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Not all that tempts your wand'ring eyes
And heedless hearts is lawful prize,
Nor all that glisters gold.

Perhaps this should have given way to the 'Long Story'another chef-d'œuvre in the way of delicate persiflage-but the story is literally long. Let us rather take our leave of Gray-for it is unnecessary to linger among so many old and cherished friends-with an epigram directed against a certain disreputable minister who sought admission to the Church of England,—an epigram which shows that Gray had a reserve-fund of tremendous satire a fund upon which, on the whole, one is thankful that he did not draw more frequently:


Thus Tophet look'd; so grinn'd the brawling fiend,
Whilst frighted prelates bow'd and call'd him friend.
Our mother church, with half-averted sight,
Blush'd as she bless'd her grisly proselyte.

Hosannas rung through Hell's tremendous borders,
And Satan's self had thoughts of taking orders.

The true society-verse-writing of the time was done, for the most part, by Lord Chesterfield, Horace Walpole, and Sir Charles Hanbury Williams. The latter was even more of a political than a social satirist, throwing into his squibs a grace of style as well as a point of expression which remind one of the similar effusions of Mackworth Praed. Of all his work in this direction, the lines he addressed to Pulteney, then Earl of Bath, are perhaps the most thoroughly admirable as satire, and the most likely to maintain their place in literature. They are so very vitriolic that, if less elegantly written, they would be almost offensive, even at this interval of time. They run:

What statesman, what hero, what king,

Whose name through the island is spread,
Will you choose, O, my Clio, to sing,

Of all the great living or dead?

* Born 1709, died 1759.

Go, my Muse, from this place to Japan,
In search of a topic for rhyme;

The great Earl of Bath is the man

Who deserves to employ your whole time.

But, howe'er, as the subject is nice,

And perhaps you're unfurnished with matter,

May it please you to take my advice,

That you mayn't be suspected to flatter.

When you touch on his lordship's high birth,
Speak Latin as if you were tipsy;

Say we all are sons of the earth,

Et genus non fecimus ipsi.

Proclaim him as rich as a Jew,

Yet attempt not to reckon his bounties;
You may say he is married-that's true-
Yet speak not a word of his countess.
Leave a blank here and there in each page,
To enrol the fair deeds of his youth!
When you mention the acts of his age,

Leave a blank for his-honour and truth.

Say he made a great monarch change hands;
He spake, and the Minister fell;

Say he made a great statesman of Sandys-*
O that he had taught him to spell!

Then enlarge on his cunning and wit,

Say how he harangued at the Fountain;

Say how the old patriots were bit,

And a mouse was produced by a mountain.

Then say how he mark'd the new year

By increasing our taxes and stocks;
Then say how he changed to a peer,

Fit companion for Edgcumbe and Fox.

Equally polished and pointed, though in a different style, is his sketch of the character of General Churchill, the merit

* Pronounced' Sands.'

of which lies, however, largely in its historic, though not generous, correctness:

None led through youth a gayer life than he,
Cheerful in converse, smart in repartee.
And with old age its vices come along,
And in narration he's extremely long;
Exact in circumstance, and nice in dates,
On every subject he his tale relates.

If you name one of Marlbro's ten campaigns,
He tells you its whole history for your pains,
And Blenheim's field becomes, by his reciting,
As long in telling as he was in fighting;
His old desire to please is well expressed,

His hat's well cocked, his periwig's well dressed ;
He rolls his stockings still, white gloves he wears,
And in the boxes with the beaux appears;
His eyes through wrinkled corners cast their rays,
Still he bows graceful, still soft things he says;
And, still remembering that he once was young,
He strains his crippled knees and struts along.
The room he entered smiling, which bespoke
Some worn-out compliment or threadbare joke,
For, not perceiving loss of parts, he yet

Grasps at the shade of his departed wit.

Many of Williams's effusions are more lively and entertaining than either of these specimens. Most people have heard of the daring jeu d'esprit in which he said of the illustrious Misses Gunning that

Nature, indeed, denied them sense,
But gives them legs and impudence,
That beats all understanding.

Walpole and Chesterfield wrote in a very different tone indeed, each of them being by far too fine a gentleman to give way to such outbursts of witty ill-nature. These men of society dealt chiefly in the epigram of compliment. Wal* Horace Walpole, born 1717, died 1797. † Born 1694, died 1773.

pole did, indeed, write a very savage epigram on Admiral Vernon, among others; and Chesterfield said of a tall dull


Unlike my subject now shall be my song,

It shall be witty and it sha'n't be long.

Still, both of them were most at home in agreeable hyperbole. Thus Walpole addressed the following to Madame de Damas on her learning English :'

Though British accents your attention fire,
You cannot learn so fast as we admire;
Scholars like you but slowly can improve,

For who would teach you but the verb 'I love '? Lord Chesterfield, on seeing a young Jacobite lady dressed in orange ribbons,' wrote:

Say, lovely traitor, where's the jest
Of wearing orange on thy breast,
While that breast upheaving shows
The whiteness of the rebel rose?

Of the latter writer's miscellaneous pieces, all of which are characterised by elegance and point, the following is an enjoyable example:

What do scholars and bards, and astronomers wise,
Mean by stuffing our heads with nonsense and lies?

By telling us Venus must always appear

In a car, or a shell, or a twinkling star,

Drawn by sparrows, or swans, or dolphins, or doves,
Attended in form by the graces and loves?

That ambrosia and nectar is all she will taste,
And her passports to hearts on a belt round her waist!

* On the Admiral's appointment to preside over the herring-fishery.. It should be premised that Vernon had made himself conspicuous in Parliament by his rancorous speeches :

Long in the senate had brave Vernon rail'd,

And all mankind with bitter tongue assail'd ;
Sick of his noise, we wearied Heav'n with pray'r,
In his own element to place the tar.

The gods at length have yielded to our wish,

And bade him rule o'er Billingsgate and Fish.

Without all this bustle, I saw the bright dame;
To supper last night to Pulteney's she came,
In a good warm sedan, no fine open car,

Two chairmen her doves, and a flambeau her star.
No nectar she drank, no ambrosia she eat,
Her cup was plain claret, a chicken her meat;
Nor wanted a cestus her bosom to grace,

For Richmond that night had lent her her face.

One of the most skilful and witty epigrammatists in the language is David Garrick, who is generally regarded as an actor and nothing more (though, to be sure, that is enough!), whereas he wrote a fair amount of verse, and much of it in a strain and of a quality which would have done credit to a professional poetaster. It is of all sorts and sizes, ranging from the full-blown copy of verses (such as the admirable ones addressed to Mrs. Crewe) to the occasional couplet or quatrain. In the latter kind of production Garrick is eminently happy; whether in compliment or in satire, he is equally felicitous. We have seen how he wrote about poor Goldsmith. Equally well known is his couplet upon John Hill:

For physic and farces his equal there scarce is,
His farces are physic, his physic a farce is.

Not so familiar is his epigram on the same individual in reference to Hill's censure of Garrick's pronunciation of 'u' for 'i':

If 'tis true, as you say, that I've injured a letter,

I'll change my note soon, and, I hope, for the better.
May the just rights of letters, as well as of men,
Hereafter be fix'd by the tongue and the pen.

Most devoutly I wish they may both have their due,
And that I may be never mistaken for you.

Few, perhaps, are aware that the hackneyed quotation—
When doctrines meet with general approbation,
It is not heresy, but reformation-

occurs in one of Garrick's smaller trifles in this way. This, Born 1716, died 1779.

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