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But that of idleness, and taste no scenes
But such as art contrives, possess ye still
Your element; there only can ye shine ;
There only minds like your's can do no harm.
Our groves were planted to console at noon
The pensive wand'rer in their shades. At eve
The moon-beam, sliding softly in between
The sleeping leaves, is all the light they wish,
Birds warbling all the music. We can spare
The splendour of your lamps; they but eclipse
Our softer satellite. Your songs confound
Our more harmonious notes: the thrush departs
Scar'd, and the offended nightingale is mute.
There is a public mischief in your mirth ;
It plagues your country. Folly such as your's,
Grac'd with a sword, and worthier of a fan,
Has made, what enemies could ne'er have done,
Our arch of empire, stedfast but for you,
A mutilated structure, soon to fall.

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ARGUMENT OF THE SECOND BOOK.

Reflections suggested by the conclusion of the former

book....Peace among the nations recommended, on the ground of their common fellowship in sorrow.... Prodigies enumerated.... Sicilian earthquakes... Man rendered obnoxious to these calamities by sin....God the agent in them.... The philosophy that stops at secondary causes reproved....Our own late miscarriages accounted for.... Satirical notice taken of our trips to Fontainbleau.... But the pulpit, not satire, the proper engine of reformation.... The Reverend Advertiser of engraved sermons.... Petit-maitre parson.... The good preacher.... Pictures of a theatrical clerical coxcomb.... Story tellers and jesters in the pulpit reproved.... Apostrophe to popular applause....Retailers of ancient philosophy expostulated with....Sum of the whole matter....Effects of sacerdotal mismanagement on the laiety.... Their folly and extravagance.... The mischiefs of profusion....Profusion itself, with all its consequent evils, ascribed, as to its principal cause, to the want of Fiscipline in the universities,

THE TASK.

BOOK II.

THE TIME-PIECE.

OH for a lodge in some vast wilderness,
Some boundless contiguity of shade,
Where rumour of oppression and deceit,
Of unsuccessful or successful war,
Might never reach me more. My ear is pain'd,
My soul is sick, with ev'ry day's report
Of wrong and outrage with which earth is fill'd.
There is no flesh in-man's obdurate heart,
It does not feel for man; the nat'ral bond
Of brotherhood is sever'd as the flax
That falls asunder at the touch of fire.
He finds his fellow guilty of a skin
Not colour'd like his own; and, having pow'r
T'enforce the wrong, for such a worthy cause
Dooms and devotes him as his lawful

prey.
Lands intersected by a narrow frith
Abhor each other. Mountains interpos'd
Make enemies of nations, who had else,
Like kindred drops, been mingled into one.

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