Imagens das páginas
PDF

One common b

ne common soul.

Nobility. Greatness. Fame. Superior talents. | Heaven breathes through every member of the whole, With pictures of human infelicity in men, possessed of them all. VII. That virtue only But Fortune's gifts if each alike possest, constitutes a happiness, whose object is universal, And each were equal, must not all contest? and whose prospect eternal. That the perfec- If then to all men happiness was meant, tion of virtue and happiness consists in a con- God in externals could not place content. formity to the order of Providence here, and a Fortune her gifts may variously dispose, resignation to it here and hereafter.

And these be happy call’d, unhappy those;

But Heaven's just balance equal will appear, OH HAPPINESS! our being's end and aim ! While those are plac'd in hope, and these in fear: Good, Pleasure, Ease, Content! whate'er thy name: Not present good or ill, the joy or curse, That something still which prompts th' eternal sigh, But future views of better, or of worse. For which we bear to live, or dare to die,

On, sons of Earth! attempt ye still to rise, Wlich still so near us, yet beyond us lies,

By mountains pil'd on mountains, to the skies? O'erlook'd, seen double, by the fool and wise : Heaven still with laughter the vain toil surveys, Plant of celestial seed! if dropp'd below,

And buries madmen in the heaps they raise. Say, in what mortal soil thou deign'st to grow ? Know, all the good that individuals find, Fair opening to some court's propitious shine, Or God and Nature meant to mere mankind, Or deep with diamonds in the flaming mine? Reason's whole pleasure, all the joys of sense, Twin'd with the wreaths Parnassian laurels yieid, Lie in three words, Health, Peace, and Competence. Or reap'd in iron harvests of the field?

But Health consists with Temperance alone; Where grows? where grows it not? If vain our toil, ' And Peace, oh Virtue! Peace is all thy own. We ought to blame the culture, not the soil : The good or bad the gifts of Fortune gain; Fix'd to no spot is happiness sincere,

But these less taste them, as they worse obtain, 'Tis no where to be found, or every where : Say, in pursuit of profit or delight, 'Tis never to be bought, but always free,

Who risk the most, that take wrong means, or right? And fled from monarchs, St. John! dwells with Of Vice or Virtue, whether blest or curst, thee.

| Which meets contempt, or which compassion first ? Ask of the learn'd the way ? 'The learn'd are blind : Count all th' advantage prosperous Vice attains, This bids to serve, and that to shun mankind; 'Tis but what Virtue Aies from and disdains : Some place the bliss in action, some in ease, And grant the bad what happiness they would, Those call it pleasure, and contentment these : One they must want, which is to pass for good. Sorne, sunk to beasts, find pleasure end in pain;

Oh blind to truth, and God's whole scheme below, Some, swell’d to gods, confess ev'n virtue vain ; Who fancy bliss to Vice, to Virtue woe! Or, indolent, to each extreme they fall,

Who secs and follows that great scheme the best, To trust in ev'ry thing, or doubt of all.

Best knows the blessing, and will most be blest. Who thus define it, say they more or less, But fools, the good alone, unhappy call, Than this, that happiness is happiness?

For ills or accidents that chance to all. Take Nature's path, and mad Opinion's leave; See Falkland dies, the virtuous and the just! All states can reach it, and all heads conceive; See godlike Turenne prostrate on the dust! Obvious her goods, in no extreme they dwell; See Sidney bleeds annid the martial strife! There needs but thinking right, and meaning well; Was this their virtue, or contempt of life ? And, mourn our various portions as we please, Say, was it virtue, more though Heaven ne'er gave, Equal is common sense, and common ease.

Lamented Digby! sunk thee to the grave ? Remember, man, “ the Universal Cause

| Tell me, if virtue made the son expire, Acts not by partial, but by gen'ral laws;"

Why, full of days and honour, lives the sire ? And makes what happiness we justly call,

| Why drew Marseilles' good bishop purer breath, Sabsist not in the good of one, but all.

When Nature sicken'd, and each gale was death? There's not a blessing individuals find,

Or why so long (in life if long can be)
But some way leans and hearkens to the kind : Lent Heaven a parent to the poor and me?
No bandit fierce, no tyrant mad with pride,

What makes all physical or moral ill ?
No cavern'd hermit, rests self-satisfy'd:

There deviates Nature, and here wanders will.
Who most to shun or hate mankind pretend, God sends not ill; if rightly understood,
Seek an admirer, or would fix a friend :

Or partial ill is universal good,
Abstract what others feel, what others think, Or change admits, or Nature lets it fall,
All pleasures sicken, and all glories sink :

Short, and but rare, till man improv'd it all. Each has his share; and who would more obtain, We just as wisely might of Heaven complain Shall find, the pleasure pays not half the pain. | That righteous Ábel was destroyed by Cain,

Order is Heaven's first law; and this confest, | As that the virtuous son is ill at ease
Some are, and must be, greater than the rest, | When his lewd father gave the dire disease.
More rich, more wise ; but who infers from hence | Think we, like some weak prince, th' Eternal Cause

That such are bappier, shocks all common sense. Prone for his favourites to reverse his laws ?
Heaven to mankind impartial we confess,

Shall burning Ætna, if a sage requires,
If all are equal in their happiness :

Forget to thunder, and recall her fires ?
Bat mutual wants this happiness increase ;

On air or sea new motions be imprest,
All Nature's difference keeps all Nature's peace. Oh blameless Bethel ! to relieve thy breast ?
Condition, circumstance, is not the thing;

When the loose mountain trembles from on high, Bliss is the same in subject or in king,

Shall gravitation cease, if you go by ? In who obtain defence, or who defend,

Or some old temple, nodding to its fall, In him who is, or him who finds a friend :

For Chartres' head reserve the hanging wall ?

Bb

But still this world (so fitted for the knave) | “What differ more," you cry, “than crown and Contents us not. A better shall we have ?

cowl!” A kingdom of the just then let it be:

I'll tell you, friend ! a wise man and a fool. But first consider how those just agree.

You'll find, if once the monarch acts the monk, The good must merit God's peculiar care;

Or, cobbler-like, the parson will be drunk, But who, but God, can tell us who they are ? Worth makes the man, and want of it the fellow; One thinks on Calvin Heaven's own spirit fell; The rest is all but leather or prunella. Another deems him instrument of Hell ;

Stuck o'er with titles, and hung round with If Calvin feels Heaven's blessing, or its rod,

strings This cries, there is, and that, there is no God. | That thou mayst be by kings, or whores of kings. What shocks one part, will edify the rest,

Boast the pure blood of an illustrious race, Nor with one system can they all be blest.

In quiet flow from Lucrece to Lucrece: The very best will variously incline,

| But, by your father's worth if yours you rate, And what rewards your virtue, punish mine. Count me those only who were good and great, WHATEVER IS, IS RIGHT.—This world, 'tis true, , Go! if your ancient, but ignoble blood Was made for Cæsar-but for Titus too;

Has crept through scoundrels ever since the Flood, And which more blest? who chain'd his country, say, Go! and pretend your family is young; Or he whose virtue sigh'd to lose a day?

Nor own your fathers have been fools so long. “ But sometimes Virtue starves, while Vice is fed.” What can ennoble sots, or slaves, or cowards? What then? Is the reward of Virtue bread ?

Alas! not all the blood of all the Howards. That, Vice may merit, 'tis the price of toil;

Look next on greatness ; say, where greatness The knave deserves it, when he tills the soil;

lies: The knave deserves it, when he tempts the main, .“ Where but among the heroes and the wise ?" Where folly fights for kings, or dives for gain. | Heroes are much the same, the point's agreed, The good man may be weak, be indolent;

From Macedonia's madman to the Swede : Nor is his claim to plenty, but content.

The whole strange purpose of their lives, to find, But grant him riches, your demand is o'er ? Or make, an enemy of all mankind! “ No shall the good want health, the good want Not one looks backward, onward still he goes, power?"

Yet ne'er looks forward further than luis nose. Add health and power, and every earthly thing, No less alike the politic and wise : “Why bounded power? why private? why noking?" All sly slow things, with circumspective eyes: Nay, why external for internal given ?

Men in their loose unguarded hours they take,
Why is not man a god, and Earth a Heaven? Not that themselves are wise, but others weak.
Who ask and reason thus, will scarce conceive | But grant that those can conquer, these can cheat:
God gives enough, while he has more to give ; 'Tis plırase absurd to call a villain great;
Immense the power, immense were the demand; Who wickedly is wise, or madly brave,
Say, at what part of Nature will they stand ? Is but the more a fool, the more a knave.

What nothing earthly gives, or can destroy, Who noble ends by noble means obtains,
The soul's calm sun-shine, and the heart-felt joy, Or, failing, smiles in exile or in chains,
Is Virtue's prize: A better would you fix? Like good Aurelius let him reign, or bleed
Then give Humility a coach and six,

Like Socrates, that man is great indeed.
Justice a conqueror's sword, or Truth a gown, What's fame? a fancy'd life in others breath,
Or Public Spirit its great cure, a crown.

A thing beyond us, ev'n before our death.
Weak, foolish man! will Heaven reward us there Just what you hear, you have ; and what's unknown,
With the same trash mad mortals wish for here? The same, my lord, if Tully's, or your own.
The boy and man an individual makes,

All that we feel of it begins and ends
Yet sigh'st thou now for apples and for cakes ? In the small circle of our foes or friends;
Go, like the Indian, in another life

To all beside as much an empty shade
Expect thy dog, thy bottle, and thy wife ;

An Eugene living, as a Cæsar dead : As well as dream such trifles are assign'd,

Alike or when, or where they shone, or shine, As toys and empires, for a godlike mind;

Or on the Rubicon, or on the Rhine. Rewards, that either would to virtue bring

A wit's a feather, and a chief a rod : No joy, or be destructive of the thing;

An honest man's the noblest work of God. How oft by these at sixty are undone

Fame but from death a villain's name can save, The virtues of a saint at twenty-one!

As Justice tears his body from the grave; To whom can riches give repute, or trust,

When what t'oblivion better were resign'd, Content, or pleasure, but the good and just ? Is hung on high to poison half mankind. Judges and senates have been bought for gold; All fame is foreign, but of true desert; Esteern and love were never to be sold.

Plays round the head, but comes not to the heart : Oh fool! to think God hates the worthy mind, One self-approving hour whole years outweighs The lover and the love of human-kind,

Of stupid starers, and of loud huzzas;
Whose life is healthful, and whose conscience clear, | And more true joy Marcellus exil'd feels,
Because he wants a thousand pounds a-year. Than Cæsar with a senate at his heels.
Honour and shame from no condition rise ;

In parts superior what advantage lies?
Act well your part, there all the honour lies. Tell (for you can) what is it to be wise ?
Fortune in men has some small difference made, ! 'Tis but to know how little can be known;
One flaunts in rags, one flutters in brocade; | To see all others faults, and feel our own :
The cobbler apron'd, and the parson gown'd, Condemn'd in business or in arts to drudge,
The friar hooded, and the monarch crown'd. Without a second, or without a judge :

Truths would you teach, or save a sinking land ? Sees, that no being any bliss can know,
All fear, none aid you, and few understand. But touches some above, and some below;
Painful pre-eminence! yourself to view

Learns from this union of the rising whole
Above life's weakness, and its comforts too.

The first, last purpose of the human soul; Bring then these blessings to a strict account ; And knows where faith, law, morals, all began, Make fair deductions; see to what they mount : All end in love of God, and love of man. How much of other each is sure to cost;

For him alone, Hope leads from goal to goal, How much for other oft is wholly lost ;

And opens still, and opens on his soul: How inconsistent greater goods with these;

Till lengthen'd on to Faith, and unconfin'd, How sometimes life is risk'd, and always ease : It pours the bliss that fills up all the mind. Think, and if still the things thy envy call,

He sees, why Nature plants in man alone Say, wouldst thou be the man to whom they fall? Hope of known bliss, and faith in bliss unknown : 'To sigh for ribbands, if thou art so silly,

(Nature, whose dictates to no other kind Mark how they grace Lord Umbra, or Sir Billy. Are given in vain, but what they seek they find :) Is yellow dirt the passion of thy life?

Wise is her present; she connects in this
Look but on Gripus, or on Gripus' wife.

His greatest virtue with his greatest bliss ;
If parts allure thee, think how Bacon shin'd, At once his own bright prospect to be blest;
The wisest, brightest, mcanest of mankind: And strongest motive to assist the rest.
Or ravish'd with the whistling of a name,

Self-love thus push'd to social, to divine,
See Cromwell, damn'd to everlasting fame! Gives thee to make thy neighbour's blessing thine.
If all, united, thy ambition call,

Is this too little for the boundless heart?
From ancient story, Icarn to scorn them all. Extend it, let thy enemies have part.
There, in the rich, the honour'd, fam'd, and great, Grasp the whole worlds of reason, life, and sense,
See the false scale of happiness complete !

In one close system of benevolence:
In hearts of kings, or arms of queens who lay, Happier as kinder, in whate'er degree,
How happy! those to ruin, these betray.

And height of bliss but height of charity.
Mark by what wretched steps their glory grows, God loves from whole to parts: but human soul
From dirt and sea-weed, as proud Venice rose ; Must rise from individual to the whole.
In each, how guilt and greatness equal ran, Self-love but serves the virtuous mind to wake,
And all that rais'd the hero, sunk the man: As the small pebble stirs the peaceful lake;
Now Europe's laurels on their brows behold, The centre mov’d, a circle straight succeeds,
But stain'd with blood, or ill exchang'd for gold: Another still, and still another spreads;
Then see them broke with toils, or sunk in ease, Friend, parent, neighbour, first it will embrace;
Or infamous for plunder'd provinces.

His country next; and next all human race; 0! wealth ill-fated ; which no act of fame

Wide and more wide, th' o'erflowings of the mind E'er taught to shine, or sanctify'd from shame!

Take every creature in, of every kind; What greater bliss attends their close of life? Earth smiles around, with boundless bounty blest, Some greedy minion, or imperious wife,

And Heaven beholds its image in his breast. The trophy'd arches, story'd halls invade,

Come then, my friend! my genius! come along! And haunt their slumbers in the pompous shade. | Oh master of the poet, and the song! Alas! not dazzled with their noon-tide ray, And while the Muse now stoops, or now ascends, Compute the morn and evening to the day ; To man's low passions, or their glorious ends, The whole amount of that enormous fame,

Teach me, like thec, in various nature wise, A tale, that blends their glory with their shame! To fall with dignity, with temper rise;

Know then this truth (enough for man to know), Form'd by thy converse, happily to steer, 4 Virtue alone is happiness below."

From grave to gay, from lively to severe; The only point where human bliss stands still, Correct with spirit, eloquent with ease, And tastes the good without the fall to ill;

Intent to reason, or polite to please. Where only merit constant pay receives,

Oh ! while along the stream of time thy name Is blest in what it takes, and what it gives;

Expanded flies, and gathers all its fame; The joy unequall'd, if its end it gain,

Say, shall my little bark attendant sail, And if it lose, attended with no pain :

Pursue the triumph, and partake the gale ? Without satiety, though e'er so blest,

When statesmen, heroes, kings, in dust repose, And but more relish'd as the more distress'd : Whose sons shall blush their fathers were thy foes, The broadest mirth unfeeling Folly wears,

Shall then this verse to future age pretend Less pleasing far than Virtue's very tears :

Thou wert my guide, philosopher, and friend? Good, from each object, from each place acquir'd, That, urg'd by thee, I turn'd the tuneful art, For ever exercis'd, yet never tir'd;

From sounds to things, from fancy to the heart; Neper elated, while one man's oppressid ;

For Wit's false mirror held up Nature's light; Never dejected, while another's blest;

Show'd erring Pride, WHATEVER IS, IS RIGHT ; And where no wants, no wishes can remain, That reason, passion, answer one great aim; Since but to wish more virtue, is to gain.

That true self-love and social are the same;
See the sole bliss Heaven could on all bestow! That virtue only makes our bliss below;
Which who but feels can taste, but thinks can know: | And all our knowledge is, ourselves to know.
Yet poor with fortune, and with learning blind,
The bad must miss; the good, untaught, will find ;
Slave to no sect, who takes no private road,
But looks through Nature, up to Nature's God;
Parsues that chain which links th’ immense design,
Joins Heaven and Earth, and mortal and divine ;

HOR.

And yet the fate of all extremes is such,

Men may be read, as well as books, too much.
MORAL ESSAYS,

To observations which ourselves we make,

We grow more partial for th' observer's sake;
IN FOUR EPISTLES TO SEVERAL PERSONS. To written wisdom, as another's, less :

Maxims are drawn from notions, these from guess. Est brevitate opus, ut currat sententia, neu se There's some peculiar in each leaf and grain, Impediat verbis lassas onerantibus aures:

Some unmark'd fibre, or some varying vein : Et sermone opus est modo tristi, sæpe jocoso, Shall only man be taken in the gross ? Defendente vicem modo Rhetoris atque Poëta,

Grant but as many sorts of mind as moss. Interdum urbani, parcentis viribus, atque

That each from other differs, first confess;
Extenuantis eas consulto.

Next, that he varies from himself no less;
Add nature's, custom's, reason's, passion's strife,

And all opinion's colours cast on life.
To Sir Richard TEMPLE, L. Cornav. Our depths who fathoms, or our shallows finds,

Quick whirls, and shifting eddies, of our minds?
EPISTLE I.

On human actions reason though you can,

It may be reason, but it is not man : OF THE KNOWLEDGE AND CHARACTERS OF MEN.

| His principle of action once explore,

That instant 'tis his principle no more.

Like following life through creatures you dissect, Argument.

You lose it in the moment you detect.

Yet more ; the difference is as great between 1. That it is not sufficient for this knowledge to

to | The optics seeing, as the objects seen.
,

' consider man in the abstract: books will not

All manners take a tincture from our own ; serve the purpose, nor yet our own experience

Or come discolour'd through our passions shown. singly. General maxims, unless they be formed

Or Fancy's beam enlarges, multiplies, upon hoth, will be but notional. Some pecu

Contracts, inverts, and gives ten thousand dyes. liarity in every man, characteristic to himself,

Nor will life's stream for observation stay, yet varying from himself.

Difficulties arising | It hurries all too fast to mark their way :

Difficulties arising | from our own passions, fancies, faculties. The

In vain sedate reflections we would make, shortness of life to observe in, and the uncertainty

rtainty | When half our knowledge we must snatch, not take. of the principles of action in men to observe by.

rve by. | Oft, in the passion's wild rotation tost, Our own principle of action often hid from our

| Our spring of action to ourselves is lost : selves. Some few characters plain, but in general Tir'd, not determin'd, to the last we yield, confounded, dissembled, or inconsistent. The

And what comes then is master of the field. same man utterly different in different places and

As the last image of that troubled heap, seasons. Unimaginable weaknesses in the greatest. When sense subsides and fancy sports in sleep, Nothing constant and certain but God and na- (Though past the recollection of the thought,) ture. No judging of the inotives from the ac- Becomes the stuff of which our dream is wrought: tions; the same actions proceeding froin contrary Something as dim to our internal view, motives, and the same motives influencing con- Is thus, perhaps, the cause of most we do. trary actions. II. Yet, to form characters, we True, some are open, and to all men known; can only take the strongest actions of a man's | Others, so very close, they're hid from none; life, and try to make them agree: the utter un (So darkness strikes the sense no less than light,) certainty of this, from nature itself, and from

IS, Irom nature itself, and from Thus gracious Chandos is belov'd at sight; policy. Characters given according to the rank And every child hates Shylock, though his soul of men of the world : and some reason for it. | Still sits at squat, and peeps not from its hole. Education alters the nature, or at least character | At half mankind when generous Manly raves, of many. Actions, passions, opinions, manners, All know 'ris virtue, for he thinks them knaves : humours, or principles, all subject to change. When universal homage Umbra pays, No judging by nature. III. It only remains to All see 'tis vice, an itch of vulgar praise. find (if we can) his ruling passion : that will / When flattery glares, all hate it in a queen, certainly influence all the rest, and can reconcile While one there is who charms us with his spleen. the seeming or real inconsistency of all his ac- ! But these plain characters we rarely find : tions. Instanced in the extraordinary character Though strong the bent, yet quick the turns of mind: of Clodio. A caution against mistaking second | Or puzzling contraries confound the whole ; qualities for first, which will destroy all possibility | Or affectations quite reverse the soul. of the knowledge of mankind. Examples of the The dull, flat falsehood serves for policy; strength of the ruling passion, and its continu And, in the cunning, truth itself's a lie : ation to the last breath.

Unthought-of frailties cheat us in the wise;

The fool lies hid in inconsistencies. Yes, you despise the man to books confin'd,

See the same man, in vigour, in the gout; Who from his study rails at human-kind;

Alone, in company; in place, or out; Though what he learns he speaks, and may advance Early at business, and at hazard late; Some general maxims, or be right by chance. Mad at a fox-chace, wise at a debate; The coxcomb bird, so talkative and grave, | Drunk at a borough, civil at a ball; That from his cage cries cuckold, whore, and knave,

Friendly at Hackney, faithless at Whitehall. Though many a passenger he rightly call,

Catius is ever moral, ever grave, You hold hiin no philosopher at all.

| Thinks who ondures a knave, is next a kaave,

Save just at dinner then presers, no doubt, 'Tis education forms the common mind;
A rogue with venison to a saint without.

Just as the twig is bent, the tree's inclin'd. Who would not praise Patricio's high desert, | Boastful and rough, your first son is a 'squire ; His hand unstain'd, his uncorrupted heart,

The next a tradesman meek, and much a liar : His comprehensive head! all interests weigh'd, Tom struts a soldier, open, bold, and brave; All Europe sav'd, yet Britain not betray'd. Will sneaks a scrivener, an exceeding knave : He thanks you not, his pride is in piquette, Is le a churchman ? then he's fond of power : Newmarket fame, and judgment at a bet. [ron!) | A quaker ? sly: a presbyterian ? sour:

What made (say, Montagne, or more sage Char A smart free-thinker? all things in an hour. Otho a warrior, Cromwell a buffoon?

Ask men's opinions: Scoto now shall tell A perjured prince a leaden saint revere,

How trade increases, and the world goes well ; A godless regent tremble at a star ?

Strike off his pension, by the setting sun, The throne a bigot keep, a genius quit,

And Britain, if not Europe, is undone. Faithless through piety, and dup'd through wit? That gay free-thinker, a fine talker once, Europe a woman, child, or dotard rule,

What turns him now a stupid, silent dunce? And just her wisest monarch made a fool ?

Some god, or spirit, he has lately found;
Know, God and Nature only are the same : Or chanc'd to meet a minister that frown'd.
In man, the judgment shoots a flying game;

Judge we by nature ? habit can efface,
A bird of passage! gone as soon as found, Interest o'ercome, or policy take place :
Now in the Moon perhaps, now under ground. By actions ? those uncertainty divides :
In vain the sage, with retrospective eye,

By passions ? these dissimulation hides :
Would from th' apparent what conclude the why, Opinions ? they still take a wider range :
Infer the motive from the deed, and show,

Find, if you can, in what you cannot change. That what we chanc'd, was what we meant to do. Manners with fortunes, humours turn with climes, Behold if Fortune or a mistress frowns,

Tenets with books, and principles with times. Some plunge in business, others shave their crowns; Search then the ruling passion : there, alone, To ease the soul of one oppressive weight,

The wild are constant, and the cunning known; This quits an empire, that embroils a state :

The fool consistent, and the false sincere ; The same adust complexion has impellid

Priests, princes, women, no dissemblers here. Charles to the convent, Philip to the field.

This clue once found, unravels all the rest, Not always actions show the man: we find The prospect clears, and Wharton stands confest. Who does a kindness, is not therefore kind : Wharton, the scorn and wonder of our days, Perhaps prosperity becalm’d his breast,

Whose ruling passion was the lust of praise ; Perhaps the wind just shifted from the east :

Born with whate'er could win it from the wise, Not therefore humble he who seeks retreat, Women and fools must like him, or he dies : Pride guides his steps, and bids him shun the great : Though wondering senates hung on all he spoke, Who combats bravely is not therefore brave, The club must hail him master of the joke. He dreads a death-bed like the meanest slave : Shall parts so various aim at nothing new ? Who reasons wisely is not therefore wise,

He'll shine a Tully and a Wilmot too. His pride in reasoning, not in acting, lies.

Then turns repentant, and his God adores But grant that actions best discover man; With the same spirit that he drinks and whores; Take the most strong, and sort them as you can. Enough if all around him but admire, The few that glare, each character must mark, And now the punk applaud, and now the friar. You balance not the many in the dark.

Thus with each gift of Nature and of Art, What will you do with such as disagree?

And wanting nothing but an honest heart; Suppress them, or miscall them policy?

Grown all to all, from no one vice exempt; Must then at once (the character to save)

And most contemptible, to shun contempt; The plain rough hero turn a crafty knave ? His passion still, to covet general praise ; Alas! in truth the man but chang'd his mind, His life, to forfeit it a thousand ways; Perbaps was sick, in love, or had not din'd.

A constant bounty, which no friend has made; Ask why from Britain Cæsar would retreat ? An angel tongue, which no man can persuade ; Cæsar himself might whisper, he was beat.

A fool, with more of wit than half mankind, Why risk the world's great empire for a punk? Too rash for thought, for action too refin'd: Cæsar perhaps might answer, he was drunk.

A tyrant to the wife his heart approves; But, sage historians! 'tis your task to prove

A rebel to the very king he loves; One action, conduct; one, heroic love.

He dies, sad outcast of each church and state, 'Tis from high life high characters are drawn : And, harder still! flagitious, yet not great. A saint in crape is twice a saint in lawn ;

Ask you why Wharton broke through every rule ? A judge is just, a chancellor juster still ;

'Twas all for fear the knaves should call hiin fool. A gownman learn'd; a bishop, what you will ; Nature well known, no prodigies remain, Wise, if a minister ; but, if a king, thing. Comets are regular, and Wharton plair. More wise, more learn'd, more just, more every | Yet, in this search, the wisest may mistake, Court-virtues bear, like gems, the highest rate, If second qualities for first they take. Born where Heaven's influence scarce can penetrate: When Catiline by rapine swell’d his store ; In life's low vale, the soil the virtues like,

When Cæsar made a noble dame a whore ; They please as beauties, here as wonders strike. In this the lust, in that the avarice, Though the same Sun with all diffusive rays Were means, not ends; ambition was the vicc. Blush in the rose, and in the diamond blaze,

That very Cæsar, born in Scipio's days, We prize the stronger effort of his power,

Had aim'd, like him, by chastity, at praise. And justly set the gem above the flower.

в) 3

« AnteriorContinuar »