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that the Chaplain and Servants rush into the Hall,' and interrupt the Banquet of the Mice.
The Room had Palladian Walls; the folding Doors are clapt-to; and then,
The Cat comes bouncing on the Floor. No doubt fhe dropped from the Cieling ; but for what Purpose does not appear, since the fortunate Mice make their Escape, tho' your damnd Stucco has no Chink.' All is effected (as the Poet tells us) by Providence, or miraculously. Any Machine (how miraculous foever) which tends to ridicule a particular Providence, is sure to be applauded.
Pope has borrowed his Moon from Cowley, who tells us, that the Mice arrived in the City,
About the Hour that Cynthia's filver Light
Had touch'd the pale Meridies of the Night. But the Cat seems to be his own.
• You durst not have censured any of Mr. Pope's Writings (it may be said) in his Life-time.' True. How. ever, this Objection may be answered in the Words of Mr. Shenstone : A Writer surrounded with all his Fame,
engaging with another that is hardly known, is a Man *in Armour attacking another in his Night Gown and Slippers.
18 Tum rufticus, &c.] This Moral is excellent; and it is not without Reason that the Emperor M. Antoninus recommends this Fable to our serious Meditation, in the eighth Book of his Moral Reflections. Toy pun, &c. · Think often (says he) of the Fable of the City and
Country Mouse; of the Terror of the latter, his • Flight,' &c. to teach us to contemn Riches, and the tumultuous Pleasures of the Town ; and to imitate the Prudence of the Field Mouse, who prefers his Beans and Vetches to all the good Cheer of the City Mouse, 19 Me fylua cavufque, &c.] pm
POPE. This, at first Glance, looks like an Imitation of the two following Lines in Cowley,
For the few Hours of Life allotted Me,
Give me, great God! but Bread and Liberty. But it must not be supposed, that Mr. Pope would imitate this forgotten Author ; since he asks, Who now • reads Gowley ?
The wishing for a Crust of Bread is not surely fo natural for a Field Mouse, as the Vetches of Horace.
In Cowley, Bread and Liberty are his own With, and not applied to a Mouse.
The SAME SATIRE Imitated.
and Mr. FAWKES,
YES, oft I panted, in a rural Seat,
To taste the milder Bleffings of Retreat ; Fast by the Murmurs of a Stream to rove, The blushing Garden, or embowering Grove. Far greater Bliss indulgent Heaven has fent: 'Tis well-my thankful Tribute be Content ! Be mine, to Tumults of the World unknown, Through Life, to feel these Blessings for my own! If never Luxury consum'd my Store, Nor mean, dishonest Avarice made it more; If I dare love, unenvious of his Pelf, The Man of Worth, though richer than myself; Nor say, like fome, “ The Beauties of my Seat “ The Ruins of that Abbey would complete!
“ These frightful Elbows to a Field I hate-
Bless'd in Retreat, spontaneous Fancy wooes Familiar Verse, and Satire is my Muse;
SATIRE Still, still the smiles, where nought my Peace
destroys, Nor palls Ambition, nor Disease annoys; In noxious Autumn as in Spring I thrive, And, fpite of Doctors, still through her survive.
Let worldly Souls, immers’d in public Cares, For prosperous Fortune breathe their ardent
But, 'mid the Noise of Town, canVerse prevail ? A Friend distress' demands me for his Bail ; • Away,—'tis Duty prompts you, you
go • Through howling Tempests, and through drifted
Snow; • Nor Cold, nor Winds, nor Footpads must delay, Though Night's thick Gloom adds Horror to the Way.'
Thus through the wond’ring Press I haste along,
Ev'n when, retir'd, I breathe the rural Air,
Of old I liv'd unknowing and unknown,
66 How you
As thus in Fortune's Smiles my Moments roll, Malignant Envy plagues me to the Soul; ** See ! how he struts, familiar in the State ! 6 He's always seen in public with the Great."
Should any Lyes be rumour'd in the Street, Or buzz'd on 'Change, each Citizen I meet Asks fifty idle Questions" As you tower, " A happy Fav'rite with the Sons of Power, “Does Spain Manilla's Ransom still contest? 6. Has France" I know not'.
love to jest !”• I know not, on my Life'-" Has France, I say, “Agreed the Bills of Canada to pay?"
I swear I'm ignorant of all'-"'Tis well“ You know their Secrets if you chose to tell."
Thus teas'd and harrass'd with unceasing Strife, All Comfort Aies me in my Noon of Life: To rural Scenes, Oh! when shall I repair, Sooth'd with the soft Forgetfulness of Care ? Peruse the facred Dead, reclin'd at Ease, And idly sleep, or scribble as I please; The Pythagorean Treat my happier Lot, And all the fimpler Dainties of the Cot? Oh! Nights, Oh! Suppers, better far than wait To load in Palaces the pamper'd Great ? Such healthy Fare my smiling Board attends, And chears alike my Servants and my Friends; Curs’d with no slavish Rules, our darling Plan Is still to be as happy as we can ;