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Thus unlamented pafs the proud away,
The gaze of fools, and pageant of a day!
So perifh all, whofe breaft ne'er learn'd to glow 45
For others good, or melt at others woe.
What can atone (oh ever-injur'd fhade!)
Thy fate unpity'd, and thy rites unpaid ?
No friend's complaint, no kind domeftic tear
Pleas'd thy pale ghoft, or grac'd thy mournful bier,
By foreign hands thy dying eyes were clos'd,
By foreign hands thy decent limbs compos'd,
By foreign hands thy humble grave adorn'd,
By ftrangers honour'd, and by strangers mourn'd!
What tho' no friends in fable weeds appear,
Grieve for an hour, perhaps, then mourn a year,
And bear about the mockery of woe
To midnight dances, and the public show?
What tho' no weeping Loves thy afhes grace,
Nor polish'd marble emulate thy face?
What tho' no facred earth allow thee room,
Nor hallow'd dirge be mutter'd o'er thy tomb?
Yet fhall thy grave with rifing flow'rs be dreft,
And the green turf lie lightly on thy breast :
There shall the morn her earliest tears bestow, 65
There the first rofes of the year fhall blow;
While Angels with their filver wings o'ershade
The ground now facred by thy.reliques made.
So peaceful refts without a ftone a name,
What once had beauty, titles, wealth, and fame, 70
How lov'd, how honour'd once, avails thee not,
To whom related, or by whom begot;
A heap of duft alone remains of thee,
'Tis all thou art, and all the proud shall be!
Poets themselves must fall like thofe they fung, Deaf the prais'd ear, and mute the tuneful tongue. Ev'n he, whofe foul now melts in mournful lays, Shall fhortly want the gen'rous tear he pays; Then from his clofing eyes thy form fhall part, And the last pang fhall tear thee from his heart, 80 Life's idle bufinefs at one gafp be o'er,
The Mufe forgot, and thou belov'd no more!
O wake the foul by tender ftrokes of art, To raife the genius, and to mend the heart; To make mankind, in confcious virtue bold, Live o'er each scene, and be what they behold: For this the Tragic Mufe firft trod the flage, Commanding tears to ftream thro' ev'ry age; Tyrants no more their favage nature kept, And foes to virtue wonder'd how they wept. Our author fhuns by vulgar fprings to move The hero's glory, or the virgin's love; In pitying Love, we but our weakness show, And wild Ambition well deferves its woe. Here tears fhall flow from a more gen'rous caufe, Such tears as Patriots fhed for dying Laws:
He bids your breast with ancient ardour rife,
And calls forth Roman drops from British eyes.
Virtue confefs'd in human fhape he draws,
What Plato thought, and godlike Cato was :
No common object to your fight difplays,
But what with pleasure Heav'n itself surveys,
A brave man ftruggling in the ftorms of fate,
And greatly falling with a falling flate.
While Cato gives his little Senate laws,
What bofom beats not in his Country's caufe?
Who fees him act, but envies ev'ry deed?
Who hears him groan, and does not wish to bleed?
Ev'n when proud Cæfar 'midft triumphal cars,
The fpoils of nations, and the pomp of wars,
Ignobly vain and impotently great,
Show'd Rome her Cato's figure drawn in flate; 30
As her dead Father's rev'rend image paft,
The pomp was darken'd, and the day o'ercaft;
The Triumph ceas'd, tears gufh'd from ev'ry eye;
The World's great Victor pafs'd unheeded by;
Her laft good man dejected Rome ador'd,
And honour'd Cæfar's lefs than Cato's fword.
Britons, attend: be worth like this approv'd, And fhow, you have the virtue to be mov'd. With honeft fcorn the firft fam'd Cato view'd
Rome learning arts from Greece, whom she subdu'd;
Your scene precariously fubfifts too long
On French tranflation, and Italian fong.
Dare to have sense yourselves; afsert the stage,
Be juftly warm'd with your own native rage:
Such Plays alone should win a British ear,
As Cato's felf had not difdain'd to hear.