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All look, all sigh, and call on Smedley lost;
He bears no tokens of the sabler streams,
No noise, no stir, no motion canst thou make,
Sons of a day! just buoyant on the flood,
meant the laureate, nothing was more absurd, no part agreeing with his character. The allegory evidently demands a person dipped in scandal, and deeply immersed in dirty work: whereas Mr. Eusden's writings rarely offended but by their length and multitude, and accordingly are taxed of nothing else in Book I. v. 102. But the person here mentioned, an Irishman, was author and publisher of many scurrilous pieces, in a Weekly Whitehall Journal, in the year 1722, in the name of Sir James Baker; and particularly whole volumes of abuse against Dr. Swift and Mr. Pope, called Gulliveriana and Alexandriana, printed in 8vo. 1728.
v. 295. Then essay'd.] A gentleman of genius and spirit, who was secretly dipt in some papers of this sort, on whom our poet be. stows a panegyric instead of a satire, as deserving to be better employed than in party-quarrels and personal invectives.
v. 299. Concunen.] Matthew Concanen, an Irishman, bred to the law. Smedley (one of his brethren in enmity to Swift), in his Metamorphosis of Scriblerus, p.7, accuses him of " having boasted of what he had not written, but others had revised and done for him." He was author of several dull and dead scurrilities in the British and London Journals, and in a paper called The Speculatist. In a pamphlet called A Supplement to the Profound, he dealt very unfairly with our poet, not only frequently imputing to him Mr. Broome's verses (for which he might indeed seem in some degree accountable, having corrected what that gentleman did), but those of the Duke of Buckingham and others: to this rare piece somebody humorously caused him to take for his motto, De profundis clamavi. He was since a hired scribbler in the Daily Courant, where he poured forth much abuse against the Lord Bolingbroke and others; after which, this man was surprisingly promoted to admi mister justice and law in Jamaica.
Ask ye their names? I could as soon disclose
Whirlpools and storms his circling arms invest,
No crab more active in the dirty dance,
Downward to climb, and backward to advance; 320
When lo! a burst of thunder shook the flood,
Smit with his mien, the mud-nymphs suck'd him in;
v. 312. ---Osborne.] A name assumed by the eldest and gravest of these writers, who at last, being ashamed of his pupils, gave his paper over, and remained silent.
v.315. Arnall.] William Arnall, bred an attorney, was a perfect genius in this sort of work. He began, under twenty, with furious party-papers; then succeeded Concanen in the British Journal. At the first publication of the Dunciad, he prevailed on the author not to give him his due place in it, by a letter professing his detestation of such practices as his predecessors. But since, by the most unexampled insolence, and personal abuse of several great men, the poet's particular friends, he most amply deserved a niche in the temple of Infamy: witness a paper called The Free Briton, a Dedication, intitled, To the Genuine Blunderer, 1732, and many others. He writ for hire, and valued himself upon it; not indeed without cause, it appearing that he received" for Free Britons, and other writings, in the space of four years, no less than 10,997 1. 6s. 8d. out of the Treasury.'"
Vied for his love in jetty bowers below,
Then sung, how shewn him by the nut-brown maids,
He ceas'd, and spread the robe; the crowd confess
A low-born, cell-bred, selfish, servile band,
So clouds, replenish'd from some bog below,
Ye critics! in whose heads, as equal scales,
v. 349. And Milbourn.] Luke Milbourn, a clergyman, the fairest of critics; who, when he wrote against Mr. Dryden's Virgil, did him justice in printing at the same time his own translations of him, which were intolerable. His manner of writing has a great resemblance to that of the gentlemen of the Dunciad against our auther.
Which most conduce to soothe the soul in slumbers,
If there be man who o'er such works can wake,
Three college sophs, and three pert Templars came,
The ponderous books two gentle readers bring;
The clamorous crowd is hush'd with mugs of mum,
v. 397. Thrice Budgel aim'd to speak.] Famous for his speeches on many occasions about the South-sea scheme, &c. "He is a very ingenious gentleman, and hath written some excellent epilogues to plays, and one small piece on Love, which is very pretty. Jacob, Lives of Poets, vol. ii. p. 289.
v. 399. Toland and Tindal.] Two persons, not so happy as to be obscure, who writ against the religion of their country. Toland, the author of the Atheist's Liturgy, called Pantheisticon, was a spy in pay to Lord Oxford. Tindal was author of The Rights of the
Who sat the nearest, by the words o'ercome,
Round and more round, o'er all the "sea of heads."
Motteux himself unfinish'd left his tale.
Boyer the state, and Law the stage gave o'er,
Morgan and Mandeville could prate no more;
Norton, from Daniel and Ostra sprung,
Bless'd with his father's front and mother's tongue,
Christian Church, and Christianity as old as the Creation. He also wrote an abusive pamphlet against Earl S-, which was suppressed while yet in MS. by an eminent person, then out of the ministry, to whom he shewed it, expecting his approbation. This Doctor afterwards published the same piece, mutatis mutundis, against that very person.
v. 411. Centlivre.] Mrs. Susannah Centlivre, wife to Mr. Centlivre, Yeoman of the Mouth to his Majesty. She writ many plays, and a song (says Mr. Jacob, vol. i. p. 82.) before she was seven years old. She also writ a ballad against Mr. Pope's Homer before he began it.
v. 413. Boyer the state, and Law the stage gave o'er.] A. Boyer, a voluminous compiler of annals, political collections, &c.---William Law, A. M. wrote with great zeal against the stage; Mr. Dennis answered with as great. Their books were printed in 1726.
v. 414. Morgan.] A writer against religion, distinguished no otherwise from the rabble of his tribe, than by the pompousness of his title; for having stolen his morality from Tindal, and his philosophy from Spinoza, he calls himself by the courtesy of England, a Moral Philosopher.
Ibid. Mandeville.] This writer, who prided himself as much in the reputation of an immoral philosopher, was author of a famous book called The Fable of the Bees; written to prove, that moral virtue is the invention of knaves, and Christian virtue the imposition of fools; and that vice is necessary, and alone sufficient, to render society flourishing and happy.
v.415. Norton.] Norton de Foe, offspring of the famous Daniel; Fortes creantur fortibus: one of the authors of the Flying Post, in which Mr. P. had sometimes the honour to be abused with his betters; and of many hired scurrilities and daily papers, to whick he never set his name.