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Cùm labor extulerit fastidia, siccus, inanis,
Sperne cibum vilem: nisi Hymettia mella Falerno,
Ne biberis, diluta. "Forìs est promus, et atrum
Defendens pisces hiemat mare: cum sale panis Latrantem stomachum bene leniet. Unde putas, aut Qui partum ? non in caro nidore voluptas
Summa, 'sed in teipso est. Tu pulmentaria quære
Quam laudas, plumâ? coctove num adest honor idem ?
Carne tamen quamvis distat nihil hâc, magis illâ ;
Ducit te species, video. Quo pertinet ergo
Proceros odisse lupos ? Quia scilicet illis
Majorem natura modum dedit, his breve pondus.
Jejunus raro stomachus vulgaria temnit.
'Your wine lock'd up, your butler stroll'd abroad, Or fish denied, (the river yet unthaw'd,)
If then plain bread and milk will do the feat, 15 The pleasure lies in you, and not the meat. *Preach as I please, I doubt our curious men Will choose a pheasant still before a hen Yet hens of Guinea full as good I hold, Except you eat the feathers green and gold. 'Of carps and mullets why prefer the great, (Though cut in pieces ere my Lord can eat,) Yet for small turbots such esteem profess? Because God made these large, the other less.
Ver. 18. before a hen ;] He might have inserted the original word peacocks, as many of our English epicures are fond of them. Q. Hortensius had the honour of being the first Roman that introduced this bird to the table as a great dainty, in a magnificent feast which he made on his being created Augur. The price of a peacock, says Arbuthnot, page 129, was fifty denarii, that is, 17. 12s. 3d. A flock of a hundred was sold at a much dearer rate, for 3221. 18s. 4d. of our money. M. Aufidius Lurco, according to Varro, used to make every year of his peacocks 4841. 7s. 6d.
Ver. 21. Of carps and mullets] Very inferior to the original; and principally so, because that pleasant stroke is omitted of the eaters knowing in what part of the river the lupus was taken, and whether or no betwixt the two bridges, which was deemed an essential circumstance. The reader will be well entertained on this subject if he will look into the seventeenth chapter of the third book of Macrobius, particularly into a curious speech of C. Tertius there recited. But Horace seems to have had in his eye a passage of Lucilius, quoted by Macrobius: "Sed et Lucilius acer et violentus poeta, ostendit scire se hunc piscem egregii saporis, qui inter duos pontes captus esset."
"Porrectum magno magnum spectare catino Vellem, ait Harpyiis gula digna rapacibus. At vos, "Præsentes Austri, coquite horum opsonia: quam
Putet aper rhombusque recens, malà copia quando Ægrum solicitat stomachum; cùm rapula plenus Atque acidas mavult inulas. Necdum omnis abacta Pauperies epulis regum : nam vilibus ovis
Nigrisque est oleis hodie locus. Haud ita pridem Galloni præconis erat acipensere mensa
Infamis. Quid? tum rhombos minus æquora alebant?
P Tutus erat rhombus, tutoque ciconia nido,
Ver. 25. Oldfield] This eminent glutton ran through a fortune of fifteen hundred pounds a year in the simple luxury of good eating. Warburton. Ver. 26. Hog barbacued, &c.] A West Indian term of gluttony; a hog roasted whole, stuffed with spice, and basted with Madeira wine. Pope.
He has happily introduced this large unwieldy instance of gluttony, supposed to be peculiar to the West Indies. But Athenæus speaks of a cook that could dress a whole hog with various puddings in his belly. Gulla is here used personally, as it is also by Juvenal, Sat. xiv. ver. 10. Warton.
Ver. 28. rabbit's tail.] A very filthy and offensive image for the more happy and decent word coquite: so fond, it must be owned, was our author, as well as Swift, of such disgusting ideas.
"Oldfield, with more than harpy throat endued, 25 Cries: "Send me, Gods! a whole hog barbecued!" Oh blast it, "south winds! till a stench exhale Rank as the ripeness of a rabbit's tail.
By what criterion do ye eat, d'ye think,
If this is prized for sweetness, that for stink? 30
He calls for something bitter, something sour,
The robin-red-breast till of late had rest,
And children sacred held a martin's nest,
Till becaficos sold so devilish dear
To one that was, or would have been, a peer. 40 "Let me extol a cat, on oysters fed,
I'll have a party at the Bedford-head;
Ver. 41. Let me extol] To dine upon a cat fattened with oysters, and to crack live crawfish, is infinitely more pleasant and ridiculous than to eat mergos assos. But then the words, extol and recommend, fall far below edixerit, give out a decree. So Virgil, Geor. iii. line 295, does not advise, but raises his subject, by saying:
"Incipiens statutis edico”.
In the lines above, 37 and 38, he has dexterously substituted for the stork two birds that among us are vulgarly held to be sacred. Semp. Rufus first taught the Romans to eat storks, for which he lost the prætorship.
Ver. 42. Bedford-head;] A famous eating-house.
'Sordidus à tenui victu distabit, Ofello Judice: nam frustrà vitium vitaveris illud, Si te aliò pravum detorseris. 'Avidienus 'Cui Canis ex vero ductum cognomen adhæret, Quinquennes oleas est et sylvestria corna; "Ac, nisi mutatum, parcit defundere vinum; et Cujus odorem olei nequeas perferre (licebit Ille repotia, natales, aliosve dierum "Festos albatus celebret) cornu ipse bilibri Caulibus instillat, veteris non parcus aceti.
Quali igitur victu sapiens utetur, et horum Utrum imitabitur? hâc urget lupus, hâc canis, aiunt.
'Mundus erit, qui non offendat sordidus, atque In neutram partem cultûs miser. "Hic
Albutî senis exemplo, dum munia didit,
Savus erit; nec sit ut simplex 'Nævius, unctam Convivis præbebit aquam: vitium hoc quoque mag
Accipe nunc, victus tenuis quæ quantaque secum Afferat. In primis valeas bene; nam variæ res Ut noceant homini, credas, memor illius escæ,
Ver. 50. For him you'll call a dog,] Warburton observes, "that Pope had the art of giving wit and dignity to Billingsgate!"
Ver. 55. But on some lucky] Much heightened and improved on the original, by two such supposed occasions of the unnatural festivity and joy of a true miser. The 68th line is useless and redundant.