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The first publication of this Epiftle.
HIS paper is a fort of bill of complaint, begun many years fince, and drawn up by fnatches, as the feveral occafions offered. I had no thoughts of publishing it, till it pleased fome Perfons of Rank and Fortune [the Authors of Verfes to the Imitator of Horace, and of an Epistle to a Doctor of Divinity from a Nobleman at Hampton Court] to attack, in a very extraordinary manner, not only my Writings (of which, being public, the Public is judge) but my Perfon, Morals, and Family, whereof, to those who know me not, a truer information may be requifite. Being divided between the neceffity to fay fomething of myself, and my own laziness to undertake fo aukward a tafk, I thought it the shortest way to put the last hand to this Epiftle. If it have any thing pleafing, it will be that by which I am most defirous to please, the Truth and the Sentiment; and if any thing offenfive, it will be only to
those I am leaft forry to offend, the vicious or the
Many will know their own pictures in it, there being not a circumstance but what is true; but I have, for the most part, fpared their Names, and they may escape being laughed at, if they please.
I would have fome of them know, it was owing to the request of the learned and candid Friend to whom it is inscribed, that I make not as free use of theirs as they have done of mine. However, I shall have this advantage, and honour, on my fide, that whereas, by their proceeding, any abuse may be directed at any man, no injury can poffibly be done by mine, fince a nameless Character can never be found out, but by its truth and likeness.
Vol. IV. facing p
F.Hayman inv. et del.
Shut, shut the Door, good John fatigud I said Tye up the Knocker, say I'm sick, I'm dead.
Ep: to Arbuthnor
An Apology for himself and his Writings. Being the Prologue to the Satire.
HUT, fhut the door, good John! fatigu'd
Tye up the knocker, fay I'm fick, I'm dead.
Fire in each eye, and papers in each hand,
What walls can guard me, or what shades can hide? They pierce my thickets, thro' my Grot they glide, By land, by water, they renew the charge,
They stop the chariot, and they board the barge. 10 No place is facred, not the Church is free,
Ev'n Sunday fhines no Sabbath-day to me :
VER. 1. Shut, fout the door, good John!] John Searle, his old and faithful fervant: whom he has remembered, under that character, in his Will.