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Such as the souls of cowards might conceive,
And, form'd like tyrants, tyrants would believe. 260
Zeal then, not charity, became the guide ;
And hell was built on spite, and heav'n on pride.
Then sacred seem'd th' ethereal vault no more ;
Altars grew marble then, and reek’d with gore :
Then first the Flamen tasted living food ; 265
Next his grim idol smear'd with human blood ;
With heav'n's own thunders shook the world below,
And play'd the God an engine on his foe.
So drives Self-love, through just and through un-

just, To one Man's pow'r, ambition, lucre, lust : 270

NOTES.

an absolute monarchy in the minds of men. Therefore Atheism did never perturbe states; for it makes men wary of themselves, as looking no farther.”

It is extremely remarkable, that this last paragraph comprehends all that Bayle has said of the effects of Atheism in his celebrated Thoughts on Comets. And yet Bacon has never been censured for it, nor numbered among Infidels.

Ver. 262. And hell was built on spite,] How mortifying is it to consider, says one, that Locke, Newton, and Clarke, would have been persecuted in France, imprisoned at Rome, and burnt at Lisbon !

Ver. 269. So drites Self-love, &c.] The inference our Author draws from all this (from Ver. 263 to 283) is, that SELF.LOVE driveth through right and wrong; it causeth the Tyrant to violate the rights of mankind ; and it causeth the People to vindicate that violation. For Self-love being common to the whole species, and setting each individual in pursuit of the same objects, it becaine necessary for each, if he would secure his own, to provide for the safety of another's. And thus Equity and Benevolence arose from that same Self-love which had given birth to Avarice and Injustice;

“His Safety must his Liberty restrain ;
All join to guard what each desires to gain.”

The same Self-love, in all, becomes the cause
Of what restrains him, Government and Laws.
For, what one likes if others like as well,
What serves one will, when many wills rebel ?
How shall we keep, what, sleeping or awake, 275
A weaker may surprise, a stronger take ?
His safety must his liberty restrain :
All join to guard what each desires to gain.
Forc'd into virtue thus by Self-defence,
Ev'n Kings learn'd justice and benevolence : 280
Self-love forsook the path it first pursu’d,
And found the private in the public good.

NOTES.

The Poet hath not any where shewn greater address, in the disposition of this work, than with regard to the inference before us; which not only giveth a proper and timely support to what had been advanced in the second epistle concerning the nature and effects of Self-love, but is a necessary introduction to what follows, concerning the Reformation of Religion and Society; as we shall see presently. W.

Ver. 272. Government and Laws,] “ However men might submit voluntarily, in the simplicity of early ages, or be subjected by conquest, to a government without a constitution ; yet they were never long in discovering," in the words of Hooker, " that to live by one man's will, became the cause of all men's misery ; and therefore they soon rejected the yoke, or made it sit easy on their necks.”

Ver. 273. For, what one likes] These two lines express with brevity and clearness the following sentiments of Hooker : “ The like natural inducement hath brought men to know, that it is no less their duty to love others than themselves : for seeing those things which are equal must needs all have one measure ; if I cannot but wish to receive good, even as much at every man's hands as any man can wish unto his own soul, how should I look to have any part of my desire herein satisfied, unless my self be careful to satisfy the like desire which is undoubtedly in other 'Twas then, the studious head, or gen'rous mind, Follow'r of God, or friend of human-kind, Poet or PATRIOT, rose but to restore

men ?"

285 The Faith and Moral, Nature gave

before;

/

NOTES.

Ver. 283. 'Twas then, the studious head, &c.] The Poet hath now described the rise, perfection, and decay, of civil Policy and Religion in the more early times. But the design had been imperfect, had he dropped his discourse here : there was, in after ages, a recovery of these from their several corruptions. Accordingly, he hath chosen that happy era for the conclusion of his Song. But as good and ill governments and religions succeed one another without ceasing, he now leaveth facts, and turneth his discourse (from Ver. 282 to 295) to speak of a more lasting reform of mankind, in the Invention of those philosophic Principles, by whose observance a Policy and a Religion may be for ever kept from sinking into Tyranny and Superstition :

“ 'Twas then, the studious head, or gen'rous mind,
Follow'r of God, or friend of human-kind,
Poet or Patriot, rose but to restore

The Faith and Moral, Nature gave before ;" &c. "The easy and just transition into this subject from the foregoing is admirable. In the foregoing he had described the effects of Self-love ; and now, with great art, and high probability, he maketh Men's observations on these effects the occasion of those discoveries which they have made of the true principles of Policy and Religion, described in the present paragraph ; and this he evidently hinteth at in that fine transition,

“ 'Twas then, the studious head,” &c. The Poet seemeth here to mean the polite and flourishing age of Greece; and those benefactors to Mankind, which he had principally in view, were SOCRATES and ARISTOTLE; who, of all the pagan world, spoke best of God, and wrote best of Government. W.

Ver. 285. Poet or Patriot, rose] “ No constitution is formed by concert; no government is copied from a plan. The members of a small state contend for equality; the members of a greater find themselves classed in a certain manner that lays a foundation for monarchy. They proceed from one form of government

Re-lum'd her ancient light, not kindled new;
If not God's image, yet his shadow drew :
Taught Pow'r's due use to People and to Kings,
Taught nor to slack, nor strain its tender strings,
The less, or greater, set so justly true,

291
That touching one must strike the other too;
Till jarring int'rests, of themselves create
Th' according music of a well-mix'd State.

NOTES.

to another; by easy transitions, and frequently under old names, adopt a new constitution. The seeds of every form are lodged in human nature: they spring up and ripen with the season. The prevalence of a particular species is often derived from an imperceptible ingredient mingled in the soil. We are therefore to receive, with caution, the traditionary histories of ancient legislators and founders of states. Their names have long been celebrated ; their supposed plans have been admired; and what were probably the consequences of an early situation, is, in every instance, considered as an effect of design. An author and a work, like cause and effect, are perpetually coupled together. This is the simplest form under which we can consider the establishment of nations : and we ascribe to a previous design what came to be known only by experience, what no human wisdom could foresee, and what, without the concurring humour and disposition of his age, no authority could enable an individual to execute." Ferguson, in his History of Civil Society; a work highly commended by the late Lord Mansfield.

Ver. 294. Th' according music] This is the very same illustration that Tully uses in that beautiful fragment, De Republica : “ Ut in fidibus, ac tibiis, atque cantu ipso, ac vocibus, concentus est quidam tenendus ex distinctis tonis, quem immutatum, ac discrepantem aures eruditæ ferre non possunt, isque concentus ex dissimillimarum vocum moderatione concors tamen efficitur et congruens ; sic, ex summis et infimis, et mediis interjectis ordinibus, ut tonis, moderata ratione civitas consensu dissimili morum concinit, et quæ harmonia a musicis dicitur in cantu, ea est in civitate concordia, arctissimum atque optimum omni in Republica vinculum incolumitatis ; quæ sine justitia nullo pacto esse potest." VOL. III.

1

Such is the World's great Harmony, that springs From Order, Union, full Consent of things : 296

NOTES.

Such is the happy and inestimable constitution of Great Britain! Lett hose, who talk and think of absolute equality, remember the words of one whom they must allow was a lover of freedom:

“ And if not equal all, yet free,
Equally free ; for orders and degrees
Jar not with liberty, but well consist.”

Par. Lost, Book V. v. 791. cydides, in three words, describes a just and well-poised government, which ought to be, αυτόνομον, αυτόδικον, αυτοτελή.

Ver. 295. Such is the World's great Harmony, &c.] This doctrine was taken up by Leibnitz; but it was to ingraft upon it a most pernicious fatalism. Plato said, God chose the best: Leibnitz said, he could not but choose the best, as he could not act without, what this philosopher called, a sufficient reason. Plato supposed freedom in God to choose one of two things equally good : : Leibnitz held the supposition to be absurd : however, admitting the case, he still held that God could not choose one of two things equally good. Thus it appears, the first went on the system of Freedom; and that the latter, notwithstanding the most artful disguises of his principles, in his Theodicée, was a thorough Fatalist: for we cannot well suppose he would give that freedom to Man which he had taken away from God. The truth of the matter seems to be this : he saw, on the one hand, the monstrous absurdity of supposing, with Spinoza, that blind Fate was the author of a coherent Universe; but yet, on the other, he could not conceive with Plato, how God could foresee and conduct, according to an archetypal idea, a World, of all possible Worlds the best inhabited by free Agents. This difficulty therefore, which made the Socinians take Prescience from God, disposed Leibnitz to take Free-will from Man: and thus he fashioned his fantastical hypothesis ; he supposed that when God made the body, he impressed on his new-created Machine a certain series or suite of motions ; and that when he made the fellow soul, he impressed a correspondent series of ideas; whose operations, throughout the whole duration of the union, were so exactly timed, that whenever an idea was excited, a correspondent motion was ever ready to satisfy the volition. Thus, for in

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