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What Richlieu wanted, Louis scarce could gain ;
And what young Ammon wish'd, but with'd in vain ?
No pow'r the Muse's friendship can command"; ; )
No pow’r, when virtue claims it, can withstand :
To Cato, Virgil pay'd one honeft line ;
O let my country's friends illumine mine!..
What are you thinking? F. Faith, the thought's no fin;
I think you're friends are out, and would be in.
P. If merely to come in, Sir, they go out,
The way they take is strangely round about.
F. They too may be corrupted, you'll allow,
P. I only call those knaves who are so now,
Is that too little ? Come then, I'll comply
Spirit of Arnall ! aid me while I lye.
Cobham's a coward, Polwart is a llave,
And Lyttleton a dark, designing knave ;
St. John has ever been a wealthy fool:
But let me add, Sir Robert's mighty dull;
Has never made a Friend in private life,
And was, besides a tyrant to his wife.
But pray, when others praise him, do I blame?
Call Verres, Wolsey, any odious name?
Why rail they then, if but a wreath of mine,
O all-accompith'd St. John! deck thy shrine ?
What shall each fpur-gall'd hackney of the day,
When Paxton gives him double pots
and Or each new-penfion'd fycophant, pretend To break my windows if I treat a friend;
Then wisely plead, to me they meant no hurt;
But it was my guest at home they threw the dirt ?
Sure, if I spare the Minister, no rules
Of honour bind me not to maul his tools ;
Sure, if they cannot cut, it
be said His saws are toothless, and his hatchets lead.
Ji anger’d Turenne, once upon a day, To see a footman kick'd that took his
pay: But when he heard the affront the fellow gave, Knew one a man of honour, one a knave ; The prudent gen'ral turn'd it to a jest, And begg'd he'd take the pains to kick the rest : Which not at present having time to doF. hold, fir, for God's sake, where's the affront to you? Again your worship when had S--k writ? Or P-ge pour’d forth the torrent of his wit ?
the Bard whose diftich all commend
(In pow'r a fervant, one of pow'r a friend)
To W-le guilty of some venial fin;
What's that to you, who ne'er.was out nor in ?
The Priest whose flattery bedropt the Crown,
How hurt he you? he only stain'd the gown,
And how did, pray, the florid youth offend,
Whofe speech you took, and gave it to a friend ?
P. Faith, it imports not much from whom it caine ;
Whoever borrow'd, could not be to blame,
Since the whole House did afterwards the same.
Let courtly wits to wits afford supply,
As hog to hog in huts of Westphaly ;
Vol. VI. 21.
If one thro' nature's bounty, or his Lord's,
Hlas what the frugal, dirty foil afford,
From hin the next receives it, thick or thing
As pure a mess almoit as it came in;
The bleffed benefit, not there confin'd,
Drops to the third, who nuzzles close behind :
From tail to mouth they feed and they caroufe ;
The last full fairly gives it to the Houfe.'
F. This filthy fimile, this beasly line
Quite turns my
P. So does flatt'ry' mine :
And all our courtly Civet-cats can vent,
Perfume to you, to me is excrement.
But hear me farther-Japhet, 'tis agreed,
Writ not, and Chartres scarce could write or read,
In all the Courts of Pindus guiltless quite ;
But pens can forge, my friend, that cannot write;
And must no egg in Japhet's-face be thrown,
Because the deed he forg'd was not my own ?
Must never Patriot then declaim at gin,
Unless, good man ! he has been fairly in ?
No zealous paflor blame a failing spouse,
Without a staring reason on his brows?
And each blafphemer quite escape the rod,
Because the insult's not on man, but God ?
Ask you what provocation I have had ?
The strong antipathy of good to bad.
When truth or virtue an affront endures,
Th’ affront is mine, my friend, and should be yours.
Mine, as a foe profess'd to false pretence.
Who think a Coxcomb's honour like his fense ;
Mine, as a friend to ev'ry worthy mind ;
And mine as man, who feel for all mankind.
F. You're flrangely proud.
P. So proud, I am no slave;
So impudent, I own myself no knave;
So'odd, my country's ruin makes me grave.
Yes, I am proud, I must be proud to see
Men not afraid of God afraid of me :
Safe from the bar, the pulpit, and the throne,
Yet touch'd and sham'd by ridicule alone.
O sacred weapon ! left for truth's defence;
Sole dread of folly, vice, and insolence !
To all but Heaven directed hands denied,
The Muse may give thee, but the Gods must guide :
Rev’rent I touch theç ! but with honeft zeal ;
To rouse the watchmen of the public weal,
To virtue's work provoke the tardy hall,
And goad the Prelate slumb’ring in his fall.
Ye tinsel insects! whom a court maintains,
That counts your beauties only by your flains,
Spin all your cobwebs o'er the eye of day!
The Muse's wing shall brush you all away :
All his Grace preaches, all his Lord thip fings,
All that makes saints of queens, and gods of kinys,
All, all but truth, drops dead-born from the press,
Like the last Gazette, or the last addressa
When black ambition stains a public cause,
A monarch's sword when mad vain-glory draws,
Not Wallers wreath can hide the nation's scar,
Nor Boileau turn the feather to a star.
Not so, when diadem'd with rays divine,
Touch'd with the flame that breaks from Virtue's Ihrine,
Her priestess Muse forbids the good to die,
And opes the temple of Eternity.
There, other trophies deck the truly brave,
Than such as Anstis caits into the grave ;
Far other fars than * and **
And may defcend to Mornington from Stair
(Such as on Hough's unsullied mitre shine,
Or beam good Digby, from a heart like thine);
Let Envy howl, while heaven's whole chorus sings,
And bark at honour not conferr’d by kings ;
Let Flatt’ry fick’ning see the incense rise,
Sweet to the world, and grateful to the skies:
Truth guards the Poet, fanctifies the line,
And makes immortal, verse as mean as mine,
Yes, the last pen for freedom let me draw,
When truth stands trembling on the edge of law ;
Here last of Britons ! let
name be read;
Are none, none living ? let me praise the dead,
And, for that cause which made your fathers shine,
Fall by the votes of their degen’rate line.