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Soft on the paper ruff its leaves I spread,
“ Of all th' enameli'd race, whose silvery wing 421
485 Whose spoils this paper offers to your eye, Fair ev’n in death! this peerless butterfly.". (parts:
“ My sons! (she answer’d) both have done your Live happy both, and long promote our arts.
IMITATIONS. v. 421. Of all the enameli'd race.) The Poet seems to have an eye to Spenser, Muiopotmos.
"'Of all the race of silver-winged flies
Which do possess the empire of the air.” 0. 427, 428. It fled, I follow'd, &c.]
I started back;
But hear a mother, when she recommends
450 The head that turns at superlunar things, Pois’d with a tail, may steer on Wilkins' wings.
“ (! would the sons of men once think their eyes And reason giv’n them but to study flies! See Nature in some partial narrow shape, 455 And let the Author of the whole escape : Learn but to trifle; or, who most observe, To wonder at their Maker, not to serve!”.
“ Be that my task (replies a gloomy clerk, Sworn foe to mystery, yet divinely dark;
460 Whose pious hope aspires to see the day When moral evidence shall quite decay, And damns implicit faith, and holy lies, Prompt to impose, and fond to dogmatize :) Let others creep by timid steps, and slow,
465 On plain experience lay foundations low, By common sense to common knowledge bred, And last, to Nature's cause through Nature lcd. All-seeing in thy mists, we want no guide, Mother of arrogance, and source of pride! • 470 We nobly take the high priori road, And reason downward, till we doubt of God:
REMARKS. v. 452. Wilkins' wings.) One of the first projectors of the Royal Society, who, among many enlarged and useful notions, entertained the extravagant hope of a possibility to fly to the moon; which has put some volatile geniuses upon making wings for that purpose,
Make Nature still encroach upon his plan,
480 Of nought so certain as our reason still, Of nought so doubtful as of soul and will. O hide the God still more! and make us see · Such as Lucretius drew, a god like thee: Wrapt up in selt, a god without a thought, 485 Regardless of our merit or default. Or that bright image to our fancy draw, Which Thcocles in raptur'd vision saw, While through poetic scenes the genius roves, Or wanders wild in academic groves;
490 That Nature our society adores, Where Tindal dictates, and Silenus snores!”
Rous'd at his name, up rose the bowzy sire, And shook from out his pipe the seeds of fire; Then snapt his box, and strok'd his belly down; 495 Rosy and reverend, though without a gown. Bland and familiar to the throne he came, Led up the youth, and call’d the goddess dame. Then thus: “ From priestcraft happily set free, Lo! every finish'd son returns to thee:
500 First slave to words, then vassal to a name, Then dupe to party; child and man the same; Bounded by nature, narrow'd still by art, A trifling head, and a contracted heart. "Thus bred, thus taught, how many have I seen, 505 Smiling on all, and smild on by a queen! Mark'd out for bonours, honour'd for their birth, To thee the most rebellious things on earth:
REMARKS. v. 492. Silenus.) Silenus was an Epicurean philosopher, as appears from Virgil, Ecl. vi. where he sings the principles of that philosophy in his drink.
Now to thy gentle shadow all are shrunk,
With that a wizard old his cup extends,
520 A feather, shooting from another's head, Extracts his brain, and principle is fled; Lost is his God, his country, every thing, And nothing left but homage to a king! The vulgar herd turn off to roll with hogs, 525 To run with horses, or to hunt with dogs; But, sad example! never to escape Their infamy, still keep the hunian shape.
But she, good goddess, sent to every child Firm impudence, or stupefaction mild:
530 And straight succeeded, leaving shame no room, Cibberian forehead, or Cimmerian gloom, Kind self-conceit to some her glass applies, Which no one looks in with another's eyes: But as the flatterer or dependant paint,
585 Beholds himself a patriot, chief, or saint.
On others interest her gay livery flings,
Others the syren sisters warble round,
REMARKS. v.517.---his cup--Which whoso tastes, &c.] The cup of self-love, which causes a total oblivion of the obligations of friendship, or how nour; and of the service of God or our country; all sacrificed to vain-glory, court-worship, or the yet meaner considerations of lucre and brutal pleasures. From ver, 520 to 528,
No more, alas! the voice of fame they hear,
On some, a priest succinct in amice white Attends; all flesh is nothing in his sight! 550 Beeves, at his touch, at once to jelly turn, And the huge boar is shrunk into an urn: The board with specious miracles he loads, Turns hares to larks, and pigeons into toads. Another (for in all what one can shine:)
555 Explains the seve and verdeur of the vine. What cannot copious sacrifice atone?
Thy truffles, Perigord! thy hams, Bayonne !
Next bidding all draw near on bended knees, 565
570 Some, deep free-masons, join the silent race, Worthy to fill Pythagoras's place: Some botanists, or florists at the least, Or issue members of an annual feast. Nor past the meanest unregarded, one
575 Rose a Gregorian, one a Gormogon.
REMARKS. 0. 560. ---Bladen---Hays.) Names of gamesters. Bladen is a black
Robert Knight, Cashier of the South Sea Company, who fled froin England in 1720 (afterwards pardoned in 1742.) ---These lived with the utmost magnificence at Paris, and kept open tables, frequented by persons of the first quality of England, and even by princes of the blood of France