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0 pouertie, chefe of the heau'nly brood, Dearer to me than wealth or kingly crowne : No wish for honour, thirst of others good, Can moue my heart, contented with mine owne: We quench our thirst with water of this flood, Nor fear we poison should therein be throwne : These little flocks of sheepe and tender goates Giue milke for food, and wool to make us coates. Xi. We little wish, we need but little wealth, From cold and hunger vs to cloath and feed; These are my sonnes, their care preserues from stealth Their fathers flocks, nor servants moe 1 need : Amid these groues I walke oft for my health, And to the fishes, birds, and beastes giue heed. How they are fed, in forrest, spring and lake, And their contentment for ensample take. X11. Time was (for each one hath his doating time, These siluer locks were golden tresses than) That countrie life I hated as a crime, And from the forrests sweet contentment ran, To Memphis' stately pallace would I clime, And there became the mightie caliphes man, And though 1 but a simple gardner weare, Yet could I marke abuses, see and heare. XIII. Entised on with hope of future gaine, 1 suffred long what did my soule displease; But when my youth was spent, my hope was vaine, I felt my native strength at last decrease; Igan my losse of lustie yeeres complaine, And wisht I had enjoy’d the countries peace; I bod the court farewell, and with content My later age here have 1 quiet spent.
. . . XIV. While thus he spake, Erminia husht and still His wise discourses heard, with great attention, His speeches graue those idle fancies kill, Which in her troubled soule bred such dissention, After much thought reformed was her will, Within those woods to dwell was her intention, Till fortune should occasion new afford, ... To turne her home to her desired Lord. XV. She said therefore, O shepherd fortunate! That troubles some didst whilom feele and proue, Yet liuest now in this contented state, Let my mishap thy thoughts to pitie moue, 'Po entertaine me as a willing mate In shepherds life, which l admire and loue; Within these pleasant groues perchance my hart, Of her discomforts, may vnload some part. - XVI. . . . . . . . H gold or wealth of most esteemed deare, lfiewels rich, thou diddest hold in prise, Such store thereof, such plentie haue I seen, As to a greedie minde might well suffice: With that downe trickled many a siluer teare, Two christall streames fell from her watrie eies : Part of her sad misfortunes than she told, And wept, and with her wept that shepherd old. XVII. With speeches kinde, he gan the virgin deare Towards his cottage gently home to guide; His aged wife there made her homely cheare, Yet welcomile her, and plast her by her side. The princesse dond a poore pastoraes geare, A kerchiefe course vpon her head she tide; But yet her gestures and her looks (I gesse) Were such, as ill beseem’d a shepherdesse. - - XVIII. Not those rude garments could obscure, and hide The heau’nly beautie of her angels face, Nor was her princely of spring damnifide, Or ought disparag’de, by those labours bace; Her little flocks to pasture would she guide, And milke her goates, and in their foldes them place. Both cheese and butter could she make, and frame Her selfe to please the shepherd and his dame,
OF MR. JoHN POMFRET nothing is known but from a slight and confused account prefixed to his poems by a nameless friend; who relates, that he was the son of the Rev. Mr. Pomfret, rector of Luton, in Bedfordshire; that he was bred at Cambridge;" entered into orders, and was rector of Malden in Bedfordshire, and might have risen in the church; but . that, when he applied to Dr. Compton, bishop of London, for institution to a living of considerable value, | to which he had been presented, he found a troublesome obstruction raised by a malicious interpretation of some passages in his Choice; from which it was inferred, that he considered happiness as more likely to be found in the company of a mistress than of a wife. This reproach was easily obliterated: for it had happened to Pomfret as to almost all other men who plan schemes of life; he had departed from his purpose, and was then married. The malice of his enemies had however a very fatal consequence: the delay constrained his attendance in London, where he caught the small-pox, and died in 1703, in the thirty-sixth year of his age.
* He was of Queen's college there, and, by the University-register, appears to have taken his bachelor’s degree in 1684, and his master's 1698. H.-His father was of Trinity. C.
He published his poems in 1699; and has been always the favourite of that class of readers, who, without vanity or criticism, seek only their own amusement.
His Choice exhibits a system of life adapted to common notions, and even to common expectations; such a state as affords plenty and tranquillity, without exclusion of intellectual pleasures. Perhaps no composition in our language has been oftener perused than Pomfret's Choice.
In his other poems there is an easy volubility; the pleasure of smooth metre is afforded to the ear, and the mind is not oppressed with ponderous or entangled with intricate sentiment. He pleases many; and he who pleases many must have some species of
OF the earl of Dorset the character has been drawn so largely and so elegantly by Prior, to whom he was familiarly known, that nothing can be added by a casual hand; and, as its author is so generally read, it would be useless officiousness to transcribe it. CHARLEs SAckville was born January 24, 1637.
Having been educated under a private tutor, he travelled into Italy, and returned a little before the Restoration. He was chosen into the first parliament that was called, for East Grinstead in Sussex, and soon became a favourite of Charles the Second ; but undertook no publick employment, being too eager of
the riotous and licentious pleasures which young men of high rank, who aspired to be thought wits, at that time imagined themselves intitled to indulge.
One of these frolicks has, by the industry of Wood,
come down to posterity. Sackville, who was then lord Buckhurst, with sir Charles Sedley and sir Thomas Ogle, got drunk, at the Cock, in Bow-street, by Covent garden, and, going into the balcony, exposed themselves to the populace in very indecent postures. At last, as they grew warmer, Sedley stood forth naked, and harangued the populace in such profane anguage, that the publick indignation was awakened; the crowd attempted to force the door, and, being rePulsed, drove in the performers with stones, and broke the windows of the house.