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Condemned a needy supplicant to wait,
While ladies interpose and slaves debate.
But did not chance at length her error mend
Did no subverted empire mark his end?
Did rival monarchs give the fatal wound?
Or hostile millions press him to the ground?
His fall was destined to a barren strand,
A petty fortress, and a dubious hand;
He left a name, at which the world grew pale,
To point a moral, or adorn a tale.
When first the college rolls receive his name,
The young enthusiast quits his ease for fame
Through all his veins the fever of renown
Spreads from the strong contagion of the gown,
O'er Bodley's dome his future labours spread,
And Bacon's mansion trembles o'er his head.
Are these thy views? Proceed, illustrious youth,
And virtue guard thee to the throne of truth!
Yet, should thy soul indulge the generous heat,
Till captive science yields her last retreat,
Should reason guide thee with her brightest ray,
And pour on misty doubt resistless day;
Should no false kindness lure to loose delight,
Nor praise relax, nor difficulty fright;
Should tempting novelty thy cell refrain,
And sloth effuse her opiate fumes in vain:
Should beauty blunt on fops her fatal dart,
Nor claim the triumph of a letter'd heart;
Should no disease thy torpid veins invade,
Nor melancholy's phantoms haunt thy shade;
Yet hope not life from grief or danger free,
Nor think the doom of man reversed for thee:
Deign on the passing world to turn thine eyes,
And pause awhile from letters to be wise;
There mark what ills the scholar's life assail,
Toil, envy, want, the patron, and the jail,
See nations, slowly wise and meanly just,
To buried merit raise the tardy bust.
If dreams yet flatter, once again attend,
Hear Lydiat's life and Galileo's end.
CLXXII. GEO. LORD LYTTLETON, 1709-1773. 1. THE FRENCH.
A nation here I pity and admire,
Whom noblest sentiments of glory fire,
Yet taught by custom's force, and bigot fear,
To serve with pride, and boast the yoke they bear;
Whose nobles born to cringe, and to command,
In courts a mean, in camps a gen'rous band;
From each low tool of power content receive
Those laws their dreaded arms to Europe give.
Whose people vain in want, in bondage blest,
Though plunder'd, gay: industrious, though oppress'd;
With happy follies rise above their fate,
The jest and envy of each wiser state.
2. LOVE AND HOPE.
None without hope e'er loved the brightest fair,
But love can hope where reason would despair.
3. BEAUX AND BELLES.
Where none admire, 'tis useless to excel,
Where none are beaux, 'tis vain to be a belle.
CLXXIII. JOHN ARMSTRONG, 1709-1779
Toil and be strong. Some love the manly foils; The tennis some; and some the graceful dance; Others, more hardy, range the purple heath Or naked stubble, where from field to field The sounding coveys urge their labouring flight; Eager amid the rising cloud to pour The gun's unerring thunder: and there are Whom still the meed of the green archer charms But if through genuine tenderness of heart, Or secret want of relish for the game, You shun the glories of the chase, nor care To haunt the peopled stream, the garden yielde A soft amusement, a humane delight.
To raise the insipid nature of the ground.
Or tame its savage genius to the grace
Of careless sweet rusticity, that seems
The amiable result of happy chance,
Is to create, and give a godly joy,
Which every year improves.
To check the lawless riot of the trees,
To plant the grove, or turn the barren mould.
Thrice happy days! in rural labours past:
Blest winter nights! when, as the genial fire
Cheers the old hall, his cordial family
With soft domestic arts the hours beguile,
And pleasing talk that starts no timorous game,
With witless wantonness to hunt it down:
Or through the fairy-land of tale or song
Delighted wander, in fictitious fates
Engaged, and all that strikes humanity;
Till, lost in fable, they the stealing hour
Of timely rest forget. Sometimes, at eve,
His neighbours lift the latch, and bless unbid.
His festal roof; while o'er the light repast
And sprightly cups, they mix in social joy;
And through the maze of conversation trace
Whate'er amuses or improves the mind.
CLXXIV. JAMES HAMMOND, 1710—1742.
PROLOGUE TO LILLO'S ELMERIC.
No labour'd scenes to-night adorn our stage,
Lillo's plain sense would here the heart engage.
He knew no art, no rule; but warmly thought
From passion's force, and, as he felt, he wrote.
His Barnwell once no critic's test could bear,
Yet from each eye still draws the natural tear.
With generous candour hear his latest strains,
And let kind pity shelter his remains.
Deprest by want, afflicted by disease,
Dying he wrote, and dying wished to please.
that wish be now humanely paid,
And no harsh critic vex his gentle shade.
'Tis yours his unsupported fame to save,
And bid one laurel grace his humble
CLXXIV. PAUL WHITEHEAD, 1710-1774.
MANNERS MAKE THE MAN.
Bishops and kings may consecrate, 'tis true,
Manners alone claim homage as their due.
Without, the court and church are both profane,
Whatever prelate preach or monarch reign:
Religion's rostrum virtue's scaffold grows,
And crowns and mitres are mere raree-shows.
In vain behold yon reverend turrets rise,
And Sarum's sacred spire salute the skies!
If the lawn'd levite's earthly vote be sold,
And God's free gift retail'd for mammon gold;
No reverence can the proud cathedral claim,
But Henley's shop and Sherlock's are the same.
Whence have S't Stephen's walls so hallow'd been?
Whence? From the virtue of his sons within.
But, should some guileful serpent, void of grace,
Glide in its bounds, and poison all the place;
Should e'er the sacred voice be set to sale,
And o'er the heart the golden fruit prevail;
The place is alter'd, sir; nor think it strange
To see the senate sink into a 'change.
Or court, or church, or senate-house, or hall,
Manners alone beam dignity on all.
Without their influence, palaces are cells
Crane-court, a magazine of cockle-shells,
The solemn bench no bosom strikes with awe,
But Westminster's a warehouse of the law.
These honest truths, my lord, deny you can;
Since all allow that " Manners make the man.'
Hence only glories to the great belong,
Or peers must mingle with the peasant throng.
Though strung with ribbons, yet behold his Grace
Shines but a lacquey in a higher place!
Strip the gay livery from the courtier's back,
What marks the difference 'twixt my lord and Jack ?
The same mean, supple, mercenary knave,
The tool of power, and of state the slave:
Alike the vassal heart in each prevails,
And all his lordship boasts is larger vails.
Wealth, manors, titles, may descend, 'tis true,
But every heir must merit's claim renew.
CLXXV. WILLIAM MELMOTH, 1710–1799.
Far as the Almighty stretched his utmost line,
He pierced in thought, and view'd the vast design
Too long had darker ages sought in vain
The secret scheme of nature to explain :
Too long had truth escaped each sage's eye,
Or faintly shone through vain philosophy.
Each shapely offspring of her feeble thought
A darker veil o'er genuine science brought;
Still stubborn facts o'erthrew their fruitless toil;
For truth and fiction who shall reconcile ?
But Britain's sons a surer guide pursue :
Tread safe the maze, since Newton gave the clue,
Where'er he turned, true science reared her head,
While far before her puzzled ignorance fled.
From each blest truth these noble ends he draws,
Use to mankind, and to their God applause.
Taught by his rules secure the merchant rides,
When threatening seas roll high their dreadful tides,
And either India speeds her precious stores,
'Midst various dangers, safe to Britain's shores.
Long as those orbs he weighed shall shed their rays,
His truth shall guide us, and shall last his praise.
CLXXVI. EDWARD MOORE, 1712—1757.
1. THE PENITENT.
Little trembler! fear no more,
Thou hast plenteous crops in store,
Seed by genial sorrows sown,
More than all thy scorners own.
What though hostile earth despise ?
Heaven beholds with gentler eyes;
Heaven thy friendless steps shall guide,
Cheer thy hours, and guard thy side.
When the fatal trump shall sound,
When the immortals pour around,
Heaven shall thy return attest,
Hail'd by myriads of the blest.