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Past six, and not a living soul! I might by this have won a vole.” A dreadful interval of spleen How shall we pass the time between 2 “Here, Betty, let me take my drops; And feel my pulse, I know it stops: This head of mine, Lord, how it swims? And such a pain in all my limbs '" “Dear madam, try to take a nap.” – But now they hear a footman's rap : “Go, run, and light the ladies up ; It must be one before we sup.” The table, cards, and counters, set, And all the gamester-ladies met, Her spleen and fits recover'd quite, Our madam can sit up all night: “Whoever comes, I’m not within.” – Quadrille's the word, and so begin. How can the Muse her aid impart, Unskill'd in all the terms of art? Or in harmonious numbers put The deal, the shuffle, and the cut? The superstitious whims relate, That fill a female gamester's pate? What agony of soul she feels To see a knave's inverted heels She draws up card by card, to find Good-fortune peeping from behind; With panting heart, and earnest eyes, In hope to see spadillo rise : In vain, alas ! her hope is fed ; She draws an ace, and sees it red; In ready counters never pays, But pawns her snuff-box, rings, and keys: Ever with some new fancy struck, Tries twenty charms to mend her luck. “This morning, when the parson came, I said I should not win a game. This odious chair, how came I stuck in 't? I think I never had good luck in 't. I'm so uneasy in my stays; Your fan a moment, if you please. Stand further, girl, or get you gone; I always lose when you look on.” “Lord madam, you have lost codille / I never saw you play so ill.” “Nay, madam, give me leave to say, 'Twas you that threw the game away : When lady Tricksey play’d a four, You took it with a mattadore; I saw you touch your wedding-ring Before my lady call'd a king; You spoke a word began with H, And I know whom you meant to teach, Because you held the king of hearts; Fie, madam, leave these little arts.” * That's not so bad as one that rubs Her chair, to call the king of clubs; And makes her partner understand A mattadore is in her hand.” “Madam, you have no cause to flounce, I swear I saw you thrice renounce.” “And truly, madam, I know when, Instead of five, you scor'd me ten. Spadillo here has got a mark; A child may know it in the dark: I guess'd the hand: it seldom fails: I wish some folks would pare their nails.” While thus they rail, and scold, and storm, It passes but for common form:
But, conscious that they all speak true,
ON THE DEATH OF DR. SWIFT."
occASIONED BY READING THE Following MAxIM IN Itochefoucault:
Dans l'adversité de nos meilleurs amis, mous trouvons toujours quelque chose qui ne mous déplait pas.
“In the adversity of our best friends, we always find something that doth not displease us.”
As Rochefoucault his maxims drew
* Written in November, 1731. – There are two distinct poems on this subject, one of them containing many spurious lines. In what is here printed, the genuine parts of both are preserved. N.
How patiently you hear him groan
“For poetry, he's past his prime: He takes an hour to find a rhyme; His fire is out, his wit decay’d, His fancy sunk, his Muse a jade. I'd have him throw away his pen; But there 's no talking to some men '" And then their tenderness appears By adding largely to my years: “He 's older than he would be reckon'd, And well remembers Charles the Second. He hardly drinks a pint of wine; And that, I doubt, is no good sign. His stomach too begins to fail; Last year we thought him strong and hale; But now he's quite another thing : I wish he may hold out till spring !” They hug themselves and reason thus: “It is not yet so bad with us !” In such a case they talk in tropes, And by their fears express their hopes. Some great misfortune to portend, No enemy can match a friend. With all the kindness they profess, The merit of a lucky guess (When daily how-d'ye's come of course, And servants answer, “Worse and worse") Would please them better, than to tell, That, “God be prais'd, the Dean is well.” Then he who prophesy'd the best, Approves his foresight to the rest: “You know I always fear'd the worst, And often told you so at first.” He 'd rather choose that I should die, Than his predictions prove a lie. Not one foretells I shall recover; But, all agree to give me over. Yet should some neighbour feel a pain Just in the parts where I complain; How many a message would he send' What hearty prayers that I should mend! Inquire what regimen I kept 2 What gave me ease, and how I slept 2 And more lament when I was dead, Than all the snivellers round my bed. My good companions, never fear; For, though you may mistake a year, Though your prognostics run too fast, They must be verify'd at last. Behold the fatal day arrive! “How is the Dean?”—“He’s just alive." Now the departing prayer is read; He hardly breathes — the Dean is dead. Before the passing-bell begun, The news through half the town is run. “Oh may we all for death prepare What has he left? and who 's his heir 2" “I know no more than what the news is; 'Tis all bequeath'd to public uses.” “To public uses there 's a whim What had the public done for him 2 Mere envy, avarice, and pride: He gave it all—but first he dy'd. And had the Dean, in all the nation, No worthy friend, no poor relation? So ready to do strangers good, Forgetting his own flesh and blood!" Now Grub-street wits are all employ'd ; With elegies the town is cloy'd: Some paragraph in every paper, To curse the Dean, or bless the Drapier.
The doctors, tender of their fame, Wisely on me lay all the blame. “We must confess, his case was nice; But he would never take advice. Had he been rul’d, for aught appears, He might have liv'd these twenty years: For, when we open'd him, we found That all his vital parts were sound.” From Dublin soon to London spread, Tis told at court, “the Dean is dead.” And lady Suffolk", in the spleen, Runs laughing up to tell the queen. The queen, so gracious, mild, and good, Cries, “Is he gone 'tis time he should. He's dead, you say; then let him rot: I'm glad the medals# were forgot. I promis'd him, I own; but when 2 I only was the princess then : But now, as consort of the king, You know, 'tis quite another thing.” Now Chartres, at Sir Robert's levee, Tells with a sneer the tidings heavy: “Why, if he dy'd without his shoes,” Cries Bob, “I’m sorry for the news: Oh, were the wretch but living still, And in his place my good friend Will! Or had a mitre on his head, Provided Bolingbroke were dead I" Now Curll his shop from rubbish drains: Three genuine tomes of Swift's remains! And then, to make them pass the glibber, Revis’d by Tibbalds, Moore, and Cibber. He ‘ll treat me as he does my betters, Publish my will, my life, my letters; Revive the libels born to die: Which Pope must bear as well as I. Here shift the scene to represent, How those I love my death lament. Poor Pope will grieve a month, and Gay A week, and Arbuthnot a day. St. John himself will scarce forbear To bite his pen, and drop a tear. The rest will give a shrug, and cry, “I’m sorry — but we all must die!" Indifference, clad in wisdom's guise, All fortitude of mind supplies: For how can stony bowels melt In those who never pity felt When we are lash'd, they kiss the rod, Resigning to the will of God. The fools, my juniors by a year, Are tortur'd with suspense and fear; Who wisely thought my age a screen, When death approach'd, to stand between : The screen remov’d, their hearts are trembling; They mourn for me without dissembling. My female friends, whose tender hearts Have better learn'd to act their parts, Receive the news in doleful dumps: “ The Dean is dead: (Pray what is trumps ?) Then, Lord have mercy on his soul! (Ladies, I'll venture for the vole.) Six deans, they say, must bear the pall: (I wish I knew what king to call.)
Mrs. Howard, at one time a favourite with the h. N. Which the Dean in vain expected, in return for all present he had sent to the princess. N.
Madam, your husband will attend
* Wolston is here confounded with Woolaston. N. D d
Suppose me dead; and then suppose A club assembled at the Rose; Where, from discourse of this and that, I grow the subject of their chat. And while they toss my name about, With favour some, and some without; One, quite indifferent in the cause, My character impartial draws. “The Dean, if we believe report, Was never ill receiv'd at court, Although, ironically grave, He sham'd the fool, and lash'd the knave; To steal a hint was never known, But what he writ was all his own.” “Sir, I have heard another story; He was a most confounded Tory, And grew, or he is much bely'd, Extremely dull, before he dy'd.” “Can we the Drapier then forget? : Is not our nation in his debt? 'Twas he that writ the Drapier's letters!” – “He should have left them for his betters : We had a hundred abler men, Nor need depend upon his pen. — Say what you will about his reading, You never can defend his breeding; Who, in his satires running riot, Could never leave the world in quiet; Attacking, when he took the whim, Court, city, camp — all one to him. — But why would he, except he slobber'd, Offend our patriot, great Sir Robert, Whose counsels aid the sovereign power To save the nation every hour ! What scenes of evil he unravels, In satires, libels, lying travels; Not sparing his own clergy cloth, But eats into it, like a moth /’’ “Perhaps I may allow the Dean Had too much satire in his vein, And seem’d determin’d not to starve it, Because no age could more deserve it. Yet malice never was his aim ; He lash'd the vice, but spar'd the name. No individual could resent, Where thousands equally were meant: His satire points at no defect, But what all mortals may correct; For he abhorr'd the senseless tribe Who call it humour when they gibe: He spar'd a hump, or crooked nose, Whose owners set not up for beaux. True genuine dulness mov’d his pity, Unless it offer'd to be witty. Those who their ignorance confest, He ne'er offended with a jest; But laugh'd to hear an idiot quote A verse from Horace learn’d by rote. Vice, if it e'er can be abash'd, Must be or ridicul’d or lash'd. If you resent it, who 's to blame? He neither knows you, nor your name. Should vice expect to 'scape rebuke, Because its owner is a duke * His friendships, still to few confin'd, Were always of the middling kind; No fools of rank, or mongrel breed, Who fain would pass for lords indeed: Where titles give no right or power, And peerage is a wither'd flower;
He would have deem'd it a disgrace.
To save their sinking country lent, Was all destroy'd by one event. Too soon that precious life was ended, On which alone our weal depended. When up a dangerous faction starts, With wrath and vengeance in their hearts; By solemn league and covenant bound, To ruin, slaughter, and confound ; To turn religion to a fable, And make the government a Babel; Pervert the laws, disgrace the gown, Corrupt the senate, rob the crown; To sacrifice Old England's glory, And make her infamous in story : When such a tempest shook the land, How could unguarded virtue stand “With horrour, grief, despair, the Dean Beheld the dire destructive scene: His friends in exile, or the Tower, Himself within the frown of power; Pursued by base envenom'd pens, Far to the land of s— and fens; A servile race in folly nurs'd, Who truckle most, when treated worst. “By innocence and resolution, He bore continual persecution; While numbers to preferment rose, Whose merit was to be his foes; When ev’n his own familiar friends, Intent upon their private ends, Like renegadoes now he feels, Against him lifting up their heels. “The Dean did, by his pen, defeat An infamous destructive cheat; Taught fools their interest how to know, And gave them arms to ward the blow. Envy hath own’d it was his doing, To save that hapless land from ruin; While they who at the steerage stood, And reap'd the profit, sought his blood. “To save them from their evil fate, In him was held a crime of state. A wicked monster on the bench, Whose fury blood could never quench; As vile and profligate a villain, As modern Scroggs, or old Tressilian; Who long all justice had discarded, Nor fear'd he God, nor man regarded; Vow'd on the Dean his rage to vent, And make him of his zeal repent: But Heaven his innocence defends, The grateful people stand his friends; Not strains of law, nor judges' frown, Nor topics brought to please the crown, Nor witness hird, nor jury pick'd, Prevail to bring him in convict. “ In exile, with a steady heart, He spent his life's declining part; Where folly, pride, and faction sway, Remote from St. John, Pope, and Gay." “ Alas, poor Dean his only scope Was to be held a misanthrope. This into general odium drew him, - Which if he lik'd, much good may ’t do him. His zeal was not to lash our crimes, But discontent against the times: For, had we made him timely offers, To raise his post, or fill his coffers, Perhaps he might have truckled down, Like other brethren of his gown;
For party he would scarce have bled : —
BAUCIS AND PHILEMON.
on The EVER-LAMENTED LOSS OF THE TWO YEWTREES IN THE PARIsh of CHILTHORNE, SoMERSET. 1708.
Imtated from the Eighth Book of Ovid.
In ancient times, as story tells,
In his poor hut to pass the night;