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The morals blacken'd when the writings 'fcape,
The whisper, that to greatnefs ftill too near,
Sporus at court, or Japhet in a jail,
A hireling fcribler, or a hireling peer,
He gain his Prince's ear, or lofe his own,
VER. 354. Abuse, on all be lov'd, or lov'd him, spread,] Namely on the Duke of Buckingham, the Earl of Burlington, Lord Bathurst, Lord Bolingbroke, Bishop Atterbury, Dr. Swift, Dr. Arbuthnot, Mr. Gay, his Friends, his Parents, and his very Nurfe, afperfed in printed papers, by James Moore, G. Ducket, L. Welfted, Tho. Bentley, and other obfcure perfons.
VER. 357. Perhaps, yet vibrates ] What force and elegance of expreffion! which, in one word, conveys to us the phyfical effects of found, and the moral effects of an often repeated fcandal.
VER. 359. For thee, fair Virtue! welcome ev'n the laft!] This line is remarkable for presenting us with the most amiable image of steady Virtue, mixed with a modest concern for his being forced to undergo the feverest proofs of his love for it, which was the being thought hardly of by his SOVEREIGN.
Yet foft by nature, more a dupe than wit,
VER. 368. in the MS.
Once, and but once, his heedlefs youth was bit,
Where Woman's is the fin, and Man's the shame.
VER. 374. ten years] It was fo long after many libels before the Author of the Dunciad published that poem, till when, he never writ a word in answer to the many fourrilities and falfehoods concerning him.
VER. 375 Welfted's lye.] This man had the impudence to tell in print, that Mr. P. had occasioned a Lady`s death, and to name a perfon he never heard of. He also published that he libell'd the Duke of Chandos ; with whom, (it was added) that he had lived in familiarity, and received from him a prefent cf five hundred pounds: the falsehood of both which is known to his Grace. Mr. P. never received any prefent, farther than the subscription for Homer, from him, or from any great man whatsoever.
VER. 378. Let Budgel] Budgel, in a weekly pamphlet called the Bee, beftowed much abufe on him, in the imagination
Let the two Curls of town and Court, abufe
that he writ fome things about the Laft Will of Dr. Tindal, in the Grub-freet Journal; a Paper wherein he never had the leaft hand, direction, or supervisal, nor the least knowledge of its Author.
VER. 379. except his Will;] Alluding to Tindal's Will: by which, and other indirect practices, Budgel, to the exclufion of the next heir, a nephew, got to himself almost the whole fortune of a man entirely unrelated to him.
VER. 381. His father, mother, &c.] In fome of Curl's and other pamphlets, Mr. Pope's father was said to be a Mechanic, a Hatter, a Farmer, nay a Bankrupt. But, what is ftranger, a Nobleman (if such a reflection could be thought to come from a Nobleman) had dropt an allufion to that pitiful untruth, in a paper call'd an Epiftle to a Doctor of Divinity: And the following line,
Hard as thy Heart, and as thy Birth obfcure, had fallen from a like Courtly pen, in certain Verfes to the Imitator of Horace. Mr. Pope's Father was of a Gentleman's Family in Oxfordshire, the head of which was the Earl of Downe, whofe fole Heirefs married the Earl of Lindsey.His mother was the daughter of William Turnor, Efq; of York: She had three brothers, one of whom was killed, another died in the service of King Charles; the eldest following his fortunes, and becoming a general Officer in Spain, left her what eftate remained after the fequeftrations and forfeitures of her family--Mr. Pope died in 1717, aged 75; She in1733,aged 93, a very few weeks after this poem was finished. The following infcription was placed by their son on their Monument in the parish of Twickenham, in Middlesex. D. O. M.
ALEXANDRO. POPE. VIRO. INNOCVO. PROBO. PIO.
XCIII. OB. MDCCXXXIII.
PARENTIBUS. BENEMERENTIBVS. FILIVS. FECIT.
Yet why that Father held it for a rule,
Of gentle blood (part fhed in Honour's caufe,
And better got, than Beffia's from the throne.
The good man walk'd innoxious thro' his age. 395
VER. 390. A. What fortune, pray?] His friend's perfo nating the Town in this place, and affuming its impertinent curiofity, gives great fpirit to the ridicule of the queftion.→ Julian has a parallel ftroke, in his farcaftic difcourfe to the people of Antioch, where he tells them a story out of Flutarch, concerning Cato; who, when he came near their City, found their youth under arms, and the magiftrates in their robes of office. On which alighting in an ill humour with his friends who he imagined had informed them of his approach, the mafter of the ceremonies came up, and, advancing before the company, accofted him in this manner; "Stranger, how far off is Demetrius ?" Now thi. Demetrius (fays Julian) was one of Pompey's freedmen, and immenfely rich. You will ask me what he was worth; for I know nothing so likely to excite your curiofity. Why, truly, for this, you must confult Demophilas the Bithynian, whofe anecdotes turn chiefly upon fubjetis of this bigb importance.
Unlearn'd he knew no schoolman's fubtile art,
Me, let the tender office long engage,
To rock the cradle of repofing Age,
With lenient arts extend a Mother's breath,
Explore the thought, explain the asking eye,
After VER. 405. MS.
And of myself, too, fomething must I say?
The man whose heart has ne'er forgot a friend,