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DEAR Chloe, what means this disdain,

Which blasts each endeavour to please?
Though forty, I'm free from all pain,

Save love, I am free from disease. No Graces my mansion have fled,

No Muses have broken my lyre;
The Loves frolic still round my bed, ,

And Laughter is cheer'd at my fire.
To none have I ever been cold,
All beauties in



among; I've appetite e'en for the old,

And spirit enough for the young. Believe me, sweet girl, I speak true,

Or else put my love to the test;
Some others have doubted like

Like them do you bless and be bless'd.




1775. VOLTAIRE, believe me, were I now In private life's calm station placed, Let Heaven for nature's wants allow, With cold indifference would I view Departing Fortune's winged haste, And laugh at her caprice like you. The' insipid farce of tedious state, Imperial duty's real weight,

The faithless courtier's supple bow,
The fickle multitude's caress,
And the great vulgar's littleness,
By long experience well I know;
And though a prince and poet born,
Vain blandishments of glory scorn.
For when the ruthless shears of fate
Have cut my life's precarious thread,
And rank'd me with the’ unconscious dead,
What will’t avail that I was great,
Or that the uncertain tongue of fame
In memory's temple chants my name?
One blissful moment whilst we live
Weighs more than ages of renown;
What then do potentates receive
Of good, peculiarly their own?
Sweet ease and unaffected joy,
Domestic peace, and sportive pleasure,
The regal throne and palace fly,
And, born for liberty, prefer
Soft silent scenes of lovely leisure
To what we monarchs buy so dear,
The thorny pomp of sceptred care.
My pain or bliss shall ne'er depend
On fickle Fortune's casual flight;
For, whether she's my foe or friend,
In calm repose I'll pass the night;
And ne'er by watchful homage own
I court her smile, or fear her frown.
But from our stations we derive
Unerring precepts how to live,
And certain deeds each rank calls forth,
By which is measured human worth.

Voltaire, within his private cell
In realms where ancient honesty
Is patrimonial property,
And sacred freedom loves to dwell,
May give up all his peaceful mind,
Guided by Plato's deathless page,
In silent solitude resign'd
To the mild virtues of a sage;
But I, 'gainst whom wild whirlwinds wage
Fierce war with wreck-denouncing wing,
Must be, to face the tempest's rage,
In thought, in life, in death, a king.

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SWEET as the fragrant breath of genial May,

Come, fair Hygeia! goddess heavenly born, More lovely than the sun's returning ray,

To northern regions, at the half year's morn. Where shall I seek thee? in the wholesome grot,

Where Temperance her scanty meal enjoys ? Or Peace, contented with her humble lot,

Beneath her thatch the’inclement blast defies? Swept from each flower that sips the morning dew,

Thy wing besprinkles all the scenes around; Where'er thou fliest the blossoms blush anew,

And purple violets paint the hallow'd ground. Thy presence renovated nature shows;

By thee each shrub with varied hue is dyed, Each tulip with redoubled lustre glows,

And all creation smiles with flowery pride.

But in thy absence joy is felt no more,

The landscape wither'd e'en in spring appears, The morn lours ominous o'er the dusky shore,

And evening suns set half extinct in tears. Ruthless disease ascends, when thou art gone,

From the dark regions of the’abyss below, With pestilence, the guardian of her throne,

Breathing contagion from the realms of woe. In vain her citron groves Italia boasts,

Or Po, the balsam of his weeping trees; In vain Arabia's aromatic coasts

Perfume the pinions of the passing breeze. No wholesome scents impregn the western gale,

But noxious stench exhaled by scorching heat, Where gasping swains the poisonous air inhale,

That once diffused a medicinal sweet. Me, abject me with pale disease oppress'

Heal with the balm of thy prolific breath, Rekindle life within my clay-cold breast,

And shield my youth from cankerworms of death. Then on the verdant turf, thy favourite shrine,

Restored to thee a votary I'll come, Grateful to offer to thy power

divine Each herb that grows round Æsculapius' tomb.


The nymph that I loved was as cheerful as day, And as sweet as the blossoming hawthorn in May, Her temper was smooth as the down on the dove, And her face was as fair as the mother's of love.

Though mild as the pleasantest zephyr that sheds,
And receives gentle odours from violet beds,
Yet warm in affection as Phæbus at noon,
And as chaste as the silver-white beams of the


Her mind was unsullied as new fallen snow,
Yet as lively as tints of young Iris's bow,
As firm as the rock, and as calm as the flood
Where the peace-loving halcyon deposits her


The sweets that each virtue or grace had in store She cull'd as the bee would the bloom of each

flower: Which treasured for me, O! how happy was I, For though hers to collect, it was mine to enjoy.


Away, let nought to love displeasing,

My Winifreda! move thy fear;
Let nought delay the heavenly blessing,

Nor squeamish pride nor gloomy care.
What though no grants of royal donors

With pompous titles grace our blood :
We'll shine in more substantial honours,

And to be noble, we'll be good.
What though from fortune's lavish bounty

No mighty treasures we possess,
We'll find within our pittance plenty,

And be content without excess.

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