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Grecian and Roman bards, we own,

Thro' all Pieria's heights have flown;

Nothing's the subject, yet unsung

By Grecian or by Roman tongue.

Where'er, from high Olympian throne,

Bright Ceres on her fields looks down;

Where'er old Ocean shews his face,

And clasps the earth in close embrace ;

NOTHING beginning wants, and end;

NOTHING does bliss complete attend.

If hence, indisputably shine

The pow'r and energy divine,
What offer'd gifts, what flames can rise,

Worthy the Ruler of the skies?

NOTHING's more pleasing to the fight

Than the clear day's fair beaming light;


NOTHING more beauteous verdure spreads,

Than water'd lawns, or flow’ry meads.

NOTHING more jocund is than Spring ;
More soft than Zephyr’s balmy wing.
Nothing the rage of war defies,

And ev’n in tumult sacred lies.

NOTHING, in peace, is right and just.
NOTHING, in treaties, you may trust.

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Nor baleful fires, nor thieves, nor snares.
Nay-he whom grave old I Zeno owns

The first of wisdom’s favour'd fons,

Tho' all things else to fate he leaves,

NOTHING admires, and NOTHING craves,


An ancient Grecian philosopher, and founder of the sect of Stoics.

Among the old || Socratic crew,

'Twas wisdom, NOTHING, Sir, to know;

And, Sir, I speak it to our praise,

Nothing's the study now a days ;

Still ’tis our youth's supreme concern

NOTHING, at school, at home, to learn;

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|| Socrates said, all his knowledge only served to teach him this, " that he knew NOTHING."

§ Pythagoras believed beans had fouls, and forbad his disciples to

eat them.

* Beans were used in the ancient courts of judicature; the white bean was the fign of a suffrage in favour of the obnoxious person ; the black, of the contrary.

+ Many, with Mercury their guide, Earth's bowels pure have liquefy'd,

Willing their substance to consumo

In secret works, and fire, and fume;

Till, with long loss, and labour weak,
They NOTHING find, yet Nothing seek.

Not ev’n the man, whose copious brains
Can sum the sands of Afric's plains,

With measuring staff, or out-stretch'd line,

Can boundless Nothing's length define.

NOTHING, not Sol's bright influence shares.
NOTHING, is higher than the stars.

you, my friend, whose foul profound
Can scale the skics, or pierce the ground;

Whose wise, acute, sagacious mind

To depths unknown a clue can find;


+ This alludes to the search after the philosopher’s-stone, which at that time particularly exercised the lucubrations of the curious,

Ev'n you (with your good leave I'll say)
Ign’rant of Nothing seem to be.

Yet Nothing's clear as Sol's bright beam,

Conspicuous as the lambent flame.

Touch NOTHING, Sir, and you'll confess

You touch a thing that ’s bodiless.
View NOTHING, Sir, and you shall view

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NOTHING, tho’ deaf, can hear, and speaks

Although it never filence breaks ;

Flies without wings; and ev’n can run

Without a leg to stand upon.

Nay, lacking motion, parts, and place,
NOTHING can move through empty space.

NOTHING more useful, Sir, you'll find

Than art of healing, to mankind :

Let not the lover then rehearse

The mutt'ring wizard's magic verse,


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