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What could be free, when lawless beasts obey`d,
And ev'n the elements a Tyrant fway'd ?
In vain kind feafons fwell'd the teeming grain,
Soft fhow'rs diftill'd, and funs grew warm in vain;
The fwain with tears his fruftrate labour yields, 55
And famish'd dies amidst his ripen'd fields.
What wonder then, a beaft or fubject flain
Were equal crimes in a defpotic reign?
Both doom'd alike, for fportive Tyrants bled,
But while the fubject ftarv'd, the beaft was fed. 60
Proud Nimrod firft the bloody chace began,
A mighty hunter, and his prey was man:
Our haughty Norman boasts that barb’rous name,
And makes his trembling flaves the royal game. 64
The fields are ravish'd from th' industrious swains,
From men their cities, and from Gods their fanes:


VER. 57, etc.

No wonder favages or fubjects flain

But fubjects ftarv'd, while favages were fed.

It was originally thus, but the word favages is not properly ap plied to beafts but to men ;, which occafioned the alteration.


VER. 65. The fields are ravis'd etc.] Alluding to the deftruction made in the New Foreft, and the Tyrannies exercised there by William I.


VER. 65. The fields are ravish'd from th' induftrious `fwains, From men their cities, and from Gods their fanes :]Translated from Templa adimit divis, fora civibus, arva colonis,

an old monkish writer, I forget who.

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The levell'd towns with weeds lie cover'd o'er;
The hollow winds thro' naked temples roar;
Round broken columns clasping ivy twin'd;
O'er heaps of ruin stalk'd the stately hind;
The fox obfcene to gaping tombs retires,
And favage howlings fill the facred quires.
Aw'd by his Nobles, by his Commons curft,
Th' Oppreffor rul'd tyrannic where he durft,
Stretch'd o'er the Poor and Church his iron rod, 75
And ferv'd alike his Vaffals and his God.
Whom ev'n the Saxon fpar'd, and bloody Dane,
The wanton victims of his sport remain.
But fee, the man, who fpacious regions gave
A wafte for beafts, himfelf deny'd a grave!
Stretch'd on the lawn his fecond hope furvey,
At once the chafer, and at once the prey :
Lo Rufus, tugging at the deadly dart,
Bleeds in the foreft like a wounded hart.
Succeeding monarchs heard the fubjects cries,
Nor faw difpleas'd the peaceful cottage rife,
Then gath'ring flocks on unknown mountains fed,
O'er fandy wilds were yellow harvests spread,
The forests wonder'd at th' unusual grain,


And fecret tranfport touch'd the confcious fwain.


VER. 72. And wolves with howling fill etc.]

The Author thought this an error, wolves not being common in England at the time of the Conqueror.




VER. 89. Miraturque novas frondes et non fua poma. Virg.

Fair Liberty, Britannia's Goddess, rears
Her chearful head, and leads the golden years.
Ye vig'rous fwains! while youth ferments your

And purer fpirits fwell the sprightly flood,
Now range the hills, the gameful woods befet, 95
Wind the fhrill horn, or spread the waving net.
When milder autumn fummer's heat fucceeds,
And in the new-fhorn field the partridge feeds,
Before his lord the ready spaniel bounds,
Panting with hope, he tries the furrow`d grounds;
But when the tainted gales the game betray,
Couch'd clofe he lies, and meditates the prey;
Secure they truft th' unfaithful field befet,
"Till hov'ring o'er 'em fweeps the fwelling net.


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VER. 91.

Oh may no more a foreign master's rage,

With wrongs yet legal, curfe a future age!

Still fpread, fair Liberty! thy heav'nly wings,

Breath plenty on the fields, and fragrance on the fprings.

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VER. 97.

When yellow autumn fummer's heat fucceeds,
And into wine the purple harvest bleeds a,
The partridge feeding in the new-fhorn fields,
Both morning sports and ev'ning pleasures yields.


a Perhaps the Author thought it not allowable to defcribe the feafon by a circumftance not proper to our climate, the vintage.

Thus (if small things we may with great compare) When Albion fends her eager fons to war, 106 Some thoughtless Town, with ease and plenty bleft, Near, and more near, the clofing lines inveft; Sudden they seize th' amaz'd, defenceless prize, And high in air Britannia's standard flies.


See! from the brake the whirring pheasant springs, And mounts exulting on triumphant wings : Short is his joy; he feels the fiery wound, Flutters in blood, and panting beats the ground. Ah! what avail his gloffy, varying dyes, His purple creft, and scarled-circled eyes, The vivid green his fhining plumes unfold, His painted wings, and breaft that flames with gold? Nor yet, when moist Arcturus clouds the sky, The woods and fields their pleafing toils deny. 120 To plains with well-breath'd beagles we repair, And trace the mazes of the circling hare: (Beafts, urg'd by us, their fellow-beafts purfue, And learn of man each other to undo)


VER. 107. It flood thus in the first Editions:
Pleas'd, in the Gen'rals fight, the hoft lie down
Sudden before fome unfufpecting town;
The young, the old, one inftant makes our prize,
And o'er their captive heads Britannia's ftandard flies.


nec te tua plurima, Pantheu,

VER. 115.
Labentem pietas, vel Apollinis infula texit.




With flaught'ring guns th' unweary'd fowler roves,
When froits have whiten'd all the naked groves;
Where doves in flocks the leaflefs trees o'erfhade,
And lonely woodcocks haunt the wat'ry glade.
He lifts the tube, and levels with his eye;
Strait a fhort thunder breaks the frozen sky:
Oft, as in airy rings they fkim the heath,
The clam'rous lapwings feel the leaden death :
Oft, as the mounting larks their notes prepare,
They fall, and leave their little lives in air.


In genial fpring, beneath the quiv'ring shade,135 Where cooling vapours breathe along the mead, The patient fisher takes his filent stand, Intent, his angle trembling in his hand : With looks unmov'd, he hopes the scaly breed, And eyes the dancing cork, and bending reed. 140 Our plenteous ftreams a various race fupply, The bright-ey'd perch with fins of Tyrian dye, The filver eel, in fhining volumes roll'd, The yellow carp, in fcales bedrop'd with gold, Swift trouts, diverfify'd with crimson ftains, And pykes, the tyrants of the watry plains.



VER, 126. O'er ruftling leaves around the naked groves.
VER. 129. The fowler lifts his levell'd tube on high.


VER. 134. Præcipites altâ vitam fub nube relinquunt.


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