Page images
[blocks in formation]

FR. "TIS all a libel-Paxton* (Sir) will fay.
P. Not yet, my friend! to-morrow 'faith

it may;

And for that very cause I print to-day.
How fhould I fret to mangle ev'ry line,
In rev'rence to the fins of Thirty-nine!
Vice with fuch giant ftrides comes on amain,
Invention ftrives to be before in vain ;
Feign what I will, and paint it e'er so strong,
Some rifing genius fins up to my fsong.

F. Yet none but you by name the guilty lash;
Ev'n Guthry § faves half Newgate by a dash.
Spare then the perfon, and expose the vice.

P. How, Sir! not damn the sharper, but the dice !

* Late folicitor to the Treasury.

[merged small][ocr errors]

§ The ordinary of Newgate, who publishes the memoirs of the malefac tors, and is often prevailed upon to be so tender of their reputation, as to set down no more than the initials of their name.


Come on then, fatire! gen'ral, unconfin'd,

Spread thy broad wing, and fouce on all the kind.
Ye ftatesmen, priefts, of one religion all!

Ye tradefmen, vile, in army, court, or hall!



Ye rev'rend atheifts. F. Scandal! name them, Who?
P. Why that's the thing you bid me not to do.
Who ftarv'd a fifter, who forfwore a debt,
I never nam'd; the town's enquiring yet.
The pois'ning dame-F. You mean-P. I don't.—
F. You do:

P. See, now I keep the fecret, and not you!
The bribing ftatesman-F. Hold, too high you go.
P. The brib'd elector-F. There you ftoop too low.
P. I fain would pleafe you, if I knew with what; 26
Tell me, which knave is lawful game, which not?
Muft great offenders, once efcap'd the crown,
Like royal harts *, be never more run down?
Admit your law to fpare the knight requires,
As beafts of nature may we hunt the 'fquires ?
Suppofe I cenfure-you know what I mean-
To fave a bishop, may I name a dean?

F. A dean, Sir? no; his fortune is not made,
You hurt a man that's rifing in the trade.

P. If not the tradefman who fet up to-day,
Much lefs the 'prentice who to-morrow may.
Down, down, proud fatire! tho' a realm be spoil'd,
Arraign no mightier thief than wretched Wild §;
Or, if a court or country's made a job,

Go drench a pickpocket, and join the mob.
But, Sir, I beg you (for the love of vice)!
The matter's weighty, pray confider twice;
Have you lefs pity for the needy cheat,




The poor and friendlefs villain, than the great?


* Alluding to the old game-laws, when our kings spent all the time they could fpare from human flaughter, in woods and forests.

§ Jonathan Wild, a famous thief, and thief-impeacher, who was at last caught in his own train and hanged.



Alas! the fmall difcredit of a bribe

Scarce hurts the lawyer, but undoes the fcribe.
Then better fure it charity becomes

To tax directors, who (thank God) have plums;
Still better, minifters; or, if the thing


May pinch ev'n there-why lay it on a king*.
F. Stop! ftop!

P. Muft fatire, then, nor rife nor fall? Speak out, and bid me blame no rogues at all.

F. Yes, ftrike that Wild, I'll justify the blow.
P. Strike! why the man was hang'd ten years ago:
Who now that obfolete example fears?
Ev'n Peter trembles only for his ears §.

F. What always Peter? Peter thinks you mad,
You make men defp'rate, if they once are bad;
Elfe might he take to virtue fome years hence-
P. As S-k, if he lives, will love the PRINCE.
F. Strange fpleen to S-k!

P. Do I wrong the man?

God knows, I praise the courtier where I can.

When I confefs, there is who feels for fame,



And melts to goodness, need ISCAR'BROW† name? 65
Pleas'd let me own, in Efher's peaceful grove
(Where Kent and Nature vye for PELHAM's love)
The scene, the mafter, opening to my view,

I fit and dream I fee my CRAGGs anew!

* He is serious on the foregoing fubjects of fatire; but ironical here, and only alludes to the common practices of ministers, in laying their own mifcarriages on their masters.

§ Peter had, the year before this, narrrowly escaped the pillory, for forgery; and got off with a fevere rebuke only from the bench.

+ Earl of and knight of the Garter, whose perfonal attachments to the king appeared from his steady adherence to the royal intereft, after his refignation of his great employment of master of the horfe; and whofe known honour and virtue made him efteemed by all parties.

The house and gardens of Efher in Surry, belonging to the honourable Mr. Pelham, brother to the duke of Newcastle. The author could not have given a more amiable idea of his character than in comparing him to Mr. Craggs.


Ev'n in a bishop I can fpy defert; Secker is decent, Rundel has a heart, Manners with candour are to Benson giv❜n, To Berkley, every virtue under Heav'n.

But does the court a worthy man remove? That inftant, I declare, he has my love:

I fhun his zenith, court his mild decline;



Thus SOMMERS* once, and HALIFAX §, were mine. Oft, in the clear, ftill mirrour of retreat,

I ftudy'd SHREWSBURY †, the wife and great; CARLETON'S calm fenfe, and STANHOPE'S || noble flame,

Compar'd, and knew their gen'rous end the fame :
How pleafing ATTERBURY's fofter hour!
How shine the foul, unconquer'd in the Tow'r!
While Roman spirit charms, and Attic wit:
ARGYLL, the ftate's whole thunder born to wield,
And shake alike the senate and the field :

Or WYNDHAM **, just to freedom and the throne,
The mafter of our paffions, and his own.

[ocr errors]


John lord Sommers died in 1716. He had been lord keeper in the reign of William III. who took from him the seals in 1700. The author had the honour of knowing him in 1706. A faithful. able, and incorrupt miaifter; who, to the qualities of a confummate statesman, added thofe of a man of learning and politeness.

§ A peer, no lefs diftinguished by his love of letters than his abilities in Parliament. He was difgraced in 1710, on the change of queen Ann's ministry.

† Charles Talbot, duke of Shrewsbury, had been secretary of flate, ambaffador in France, lord lieutenant of Ireland, lord Chamberlain, and lord Treasurer. He feveral times quitted his employments, and was often recalled. He died in 1718.

Hen. Boyle, lord Carleton, (nephew of the famous Robert Boyle) whọ was secretary of state under William III. and president of the council under queen Anne.

James earl Stanhope. A nobleman of equal courage, fpirit, and learning. General in Spain, and secretary of state.

** Sir William Wyndham, chancellor of the Exchequer under queen Anne, made early a confiderable figure; but fince a much greater both by his ability and eloquence, joined with the utmost judgment and temper.


Names, which I long have lov'd, nor lov'd in vain, 90
Rank'd with their friends, not number'd with their train;
And if yet higher the proud lift should end,
Still let me fay! No follower, but a friend.
Yet think not, friendship only prompts my lays;
I follow Virtue; where the fhines, I praife:
Point the to Prieft or Elder, Whig or Tory,
Or round a Quaker's beaver caft a glory.
Inever (to my forrow I declare)

Din'd with the MAN of Ross, or my LORD MAY'R.
Some, in their choice of friends (nay, look not grave)
Have ftill a fecret biafs to a knave:

To find an honeft man I beat about,
And love him, court him, praife him, in or out.
F. Then why so few commend?

P. Not fo fierce;

Find you the virtue, and I'll find the verse.
But random praife-the task can ne'er be done ;
Each mother asks it for her booby fon,
Each widow afks it for the best of men,
For him fhe weeps, for him fhe weds agen.
Praise cannot ftoop, like fatire, to the ground:
The number may be hang'd, but not be crown'd.
Enough for half the greatest of these days,
To 'scape my censure not expect my praise.
Are they not rich? what more can they pretend?
Dare they to hope a poet for their friend ?





What RICHELIEU wanted, LOUIS fcarce could gain,
And what young AMMON wifh'd, but wish'd in vain.
No pow'r the Mufe's friendship can command;
No pow'r, when Virtue claims it, can withstand:
To Cato, Virgil paid one honeft line;

O let my country's friends illumine mine!



-What are you thinking? F. Faith the thought's no fin,

I think your friends are out, and would be in.
P. If merely to come in, Sir, they go out,
The way they take is ftrangely round about.



F. They

« PreviousContinue »