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Taller than miss's by two yards;
Not a sham thing of clay or cards:
And so he did; for in a while
He built up such a monstrous pile,
That no two chairmen could be found
Able to lift it from the ground.
Still at Whitehall it stands in view,
Just in the place where first it grew;
There all the little schoolboys run,
Envying to see themselves outdone.

From such deep rudiments as these,
Van is become, by due degrees,
For building famed, and justly reckon'd,
At court, Vitruvius the Second:

No wonder, since wise authors show
That best foundations must be low;
And now the duke has lately ta'en him
To be his architect at Blenheim.

But raillery at once apart,

If this rule holds in every art;
Or if his grace were no more skill'd in
The art of battering walls than building,
We might expect to see next year

A mousetrap-man chief engineer.

BAUCIS AND PHILEMON.

ON THE EVER-LAMENTED LOSS OF THE TWO YEW-TREES IN THE PARISH OF CHILTHORNE, SOMERSET.

1706.

Imitated from the eighth book of Ovid.
IN ancient times, as story tells,

The saints would often leave their cells,
And stroll about, but hide their quality,
To try good people's hospitality.

It happen'd on a winter night,
As authors of the legend write,
Two brother hermits, saints by trade,
Taking their tour in masquerade,
Disguis'd in tatter'd habits, went
To a small village down in Kent;
Where, in the strollers' canting strain,
They begg'd from door to door in vain,
Tried every tone might pity win;
But not a soul would let them in.

Our wandering saints, in woful state,
Treated at this ungodly rate,
Having through all the village pass'd,
To a small cottage came at last
Where dwelt a good old honest ye'man,
Call'd in the neighborhood Philemon;
Who kindly did these saints invite

And then the hospitable sire
Bid Goody Baucis mend the fire;
While he from out the chimney took
A flitch of bacon off the hook,
And freely from the fattest side
Cut out large slices to be fried;
Then stepp'd aside to fetch them drink,
Fill'd a large jug up to the brink,
And saw it fairly twice go round;
Yet (what is wonderful) they found
'Twas still replenish'd to the top,
As if they ne'er had touch'd a drop.
The good old couple were amazed,
And often on each other gazed;
For both were frighten'd to the heart,
And just began to cry, "What ar't?"
Then softly turn'd aside, to view
Whether the lights were burning blue.
The gentle pilgrims, soon aware on't,
Told them their calling and their errand:
"Good folks, you need not be afraid,
We are but saints," the hermits said;
"No hurt shall come to you or yours:
But for that pack of churlish boors,
Not fit to live on Christian ground,
They and their houses shall be drown'd;
While you shall see your cottage rise,
And grow a church before your eyes."

They scarce had spoke, when fair and soft The roof began to mount aloft; Aloft rose every beam and rafter; The heavy wall climb'd slowly after.

The chimney widen'd, and grew higher, Became a steeple with a spire.

The kettle to the top was hoist, And there stood fasten'd to a joist, But with the upside down, to show Its inclination for below:

In vain; for a superior force
Applied at bottom stops its course:
Doom'd ever in suspense to dwell,
'Tis now no kettle, but a bell.
A wooden jack, which had almost
Lost by disuse the art to roast,
A sudden alteration feels,
Increased by new intestine wheels;
And, what exalts the wonder more,
The number made the motion slower.
The flier, though it had leaden feet,
Turn'd round so quick you scarce could see't;
But, slacken'd by some secret power,

Taller than miss's by two yards;
Not a sham thing of clay or cards:
And so he did; for in a while
He built up such a monstrous pile,
That no two chairmen could be found
Able to lift it from the ground.
Still at Whitehall it stands in view,
Just in the place where first it grew;
There all the little schoolboys run,
Envying to see themselves outdone.

From such deep rudiments as these,
Van is become, by due degrees,
For building famed, and justly reckon'd,
At court, Vitruvius the Second:

No wonder, since wise authors show
That best foundations must be low;
And now the duke has lately ta'en him
To be his architect at Blenheim.

But raillery at once apart,

If this rule holds in every art;
Or if his grace were no more skill'd in
The art of battering walls than building,
We might expect to see next year

A mousetrap-man chief engineer.

BAUCIS AND PHILEMON.

ON THE EVER-LAMENTED LOSS OF THE TWO YEW-TREES IN THE PARISII OF CHILTHORNE, SOMERSET.

1706.

Imitated from the eighth book of Ovid.
IN ancient times, as story tells,

The saints would often leave their cells,
And stroll about, but hide their quality,
To try good people's hospitality.

It happen'd on a winter night,
As authors of the legend write,
Two brother hermits, saints by trade,
Taking their tour in masquerade,
Disguis'd in tatter'd habits, went
To a small village down in Kent;
Where, in the strollers' canting strain,
They begg'd from door to door in vain,
Tried every tone might pity win;
But not a soul would let them in.

Our wandering saints, in woful state,
Treated at this ungodly rate,
Having through all the village pass'd,
To a small cottage came at last
Where dwelt a good old honest ye'man,
Call'd in the neighborhood Philemon;
Who kindly did these saints invite

And then the hospitable sire
Bid Goody Baucis mend the fire;
While he from out the chimney took
A flitch of bacon off the hook,
And freely from the fattest side
Cut out large slices to be fried;
Then stepp'd aside to fetch them drink,
Fill'd a large jug up to the brink,
And saw it fairly twice go round;
Yet (what is wonderful) they found
'Twas still replenish'd to the top,
As if they ne'er had touch'd a drop.
The good old couple were amazed,
And often on each other gazed;
For both were frighten'd to the heart,
And just began to cry, "What ar't?"
Then softly turn'd aside, to view
Whether the lights were burning blue.
The gentle pilgrims, soon aware on't,
Told them their calling and their errand:
"Good folks, you need not be afraid,
We are but saints," the hermits said;
"No hurt shall come to you or yours:
But for that pack of churlish boors,
Not fit to live on Christian ground,
They and their houses shall be drown'd;
While you shall see your cottage rise,
And grow a church before your eyes."

They scarce had spoke, when fair and soft The roof began to mount aloft; Aloft rose every beam and rafter; The heavy wall climb'd slowly after.

The chimney widen'd, and grew higher, Became a steeple with a spire.

The kettle to the top was hoist, And there stood fasten'd to a joist, But with the upside down, to show Its inclination for below:

In vain; for a superior force
Applied at bottom stops its course:
Doom'd ever in suspense to dwell,
'Tis now no kettle, but a bell.
A wooden jack, which had almost
Lost by disuse the art to roast,
A sudden alteration feels,
Increased by new intestine wheels;
And, what exalts the wonder more,
The number made the motion slower.
The flier, though it had leaden feet,
Turn'd round so quick you scarce could see't;
But, slacken'd by some secret power,

The jack and chimney, near allied,
Had never left each other's side:
The chimney to a steeple grown,
The jack would not be left alone;
But up against the steeple rear'd,
Became a clock, and still adhered;
And still its love to household cares,
By a shrill voice at noon, declares,
Warning the cookmaid not to burn
That roast meat which it cannot turn.

The groaning-chair began to crawl, Like a huge snail, along the wall; There stuck aloft in public view, And with small change, a pulpit grew.

The porringers, that in a row

Hung high, and made a glittering show,
To a less noble substance changed
Were now but leathern buckets ranged.
The ballads, pasted on the wall,
Of Joan of France, and English Mall,
Fair Rosamond, and Robin Hood,
The little Children in the Wood,
Now seem'd to look abundance better,
Improved in picture, size, and letter:
And, high in order placed, describe
The heraldry of every tribe.

A bedstead of the antique mode,
Compact of timber many a load,
Such as our ancestors did use,
Was metamorphosed into pews:
Which still their ancient nature keep
By lodging folks disposed to sleep.

The cottage, by such feats as these, Grown to a church by just degrees, The hermits then desired their host To ask for what he fancied most. Philemon, having paused a while, Return'd them thanks in homely style; Then said, "My house is grown so fine, Methinks I still would call it mine, I'm old, and fain would live at ease; Make me the parson, if you please."

He spoke, and presently he feels His grazier's coat fall down his heels: He sees, yet hardly can believe, About each arm a pudding sleeve; His waistcoat to a cassock grew, And both assumed a sable hue; But, being old, continued just As threadbare and as full of dust. His talk was now of tithes and dues:

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