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Jove, Jove himself, does on the scissars shine,
The metal and the workmanship divine-
Smil. This snuff-box-once the pledge of Sharper's love,
When rival beauties for the present strove;
At Corticelli's he the raffle won;
Then first his passion was in public shown:
Hazardia blush'd, and turn'd her head aside,
A rival's envy (all in vain) to hide.
This snuff-box-on the hinge see brilliants shine,
This snuff-box will I stake the prize is mine.
Card. Alas! far lesser losses than I bear.
Have made a soldier sigh, a lover swear.
And, oh! what makes the disappointment hard,
'Twas my own lord that drew the fatal card.
In complaisance I took the queen he gave,
Though my own secret wish was for the kuave :
The knave won sonica, which I had chose,
And the next pull my septleva I lose.
Smil. But, ah! what aggravates the killing smart, The cruel thought that stabs me to the heart; This curs'd Ombrelia, this undoing fair; By whose vile arts this heavy grief I bear; She, at whose name I shed these spiteful tears, She owes to me the very charms she wears. An awkward thing when first she came to town, Her shape unfashion'd, and her face unknown: She was my friend; I taught her first to spread Upon her sallow checks enlivening red; I introduc'd her to the park and plays, And by my interest Cozens made her stays. Ungrateful wretch! with mimic airs grown pert, 65 She dares to steal my favourite lover's heart.
Card. Wretch that I was, how often have I swore! When Winnall tallied, I would pant no more?
I know the bite, yet to my ruin run,
And see the folly which I cannot shun.
Smil. How many maids have Sharper's vows deceiv'd?
many curs'd the moment they believ'd?
Yet his known falsehoods could no warning prove;
Ah! what is warning to a maid in love? [form'd,
Card. But of what marble must that breast be
To gaze on basset and remain unwarm'd?
When kings, queens, knaves, are set in decent rank,
Expos'd in glorious heaps the tempting bank,
Guineas, half-guineas, all the shining train,
The winner's pleasure, and the loser's pain,
In bright confusion open rouleaus lie,
They strike the soul, and glitter in the eye:
Fir'd by the sight, all reason I disdain,
My passions rise, and will not bear the rein.
Look upon basset, you who reason boast,
And see if reason must not there be lost.
Smil What more than marble must that heart comCan hearken coldly to my Sharper's vows? Then when he trembles! when his blushes rise! When awful love seems melting in his eyes! With eager beats his Mechlin cravat moves, He loves-I whisper to myself, He loves! Such unfeign'd passion in his looks appears, I lose all memory of my former fears; My panting heart confesses all his charms, I yield at once, and sink into his arms. Think of that moment you who prudence boast; For such a moment prudence well were lost.
Card. At the Groom-porter's batter'd bullies play, Some dukes at Marybonne bowl time away; But who the bowl or rattling dice compares To basset's heavenly joys and pleasing cares? Smil. Soft Simplicetta dotes upon a beau; Prudina likes a man, and laughs at show: Their several graces in my Sharper meet, Strong as the footman, as the master sweet. Lov. Cease your contention, which has been too long; I grow impatient, and the tea's too strong. Attend, and yield to what I now decide; The equipage shall grace Smilinda's side; The snuff-box to Cardelia I decree:Now leave complaining and begin your tea.
To wake the soul by tender strokes of art,
To raise the genius, and to mend the heart;
To make mankind in conscious virtue bold,
Live o'er each scene and be what they behold:
For this the tragic Muse first trod the stage,
Commanding tears to stream through every age;
Tyrants no more their savage nature kept,
And foes to virtue wonder'd how they wept.
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 wild ambition well deserves its woe.
Here tears shall flow from a more generous cause,
Such tears as patriots shed for dying laws:
He bids your breasts with ancient ardour rise,
And calls forth Roman drops from British eyes.
Virtue confess'd in human shape he draws,
What Plato thought, and godlike Cato was:
No common object to your sight displays,
But what with pleasure Heav'n itself surveys,
A brave man struggling in the storms of fate,
And greatly falling with a falling state.
While Cato gives his little senate laws,
What bosom beats not in his country's cause?
Who sees him act, but envies every deed?
Who hears him groan, and does not wish to bleed?
Ev'n when proud Cæsar, 'midst triumphal cars,
The spoils of nations, and the pomp of wars,
Ignobly vain, and impotently great,
Show'd Rome her Cato's figure drawn in state;
As her dead father's reverend image past,
The pomp was darken'd and the day o'ercast;
The triumph ceas'd, tears gush'd from every eye;
The world's great victor pass'd unheeded by;
Her last good man dejected Rome ador'd,
And honour'd Cæsar's less than Cato's sword.
Britons! attend: be worth like this approv'd,
And shew you have the virtue to be mov'd.
With honest scorn the first-fam'd Cato view'd
Rome learning arts from Greece, whom she sub-
Your scene precariously subsists too long
On French translation and Italian song.
Dare to have sense yourselves; assert the stage,
Be justly warm'd with our own native rage:
Such plays alone should win a British ear,
As Cato's self had not disdain'd to hear.
A PLAY FOR MR. DENNIS'S BENEFIT, IN 1733, When he was old, blind, and in great distress, a little before his death.
As when that hero, whe, in each campaign,
Had brav'd the Goth, and many a Vandal slain,
Lay fortune-struck, a spectacle of woe !
Wept by each friend, forgiv'n by every foe;
Was there a generous, a reflecting mind,
But pitied Belisarius, old and blind?
Was there a chief but melted at the sight?
A common soldier but who clubb'd his mite?
Such, such emotions should in Britons risc,
When press'd by want and weakness Dennis lies; 10
Dennis! who long had warr'd with modern Huns,
Their quibbles routed, and defied their puns;
A desperate bulwark, sturdy, firm, and fierce,
Against the Gothic sons of frozen verse :
How chang'd from him who made the boxes groan,
And shook the stage with thunders all his own!
Stood up to dash each vain pretender's hope,
Maul the French tyrant, or pull down the Pope!
If there's a Briton then, true bred and born,
Who holds dragoons and wooden shoes in scorn; 20
If there's a critic of distinguish'd rage;
If there's a senior who contemns this age;
Let him to-night his just assistance lend,
And be the critic's, Briton's, old man's, friend.
MR. ROWE'S JANE SHORE.
(Designed for Mrs. Oldfield.)
PRODIGIOUS this! the frail one of our play
From her own sex should mercy find to day!
You might have held the pretty head aside,
Peep'd in your fans, been serious, thus, and cried,-
"The play may pass but that strange creature,
I can't-indeed now-I so hate a whore-"
Just as a blockhead rubs his thoughtless skull,
And thanks his stars he was not born a fool;
So from a sister sinner you shall hear,
"How strangely you expose yourself, my dear!" 10 But let me die, all raillery apart,
Our sex are still forgiving at their heart;
And, did not wicked custom so contrive,
We'd be the best good-natur'd things alive.
There are, 'tis true, who tell another tale,
That virtuous ladies envy while they rail;
Such rage without betrays the fire within
In some close corner of the soul they sin;
Still hoarding up, most scandalously nice,
Amidst their virtues a reserve of vice.
The godly dame, who fleshly failings damns,
Scolds with her maid, or with her chaplain crams.
Would you enjoy soft nights, and solid dinners?
Faith, gallants! board with saints, and bed with