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Serene in virgin modesty she shines,
And unobserv'd the glaring orb declines.
Oh! blest with temper, whose unclouded ray
Can make to-morrow cheerful as to-day :
She, who can love a sister's charms, or hear
Sighs for a daughter with unwounded ear;
She who ne'er answers till a husband cools,
Or, if she rules him, never shows she rules;
Charms by accepting, by submitting sways,
Yet has her humour most, when she obeys;
Let fops or Fortune fly which way they will,
Disdains all loss of tickets, or codille;
Spleen, vapours, or small-pox, above them all,
And mistress of herself, though china fall.
And yet, believe me, good as well as ill, Woman's at best a contradiction still.
Heaven when it strives to polish all it can
Its last best work, but forms a softer man ;
Picks from each sex, to make the favourite blest,
Your love of pleasure, our desire of rest:
Blends, in exception to all general rules,
Your taste of follies, with our scorn of fools:
Reserve with frankness, art with truth ally'd,
Courage with softness, modesty with pride;
Fix'd principles, with fancy ever new;
Shakes all together, and produces — you.
Be this a woman's fame! with this unblest,
Toasts live a scorn, and queens may die a jest.
This Phoebus promis'd (I forget the year)
When those blue eyes first open'd on the sphere;
Ascendant Phoebus watch'd that hour with care,
Averted half your parents' simple prayer;
And gave you beauty, but deny'd the pelf
That buys your sex a tyrant o'er itself.
The generous god, who wit and gold refines.
And ripens spirits as he ripens mines,
Kept dross for duchesses, the world shall know it,
To you gave sense, good-humour, and a poet.
That it is known to few, most falling into one of the extremes, avarice or profusion. The point discussed, whether the invention of money has been more commodious or pernicious to mankind. That riches, either to the avaricious or the prodigal, cannot afford happiness, scarcely necessaries. That avarice is an absolute frenzy, without an end or purpose. Conjectures about the motives of avaricious men. That the conduct of men, with respect to riches, can only be accounted for by the order of Providence, which works the general good out of extremes, and brings all to its great end by perpetual revolutions. How a miser acts upon principles which appear to him reasonable. How a prodigal does the same. The due medium, and true use of riches. The Man of Ross. The fate of the profuse and the covetous, in two examples; both miserable in life and in death. The story of Sir Balaam.
P. WHO shall decide when doctors disagree,
And soundest casuists doubt, like you and me?
You hold the word, from Jove to Momus given,
That man was made the standing jest of Heaven;
And gold but sent to keep the fools in play,
For some to heap, and some to throw away.
But I, who think more highly of our kind,
(And, surely, Heaven and I are of a mind,)
Opine, that Nature, as in duty bound,
Deep hid the shining mischief under ground:
But when, by man's audacious labour won,
Flam'd forth this rival too, its sire, the Sun,
Then careful Heaven supply'd two sorts of men,
To squander these, and those to hide again.
Like doctors thus, when much dispute has past, We find our tenets just the same at last. Both fairly owning, riches, in effect, No grace of Heaven, or token of th' elect; Given to the fool, the mad, the vain, the evil, To Ward, to Waters, Chartres, and the Devil.
B. What nature wants, commodious gold bestows; 'Tis thus we eat the bread another sows.
P. But how unequal it bestows, observe;
'Tis thus we riot, while, who sow it, starve:
What nature wants (a phrase I must distrust)
Extends to luxury, extends to lust :
Useful, I grant, it serves what life requires,
But dreadful too, the dark assassin hires.
B. Trade it may help, society extend:
P. But lures the pirate, and corrupts the friend. B. It raises armies in a nation's aid:
P. But bribes a senate, and the land's betray'd. In vain may heroes fight, and patriots rave, If secret gold sap on from knave to knave.
Once we confess, beneath the patriot's cloak,
From the crack'd bag the dropping Guinea spoke.
And jingling down the back-stairs, told the crew
"Old Cato is as great a rogue as you."
Blest Paper-credit! last and best supply!
That lends Corruption lighter wings to fly!
Gold, imp'd by thee, can compass hardest things,
Can pocket states, can fetch or carry kings;
A single leaf shall waft an army o'er,
Or ship off senates to some distant shore;
A leaf, like Sibyl's, scatter to and fro
Our fates and fortunes, as the wind shall blow:
Pregnant with thousands flits the scrap unseen,
And silent sells a king, or buys a queen.
Oh! that such bulky bribes as all might see,
Still, as of old, encumber'd villany!
Could France or Rome divert our brave designs, With all their brandies, or with all their wines? What could they more than knights and 'squires confound,
Or water all the quorum ten miles round?
A statesman's slumbers how this speech would spoil!
"Sir, Spain has sent a thousand jars of oil; Huge bales of British cloth blockade the door; A hundred oxen at your levee roar.
Poor Avarice one torment more would find; Nor could Profusion squander all in kind. Astride his cheese Sir Morgan might we meet : And Worldly crying coals from street to street, Whom, with a wig so wild, and mien so maz'd, Pity mistakes for some poor tradesman craz’d.
Had Colepepper's whole wealth been hops and
Could he himself have sent it to the dogs?
His grace will game: to White's a bull be led,
With spurning heels and with a butting head.
To White's be carry'd, as to ancient games,
Fair coursers, vases, and alluring dames.
Shall then Uxorio, if the stakes he sweep,
Bear home six whores, and make his lady weep?
Or soft Adonis, so perfum'd and fine,
Drive to St. James's a whole herd of swine?
Oh filthy check on all industrious skill,
To spoil the nation's last great trade, quadrille !
Since then, my lord, on such a world we fall,
What say you? B. Say? Why take it, gold and all.
P. What riches give us, let us then inquire?
Meat, fire, and clothes. B. What more? P. Meat,
clothes, and fire.
Is this too little? would you more than live?
Alas! 'tis more than Turner finds they give.
Alas! 'tis more than (all his visions past)
Unhappy Wharton, waking, found at last!
What can they give? to dying Hopkins, heirs;
To Chartres, vigour; Japhet, nose and ears?
Can they, in gems bid pallid Hippia glow,
In Fulvia's buckle ease the throbs below;
Or heal, old Narses, thy obscener ail,
With all th' embroidery plaster'd at thy tail?
They might (were Harpax not too wise to spend)
Give Harpax self the blessing of a friend;
Or find some doctor that would save the life
Of wretched Shylock, spite of Shylock's wife;