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Extremes in Nature equal ends produce,
In man they join to fome myfterious ufe;
Though each by turns the other's bound invade,
As, in fome well-wrought picture, light and shade,
And oft so mix, the difference is too nice
Where ends the Virtue, or begins the Vice.
Fools! who from hence into the notion fall,
That Vice or Virtue there is none at all.
If white and black blend, foften, and unite
A thoufand ways, is there no black or white?
Afk your own heart, and nothing is fo plain;
'Tis to mistake them, cofts the time and pain.
Vice is a monfter of fo frightful mien,
As, to be hated, needs but to be feen;
At Greenland, Zembla, or the Lord knows where.
No creature owns it in the first degree,
But thinks his neighbour further gone than he:
After ver. 220, in the first Edition followed these :
A Cheat! A Whore! who ftarts not at the name,
In all the Inns of Court or Drury-lane?
Yet feen too oft, familiar with her face,
We first endure, then pity, then embrace.
But where th' Extreme of Vice, was ne'er agreed:
Afk where's the North? at York, 'tis on the Tweed;
In Scotland, at the Orcades; and there,
After ver. 226, in the MS.
The Colonel fwears the Agent is a dog;
The Scrivener vows th' Attorney is a rogue.
Ev'n those who dwell beneath its very zone,
Or never feel the rage, or never own;
What happier natures shrink at with affright,
The hard inhabitant contends is right.
That disappoints th' effect of every vice:
That, happy frailties to all ranks apply'd;
Shame to the virgin, to the matron pride;
Fear to the statesman, rashness to the chief;
To kings prefumption, and to crowds belief:
That, Virtue's ends from vanity can raise,
Which feeks no intereft, no reward but praise;
And build on wants, and on defects of mind,
The joy, the peace, the glory of Mankind.
Heaven forming each on other to depend,
A master, or a fervant, or a friend,
Virtuous and vicious every Man must be,
Few in th' extreme, but all in the degree;
The rogue and fool by fits is fair and wife;
And ev'n the beft, by fits, what they defpife.
'Tis but by parts we follow good or ill;
For, Vice or Virtue, Self directs it ftill;
Each individual feeks a feveral goal;
But Heaven's great view, is One, and that the Whole. That counter-works each folly and caprice;
Against the Thief th' Attorney loud inveighs,
For whofe ten pounds the County twenty pays.
The Thief damns Judges, and the Knaves of State;
And dying, mourns fmall Villains hang'd by great.
Bids each on other for affiftance call,
Till one Man's weakness grows the strength of all.
Wants, frailties, paffions, clofer ftill ally
The common intereft, or endear the tie.
To thefe we owe truc friendship, love sincere,
Each home-felt joy that life inherits here;
Yet from the fame we learn, in its decline,
Those joys, those loves, those interests, to resign;
Taught half by reason, half by mere decay,
To welcome death, and calmly pass away.
Whate'er the paffion, knowledge, fame, or pelf,
Not one will change his neighbour with himself.
The learn'd is happy nature to explore,
The fool is happy that he knows no more;
The rich is happy in the plenty given,
The poor contents him with the care of Heaven.
See the blind beggar dance, the cripple fing,
The fot a hero, lunatic a king;
The ftarving chemift in his golden views
Supremely bleft, the poet in his Mufe.
See fome strange comfort every state attend,
And pride bestow'd on all, a common friend:
See fome fit paffion every age fupply;
Hope travels through, nor quits us when we die.
Behold the child, by nature's kindly law,
Pleas'd with a rattle, tickled with a straw:
Some livelier play-thing gives his youth delight,
A little louder, but as empty quite :
Scarfs, garters, gold, amufe his riper ftage,
And beads and prayer-books are the toys of age: 280
Pleas'd with this bauble ftill, as that before;
'Till tir'd he fleeps, and Life's poor play is o'er.
Meanwhile Opinion gilds with varying rays
Those painted clouds that beautify our days;
Each want of happiness by Hope supply'd,
And each vacuity of fenfe by Pride :
These build as fast as knowledge can destroy;
In folly's cup ftill laughs the bubble, joy;
One profpect loft, another still we gain;
And not a vanity is giv'n in vain;
Ev'n mean Self-love becomes, by force divine,
The scale to measure others wants by thine.
See! and confefs, one comfort ftill muft rife;
'Tis this, Though Man's a fool, yet GOD IS WISE.
Of the Nature and State of Man with respect to Society.
I. THE whole Universe one fyftem of Society, ver. 7, &c. Nothing made wholly for itfelf, nor yet wholly for another, ver. 27. The happiness of Animals mutual, ver. 49. II. Reafon or Inftinct operate alike to the good of each Individual, ver. 79. Reafon or Inftinct operate alfo to Society in all animals, ver. 109. III. How far Society carried by Inftinct, ver. 115. How much farther by Reason, ver. 128. IV. Of that which is called the State of Nature, ver. 144. Reafon inftructed by Inftinct in the Invention of Arts, ver. 166. and in the Forms of Society, ver. 176. V. Origin of Political Societies, ver. 196. Origin of Monarchy, ver. 207. Patriarchal Government, ver. 212. VI. Origin of true Religion and Government, from the fame principle, of Love, ver. 231, &c. Origin of Superftition and Tyranny, from the fame principle, of Fear, ver. 237, &c. The Influence of Self-love operating to the focial and public Good, ver. 266. Restoration of true Religion and Government on their first principle, ver. 285. Mixed Government, ver. 288. Various Forms of each, and the true end of all, ver. 300, &c.