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HY forests, Windsor! and thy green retreats,
At once the Monarch's and the Muse's feats, Invite my lays. Be present, fylvan maids ! Unlock your springs, and open all your shades. GRANVILLE commands ; your aid, O Muses bring! What Muse for Granville can refuse to fing!
VER. 3, etc. Originally thus,
Chafte goddess of the woods,
Nymphs of the vales, and Naïds of the floods,
Lead me throarching bow'rs, and glimm’ring glades.
Unlock your springs -
NOTES. This Poem was written at two different times: the first part of it, which relates to the country, in the year 1704, at the fame time with the Pastorals : the latter part was not added till the year 1713, in which it was published.
IMITATIONS. VER. 6.
neget quis carmina Gallo ? Virg.
The Groves of Eden vanish'd now so long, Live in description, and look green in song : These, were my breast inspir’d with equal flame, Like them in beauty, should be like in fame. Here hills and vales, the woodland and the plain, Here earth and water seem to strive again; Not Chaos-like together crush'd and bruis'd, But, as the world, harmoniously confus’d : Where order in variety we see,
15 And where, tho' all things differ, all agree. Here waving groves a chequer'd scene display, And part admit, and part exclude the day; As some coy nymph her lover's warm address Nor quite indulges, nor can quite repress. There, interspers'd in lawns and op'ning glades, Thin trees arise that shun each other's shades. Here in full light the ruffet plains extend: There wrapt in clouds the blueish hills ascend. Ev'n the wild heath displays her purple dyes, And ’midst the desert fruitful fields arise, That crown'd with tufted trees and springing corn, Like verdant ifles the fable waite adorn,
Ver. 25. Originally thus;
Why should I sing our better funs or air,
Whose vital draughts prevent the leach's care,
While thro’ fresh fields th’enliv’ning odours breathe,
Or spread with vernal blooms the purple heath?
Let India boaft her plants, nor envy we
The weeping amber or the balmy tree, 30
While by our oaks the precious loads are born,
And realms commanded which those trees adorn.
Not proud Olympus yields a nobler fight,
Tho Gods affembled grace his tow'ring height,
Than what more humble mountains offer here, 35
Where, in their blessings, all those Gods appear.
See Pan with flocks, with fruits Pomona crown'd;
Here blushing Flora paints th' enamel'd ground,
Here Ceres' gifts in waving prospect stand,
And nodding tempt the joyful reaper's hand; 40
Rich Industry fits smiling on the plains,
And peace and plenty tell, a STUART reigns.
Not thus the land appear'd in ages patt,
A dreary defert, and a gloomy waite,
To savage beasts and savage laws a prey, 45
And kings more furious and severe than they;
Who claim'd the skies, dispeopled air and floods,
The lonely lords of empty wilds and woods :
Cities laid waste, they ítorm'd the dens and caves,
(For wiser brutes were backward to be slaves,) 50
Ver. 49. Originally thus in the MS.
From towns laid waste, to dens and caves they ran
(For who first stoop'd to be a Nave was man.)
VER. 45. savage laws] The Forelt Laws.
What could be free, when lawless beasts obey'd,
And ev’n the elements a Tyrant sway'd?
In vain kind seasons swell'd the teeming grain,
Soft show'rs distillid, and suns grew warm in vain;
The swain with tears his frustrate labour yields, 55
And familh'd dies amidit his ripen'd fields.
What wonder then, a beast or subject slain
Were equal crimes in a despotic reign?
Both doom'd alike, for sportive Tyrants bled,
But while the subject starv’d, the beast was fed. 60
Proud Nimrod first the bloody chace began,
A mighty hunter, and his prey was man:
Our haughty Norman boasts that barb'rous name,
And makes his trembling slaves the royal game. 64
The fields are ravith'd from th'industrious swains,
From men their cities, and from Gods their fanes :
VARIATIONS. VER, 57, etc.
No wonder savages or subjects Nain
But subjects starv'd, while savages were fed. It was originally thus, but the word savages is not properly ape plied to beasts but to men ;, which occasioned the alteration,
NOTES. Ver. 65. The fields are ravisk'd etc.] Alluding to the destruction made in the New Forest, and the Tyrannies exercised there by William I.
IMITATIONS. Ver. 65. The fields are ravish'd from th' indufirious Szvains, From men their cities, and from Gods their fanes :]Translated from
Templa adimit divis, fora civibus, arva colonis, an old monkish writer, I forget who.
The levell’d towns with weeds lie cover'd o'er;
The hollow winds thro’ naked temples roar;
Round broken columns clasping ivy twin'd;
O'er heaps of ruin stalk'd the stately hind; 70
The fox obscene to gaping tombs retires,
And savage howlings fill the sacred quires.
Aw'd by his Nobles, by his Commons curst,
Th' Oppressor rul'd tyrannic where he durit,
Siretch'd o’er the Poor and Church his iron rod, 75
And serv'd alike his Vassals and his God.
Whom ev’n the Saxon spar'd, and bloody Dane,
The wanton victims of his sport remain.
di But fee, the man, who spacious regions gave
A wafle for beafts, himself deny'd a grave! 80
Stretch'd on the lawn his second hope survey,
At once the chaser, and at once the prey :
Lo Rufus, tugging at the deadly dart,
Bleeds in the forest like a wounded hart.
Succeeding monarchs heard the subjects cries,
Nor saw displeas'd the peaceful cottage rife,
Then gath’ring flocks on unknown mountains fed,
O’er sandy wilds were yellow harvests spread,
The forests wonder'd at th’ unusual grain,
And secret transport touch'd the conscious swain.
VER. 72. And wolves with howling fill etc.]
The Author thought this an error, wolves not being common
in England at the time of the Conqueror,
Ver. 89. Miraturque novas frondes et non sua poma. Virg.