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« There was no stopping a torrent with « a finger, so out it came.

Many ludicrous circumstances at“ tended it. The Dunccs (for by this “name, they were called) held weekly

clubs, to consult of hoftilities agair.It as the author : one wrote a Letrer to a

great minister, assuring him Mr. Pope “ was the greatest eneiny the govern“ment had; and another bought his “ image in clay, to execute him in

effigy, with which sad sort of satisfac“tions the gentlemen were a little com« forted.

6 Some false editions of the book having an owl in their frontispiece, “ the true one, to distinguish it, fixed in 66 its stead an ass laden with authors,

" Then


« Then another surreptitious one being

printed with the same ass, the new « edition in octavo returned for diftinc“ tion to the owl again. Hence arose e a great contest of booksellers against 6 booksellers, and advertisements against « advertisements; some recommending " the edition of the owl, and others the “ edition of the ass; by which namas they came to be diftinguished, to the

great honour also of the gentlemen of " the Dunciad.

Pope appears by this narrative to have contemplated his victory over the Dunces with great exultation; and such was his delight in the tumult which he had raised, that for a while his natural fenfi. hility was fufpended, and he read re

proaches proaches and invectives. without emation, considering them only as the necessary effects of that pain which he rejoiced in having given.

It cannot however be concealed that, by his own confession, he was the ag. greilor; for nobody believes that the letters in the Bathos were placed at ranje dom; and it may be discovered that, when he thinks himself concealed, he indulges the common vanity of common men, and triumphs in those distinctions which he had affected to despise. He is proud that his book was presented to the King and Queen by the right honourable Sir Robert Walpole; he is proud that they had read it before; he is proud that the edition was taken off

by by the nobility and persons of the first distinction.

The edition of which he speaks was, I believe, that, which by telling in the text the names and in the notes the characters of those whom he had fatirised, was made intelligible and diverting. The criticks had now declared their approbation of the plan, and the common reader began to like it without fear; those who were strangers to petty literature, and therefore unable to de. cypher initials and blanks, had now names and persons brought within their view; and delighted in the visible effect of those shafts of malice, which they had hitherto contemplated, as shot into the

Dennis, Dennis, upon the fresh provocation now given him, renewed the enmity which had for a time been appeased by mutual civilities; and published remarks, which he had till then suppressed, upon the Rape of the Lock. Many more grumbled in secret, or vented their resentment in the newspapers by epigrams or invectives.

Ducket, indeed, being mentioned as loving Burnet with pious paffion, pretended that his moral character was injured, and for some time declared his resolution to take vengeance with a cudgel. But Pope appeased him, by changing pious passion to cordial friendship, and by a note, in which he vehe


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