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Slander or Poifon dread from Delia's rage,
Hard words or hanging, if your Judge be Page.
From furious Sappho fcarce a milder fate,
P-x'd by her love, or libell'd by her hate.
Its proper pow'r to hurt, each creature feels;
Bulls aim their horns, and Affes lift their heels;
'Tis a bear's talent not to kick, but hug;
And no man wonders he's not stung by Pug.
So drink with Walters, or with Chartres eat,
They'll never poifon you, they'll only cheat;

Then, learned Sir? (to cut the matter short)
Whate'er my fate, or well or ill at Court,
Whether old age, with faint but chearful ray,
Attends to gild the Ev'ning of my day,
Or death's black wing already be display'd,
To wrap me in the univerfal fhade;

Whether the darken'd room to mufe invite,
Or whiten'd wall provoke the fkew'r to write :
In durance, exile, Bedlam, or the Mint,
Like Lee or Budgell, I will rhyme and print.
F. Alas young man!

In flow'r of Age you

your days can ne'er be long, perish for a fong!

Plums and Directors, Shylock and his wife,
Will club their Tefters, now, to take your life!

P. What? arm'd for virtue when I point the pen,
Brand the bold front of fhameless guilty men;
Dafh the proud Gamefter in his gilded Car;
Bare the mean Heart that lurks beneath a Star;
Can there be wanting, to defend Her caufe,
Lights of the Church, or Guardians of the Laws

Could penfion'd Boileau lafh in honest strain
Flatt'rers and Bigots ev'n in Louis' reign?
Could Laureate Dryden pimp and fry'r engage,
Yet neither Charles nor James be in a rage?
And I not strip the gilding of a Knave,
Unplac'd, unpenfion'd, no man's heir, or flave?
I will, or perish in the genrous caufe:
Hear this and tremble! you, who 'fcape the Laws.
Yes, while I live, no rich or noble knave
Shall walk the world, in credit to his grave.
The world befide may murmur, or commend.
Know, all the distant din that world can keep,
Rolls o'er my Grotto, and but fooths my fleep.
There, my retreat the best Companions grace,
Chiefs out of war, and statesmen out of place.
There ST. JOHN mingles with my friendly bowl
The Feaft of Reafon and the Flow of foul:

And Hɛ, whose lightning pierc'd th' Iberian Lines,
Now forms my Quincunx, and now ranks my vines,
Or tames the Genius of the stubborn plain,
Almost as quickly as he conquer'd Spain.

Envy must own, I live among the Great,

No pimp of pleasure, and no spy of state,
With eyes that pry not, tongue that ne'er repeats,
Fond to spread friendships, but to cover heats;
To help who want, to forward who excell;
This, all who know me, know; who love me, tells
And who unknown defame me, let them be
Scribblers or Peers, alike are Mob to me.

This is my Plea, on this I rest my cause---
What faith my council, learned in the laws?

F. Your plea is good; but ftill I fay, beware! Laws are explain'd by men---so have a care--It ftands on record, that in Richard's times A man was hang'd for very honest rhymes; Confult the Statute, quatt. I think, it is, Edwardi fext. or prim. et quint. Eliz. See Libels, Satires---here you have it---read. P. Libels and Satires! lawless things indeed! But grave Epifles, bringing Vice to light, Such as a King might read, a Bishop write, Such as Sir ROBERT would approve--

F. Indeed?

The cafe is alter'd---you may then proceed;
In fuch a cafe the plaintiff will be hifs'd,

My Lords the judges laugh, and you're dismiss’d.

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WHAT, and how great, the Virtue and the Art

To live on little with a chearful heart;

(A doctrine fage, but truly none of mine)
Let's talk, my friends, but talk before we dine.
Not when a gilt Buffet's reflected pride

Turns you from found Philofophy afide;

Not when from plate to plate your eye-balls roll,
And the brain dances to the mantling bowl.

Hear BETHEL's Sermon, one not vers'd in schools,
But strong in fenfe, and wife without the rules.
Go work, hunt, exercife! (he thus began)
Then fcorn a homely dinner, if you can.
Your wine lock'd up, your Butler ftroll❜d abroad,
Or fish deny'd (the river yet unthaw'd)

If then plain bread and milk will do the feat,
The pleasure lies in you, and not the meat.

Preach as I please, I doubt our curious men
Will chufe a pheasant still before a hen;

Yet hens of Guinea full as good I hold,
Except you eat the feathers green and gold.
Of carps and mullets why prefer the great,
(Tho' cut in pieces ere my lord can eat)
Yet for fmall Turbots fuch efteem profess?
Because God made these large, the other lefs.
Oldfield with more than Harpy throat endu'd,
Cries" Send me, Gods! a whole Hog barbecu❜d!"
Oh blast it, South-winds! till a ftench exhale
Rank as the ripeness of a rabbit's tail.

By what Criterion do you eat, d'ye think,
If this is priz'd for sweetness, that for stink?
When the tir'd glutton labours thro' a treat,
He finds no relish in the sweetest meat,
He calls for fomething bitter, fomething four,
And the rich feast concludes extremely poor:
Cheap eggs, and herbs, and olives ftill we fee;
Thus much is left of old Simplicity!

The Robin-red-breast till of late had rest,
And children facred held a Martin's neft,
Till Becca-ficos fold fo dev'lish dear

To one that was, or would have been, a Peer.
Let me extol a Cat, on oifters fed,
I'll have a Party at the Bedford-head;
Or ev'n to crack live Crawfish recommend;
I'd never doubt at Court to make a Friend.

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