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Rev'rent I touch thee! but with honest zcal;
NOTES. “ IN PUNIHING is the mof precious blessing of Society. « This is the PERFECT CITIZEN, to whom we should " adjudge the prize of Virtus."
Ver. 220. Ye Inseets-The Muse's quing mall brulh yox all away: ] This it did very effe&tually; and the memory of them had been now forgotten, had not the Poet's chasity, for a while, protracted their miserable Being. There is now in his library a complete collection of all the horrid Libels written and published against him ;
The tale reviv'd, the lye fo oft o'erthrown,
The libell'd Perfon, and the pi&tur'd shape. These he had bound up in several volumes, according to their various sizes, from folios down to duodecimos ; and to each of them hath affixed this motto out of the book of Job:
Behold, my desire is, that mine adversary should write a book. Surely I should take it upon my shoulder, and bind it as a crown to me. Ch. xxxi. x 35, 36.
VER. 222. Cobwebs] Weak and night sophistry against virtue and honour. Thin colours over vice, as unable to hide the light of Truth, as cobwebs to fhade the fun. P.
All his Grace preaches, all his Lordship fings, 224 All that makes Saints of Queens, and Gods of Kings. All, all but Truth, drops dead-born from the Press, Like the last Gazette, or the last Address.
When black Ambition stains a public Cause, A Monarch's sword when mad Vain-glory draws, Not Waller's Wreath can hide the Nation's Scar, Nor Boileau turn the Feather to a Star.
231 Not so, when diadem'd with rays divine, Touch'd with the Flame that breaks from Virtue's
After x 227. in the MS.
Where's now the Star that lighted Charles to rise?
VER. 228. When black Ambition etc.] The case of Cromwell in the civil war of England; and (x 229.), of Louis XIV. in his conquest of the Low Countries. Þ.
Ver. 231. Nor Boileau turn the Feather to a Star.) See his Ode on Namur; where (to use his own words) « fait un Aftre de la Plume blanche que le Roy porte or“ dinairement à son Chapeau, et qui est en effet une espece "de Comete, fatale à nos ennemis." P.
Her Priestess Mufe forbids the Good to die,
wear, And may defcend to Mordington from STAIR : (Such as on Hough's unfully'd Mitre shine, 240 Or beam, good Digby, from a heart like thine) Let Envy howl, while Heav'n's whole Chorus fings, And bark at Honour not confer'd by Kings; Let Flatt'ry sickening see the Incense rise, Sweet to the World, and grateful to the Skies : 245 Truth guards the Poet, sanctifies the line, And makes immortal, Verse as mean as mine,
Yes, the last Pen for Freedom let me draw, When Truth stands trembling on the edge of Law;
Notes. VER. 237. Anjlis] The chief Herald at Arms. It is the custom, at the funeral of great peers, to caft into the grave the broken staves and enligns of honour. P.
VER. 239. Stair;] John Dalrymple Earl of Stair, Knight of the Thistle ; served in all the wars under the Duke of Marlborough; and afterwards as Embassador in France. P.
Ver. 240, 241. Hough and Digby] Dr. John Hough Bishop of Worcefter, and the Lord Digby. The one an affertor of the Church of England in opposition to the false measures of King James II. The other as firmly attached to the cause of that King. Both acting out of principle, and equally men of honour and virtue. P.
VER. 249. on the edge of Late': ] From the summit af
Here, Last of Britons ! let your Names be read; 250
Fr. Alas! alas! pray end what you began,
Notes. law is a dreadful precipice, which may well make Truth herself tremble. And from thence came the common proverb, Summum jus, summa injuria. SCRIBL.
Ver. ult.] This was the last poem of the kind printed by our author, with a resolution to publish no more ; but to enter thus, in the most plain and folemn manner he could, a sort of Protest against that insuperable corruption and depravity of manners, which he had been so unhappy as to live to see. Could he have hoped to have amended any, he had continued those attacks ; but bad men were grown so shameless and so powerful, that Ridicule was be. come as unsafe as it was ineffectual. The Poem raised him, as he knew it would, some enemies; but he had reason to be satisfied with the approbation of good men, and the testimony of his own conscience. Po
Receiving from the Right Hon. the Lady FRANCES SHIRL E Y
A STANDISH and Two Pens.
ES, I beheld the Athenian Queen
Descend in all her sober charms « And take the said, and smil'd serene)
• Take at this hand celeftial arms :
« Secure the radiant weapons wield;
“ The golden lance shall guard Desert, « And if a Vice dares keep the field,
" This steel shall stab it to the heart."
Aw'd, on my bended knees I fell,
Receiv'd the weapons of the sky; And dipt them in the fable Well,
The fount of Fame or Infamy.
" What well? what weapon? (Flavia cries)
“ Aftandish, steel and golden pen; " It came from Bertrand's e, not the skies : “ I gave it you to write again.
Notes. The Lady Frances Shirley) a Lady whose great Merit Mr. Pope took a real pleasure in celebrating
* A famous toy-Shop at Bath,