her own plan
The world accounts an honourable man,
Because forsooth thy courage has been tried
And stood the test, perhaps on the wrong side; 740
Though thou hadst never grace enough to prove
That any thing but vice could win thy love;
Or hast thou a polite, card-playing wife,
Chain'd to the routs that she frequents for life;
Who, just when industry begins to snore, 745
Flies, wing'd with joy, to some coach-crowded door;
And thrice in every winter throngs thine own
With half the chariots and sedans in town,
Thyself meanwhile e'en shifting as thou mayst;
Not very sober though, nor very chaste;

Or is thine house, though less superb thy rank
If not a scene of pleaure, a mere blank,
And thou at best, and in thy sob’rest mood,
A trifler, vain and empty of all good:
Though mercy for thyself thou canst have nono, 785
Hear Nature plead, show mercy to thy son.
Sav'd from his home, where every day brings forth
Some mischief fatal to his future worth,
Find him a better in a distant spot;
Within some pious pastor's humble cot,

760 Where wild example, (yours I chiefly mean, The most seducing, and the oft'nest seen,) May never more be stamp'd upon his breast, Nor yet perhaps incurably impress'd. Where early rest makes early rising sure, 706 Disease or comes not, or finds easy cure Prevented much by diet neat and plain; Or, if it enter, soon starv'd out again: Were all th' attention of his faithful host, Discreetly limited to two at most,

770 May raise such fruits as shall reward his care, And not at last evaporate in air; Where, stillness aiding study, and his mind Serene, and to his duties much inclin'd,

Not occupied in day-dreams, as at home,

775 Of pleasures past, or follies yet to come, His virtuous toil may terminate at last In settled habit and decided taste.But whom do I advise? the fashion led, Th’incorrigibly wrong, the deaf, the dead, 780 Whom care and cool deliberation suit Not better much than spectacles a brute; Who, if their sons some slight tuition share, Deem it of no great moment whose or where; Too proud t' adopt the thoughts of one unknown, 785 And much too gay t' have any of their own. But courage, man! methought the muse replied Mankind are various, and the world is wide: The ostrich, silliest of the feather'd kind, And form’d of God without a parent's mind,

790 Commits her eggs, incautious, to the dust, Forgetful that the foot may crush the trust; And while on public nurries they rely, Not knowing, and too oft not caring why, Irrational in what they thus prefer

795 No few, that would seem wise, resemble her. But all are not alike. Thy warning voice May here and there prevent erroneous choice; And some perhaps, who busy, as they are, Yet make their progeny their dearest care,

800 (Whose hearts will ache, once told what ills may

reach Their offspring, left upon so wild a beach,) Will need no stress of argument to enforce Th' expedience of a less advent'rous course; The rest will slight thy counsel or condemn; 805 But they have human feelings-turn to them.

To you then, tenants of life's middle state, Securely plac'd between the small and great, Whose character, yet undebauch'd, retaius Two thirds of all the virtue that remains,


Who, wise yourselves, desire your son should learn
Your wisdom and your ways--to you I turn.
Look round you on a world perversely blind:
See what contempt is fall’n on human kind;
See wealth abus’d, and dignities misplac’d, 813
Great titles, offices, and trusts disgrac’d,
Long lines of ancestry, renown'd of old,
Their noble qualities all quench'd and cold;
See Bedlam's closeted and hand-cuff'd charge
Surpass'd in frenzy by the mad at large;

See great commanders making war a trade;
Great lawyers, lawyers without study made:
Churchmen, in whose esteem their best employ
Is odious, and their wages all their joy;
Who, far enough from furnishing their shelves 826
With gospel lore, turn infidels themselves;
See womanhood despis'd, and manbood sham'd
With infamy too nauseous to be nam'd;
Fops at all corners, lady-like in pien,
Civited fellows, smelt ere they are seen.

830 Else coarse and rude in manners, and their tongue On fire with curses, and with nonsense hung, Now Alush'd with drunk’nness, now with whoredom

pale, Their breath a sample of last night's regale; See volunteers in all the vilest arts,

836 Man well endow'd of honourable parts, Design'd by Nature wise, but self-made fools, All these, and more like these, were bred at schools, And if it chance, as sometimes chance it will, That though school-bred the boy be virtuous still; 840 Such rare exceptions, shining in the dark Prove, rather than impeach, the just remark: As here and there a twinkling star descried, Serves but to show how black is all beside. Now look on him, whose very voice in tono 846 Just echoes thine, whose features are thine own,

And stroke bis polish'd cheek of purest red,
And lay thine hand upon his flaxen head,
And say, My boy, th' unwelcome hour is come,
When thou, transplanted from thy genial home, 850
Must find a colder soil and bleaker air,
And trust for safety to a stranger's care;
What character, what turn thou wilt assume
From constant converse with I know not whom;
Who there will court thy friendship, with what views,
And, artless as thou art, whom thou wilt choose;

Though much depends on what thy choice shall be,
Is all chance-medley, and unknown to me.
Canst thou, the tear just trembling on thy lids,
And while the dreadful risk foreseen forbids; 860
Free too, and under no constraining force,
Unless the sway of custom warp thy course;
Lay such a stake upon the losing side.
Merely to gratify so blind a guide?
Thou canst not! Nature, pulling at thine heart, 865
Condemns th’ unfatherly, th’imprudent part,
Thou wouldst not, deaf to Nature's tend'rest plea,
Turn him adrift upon a rolling sea,
Nor say, Go thither, conscious that there lay
A brood of asps or quicksands in his way;

870 Then only govern’d by the self-same rule Of nat’ral pity, send him not to school. No-guard him better. Is he not thine own, Thyself in miniature, thy flesh, thy bone? And hop'st thou not, ('tis ev'ry father's hope,) 875 That since thy strength must with thy years elope, And thou wilt need some comfort to assuage Health's last farewell, a staff in thine old age, That then, in récompense of all thy cares, Thy child shall show respect to thy gray hairs,

880 Befriend thee, of all other friends bereft, And give thy life its only cordial left! Aware then how much danger intervenes, To compass that good end forecast the means,

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