صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني


raving mad. Let's get away (1) as fast as we

Jack. A plague on his crazy head. If ever I put my nose within his doors again, may it be pinched off in good earnest. [Exeunt, running. ]



Prologue to Cato. Teaching

To wake the soul by tender strokes of art,

To raise the genius, and to mend the heart; (2) Courage. To make mankind in conscious virtue bold,

Live o'er each scene, and be what they behold; Teaching. For this the tragic muse first trod the stage,

Commanding tears to stream through ev'ry age.

Tyrants no more their savage nature kept, Wonder. And foes to virtue wonder'd how they wept. Contempt. (3) Our author shuns by vulgar springs to move,

The hero's glory, or the virgin's love.
In pitying love, we but our weakness show,-

And wilă ambition well deserves its woe.

Here tears shall flow from a more gen'rous cause,
Such tears as patriots shed for dying laws.
He bids your breast with ancient ardors rise,
And calls forth Roman drops from British eyes.

Virtue confest in human shape he draws,
Veneration. What Plato thought, and godlike Cato was ;

No common object to your sight displays; Awe.

But what with pleasure heav'n itself surveys, Esteem. A brave man struggling in the storms of fate,

And greatly falling with a falling state.
While Cato gives his little senate laws,

(1) Separation of the Protestants from the Romish church.

(2) The words, mend the heart, may be expressed with the right hand laid upon the breast

(3) I question whether all readers of this line (Our author jhuns, &c.) understand it as the Author meant it. The sense, in plain prose, would be, “Our author thinks it beneath him to endeavour to affect you by the coinmon subject of tragic distress, as the fall of a prince or statesman, or the misfortunes occafioned by love."

What bosom (1) beats not in his country's cause? Earnestness
Who sees him act, but envies ev'ry deed ?
Who hears him groan, and does not wish to bleed?
Ev’n when proud Cæsar midst triumphal cars, Contempt.
The spoils of nations, and the pomp of wars,
Ignobly vain, and impotently great,
Shew'á Rome her Cato's figure drawn in state,
As her dead father's rev'rend image past,

The pomp was darken'd, and the day o'ercast;
The triumph ceas'do Tears gush'd from ev'ry eye 1 - Grief.
The world's great victor pass'd unheeded by. Contempt.
Her last good man dejected Rome ador'd,
And honor'd Cæsar's less than Cato's sword.

Grief. Britons attend ! Be worth like this approv'd, Teaching And shew, you have the virtue (2) to be mov'd. With honest scorn the first fam'd Cato view'd Contempt. Rome learning arts from Greece, whom she

Our scene precariously subsists too long
On French translation and Italian song ;
Dare to have sense yourselves : Assert the stage, Exciting.
Be justly warm’d with your own native rage,

Such plays alone should please a British car,
As Cato's self had not disdain'd to hear.


Scene between DENNIS the Critic, (satyri-

cally reperesented by Swift, as mad) and

the DOCTOR, SCENE. DENNIS's Garret. DENNIS, Doc-TOR, NURSE, LINTOT the Bookseller, and another Author. DENNIS, looking wise, and

bringing out his words slowly and formally. Dennis. BEWARE, Doctor, that it fare not Warning. with you, as it did with your predecessor, the

(1) The words, What bosom beats not, may be fpoken with the right hand pressed to the breast. (2) So may the word, virtue.


famous Hippocrates, whom the mistaken citizens

of Abdera sent for in this very manner, to cure Pride. the philosopher Democritus. He returned full of admiration at the wisdom of the

person, whom he had supposed a lunatic. Behold, Doctor, it was thus that Aristotle himself, and all the great ancients, spent their days and nights wrapped up in criticism, and beset all round with their own writings. As for me, be assured, I have no disease, besides a swelling in my legs, of which. I say nothing, since your art may farther certify

you. Questioning Doctor. Pray, Sir, how did you contract

this swelling ?

Dennis. By Criticism. Wonder, Doctor. By Criticism ! That's a distemper I

have never heard nor read of. Sudden an

Dennis. Death, Sir! A distemper! It is no distemper ; but a noble art.

I have sat fourteen Contempt. hours a day at it; and are you a doctor, and don't

know that there is a communication between

the brain and the legs ? Question. Doctor. What made you sit so many hours,

Sir ?
Earnestly. Dennis. Cato, Sir.

Docior. Sir, I speak of your distemper.

What gave you this tumour ? Peevishness Dennis. Cato, Cato, Cato. (1) Intreating

Nurse. For God's sake, Doctor, name not

this evil spirit ; it is the whole cause of his mad. Grief. Alas! poor master will have his fits again.

[Almost crying. ] Lintot. Fits ! with a pox; a man inay well have fits and swell'd legs, that sits writing fourteen hours in a day. The Remarks the Remarks, have brought all his complaints upon

hiin. Question. Doctor. The Remarks! What are they ?

Dennis. Death ! have you never read iny RePeevishness inarks ? I'll he hang'd if this niggardly bookseller

(1) He published Remarks on Cato, in the year 1712.




has advertised the book as it should have been.

Lintot. Not advertise it, quotha! Pox ! I have laid out pounds after pounds in advertising. There has been as much done for the book, as could be done for any book in Christendom.

Doctor. We had better not talk of books, Cautioning. Sir: I am afraid they are the fuel that feed his delirium. Mention books no more. I desire a word in private with this gentleman. I suppose, Sir, you are his apothecary?

Question. Gent. Sir, I am his friend.

Doctor. I doubt it not. What regimen have you observed, since he has been under your care? You remember, I suppose, the passage in Celsus, which says, “If the patient, on the third day, have an interval, suspend the medicaments at night." Let fumigations be used to corroborate Teaching. the brain. I hope, you have, upon no account, promoted sternutation by Hellebore ?

Gent. Sir, you mistake the matter quite : Doctor. What ! An apothecary tell a physi- Pride and cian he mistakes! You pretend to dispute my prescription ! Pharmacopola componat.

Medicus solus præscribat. Fumigate him, I say, this Authority. very evening, while he is relieved by an interval.

Dennis. Death Sir! Do you take my friend Anger. for an apothecary! A man of genius and learning for an apothecary ! Know, Sir, that this gentle- Authority. man professes, like myself, the two noblest sciences in the universe, Criticisin, and Poetry. By the immortals, he himself is author of three whole paragraphs in my Remarks, had a hand in my Public Spirit, and assisted me in my description of the Furies and infernal regions in my Appius.

Lintot. He is an author. You mistake the gentleman, Doctor. He has been an author these twenty years, to his bookseller's knowledge, if to no one's else.

Dennis. Is all the town in a combination ! shall poetry fall to the ground ! Must our reputation in foreign countries be quiie lost? O


Sneer. Vexation


Destruction ! Perdition ! Cursed Opera! Confounded Opera ! (1) As poetry once raised cities, so, when poetry fails, cities are overturned, and

the world is no more. Anxiety.

Doctor. He raves, he raves. He must be pinioned, he must be strait-waistcoated, that he

may do no mischief. Vexation. Dennis. O I am sick ! I am sick to death! Comfort. Doctor. That is a good symptom; a very good

symptom. To be sick to death (says the modern theory) is symptom præclarum. When a patient

is sensible of his pain, he is half cured. Pray, Question. Sir, of what are you sick ? Peevishnefs

Dennis. Of every thing. Of every thing. I am sick of the sentiments, of the diction, of the protasis, of the epitasis, and the catastrophe.

Alas, for the lost drama ! The drama is no more. Obfequious Nurse. If you want a dram, Sir, I will bring

you a couple of penn'orths of gin in a minute.

Mr. Lintot has drank the last of the noggin. Peevishness Dennis. O scandalous want ! O shameful

omission ! By all the imniortals, here is not the shadow of a peripetia ! No change of fortune

in the tragedy. Obsequious Nurse. Pray, Sir, don't be uneasy about

change. Give me the six-pence, and I'll get you change immediately at the gin-shop next door.

Doctor. Hold your peace, good woman. Directing. His fit increases. We must call for help. Mr. Fear. Lintot a--hold him, pray, [Doctor gets behind


Lintot. Plague on the man ! I am afraid, he Anxiety. is really mad. And, if he be, who, the devil will

buy the Remarks? I wish [scratching his head] he had been whip'd rather than I had meddled with his Remarks.

Doctor. He must use the cold bath, and be cupped on the head. The symptoms seem des

(1) He wrote a Treatise to prove, that the decay of public fpirit proceeds from the Italian Opera,

« السابقةمتابعة »