« PreviousContinue »
“ Great idol of mankind! We neither claim Indifference. The praise of merit, nor aspire to fame ; But safe in deserts from th' applause of men, Would die unheard of, as we liv'd unseen. 'Tis all we beg thee to conceal from sight Those acts of goodness which themselves requite. Oh, let us still the secret joy partake,
Delight. To follow virtue ev'n for virtue's sake."
“And live there men who slight immortal fame? Wonder. Who then with incense shall adore our name? But, mortals! know 'tis still our greatest pride Informing. To blaze those virtues which the good would hide. Rise, Muses ! Rise! Add all your tuneful breath! Exciting. These must not sleep in darkness and in death."
She said. "In air the trembling music floats, Pleasing And on the winds triumphant swell the notes ;
description. So soft, though high; so loud, and yet so clear ; Ev'n list'ning angels lean from heav'n to hear. To farthest shores th' ambrosial spirit flies, Sweet to the world, and grateful to the skies.
While thus I stood intent to see and hear, One came, methought, and whisper'd in my ear: 2 What could thus high thy rash ambition raise? Questioning
with reproof. Art thou, fond youth? a candidate for praise?”
'Tis true, said I, not void of hopes I came; Apology. For who so fond, as youthful bards, of fame? But few, alas! the casual blessing boast, So hard to gain, so easy to be lost. How vain that second life in others' breath, Th' estate which wits inherit after death. Ease, health, and life, for this they must resign (Unsure the tenure, and how vast the fine!)
* To be spoken as melodiously as possible.
" What could thus high," &c., must be spoken with a lower voice than the foregoing.
The great man's curse, without the gains, endure,
And all successful, jealous friends at best.
She comes unlook'd for, if she comes at all.
But if the purchase costs so dear a price,
And follow still, where fortune leads the way;
But the fall’n ruins of another's fame;
Drive from my breast that wretched lust of praise.
Sneer, or 'Tis from high life high characters are drawn:
A judge is just; a chanc'llor-juster still ;
More wise, more just, more learn'd, more every thing. Teaching.
'Tis education forms the common mind;
Just as the twig is bent, the tree's inclin'd,
The next a tradesman, meek, and much a liar;
1 Though these lines contain descriptions, or characters, they may be expressed with action, almost as if they were speeches. This first line " Boastful and rough,” &c., may be spoken with the action of boasting; and so for the rest.
Is he a churchman? Then he's fond of pow'r; Pride.
b Peevish. A smart free-thinker? All things in an hour. Foppery.
Ask men's opinions-Scoto now shall tell How trade increases, and the world goes
well: Strike off his pension by the setting sun, And Britain, if not Europe, is undone.
Manners with fortune, humours turn with climes, Teaching. Tenets with books, and principles with times. Search then the ruling passion. There alone The wild are constant, and the cunning known. This clue once found unravels all the rest ; The prospect clears, and Wharton stands confest ; Wharton! the scorno and wonderd of our days, c Contempt.
d Admiration Whose ruling passion was the lust of praise. Born with whate'er could win it from the wise, Women and fools must like him, or he dies. Eager. Though wond’ring senates hung on all he spoke, The club must hail him master of the joke.
Contempt. Shall parts so various aim at nothing new ? He'll shine a Tully and a Wilmot too.
A salmon's belly, Helluo' was thy fates The doctor call’d, declares all help too late.
Trepidation. Mercy,” cries Helluo, “ mercy on my soul ! Deprecation. Is there no hope? Alas! then bring the jowl.”3
66 Odious! In woollen! 'Twould a saint provoke,” Aversion. Were the last words that poor Narcissa spoke. “ No; let a charming chintz and Brussels lace,
Weakness. Wrap my cold limbs, and shade my lifeless face. One need not, sure, be ugly, though one's dead : And-Betty-give this cheek-a little-red.” Expiring.
Grief with sickness.
1 “ Helluo" signifies glutton.
3 The glutton will continue to indulge his appetite (so indeed will every habitual offender in every kind) in spite of all consequences.
Civil with weakness.
The courtier smooth, who forty years had shin'd
“I give, and I devise," old Euclio said,
“Your money, sir.” “My money, sir!- What-all? Weeping. Why—if I must—(then wept)-I give it-Paul.”
“The manor, sir?"_“The manor"_“Hold," he cried,
“I cannot-must not part with that”-and died. Dignity. And you, brave Cobham! at your latest breath
Shall feel your ruling passion strong in death.
Such in that moment, as in all the past, Praying Oh, save my country, heav'n!" shall be your last.
Pope's complaint of the impertinence of scribblers.
1 Dr. Arbuthnot, his friend and physician,
8 " The world had wanted.” Thus far ought to be spoken with great emphasis, as if somewhat very important were coming; and the remaining part of the line, “ many an idle song," in a ludicrous manner.
Then drop, at last, but in unwilling ears, This saving counsel, “Keep your piece nine years." Advising. “Nine years !” cries he, who high in Drury-lane, Offence with
surprise. Lull’d by soft zephyrs through the broken pane, Rhymes ere he wakes, and prints before term ends, Oblig'd, by hunger-and request of friends. “The piece, you think, is incorrect. Why take it. Pertness. I'm all submission; what you'd have it, make it.” Cringing. Three things another's modest wishes bound; My friendship, and a prologue, and ten pound. Cringing. Pitholeonsends to me;
- You know his Grace. “I want a patron—Ask him for a place.” “*Pitholeon libelld me"_b But here's a letter a Offence. Informs you, sir, 'twas when he knew no better.
Cringing. Dare you refuse him; Curl invites to dine; Threatening, He'll write a journal, or he'll turn divine."
Bless me! A packet! “ 'Tis a stranger sues; Surprise. A virgin tragedy; an orphan muse." If I dislike it, “ Furies! death, and rage!”
Anger. If I approve, " Commend it to the stage.”
Cringing. There, thank my stars, my whole commission ends, Comfort. The play’rs and I are, luckily, no friends. Fir'd, that the house reject him, “'S death, I'll Anger.
print it, And shame the fools-Your intrest, sir, with Lintot.” Cringing. Lintot (dull rogue !) will think your price too Excuse.
much.” “Not, sir, if you revise it and retouch.”
Cringing. All my
demurs but double his attacks. At last he whispers, "Do; and we go snacks.” Wheedling. Glad of a quarrel, straight I clapp'd the door.
Sir, let me see you and your works no more.” Dismissing 1 Alluding to Horace's “Nonumque premetur in annum." 2 Pitholeon. The name of a foolish ancient poet.
3“ Curl in vites," &c. Mr. Pope was, it seems, ill used by Curl, a bookseller, by the writer of a journal or newspaper, and by a “ parson much bemused in beer.”