« PreviousContinue »
* Si, Mimnermus uti cenfet, fine amore jocisque
Nil eft jucundum; vivas in amore jocifque.
Vive, vale. fi quid novifti rectius iftis,
Candidus imperti; fi non, his utere mecum.
And SwiFT cry wifely,
"Vive la Bagatelle !"
The Man that loves and laughs, muft fure do well. 1 30
*Adieu—if this advice appear the worst,
E'en take the Counsel which I gave you first:
Or better Precepts if you can impart,
Why do, I'll follow them with all my heart,
HE Reflections of Horace, and the Judgments
past in his Epistle to Auguftus, feem'd so seafonable to the prefent Times, that I could not help applying them to the use of my own Country. The Author thought them confiderable enough to address them to his Prince; whom he paints with all the great and good qualities of a Monarch, upon whom the Romans depended for the Encrease of an abfolute Empire. But to make the Poem entirely English, I was willing to add one or two of those which contribute to the Happiness of a Free People, and are more confiftent with the Welfare of our Neighbours.
This Epiftle will fhew the learned World to have fallen into Two mistakes: one, that Auguftus was a Patron of Poets in general; whereas he not only prohibited all but the Best Writers to name him, but recommended that Care even to the Civil MagiAtrate: Admonebat Praetores, ne paterentur Nomen fuum obfolefieri, etc. The other, that this Piece was only a general Difcourfe of Poetry; whereas it was an Apology for the Poets, in order to render Auguftus more their Patron. Horace here pleads the Cause of his Cotemporaries, firft against the Tafte of the Town, whofe humour it was to magnify the Authors of the preceding Age; fecondly against the Court