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How pleasing ATTERBURY's fofter hour!
How fhin'd the Soul, unconquer'd in the Tow'r!
VER. 80. STANHOPE's noble Flame,] Who confeffed to old Whifton, that, in his opinion, it was almoft impoffible for a Minister of State to be an honeft man. WARTON.
VER. 82. How pleafing ATTERBURY's] Pleafing indeed it muft have been, whether we confider his learning, his eloquence, his tafte, his tender domeftic feelings as a Father, his kindness as a Friend. Atterbury is held up, as factious, ambitious, &c. That he was attached to the Houfe of Stuart, and afterwards entered into the schemes with the party, there can be no doubt; but I think it hard to attribute this to disappointed ambition, from not attaining the ecclefiaftical eminence he afpired to. Might he not have been actuated folely by confcience, and a sense of what he thought his duty? His firmnefs of conduct, his manly tendernefs, his accomplishments, and his fufferings throw a kind of beautiful luftre on his character, whatever might have been his political creed, or conduct. His letter on his banishment, where he fays, "Some natural tears he dropped, but wiped them foon;" who can read without being affected to tears? I cannot help faying, when I think of his "fofter hour;" "Ambition should be made of ferner fuff"
When we confider what has been esteemed the harsher and more violent part of his character, we feel an additional tenderness, at the idea of kindneffes, friendship, paternal feelings, &c. We are interested, as when in Julius Cæfar we see Brutus, whofe ftern character we had been almoft afraid to approach, taking the inftrument, from the boy's hand, and, in the midft of his haraffed and bitter feelings, faying,
"Gentle Knave, good night;
I will not do thee so much wrong to wake thee !"
I will add Coxe's account of his Education, &c.
"Francis Atterbury was born at Middleton near Newport Pagnell, in Buckinghamshire, 1662. He was educated at Weftminfter, and elected ftudent of Chrift Church Oxford. He was diftinguished at an early age for tafte and claffical attainments. On taking orders, he acquired high reputation, for his talents in preaching, and fupporting, against Hoadley and Wake, the doctrines of the high Church.
How can I PULT'NEY, CHESTERFIELD forget,
While Roman Spirit charms, and Attic Wit :
"He was firft patronized by Sir Jonathan Trelawny, Bishop of Exeter; appointed by the Tory administration of Queen Anne, Dean of Christ Church; and in 1713, at the recommendation of the Earl of Oxford, advanced to the Bishoprick of Rochetter, and Deanery of Westminster.
"He was inimical always to the fucceffion of the Hanover line. On the acceffion of George the First, he received evident marks of coldnefs from the new Sovereign. He afpired to the highett honours of the Church, and would have fucceeded under Queen Anne; but, on her death, his uniform oppofition to the Government of his new Sovereign, precluded him from all expectation of preferment."
VER. 83. How fhin'd the Soul,] Among thefe, Atterbury was his chief intimate. The turbulent and imperious temper of this haughty prelate was long felt and remembered in the college over which he prefided. It was with difficulty Queen Anne was perfuaded to make him a bishop; which fhe did at last, on the repeated importunities of Lord Harcourt; who preffed the Queen to do it, because truly she had before disappointed him, in not placing Sacheverell on the bench. After her decease, Atterbury vehemently urged his friends to proclaim the Pretender; and on their refufal, upbraided them for their timidity with many oaths; for he was accuftomed to fwear, on any ftrong provocation. In a Collection of Letters, lately published by Mr. Duncombe, it is affirmed, on the authority of Elijah Fenton, that Atterbury, fpeaking of Pope, faid, there was,
Mens curva in corpore curvo.
This fentiment feems utterly inconfiftent with the warm friendfhip fuppofed to fubfift between thefe celebrated men. But Dr. Herring, in the 2d vol. of this collection, p. 104. fays, "If At. terbury was not worse used than any honeft man in the world ever was, there were strong contradictions between his public and private character." WARTON.
VER. 84. PULT'NEY, CHESTERFIELD] I have heard a lady. of exquifite wit and judgment, fay of thefe two celebrated men, "The latter was always ftriving to be witty, and the former could not help being so.”
ARGYLL, the State's whole Thunder born to wield,
Or WYNDHAM, just to Freedom and the Throne,
Names, which I long have lov'd, nor lov'd in vain,
yet higher the proud Lift fhould end, Still let me fay! No Follower, but a Friend.
The two lines on Argyle are faid to have been added, on the Duke's declaring in the Houfe of Lords, on occation of fome of Pope's fatires, that if any man dared to use his name in an invective, he would run him through the body, and throw himself on the mercy of his Peers, who, he trufted, would weigh the pro
Bolingbroke's Letter to Wyndham is one of the most curious of his works, and it gave a deadly and incurable blow to the folly and madness of Jacobitifm. WARTON.
VER. 84. CHESTERFIELD forget,] His character was much funk by the publication of the loose and libertine Letters to his Son. WARTON.
VER. 88. WYNDHAM,] Sir William Wyndham, Chancellor of the Exchequer under Queen Anne, made early a confiderable figure; but fince a much greater, both by his ability and eloquence, joined with the utmoft judgment and temper.
VER. 88. Or WYNDHAM, just to] In former Editions,
Or WYNDHAM arm'd for FreedomVER. 88. Freedom and the Throne.] We must always remember that the facred appellation of Patriot, is always adopted by difappointment, but it feems almoft ludicrous that it fhould be fo perpetually in the mouth of the high Tory Party, fuch as Bolingbroke, &c.
VER. 92. And if yet higher, &c.] He was at that time honoured with the esteem and favour of his Royal Highness the Prince of Wales. WARBURTON.
Yet think not, Friendship only prompts my lays; I follow Virtue; where fhe fhines, I praise : Point fhe to Prieft or Elder, Whig or Tory, Or round a Quaker's Beaver caft a Glory.
I never (to my forrow I declare)
Din'd with the MAN of Ross, or my LORD MAY'R. Some,
Frederic Prince of Wales; who poffeffed many of what the King of Pruffia called, ces qualités fociables qui s'allient si rare. ment avec la morgue et la grandeur des Souveraines WARTON. VER. 93. Still let me fay! No Follower, but a Friend] i. e. Unrelated to their parties, and attached only to their perfons. WA ARBURTON.
VER. 99 the MAN of Ross,] Kirle, the celebrated Man of Rofs, was educated at Baliol College Oxford, where there is a curious Tankard, infcribed with his name, which he left as a prefent to the College; it is often fhewn as a curiofity, in confequence of the fplendor given to his name, by Pope's numbers.
The Tankard flands about 10 inches high from the ground, being fupported by three legs, in the shape of Lions.
The handle is formed by the figure of a Dolphin, and the cover, lifted up by a figure of an Hedge hog, which was Kirle's Crest. Upon the cover of the Tankard, the arms of Baliol College.
In the centre, the Arms of the Donor, above which are the words "Poculum Charitatis:" and underneath, the following Infcription:
"Ex dono Jhannis Kirle de Roffe, in Agro Herefordienfi et hujus Collegii Sono Commenfalis."
The date of the year, in which the gift was made, is, contrary to the usual form, omitted.
VER. 99. my LORD MAY'R.] Sir John Barnard, Lord Mayor in the year of the Poem, 1738. A citizen eminent for his virtue, public fpirit, and great talents in Parliament. An excellent Man, Magiftrate, and Senator. In the year 1747, the City of London, in memory of his many and fignal fervices to his Country, erected a flatue to him. But his image had been placed long before in the heart of every good Man. WARBURTON.
Some, in their choice of Friends (nay, look not
Have ftill a fecret Bias to a Knave:
To find an honest man I beat about,
And love him, court him, praise him, in or out.
P. Not fo fierce;
Each Widow afks it for the Best of Men,
VER. 102. To find an honest man, &c.] In this fearch, in which he was very fincere, it would have been well if he had not fometimes trufted to the reports of others, who had less penetration, but more paffions to gratify. WARBURTON.
VER. 112. Enough for half the Greatest] Dr. Warton asks, whether this is not too high language? He might well ask. Pope puts me in mind here, of what we read of the beautiful, but fearful serpent, in a rich African landscape, that lifts his head above the tall grafs, as if he thought himself the lord of the Earth.
VER. 116 What RICHLIU wanted,] A curious and uncommon fact is mentioned by the learned Abbé Longuerue, Part ii. P. 5. That Cardinal Richlieu had, from time to time, fits of in3 fanity