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Then proftrate falls, and begs with ardent eyes
Soon to obtain and long poflefs the prize:
The pow'rs gave ear, and granted half his pray'r,.
The rest, the winds difpers'd in empty air.


But now fecure the painted veffel glides, The fun-beams trembling on the floating tides: While melting mufic fteals upon the sky, And foften'd founds along the waters die; 50 Smooth flow the waves, the Zephyrs gently play,. Belinda fmil'd, and all the world was gay. All but the Sylph--with careful thoughts oppreft, Th' impending woe fat heavy on his breast. He fummons ftraits his Denizens of air; The lucid fquadrons round the fails repair : Soft o'er the fhrouds aërial whispers breathe, That feem'd but Zephyrs to the train beneath. Some to the fun their infect-wings unfold, Waft on the breeze, or fink in clouds of gold; Transparent forms, too fine for mortal fight, Their fluid bodies half diffolv'd in light. Loose to the wind their airy garments flew, Thin glitt'ring textures of the filmy dew, Dipt in the richest tincture of the skies, Where light difports in ever-mingling dyes, While ev'ry beam new tranfient colours flings, Colours that change whene'er they wave their wings.



VER. 45. The pow'rs gave ear,] Virg. Æn. xi,



Amid the circle on the gilded mast,
Superior by the head, was Ariel plac'd;
His purple pinions op'ning to the fun,
He rais'd his azure wand, and thus begun.

Ye Sylphs and Sylphids, to your chief give ear,
Fays, Fairies, Genii, Elves, and Dæmons hear!
Ye know the spheres, and various tasks affign'd 75
By laws eternal to th' aërial kind.
Some in the fields of pureft Æther play,


And bask and whiten in the blaze of day. Some guide the courfe of wand'ring orbs on high, Cr roll the planets thro' the boundless sky. Some lefs refin'd, beneath the moon's pale light Purfue the ftars that shoot athwart the night, Or fuck the mifts in groffer air below, Or dip their pinions in the painted bow, Or brew fierce tempefts on the wintry main, Or o'er the glebe diftill the kindly rain. Others on earth o'er human race prefide, Watch all their ways, and all their actions guide: Of these the chief the care of Nations own, And guard with Arms divine the British Throne. 90 Our humbler province is to tend the Fair, Not a lefs pleafing, tho' lefs glorious care; To fave the powder from too rude a gale, Nor let th' imprison'd effences exhale; To draw fresh colours from the vernal flow'rs; 95 To fteal from rainbows, ere they drop in fhow'rs,




A brighter wash; to curl their waving hairs,
Affift their blushes, and inspire their airs;
Nay oft, in dreams, invention we bestow,
To change a Flounce, or add a Furbelow.
This day, black Omens threat the brightest Fair
That e'er deferv'd a watchful fpirit's care;
Some dire difafter, or by force, or flight;
But what, or where, the fates have wrapt in night.
Whether the nymph fhall break Diana's law, 105
Or fome frail China jar receive a flaw;
Or ftain her honour, or her new brocade;
Forget her pray'rs, or mifs a masquerade;
Or lose her heart, or necklace, at a ball; 109
Or whether Heav'n has doom'd that Shock must fall.
Hafte then, ye fpirits! to your charge repair:
The flutt'ring fan be Zephyretta's care;
The drops to thee, Brillante, we confign;
And, Momentilla, let the watch be thine;
Do thou, Crifpiffa, tend her fav'rite Lock;
Ariel himself fhall be the guard of Shock.

To fifty chofen Sylphs, of special note,
We trust th' important charge, the Petticoat:
Oft have we known that feven-fold fence to fail,
Tho' ftiff with hoops, and arm'd with ribs of whale;


VER. 105. Whether the nymph, etc.] The difafter, which makes the subject of this poem, being a trifle, taken seriously; it naturally led the Poet into this fine fatire on the female eftimate of human mifchances.

Form a strong line about the filver bound,
And guard the wide circumference around.
Whatever fpirit, careless of his charge,
His poft neglects, or leaves the fair at large,
Shall feel fharp vengeance foon o'ertake his fins, 125
Be ftop'd in vials, or transfix'd with pins;
Or plung'd in lakes of bitter washes lie,

Or wedg'd whole ages in a bodkin's eye :
Gums and Pomatums fhall his flight restrain,
While clog'd he beats his filken wings in vain; 130
Or Alum ftyptics with contracting pow'r

Shrink his thin effence like a rivel'd flow'r :
Or, as Ixion fix'd, the wretch fhall feel
The giddy motion of the whirling Mill,
In fumes of burning Chocolate fhall glow,
And tremble at the fea that froths below!

He spoke; the fpirits from the fails defcend;
Some, orb in orb, around the nymph extend ;
Some thrid the mazy ringlets of her hair;
Some hang upon the pendants of her ear;

With beating hearts the dire event they wait,
Anxious, and trembling for the birth of Fate.




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LOSE by thofe meads, for ever crown'd with

Where Thames with pride furveys his rifing tow'rs,
There stands a structure of majestic frame,
Which from the neighb'ring Hampton takes its name.
Here Britain's statesmen oft the fall foredoom 5
Of foreign Tyrants, and of Nymphs at home ;
Here thou, great ANNA! whom three realms obey,
Doft fometimes counsel take-and fometimes Tea.
Hither the Heroes and the nymphs refort,
To taste a while the pleasures of a Court;
In various talk th' inftructive hours they past,
Who gave the ball, or paid the visit last ;
One speaks the glory of the British Queen,
And one defcribes a charming Indian screen;



VER. 1. Clofe by thofe meads,] The first Edition continues from this line to ✯ 24. of this Canto.

VER. 11, 12. Originally in the first Edition,

In various talk the chearful hours they paft,
Of, who was bit, or who capotted last,

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