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Be that my task (replies a gloomy clerk, Sworn foe to myst'ry, 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 led. All-seeing in thy mists, we want no guide, Mother of arrogance, and source of pride! 470 We nobly take the high Priory road, And reason downward, till we doubt of God: Make Nature still encroach upon his plan, And shove him off as far as e'er we can : Thrust some mechanic cause into his place, 475 Or bind in matter, or diffuse in space : Or, at one bound o’er-leaping all his laws, Make God Man's Image, Man the final Cause ; Find Virtue local, all Relation scorn, See all in Self, and but for self be born : 480 Of nought so certain as our Reason still," Of nought so doubtful as of Soul and WNI. Oh hide the God still more ! and make us sce Such as Lucretius drew, a god like thee : Wrapt up in self, a god without a thought, 485 Regardless of our merit, or default. Or that bright image to our fancy draw, Which Theocles in raptur’d vision saw,?:
While through poetic scenes the Genius roves,
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 stroak'd his belly down; Rosy, and rev'rend, though without a gown. 196 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, Ło! ev'ry 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, Smiling on all, and smild on by a queen ?
506 Mark'd out for honors, honor'd for their birth, To thee the most rebellious things on earth : Now to thy gentle shadow all are shrunk, All melted down in pension, or in punk !
510 So K*, so B** sneak'd into the grave, A monarch's half, and half a harlot's slave. Poor W** nipt in folly's broadest bloom, Who praises now ? his chaplain on his tomb.
v. 492. Silenus.) Sitenus was an Epicurean philosopher, 35 appears from Virgil, Ecl. vi. where he sings the principles of that philosophy in his drink.
Then take them all, oh take them to thy breast ! Thy Magus, Goddess ! shall perform the rest. 516
With that a wizard old, his cup extends, Which whoso tastes, forgets his former friends, Sire, ancestors, himself. One casts his eyes, Up to a star, and like Endymion dies : 520 A feather, shooting, from another's head, Extracts his brain, and principle is fled ; Lost in his God, his country, ev'ry 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 human shape.
But she, good Goddess, sent to every child Firm Impudence, or Stupefaction mild; 530 And strait 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 ;
REMARKS. v. 517...his cup.. Which whoso tastes, &c.] The cup of Selflove, which causes a total oblivion of the obligations of friend. ship or honor; and of the service of God or our country: all sacrinced to vain-glory, court-worship, or the yet meaner consi. derations of lucre and brutal pleasures. From ver. 520, to 528,
0. 518. Ihich whoso tastes, forgets his former friends, ..Sire, &c.] llomer of the Nepenthe, Odyss. IV.
But as the flatt'rer, or dependant, paint,
533 Beholds himself a patriot, chief, or saint.
On others' int’rest, her gay liv'ry flings, Intrest, that waves on party-color'd wings: Turn'd to the sun, she casts a thousand dyes, And, as she turns, the colors fall, or rise. 540
Others the Syren Sisters warble round, And empty beads console with empty sound. No more, alas ! the voice of Fame they hear, The balm of Dulness trickling in their ear. Great C**, H**, 'P**, R**, K*,
545 Why all your toils? your sons have learn'd to sing, How quick Ambition hates to ridicule ! The sire is made a peer, the son a fool.
On some, a priest succinct in amice white Attends; all flesh is nothing in his sight! Beeves at his touch, at once to jelly turn, And the huge boar is shrunk into an urn: The board, with spacious miracles, he loads, Turns hares to larks, and pigeons into toads. Another (for in all, what one can shine ?) Explains the seve and verdeur of the vine. What cannot copious sacrifice atone ? Thy truffles, Perigord! thy hams, Bayonne ! With French libation, and Italian strain, Wash Bladen white, and expiate Hays's staio. 560
7. 560... Bladen.. Hays.] Names of gamesters. Bladen is a
Robert Knig!it, Cashier of the Souin ser Cupuas, who died from England in 1720/afterwards pardoned in 1741
Knight lifts the head; for what'are crowds undone,
Next bidding all draw near on bended knees,
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. The last, not least in honor or applause, Isis and Cam made Doctors of her Laws.
Then, blessing all, Go, children of my care ! To practice now from theory repair.
580 All my commands are easy, short, and full: My Sons! be proud, be selfish, and be dulļ. Guard my prerogative, assert my throne : This nod confirms each privilege your own. The cap and switch be sacred to his Grace; 585 With staff and pumps the Marquis leads the race ; From stage to stage the licens'd Earl may run, Paird with his fellow-charioteer, the Sun;
REMARKS. 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.