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Arm'd all to point, and on a courfer fair
Imounted high, in military pride,

His little train before he flow did ride.
Him eke behind a gentle 'fquire enfues,
With his young lord aye marching fide by fide,
His counsellor and guard in goodly thews,
Who well had been brought up and nurs'd by
ev'ry Muse.

Thus as their pleafing journey they purfu'd,
With cheerful argument beguiling pain,
Ere long defcending from an hill they view'd,
Beneath their eyes outstretch'd a fpacious plain,
That fruitful fhew'd and apt for ev'ry grain,
For paftures, vines, and flow'rs, while Nature fair
Sweet-fmiling all around with count'nance faint

Seem'd to demand the tiller's art and care
Her wildness to correct, her lavish waste repair.
Right good I ween and bounteous was the foil,
Aye wont in happy feafon to repay
With tenfold ufury the peafant's toil,
But now it was ruin all and wild decay ;
Untill'd the garden and the fallow lay, [grown,
The fheep-thorne down with barren brakes to'er-
The whiles the merry peasants fport and play
All as the public evil were unknown,
Or ev'ry public care from ev'ry breath was flown.

Aftonifh'd at a fcene at once fo fair
And fo deform'd, with wonder and delight
At man's neglect and Nature's bounty rare,
In ftudious thought awhile the Fairy knight
Bent on that goodly lond § his eager fight,
Then forward rufh'd impatient to defcry
What towns and cattles therein were empight||;
For towns him feem'd and caftles he did ipy [eye.
As to th' horizon round he stretch'd his roaming
Nor long way had they travell'd ere they came
To a wide ftream that with tumultuous roar
Amongst rude rocks its winding courfe did frame:
Black was the wave and fordid, cover'd o'er
With angry foam, and ftain'd with infants' gore:
Thereto, along th`unlovely margin stood
A birchen grove that waving from the shore
Aye caft upon the tide its falling bud,
And with its bitter juice empoifon'd all the flood.
Right in the centre of the vale empight
Not diftant far a forked mountain rofe,
In outward form prefenting to the fight
That fam'd Parnaffian hill on whole fair brows
The Nine Aonian Sifters wont repose,
Lift'ning to fweet Caftalia's founding stream,
Which thro' the plains of Cirrha murm'ring flows;
But this to that compar'd mote juftly feem
Ne fitting haunt for gods, ne worthy man's esteem.
For this, nor founded deep nor fpredden wide,
Nor high uprais'd above the level plain,
By toiling art thro' tedious years applied,
From various parts compil'd with ftudious pain,

Thews, manners. Empight, plac'd. ++ Emprize, enterprise, attempt. Whilom, formerly.

Was erft upthrown, if so it mote attain,
Like that poetic mountain, to be hight
The noble feat of Learning's goodly train;
Thereto, the more to captivate the fight
It like a garden fair molt curiously was dight**,
By micafure and by rule it was outlay'd,
In figur'd plots with leafy walls enclos'd,
With fymmetry fo regular difpos'd
That plot to plot ftill anfwer'd fhade to fhade;
Each correfpondent twain alike array'd
With like embellishments of plants and flow'rs,
Of ftatues, vafes, fpouting founts, that play'd
Thro' fhells of Tritons their afcending fhow'rs.
And labyrinths involv'd and trelice-woven bow'rs.
There likewife mote be seen on ev'ry side
The yew obedient to the planter's will,
And fhapely box of all their branching pride
Ungently fhorne, and with prepoft'rous skill
To various beafts and birds of fundry quill
Transform'd, and human fhapes of montrous fize,
Huge as that giant race who hill on hill
High-heaping, foughtwith impious vain emprize++
Despite of thund'ring Jove toicale the fteepy skies.
Als other wonders of the fportive fhears
Fair Nature mifadorning there were found,
Globes. fpiral columns, pyramids, and piers,
With fprouting urns and budding ftatues crown'd,
And horizontal dials on the ground
In living box by cunning artifts trac'd,
And gallies trim on no long voyage bound,
But by their roots there ever anchor'd faft, [blaft.
All were their bellying fails outspread to ev'ry
With terraffes on terraffes upthrown,
O'er all appear'd the mountain's forked brows
And all along arrang'd in order'd rows
And viftos broad the velvet flopes adown
The ever verdant trees of Daphne fhone;
But aliens to the clime, and brought of old
From Latian plains and Grecian Helicon,
They fhrunk and languifh'd in a foreign mould,
By changeful fummers ftarv'd, and pinch'd by
winter's cold.

On golden thrones of antic form reclin'd,
Amid this verdant grove with folemn state,
In mimic majefty Nine Virgins fat,
In features various as unlike in mind:
Als boafted they themselves of heavenly kind,
And to the fweet Parnallian Nymphs allied;
Thence round their brows the Delphic bay they

And matching with high names their apifh pride, O'er ev'ry learned fchool aye claim'd they to prefide.

+Fain, earnest, eager.

In antic garbs (for modern they difdain'd)
By Greek and Roman artifts whilom §§ made,
of various woofs and variously distain'd
With tints of ev'ry hue were they array'd;

Brakes, briers.

§ Lond, land. ** Dight, dreft.

1 Hight, called, named.

‡‡ All, ufed frequently by the old English poets for although.


And here and there ambitioufly difplay'd
A purple fhred of fome rich robe, prepar'd
Erft by the Mufes or th' Aonian Maid,
To deck great Tullius or the Mantuan bard,
Which o'er each motely weft with uncouth
fplendour glar'd.


And well their outward vefture did exprefs
The bent and habit of their inward mind,
Affe&ting Wildom's antiquated drefs,
And ufages by time caft far behind:
Thence to the charms of younger Science blind,
The customs, laws, the learning, arts, and phrafe,
Of their own countries they with fcorn declin'd;
Ne facred Truth herself would they embrace
Unwarranted, unknown in their forefathers days.
Thus ever backward cafting their furvey
To Rome's old ruins, and the groves forlorn
Of elder Athens, which in profpc&t lay
Stretch'd out beneath the mountain, would they
Their bufy fearch, and o'er the rubbish mourn;
Then gath'ring up with fuperftitious care
Each little ferap, however foul or torn,
In grave harangues they boldly would declare,
This Ennius, Varro, this the Stagirite, did wear.
Yet under names of vencrable found,
While o'er the world they ftretch'd their awful rod,
Thro' all the provinces of Learning own'd
For teachers of whate'er is wife and good;
Als from cach region to their drad * abode
Came youth unnumber'd, crowding all to tafte
The ftreams of Science, which united flow'd
Adown the mount from nine rich fources caft,
And to the vale below in one rude torrent paft.
O'er ev'ry fource, protectress of the ftream,
One of thofe Virgin Sifters did prefide,
Who dignifying with her noble name
Her proper flood, aye pour'd into the tide
The heady vapours of fcholaftic pride,
Defpotical and abject, bold and blind,
Fierce in debate, and forward to decide,
Vain love of praise with adulation join'd,
And difingenuous fcorn and impotence of mind.
Extending from the hill on ev'ry fide,
In circuit vaft a verdant valley fpread,
Acrofs whofe uniform flat bofom glide
Ten thoufand fireams, in winding mazes led
By various fluices from one common head;
A turbid mais of waters, valt, profound!
Hight of Philology the lake, and fed
By that rude terrent which with roaring found
Came tumbling from the hill, and flow'd the
level round.

And ev'ry where this fpacious valley o'er,
Faft by cach ftream was feen a num'rous throng
Of beardless striplings, to the birch-crown'd fhore
By nurfes, guardians, fathers, dragg'd along,
Who helplefs, meck, and innocent of wrong,

Were torn reluctant from the tender fide
Of their fond mothers, and by faitours + ftrorg,
By pow'r made infolent and hard by pride, [tiče.
Were driv'n with furious rage, and lath'd into the
On the rude bank with trembling feet they flood,
And cafting round their oft reverted eyes,
If haply they mote 'fcape the hated flood,
Fill'd all the plain with lamentable cries:
But far away th' unheeding father flies,
Conftrain'd his ftrong compunctions to reprefs;
While clofe behind, affuming the difguife
Of nurt'ring Care and smiling Tenderness, [press.
With fecret fcourges arm'd thofe grifly faltours
As on the steepy margin of a brook,
When the young Sun with flow'ry Maia rides,
With innocent difmay a bleating flock
Crowd back, affrighted at the rolling tides,
The shepherd-fwain at firft exhorting chides
Their fedly fear; at length, impatient grows,
With his rude crook he wounds their tender fides,
And, all regardlefs of their piteous moan,
Into the dashing wave compels them furious down.
Thus ung'd by maft'ring fear and dolorous teer§
Into the current plung'd that infant crowd:
Right piteous was the fpectacle I ween,

Drad, dreadful.

+Faitour, doer, from faire, to do, and fuit, deed;
Seely fimple.
§ Teen, pain, grief.
** Lear, learning.


Of tender ftriplings ftain'd with tears and blood,
Perforce conflicting with the bitter flood,
And lab'ring to attain the diftant fhore,
Where holding forth the gown of manhood flood
The Siren Liberty, and evermore
Solicited their hearts with her enchanting lore.
Irkfome and long the paffage was, perplex'd
With rugged rocks, on which the raving tide
By fudden bursts of angry tempefts vex'd,
Oft dah'd the youth, whofe ftrength mote ill abide
With head uplifted o'er the waves to ride;
Whence many wearied ere they had o'erpaft
The middle ftream (for they in vain have tried)
Again return'd aftounded and aghaft,
Ne one regardful look would ever backward caft,
Some, of a rugged more enduring frame,
Their teilfome courfe with patient pain purfu'd,
And tho' with many a bruife and muchel & blame,
Eft hanging on the rocks, and eft embru'd
Deep in the muddy ftream, with hearts subdu`d,
And quail'd by labour, gain'd the shore at laft;
But in life's practic'd lear unfkill'd and rude,
Forth to that forked hill they filent pac'd,
Where hid in ftudious fhades their fruitless hours
they wafte.

Others of rich and noble lineage bred,
Tho' with the crowd to pass the flood constrain'd,
Yet o'er the crags with fond indulgence led
Pv hindling guides, and in all depths fuftain'd,
Skimm'd'lightly o'er the tide, undipt, unftain'd,
Save with the fprinkling of the wat'ry fpray,
And aye their proud prerogative maintain'd

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Of ignorance, and cafe, and wanton play,
Soft harbingers of vice and premature decay.
A few, alas! how few! by Heaven's high will
With fubtle fpirits endow'd and finews ftrong,
Albefore mated + by the tempefts thrill
That bellow'd fierce and rife the rocks among,
By their own native vigour borne along,
Cut briskly thro' the waves, and forces new
Gath'ring from toil, and ardor from the throng
Of rival youths, outstript the lab'ring crew,
And to the true Parnaffe and heaven-throng'd
glory flew.

Then turns his ready fteed, and on his journey hics.
But far he had not march'd ere he was ftay'd
By a rude voice, that like th' united found
Of houting myriads thro' the valley bray'd,
And fhook the groves, the floods, and folid ground;
The diftant hills rebellow'd all around.
“Arreft, Sir Knight," it cried, "thy fond career,
"Nor with prefumptuous difobedience wound
"That awful majefty which all revere!
"In my commands, Sir Knight, the voice of
"nations hear."

Quick turn'd the knight, and faw upon the plain
Advancing tow'rds him, with impetuous gait,
And vifage all inflam'd with fierce difdain,
A monftrous giant, on whofe brow elate
Shone the bright enfign of imperial state;
Albeit lawful kingdom he had none,
But laws and kingdoms wont he oft create,'
And oft times over both erect his throne,

Dire was the tumult and from ev'ry fhore
Difcordant echoes ftruck the deafen'd ear,
Heart-thrilling cries, with fobs and fingults § fore
Short-interrupted, the imploring tear,
And furious ftripes and angry threats fevere,
Confus'dly mingled with the jarring found
Of all the various fpeeches that whilere ||
On Shinar's widespread champaign did astound
High Babel's builders vain, and their proud works


And to the Fairy knight now drawing near
With voice terrific and imperious mien


Much was the knight empaffion'd at the scene;
But more his blooming fon, whofe tender breaft
Empierced deep with fympathizing teen
On his pale check the figns of drad imprefs'd,
And fill'd with tears his eyes, which fore diftrefs'd,
Up to his fire he rais'd in mournful wife,
Who with fweet finiles paternal foon redrefs'd
His troublous thoughts, and clear'd each fad fur-(All was he wont lefs dreadful to appear
When known and practis'd than at distance feen)
And kingly stretching forth his fceptre fheen,
Him he commandeth upon threaten'd pain
Of his difpleasure high and vengeance keen,
From his rebellious purpofe to refrain,[train.
And all due honours pay to Learning's rev'rend
So faying, and foreftalling all reply,
His peremptory hand without delay,
As one who little car'd to justify
His princely will, long us'd to boundless fway,
Upon the Fairy youth with great difmay
In ev'ry quaking limb convuls'd he lay'd,
And proudly stalking o'er the verdant lay ††,
Him to thofe fcientific ftreams convey'd,
With many his young compeers, therein to be
embay'd +1.

While fenates, priefts, and kings, his fovran
fceptre own.

Custom he hight, and aye in ev'ry land
Ufurp'd dominion with defpotic sway
O'er all he holds, and to his high command

Conftrains ev'n ftubborn Nature to obey,
Whom difpoffeffing oft he doth affay
To govern in her right; and with a pace
So foft and gentle doth he win his way,
That the unwares is caught in his embrace';
And tho' defiour'd and thrall'd nought feels her
foul difgrace.



For nurt'ring even from their tenderest age
The docile fons of men withouten pain,
By difciplines and rules to ev'ry stage
of life accommodate, he doth them train
Infenfibly to wear and hug his chain:
Als his behefts or gentle or fevere,
Or good or noxious, rational or vain,
He craftily perfuades them to revere
As inftitutions fage and venerable lear.
Protector therefore of that forked hill,
And mighty patron of thofe Sifters Nine,
Who there enthron'd with many a copious rill,
Feed the full ftreams that thro' the valley fhine,
He deemed was, and aye with rites divine,
Like thofe which Sparta's hardy race of yore
Were wont perform at fell Diana's fhrine,
He doth conftrain his vafals to adore
Perforce their facred names, and learn their fa-
cred lore.

+ Mated, amazed, feared.

Whilere, formerly.

The knight his tender fon's distressful stour §§
Perceiving, fwift to his affiftance flew,
Ne vainly flay'd to deprecate that pow'r
Which from fubmiffion aye more haughty grew :
For that proud giant's force he wifely knew
Not to be meanly dreaded, nor defied
With rafh prefumption; and with courage truc,
Rather than ftep from virtue's path afide,
Oft had he fingly fcorn'd his all-difmaying pride.

Parnaffe, Parnaffus.
Sovran, for fovereign.

*Albe, although.

Singults, fighs.

**The Lacedemonians, in order to make their children hardy, and endure pain with conftancy and courage, were accustomed to caufe them to be fcourged very feverely. "And I myself," fays Plutarch, in his Life of Lycurgus, "have feen feveral of them endure whipping to death at the foot of the altar of Diana, furnamed Orthia,”? ++ Lay, mead. Embay'd, bathed, dipt. § Stour, trouble, misfortune, &c.


And now, difdaining parle, his courfer hot
He fiercely prick'd, and couch'd his vengeful


Wherewith the giant he fo rudely finot,
That him perforce conftrain'd to wend arrear;
Who much abafh'd at fuch rebuke fevere,
Yet his accuftom'd pride recov'ring foon,"
Forthwith his maffy fceptre 'gan uprear,
For other warlike weapon he had none,
Ne other him behov'd to quell his boldest fene t.
With that enormous mace the Fairy knight
So fore he bet that all his armour bray'd §,
To pieces well nigh riv'n with the might
Of to tempeftuous ftrokes; but he was ftay'd,
And ever with delib'rate valour weigh'd
The fudden changes of the doubtful fray,
From cautious prudence oft deriving aid,
When force unequal did him hard affay;
So lightly from his fteed he leap'd upon the lay.
Then fwiftly drawing forth his trenchant blade,
High o'er his head he held his fenceful thield,
And warily forecafting to evade
The giant's furious arm about him wheel'd,
With reftlefs fteps aye traverfing the field,
And ever as his foc's intemperate pride
Thro' rage defenceless mote advantage yield,
With his fharp fword fo oft he did him gride ¶,
That his gold-fandal'd feet in crimton floods were

His bafer parts he maim'd with many a wound;
But far above his utmoft reach were pight **
The forts of life; ne never to confound
With utter ruin, and abolish quite
A pow'r fo puiffant, by his fingle might
Did he prefume to hope: himielf along
From lawless force to free in bloody fight
He ftood, content to bow to custom's throne,
So reafon mote not blush his sovran rule to own.
So well he warded and fo fiercely preft
His foc, that weary wex'd he of the fray.
Yet nould he algates ++ lower his haughty creft,
But making in contempt his fore difmay,
Difdainfully releas'd the trembling prey
As one unworthy of his princely care;
Then proudly cafting on the warlike Fay ‡‡
A fmile of fcorn and pity, thro' the air
'Gan blow his fhrilling horn; the blaft was heard

They, when their bleeding king they did behold,
And faw an armed knight him ftanding near,
Attended by that palmer fage and bold,
Whofe vent'rous fearch of devious truth whilere
Spread thro' the realms of learning horrours drear,
Yfeized were at firft with terrors great,

Eftfoons aftonish'd at th' alarming found,
The fignal of diftrefs and hoftile wrong,
Confus'dly trooping from all quarters round,
Came pouring o'cr the plain a num'rous throng
Of ev'ry fex and order, old and young,
The vaffals of great Cuftom's wide domain,
Who to his lore inur'd by ufage long
His ev'ry fummons heard with pleasure fain,
And felt his ev'ry wound with fympathetic pain.

* Wend arrear, move backwards. Trenchant, cutting.

Nould he algates, would not by any means.

And in their boding hearts began to fear
Diffenfion factious, controverfial hate,

And innovatious ftrange, in Cuftom's peaceful

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In village, city, castle, bow'r, and hall,
Each fex, each age, each order and degree,
To vice and idle fport abandon'd all,
Kept one perpetual gen'ral jubilee,
Ne fuffer'd ought difturb their merry glee ;
Ne fenfe of private lofs, ne public woes,
Reftraint of law, religion's drad decree,
Inteftine defolation, foreign foes, [vulfive throes.
Nor Heaven's tempeftous threats, nor earth's con-

Bet, beat.
Fay, Fairy,

+ Fone, foes.

Gride, cut, hack.

Bray'd, refounded.

**Pight, plac'd.

§ Welkin, iky.


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But chiefly they whom Heaven's difpofing hand Had feated high on Fortune's upper stage, L And plac'd within their call the facred band That waits on Nurture and Inftruction sage, If haply their wife heftsmote them engage To climb thro' knowledge to more noble praife, And, as they mount, enlighten ev'ry age With the bright influence of fair virtue's rays, Which from the awful heights of grandeur brighter blaze :

They, O perverfe and bafe ingratitude !
Defpifing the great ends of Providence,
For which above their mates they were endued
With wealth, authority, aud eminence,
To the low fervices of brutal fenfe

Abus'd the means of pleasures more refin'd,
Of knowledge, virtue, and beneficence;
And, fett'ring on her throne th' immortal Mind,
The guidance of her realm to paflions wild refign'd.
Hence, thoughtless, fhameless, recklefs, fpiritlefs,
Nought worthy of their kind did they effay,
But, or benumb'd with palfied idlenefs,
In merely living loiter'd life away,
Or by falfe tafte of pleafure led aftray,
For ever wand'ring in the fenfual bow'rs
Of feverish Debauch and luftful Play,
Spent on ignoble toils their active pow'rs,
Aud with untimely blafts difcas'd their vernal


E'en they to whom kind Nature did accord
A frame more delicate and purer mind,
Tho' the foul brothel and the wine-ftain'd board
Of beastly Comus loathing they declin'd,
Yet their foft hearts to idle joys refign'd;
Like painted infects thro' the fummer air
With random flight aye ranging unconfin'd,
And tafting ev'ry flow'r and bloom fair
Withouten any choice, withouten any carc.
For choice them needed none who only fought
With vain amufements to beguile the day;
And wherefore should they take or care or thought
Whom Nature prompts and Fortune calls to play
"Lords of the earth, be happy as ye may !"
So learn'd, fo taught, the leaders of mankind
Th' unreafoning vulgar willingly obey,
And, leaving toil and poverty behind, [find.
Ran forth by diff'rent ways the blifsful boon to
Nor tedious was the fearch; for ev'ry where,
As nigh great Cuftom's royal tow'rs the knight
Pafs'd thro' th' adjoining hamlets, mote he hear
The merry voice of feftival delight
Saluting the return of morning bright
With matin revels by the mid-day hours
Scarce ended, and again with dewy night
In cover'd theatres or leafy bow'rs, [pow'rs
Off'ring her ev'ning vows to Pleafure's joyous
And ever on the way mote he efpy
Men, women, children, a promifcuous throng
Of rich, poor, wife and fimple, low and high,
By land, by water, paffing aye along
With murmurs, anticks, mufic, dance and fong,

Hefts, behefte, precepts, commands.

To Pleafure's num'rous temples, that befide The glift'ning ftreams, or tufted groves among, To ev'ry idle foot stood open wide,

And ev'ry gay defire with various joys fupplied. For there each heart with diverfe charms to move ;

The fly enchantrefs fummon'd all her train
Alluring Venus, queen of vagrant love,
The boon companion Bacchus, loud and vain,
And tricking Hermes, god of fraudful gain,
Who when blind Fortune throws directs the die,
And Phœbus, tuning his foft Lydian ftrain
To wanton motions and the lover's figh,
And thought-beguiling fhew and masking revelry.
Unmeet affociates thefe for noble youth
Who to true honour meaneth to aspire,
And for the works of virtue, faith and truth,
Would keep his manly faculties entire ;
The which avizing well the cautious fire
From that foft Siren land of pleafaunce vain
With timely hafte was minded to retire,
Or ere the fweet contagion mote attain [ftain.
His fon's unpractis'd heart, yet free from vicious
So turning from that beaten road afide,
Thro' many a devious path at length he pac'd,
As that experienc'd palmer did him guide,
Till to a mountain hoare they came at laft,
Whofe high-rais'd brows, with fylvan honours
Majeftically frown'd upon the plain, [grac'd,
And over all an awful horror caft;
Seem'd as thofe villas gay it did difdain,
did difdsin, (train.
Which spangled all the vale like Flora's painted
The hill afcended straight, erewhile they came
To a tall grove, whofe thick embow'ring fhade,
Impervious to the fun's meridian flame,
E'en at mid-noon a dubious twilight made,
Like to that sober light which, difarray'd
Of all its gorgeous robe, with blunted beams
Thro' windows dim with holy acts pourtray'd
Along fome cloifter'd abbey faintly gleams,
Abstracting the rapt thought from vain earth-
muling themes.

Beneath this high o'erarching canopy
Of cluft'ring oaks, a fylvan colonnade,
Aye lift ning to the native melody

Of birds fweet echoing thro' the lonely fhade,
On to the centre of the grove they ftray'd;
Which in a fpacious circle op'ning round,
Within its helt'ring arms fecurely laid,
Difclos'd to fudden view a vale profound,
With Nature's artlefs fmiles and tranquil beau-
ties crown'd.

There, on the bafis of an ancient pile,

Whofe cross-furmounted fpire o'er look'd the wood,
A venerable matron they erewhile
Difcover'd have befide a murm'ring flood,
Reclining in right fad and penfive mood:
Retir'd within her own abftracted breast,
She feem'd o'er various woes by turns to brood,
The which her changing cheer by turns express'd,
Now glowing with difdain, with grief now over-
keft t

+ Overkeft, for overcast,


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