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And, madam, there's my lady Spade,
And studied Affectation came, Hath sent this letler by her maid.”
Each limb and feature out of frame ; “ Well, I remember what she won;
While Ignorance, with brain of lead, And hath she sent so soon to dun?
Flew hovering o'er each female lead. Here, carry down those ten pistoles
Why should I ask of thee, my Muse, My husband left to pay for coals :
An hundred tongues, as poets use, I thank my stars, they all are light;
When, to give every dame her due, And I may have revenge to-night.”
An hundred thousand were too few ? Now, loitering o'er her tea and cream,
Or how shall I, alas! relate She enters on her usual theme;
The sum of all their senseless prate, Her last night's ill success repeats,
Their innuendoes, hints, and slanders, Calls lady Spade a hundred cheats:
Their meanings lewd, and double entendres i “ She slipt spadillo in her breast,
Now comes the general scandal-charge; Then thought to turn it to a jest :
What some invent, the rest enlarge ; There's Mrs. Cut and she combine,
And, “ Madam, if it be a lie, And to each other give the sign.”
You have the tale as cheap as I: Through every game pursues her tale,
I must conceal my author's name; Like hunters o'er their evening ale.
But now 'tis known to common fame." Now to another scene give place :
Say, foolish females, bold and blind, Enter the folks with silks and lace :
Say, by what fatal turn of mind, Fresh matter for a world of chat,
Are you on vices most severe, Right Indian this, right Mechlin that:
Wherein yourselves have greatest share ? “Observe this pattern; there's a stuff;
Thus every fool herself deludes; I can have customers enough.
The prudes condemn the absent prudes : Dear madam, you are grown so hard
Mopsa, who stinks her spouse to death, This lace is worth twelve pounds a yard:
Accuses Chloe's tainted breath ; Madam, if there be truth in man,
Hircina, rank with sweat, presumes I never sold so cheap a fan.”
To censure Phyllis for perfumes; This business of importance o'er,
While crooked Cynthia, sneering, says And madam almost dress'd by four;
That Florimel wears iron stays : The footman, in his usual phrase,
Chloe, of every coxcomb jealous, Comes up with, “ Madam, dinner stays."
Admires how girls can talk with fellows ; She answers in her usual style,
And, full of indignation, frets, “ The cook must keep it back awhile :
That women should be such coquettes : I never can have time to dress ;
Iris, for scandal most notorious, (No woman breathing takes up less ;)
Cries, “ Lord, the world is so censorious!" I'm hurried so it makes me sick;
And Rufa, with her combs of lead, I wish the dinner at Old Nick.”
Whispers that Sappho's hair is red : Ai table now she acts her part,
Aura, whose tongue you hear a mile hence, Has all the dinner-cant by heart:
Talks half a day in praise of silence ; “I thought we were to dine alone,
And Sylvia, full of inward guilt, My dear; for sure, if I had known
Calls Amoret an arrant jilt. This company would come to-day
Now voices over voices rise, But really 'tis my spouse's way!
While each to be the loudest vies : He's so unkind, he never sends
They contradict, affirm, dispute, To tell when he invites his friends :
No single tongue one moment mute; I wish ye may but have enough!”
All mad to speak, and none to hearken, And while with all this paltry stuff
They set the very lap-dog barking; She sits tormenting every guest,
Their chattering makes a louder din Nor gives her tongue one moment's rest,
Than fish-wives o'er a cup of gin: In phrases batter'd, stale, and trite,
Not school-boys at a barring-out Which modern ladies call polite ;
Rais'd ever such incessant rout; You see the booby husband sit
The jumbling particles of matter In admiration at her wit.
In chaos made not such a clatter; But let me now awhile survey
Far less the rabble roar and rail, Our madam o'er her evening-tea;
When drunk with sour election ale. Surrounded with her noisy clans
Nor do they trust their tongues alone, Of prudes, coquettes, and harridans ;
But speak a language of their own; When, frighted at the clamorous crew,
Can read a nod, a shrug, a look, Away the god of Silence flew,
Far better than a printed book ; And fair Discretion left the place,
Convey a libel in a frown, And Modesty with blushing face:
And wink a reputation down; Now enters overweening Pride,
Or, by the tossing of the fan, And Scandal ever gaping wide;
Describe the lady and the man. Hypocrisy with frown severe,
But see, the female club disbands, Scurrility with gibing air;
Each twenty visits on her hands. Rude Laughter seeming like to burst,
Now all alone poor madam sits And Malice always judging worst;
In vapors and hysteric fits : And Vanity with pocket-glass,
“And was not Tom this morning sent ? And Impndence with front of brass ;
I'd lay my life he never went :
Past six, and not a living soul !
But, conscious that they all speak true, I might by this have won a vole."
And give each other but their due, A dreadful interval of spleen!
It never interrupts the game, How shall we pass the time between ?
Or makes them sensible of shame. “Here, Betty, let me take my drops ;
The time too precious now to waste, And feel my pulse, I know it stops :
The supper gobbled up in haste ; This head of mine, Lord, how it swims!
Again afresh to cards they run, And such a pain in all my limbs!"
As if they had but just begun. “Dear madam, try to take a nap.”
But I shall not again repeat, But now they hear a footman's rap:
How oft they squabble, snarl, and cheat. “Go, run, and light the ladies up:
At last they hear the watchman knock. It must be one before we sup."
"A frosty morn—past four o'clock." The table, cards, and counters, set,
The chairmen are not to be found, And all the gamester-ladies met,
“Come, let us play the other round.” Her spleen and fits recover'd quite,
Now all in taste they huddle on Our madam can sit up all night :
Their hoods, their cloaks, and get them gone, “Whoever comes, I'm not within."
But, first, the winner must invite Quadrille's the word, and so begin.
The company to-morrow night. How can the Muse her aid impart,
Unlucky madam, left in tears, Unskill'd in all the terms of art?
(Who now again quadrille forswears.) Or in harmonious numbers put
With empty purse, and aching head,
Steals to her sleeping spouse to bed.
ON THE DEATH OF DR. SWIFT.*
OCCASIONED BY READING THE FOLLOWING In vain, alas! her hope is fed ;
MAXIM IN ROCHEFOUCAULT: She draws an ace, and sees it red ;
Dans l'adversité de nos meilleurs amis, nous trouvons In ready counters never pays,
toujours quelque chose qui ne nous déplait pas. But pawns her snuff-box, rings, and keys : Ever with some new fancy struck,
" In the adversity of our best friends, we always find someTries twenty charms to mend her luck.
thing that doth not displease us." “This morning, when the parson came, I said I should not win a game.
As Rochefoucault his maxims drew This odious chair, how came I stuck in't? From nature, I believe them true: I think I never had good luck in't.
They argue no corrupted mind I'm so uneasy in my stays;
In him : the fault is in mankind. Your fan a moment, if you please.
This maxim more than all the rest Stand further, girl, or get you gone ;
Is thought too base for human breast : I always lose when you look on."
“In all distresses of our friends, “Lord! madam, you have lost codille !
We first consult our private ends; I never saw you play so ill."
While nature, kindly bent to ease us, Nay, madam, give me leave to say,
Points out some circumstance to please us." 'Twas you that threw the game away :
If this perhaps your patience move, When lady Tricksey play'd a four,
Let reason and experience prove. You took it with a mattadore ;
We all behold with envious eyes I saw you louch your wedding-ring
Our equals rais'd above our size. Before my lady callid a king;
Who would not at a crowded show You spoke a word began with H,
Stand high himself, keep others low? And I know whom you meant to teach,
I love my friend as well as you : Because you held the king of hearts ;
But why should he obstruct my view ? Fie, madam, leave these little arts.”
Then let me have the higher post ; “That's not so bad as one that rubs
Suppose it but an inch at most. Her chair, to call the king of clubs;
If in a battle you should find And makes her partner understand
One, whom you love of all mankind, A maltadore is in her hand."
Had some heroic action done, “ Madam, you have no cause to flounce,
A champion killed, or trophy won; I swear I saw you thrice renounce."
Rather than thus be over-topt, “And truly, madam, I know when,
Would you not wish his laurels cropt? Instead of five, you scor'd me ten.
Dear honest Ned is in the gout, Spadillo here has got a mark;
Lies rack'd with pain, and you without : A child may know it in the dark : I guess'd the hand : it seldom fails :
* Written in November, 1731.—There are two distinc: I wish some folks would pare their nails."
poems on this subject, one of them containing many spa. While thus they rail, and scold, and storm, rious lines. In what is here printed, the genuine parts It passes but for common form :
of both are preserved. N.
How patiently you hear him groan!
“ For poetry, he's past his prime; How glad the case is not your own!
He takes an hour to find a rhyme : What poel would not grieve to see
His fire is out, his wit decay'd, His brother write as well as he ?
His fancy sunk, his Muse a jade. But, rather than they should excel,
I'd have him throw away his pen; Would wish his rivals all in hell ?
But there's no talking to some men !" Her end when emulation misses,
And then their tenderness appears She turns to envy, stings, and hisses :
By adding largely to my years : The strongest friendship yields to pride,
“He's older than he would be reckond, Unless the odds be on our side.
And well remembers Charles the Second. Vain human-kind ! fantastic race!
He hardly drinks a pint of wine ; Thy various follies who can trace ?
And that, I doubt, is no good sign. Self-love, ambition, envy, pride,
His stomach too begins to fail ; Their empire in our heart divide.
Last year we thought him strong and hale ; Give others riches, power, and station,
But now he's quite another thing: 'Tis all to me an usurpation.
I wish he may hold out till spring !" I have no title to aspire ;
They hug themselves, and reason thus : Yet, when you sink, I seem the higher.
“ It is not yet so bad with us !" In Pope I cannot read a line,
In such a case they talk in tropes, But with a sigh I wish it mine :
And by their fear express their hopes. When he can in one couplet fix
Some great misfortune to portend, More sense than I can do in six ;
No enemy can match a friend. It gives me such a jealous fit,
With all the kindness they profess, I cry, “ Pox take him and his wit !"
The merit of a lucky guess I grieve to be outdone by Gay
(When daily how-d'ye 's come of course, In my own humorous biting way.
And servants answer, “ Worse and worse !") Arbuthnot is no more my friend,
Would please them better, than to tell, Who dares to irony pretend,
That, “ God be prais'd, the Dean is well.” Which I was born to introduce,
Then he who prophesied the best, Refin'd at first, and show'd its use.
Approves his foresight to the rest : St. John, as well as Pulteney, knows
“You know I always fear'd the worst, That I had some repute for prose;
And often told you so at first.” And, till they drove me out of date,
He'd rather choose that I should die, Could maul a minister of state.
Than his predictions prove a lie. If they have mortified my pride,
Not one foretells I shall recover; And made me throw my pen aside ;
But, all agree to give me over. If with such talents Heaven hath bless'd 'em, Yet should some neighbor feel a pain Have I not reason to detest 'em ?
Just in the parts where I complain; To all my foes, dear Fortune, send
How many a message would he send ! Thy gifts; but never to my friend :
What hearty prayers that I should mend ! I tamely can endure the first;
Inquire what regimen I kept ? But this with envy makes me burst.
What gave me ease, and how I slept ? Thus much may serve by way of proem; And more lament, when I was dead, Proceed we therefore to our poem.
Than all the snivellers round my bed. The time is not remote when I
My good companions, never fear; Must by the course of nature die ;
For, though you may mistake a year, When, I foresee, my special friends
Though your prognostics run too fast, Will try to find their private ends :
They must be verified at last. And, though 'tis hardly understood
Behold the fatal day arrive! Which way my death can do them good,
“How is the Dean ?”—“He's just alive." Yet thus, methinks, I hear them speak:
Now the departing prayer is read; “ See how the Dean begins to break !
He hardly breathes—the Dean is dead. Poor gentleman, he droops apace!
Before the passing-bell begun, You plainly find it in his face.
The news through half the town is run. That old vertigo in his head
“Oh! may we all for death prepare ! Will never leave him till he's dead.
What has he left? and who's his heir ?". Besides, his memory decays :
“I know no more than what the news is; He recollects not what he says ;
'Tis all bequeath'd to public uses." He cannot call his friends to mind ;
“ To public uses ! there's a whim! Forgets the place where last he din'd;
What had the public done for him? Plies you with stories o'er and o'er;
Mere envy, avarice, and pride : He told them fifty times before.
He gave it all—but first he died. How does he fancy we can sit
And had the Dean, in all the nation, To hear his out-of-fashion wit?
No worthy friend, no poor relation ? But he takes up with younger folks,
So ready to do strangers good, Who for his wine will bear his jokes.
Forgetting his own flesh and blood !" Faith! he must make his stories shorter,
Now Grub-street wits are all employ'd ; Or change his comrades once a quarter ;
With elegies the town is cloy'd : In half the time he talks them round,
Some paragraph in every paper, There must another set be found.
To curse the Dean, or bless the Drapier.
The doctors, tender of their fame,
From Dublin soon to London spread,
Now Chartres, at Sir Robert's levee,
Why, if he died without his shoes,”
Now Curll his shop from rubbish drains :
Here shift the scene, to represent
St. John himself will scarce forbear
Indifference, clad in wisdom's guise,
The fools, my juniors by a year,
My female friends, whose tender hearts
Madam, your husband will attend
Why do we grieve that friends should die ?
Some country squire to Lintot goes,
“Here's Wolston's tracts, the twelfth edition :
* Mrs. Howard, at one time a favorite with the Dean. N.
Which the Dean in vain expected, in return for a small present he had sent to the princess. N.
* Wolston is here confounded with Woolaston. N.
Suppose me dead; and then suppose
He would have deem'd it à disgrace, A club assembled at the Rose ;
If such a wretch had known his face. Where, from discourse of this and that,
On rural squires, that kingdom's bane, grow the snbject of their chat.
He vented oft his wrath in vain : And while they toss my name about,
******* squires to market brought, With favor sume, and some without;
Who sell their souls and **** for nought: One, quite indifferent in the cause,
The **** ****
go joyful back. My character iinpartial draws.
To rob the church, their tenants rack ; The Dean, if we believe report,
Go snacks with ***** justices, Was nerer ill receiv'd at court,
And keep the peace to pick up fees; Although, ironically grave,
In every job to have a share, He sham'd the fool, and lash'd the knave;
A gaol or turnpike to repair; To steal a hint was never known,
And turn ******* to public roads But what he writ was all his own."
Commodious to their own abodes. “Sir, I have heard another story;
“He never thought an honor done him,
Because a peer was proud to own him;
Would rather slip aside, and choose
To talk with wits in dirty shoes ;
And scorn the tools with stars and garters,
So often seen caressing Chartres.
He never courted men in station,
Of no man's greatness was afraid,
Because he sought for no man's aid.
Though trusled long in great affairs,
He gave himself no haughty airs :
Without regarding private ends,
Spent all his credit for his friends;
And only chose the wise and good ;
No flatterers; no allies in blood :
But succord virtue in distress,
And seldom failid of good success;
As numbers in their hearts must own,
Who, but for him, had been unknown.
“He kept with princes due decorum;
Yet never stood in awe before 'em,
He follow'd David's lesson just;
In princes never put his trust;
And, would you make him truly sour,
Provoke him with a slave in power.
The Irish senate if you nam'd,
With what impatience he declaim'd!
Fair LIBERTY was all his cry;
For her he stood prepar'd to die;
For her he boldly stood alone ;
For her he oft expos'd his own.
Two kingdoms, just as faction led,
Had set a price upon his head ;
But not a traitor could be found,
To sell him for six hundred pound.
“Had he but spar'd his tongue and pen, Whose owners set not up for beaux.
He might have rose like other men:
But power was never in his thought,
And wealth he valued not a groat:
Ingratitude he often found,
And pitied those who meant the wound;
But kept the tenor of his mind,
To merit well of human-kind;
Nor made a sacrifice of those
Who still were true, to please his foes.
He labor'd many a fruitless hour,
To reconcile his friends in power;
Saw mischief by a faction brewing,
While they pursued each other's ruin.
But, finding vain was all his care,
He left the court in mere despair.
“ And, oh! how short are human schemes! Who fain would pass for lords indeed :
Here ended all our golden dreams.
What St. John's skill in state affairs,
What Ormond's valor, Oxford's cares,