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Our bolder talents in full life display'd;
In men we various ruling passions find; In women, two almost divide the kind : Those, only fix'd, they first or last obey, The love of pleasure, and the love of sway. That, Nature gives; and where the lesson taught Is but to please, can pleasure seem a fault? Experience, this; by man's oppression curst, They seek the second not to lose the first.
Men, some to business, some to pleasure take; But every woman is at heart a rake: Men, some to quiet, some to public strife; But every lady would be queen for life.
Yet mark the fate of a whole sex of queens!
Nor leave one sigh behind them when they die. 230
At last, to follies youth could scarce defend,
Ah! friend! to dazzle let the vain design; [250
Oh! blest with temper, whose unclouded ray Can make to morrow chearful as to day: She, who can love a sister's charms, or hear Sighs for a daughter with unwounded ear; She who ne'er answers till a husband cools, Or, if she rules him, never shows she rules; Charms by accepting, by submitting sways, Yet has her humour most, when she obeys;
Ver. 207, in the first edition:
In several men we several passions find; In women, two almost divide the kind.
Let fops or Fortune fly which way they will,
And yet, believe me, good as well as ill, Woman's at best a contradiction still. Heaven when it strives to polish all it can Its last best work, but forms a softer man; Picks from each sex, to make the favourite blest, Your love of pleasure, our desire of rest: Blends, in exception to all general rules, Your taste of follies, with our scorn of fools: Reserve with frankness, art with truth ally'd, Courage with softness, modesty with pride; Fix'd principles, with fancy ever new ; Shakes all together, and produces-you. Be this a woman's fame! with this unblest, Toasts live a scorn, and queens may die a jest. This Phoebus promis'd (I forget the year) When those blue eyes first open'd on the sphere; Ascendant Phoebus watch'd that hour with care, Averted half your parents' simple prayer; And gave you beauty, but deny'd the pelf That buys your sex a tyrant o'er itself. The generous god, who wit and gold refines, And ripens spirits as he ripens mines, Kept dross for dutchesses, the world shall know it, To you gave sense, good-humour, and a poet.
TO ALLEN, LORD BATHURST.
ON THE USE OE RICHES.
THAT it is known to few, most falling into one of the extremes, avarice or profusion, ver. 1, &c. The point discussed, whether the invention of money has been more commodious or pernicious to mankind, ver. 21 to 77. That riches, either to the avaricious or the prodigal, cannot afford happiness, scarcely necessaries, ver. 89 to 160. That avarice is an absolute frenzy, without an end or purpose, ver. 113, &c. 152. Conjectures about the motives of avaricious men, ver. 121 to 153. That the conduct of men, with respect to riches, can only be accounted for by the order of Providence, which works the general good out of extremes, and brings all to its great end by perpetual revolutions, ver. 161 to 178. How a miser acts upon principles which appear to him reasonable, ver. 179. How a prodigal does the same, ver. 199. The due medium, and true use of riches, ver. 219. The man of Ross, ver. 250. The fate of the profuse and the covetous, in two examples; both miserable in life and in death, ver. 300, &c. The story of Sir Balaam, ver. 339 to the end.
THIS Epistle was written after a violent outcry against our author, on a supposition that he had ridiculed a worthy nobleman merely for his wrong taste. He justified himself upon that article in a letter to the earl of Burlington; at the end of which are these words: "I have learnt that there are some who would rather
be wicked than ridiculous: and therefore it may be safer to attack vices than follies. I will therefore leave my betters in the quiet posses. sion of their idols, their groves, and their highplaces; and change my subject from their pride to their meanness, from their vanities to their miseries; and as the only certain way to avoid misconstructions, to lessen offence, and not to multiply ill-natured applications, I may probably in my next make use of real names instead of fictitious ones."
P. WHO shall decide when doctors disagree,
But I, who think more highly of our kind,
Like doctors thus, when much dispute has past,
No grace of Heaven, or token of th' elect;
P. But how unequal it bestows, observe;
B. Trade it may help, society extend:
P. But bribes a senate, and the land's betray'd.
Oh! that such bulky bribes as all might see, Still, as of old, encumber'd villainy! Could France or Rome divert our brave designs, With all their brandies, or with all their wines? What could they more than knights and 's quires Or waterall the quorum ten miles round? [confound,
After ver. 50, in the MS.
To break a trust were Peter brib'd with wine, Peter! 'twould pose as wise a head as thine.
A statesman's slumbers how this speech would spoil
Poor Avarice one torment more would find; Nor could Profusion squander all in kind. Astride his cheese sir Morgan might we meet: And Worldly crying coals from street to street, Whom, with a wig so wild, and mien so maz'd, Pity mistakes for some poor tradesman craz'd, Had Colepepper's whole wealth been hops and hogs, Could he himself have sent it to the dogs? His grace will game: to White's a bull be led, With spurning heels and with a butting head. To White's be carry'd, as to ancient games, Fair coursers, vases, and alluring dames. Shall then Uxorio, if the stakes he sweep, Bear home six whores, and make his lady weep? Or soft Adonis, so perfum'd and fine, Drive to St. James's a whole herd of swine? Oh filthy check on all industrious skill,
To spoil the nation's last great trade, quadrille ! Since then, my lord, on such a world we fall, What say you? B. Say? Why take it, gold and all, P. What riches give us, let us then inquire? Meat, fire, and clothes. B. What more? P. Meat, clothes, and fire. 80
Is this too little? would you more than live?
T' enrich a bastard, or a son they hate,
Perhaps you think the poor might have their part; Bond damns the poor, and hates them from his heart: The grave sir Gilbert holds it for a rule That every man in want is knave or fool: "God cannot love" (says Blunt, with tearless eyes)' "The wretch he starves"-and piously denies : But the good bishop, with a meeker air, Admits, and leaves them, Providence's care,
Yet to be just to these poor men of pelf, Each does but hate his neighbour as himself: Dama'd to the mines, an equal fate betides [110 The slave that digs it, and the slave that hides.
B. Who suffer thus, mere charity should own, Must act on motives powerful, though unknown. P. Some war, some plague, or famine, they foresee, Some revelation hid from you and me. Why Shylock wants a meal, the cause is found; He thinks a loaf will rise to fifty pound, What made directors cheat in South-Sea year? To live on venison when it sold so dear.
Ver. 77. Since then, &c] In the former edit. Well then, since with the world we stand or fall, Come take it, as we find it, gold and all.
Ask you why Phryne the whole auction buys?
Wise Peter sees the world's respect for gold,
The crown of Poland, venal twice an age,
No rafter'd roofs with dance and tabór sound,
Not so his son: he mark'd this oversight,
To buy both sides, and give thy country peace. 130 T' enjoy them, and the virtue to impart,
"All this is madness," cries a sober sage:
But who, my friend has reason in his rage?
Hear then the truth: 'Tis Heaven each passion
Not meanly, nor ambitiously pursued,
And ease, or emulate, the care of Heaven;
P. Who starves by nobles, or with nobles eats ?
Where one lean herring furnish'd Cotta's board,
The secret rare, which Affluence hardly join'd,
But all our praises why should lords engross? Rise, honest Muse! and sing the MAN of Ross: 250 Pleas'd Vaga echoes through her winding bounds, And rapid Severn hoarse applause resounds. Who hung with woods yon mountain's sultry brow? From the dry rock who bade the waters flow? Not to the skies in useless columns tost, Or in proud falls magnificently lost, But clear and artless pouring through the plain Health to the sick, and solace to the swain. Whose causeway parts the vale with shady rows? Whose seats the weary traveller repose? Who taught that heaven-directed spire to rise? "The Man of Ross," each lisping babe replies. Behold the market-place with poor o'erspread! The Man of Ross divides the weekly bread: He feeds yon alms-house, neat, but void of state, Where Age and Want sit smiling at the gate; Hin portion'd maids, apprentic'd orphans blest, The young who labour, and the old who rest. Is any sick? the Man of Ross relieves, [270 Prescribes, attends, the medicine makes, and gives. Is there a variance? enter but his door, Balk'd are the courts, and contest is no more. Despairing quacks with curses fled the place, And vile attorneys, now an useless race.
B. Thrice happy man! enabled to pursue What all so wish, but want the power to do! Oh say, what sums that generous hand supply? What mines to swell that boundless charity?
P. Of debts and taxes, wife and children clear, This man possest-five hundred pounds a year. 280 Blush, Grandeur, blush! proud courts, withdraw your blaze!
Ye little stars! hide your diminish'd rays.
B. And what? no monument, inscription, stone? His race, his form, his name almost unknown?
P. Who builds a church to God, and not to Fame, Will never mark the marble with his name: Go, search it there, where to be born and die, Of rich and poor makes all the history ; Enough, that Virtue fill'd the space between ; Prov'd by the ends of being, to have been. When Hopkins dies, a thousand lights attend The wretch, who living sav'd a candle's end; Shouldering God's altar a vile image stands, Belies his features, nay extends his hands; That live-long wig, which Gorgon's self might own, Eternal buckle takes in Parian stone. Behold what blessings wealth to life can lend ! And see, what comfort it affords our end.
In the worst inn's worst room, with mat half-hung, The floors of plaister, and the walls of dung,
On once a flock-bed, but repair'd with straw,
Of mimick'd statesmen, and their merry king. 310
No fool to laugh at, which he valued more.
His grace's fate sage Cutler could foresee,
A plain good man, and Balaam was his name;
And tempts by making rich, not making poor.
An honest factor stole a gem away:
He pledg'd it to the knight, the knight had wit,
Ver. 337. In the former editions,
That knotty point, my lord, shall I discuss, Or tell a tale,?-a tale-it follows this.
Some scruple rose, but thus he eas'd his thought,
Behold sir Balaam, now a man of spirit, Ascribes his gettings to his parts and merit;' What late he call'd a blessing, now was wit, And God's good providence, a lucky hit. Things change their titles, as our manners turn: His compting-house employ'd the Sunday morn: Seldom at church, ('twas such a busy life) But duly sent his family and wife. There (so the devil ordain'd) one Christmas-tide My good old lady catch'd a cold, and dy'd.
A nymph of quality admires our knight; He marries, bows at court, and grows polite: Leaves the dull cits, and joins (to please the fair) The well-bred cuckolds in St. James's air : First, for his son a gay commission buys, Who drinks, whores, fights, and in a duel dies: His daughter flaunts a viscount's tawdry wife; She bears a coronet and p-x for life. In Britain's senate be a seat obtains, And one more pensioner St. Stephen gains. My lady falls to play: so bad her chance, He must repair it; takes a bribe from France; The house impeach him, Coningsby harangues; The court forsake him, and sir Balaam hangs : Wife, son, and daughter, Satan! are thy own, His wealth, yet dearer, forfeit to the crown: 400 The devil and the king divide the prize, And sad sir Balaam curses God and dies.
TO RICHARD BOYLE, EARL OF BURLINGTON.
OF THE USE OF RICHES.
THE vanity of expense in people of wealth and quality. The abuse of the word taste, ver. 13. That the first principle and foundation in this, as in every thing else, is good sense, ver. 40. The chief proof of it is to follow Nature, even in works of mere luxury and elegance. Instanced in architecture and gardening, where all must be adapted to the genius and use of the place, and the beauties not forced into it, but resulting from it, ver. 50. How men are disappointed in their most expensive undertakings, for want of this true foundation, without which nothing can please long, if at all; and the best examples and rules will be but perverted into something burthensome and ridiculous, ver. 65, &c. to 92. A description of the false taste of magnificence; the first grand errour of which is, to imagine that greatness consists in the size and dimension, instead of the proportion and
harmony of the whole, ver. 97, and the second, either in joining together parts incoherent, or too minutely resembling, or in the repetition of the same too frequently, ver. 105, &c. A word or two of false taste in books, in music, in painting, even in preaching and prayer, and lastly, in entertainments, ver. 133, &c. Yet Providence is justified in giving wealth to be squandered in this manner, since it is dispersed to the poor and laborious part of mankind, ver. 169, [recurring to what is laid down in the first book, Ep. ii. and in the Epistle preceding this, ver. 159, &c.] What are the proper objects of magnificence, and a proper field for the expense of great men, ver. 177, &c. and finally the great and public works which become a prince, ver. 191, to the end.
THE extremes of avarice and profusion being treated of in the foregoing epistle; this takes up one particular branch of the latter, the vanity of expense in people of wealth and quality; and is therefore a corollary to the preceding, just as the epistle on the characters of women is to that of the knowledge and characters of men. It is equally remarkable for exactness of method with the rest. But the nature of the subject, which is less philosophical, makes it capable of being analyzed in a much narrower compass.
'Tis strange, the miser should his cares employ
For what has Virro painted, built, and planted?
You show us, Rome was glorious,. not profuse, And pompous buildings once were things of use. Yet shall (my lord) your just, your noble rules Fill half the land with imitating fools; Who random drawings from your sheets shall take, And of one beauty many blunders make;
After ver. 22, in the MS.
Must bishops, lawyers, statesmen, have the skill To build, to plant, judge paintings, what you will? Then why not Kent as well our treaties draw, Bridgman explain the gospel, Gibbs the law ?