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TEMPLE OF FAME.

By ALEXANDER POPE..

[Written in the Year 1711.]

ADVERTISEMENT.

The hint of the following Piece was taken from Chaucer's

“ House of Fame.” The design is in a manner entirely altered, the descriptions and most of the particular thoughts my own: yet I could not suffer it to be printed without this acknowledgment. The reader who would compare this with Chaucer, may begin with his Third Book of Fame, there being nothing in the two first books that answers to their title. (P.)

IN that soft season when descending show'rs
Call forth the greens, and wake the rising flow'rs;
When op’ning buds salute the welcome day,
And earth relenting feels the genial ray;

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As balmy sleep had charm’d my cares to rest,
And love itself was banish'd from my breast,
(What time the morn mysterious visions brings,
While purer slumbers spread their golden

wings);
A train of phantoms in wild order rose,
And, join'd, this intellectual scene compose :

I stood, methought, betwixt earth, seas, and

skies ; The whole creation open to my eyes : In air self-balanc'd hung the globe below, . Where mountains rise, and circling oceans flow: Here naked rocks and empty wastes were seen; There tow'ry cities, and the forests green : Here sailing ships delight the wand’ring eyes ; There trees and intermingled temples rise : Now a clear sun the shining scene displays, The transient landscape now in clouds decays.

O'er the wide prospect as I gaz’d around, Sudden I heard a wild promiscuous sound,

Like broken thunders that at distance roar,
Or billows murm’ring on the hollow shore:
Then, gazing up, a glorious pile beheld,
Whose tow'ring summit ambient clouds con-

ceal'd.
High on a rock of ice the structure lay,
Steep its ascent, and slipp'ry was the way:
The wondrous rock like Parian marble shone,
And seem’d, to distant sight, of solid stone:
Inscriptions here of various names I view'd,
The greater part by hostile Time subdu'd ;
Yet wide was spread their fame in ages past,
And poets once had promis'd they should last.
Some, fresh engravid, appear’d of Wits renown'd;
I look'd again, nor could their trace be found.
Critics I saw, that other names deface,
And fix their own, with labour, in their place;
Their own, like others, soon their place re-

sign'd,
Or disappear’d, and left the first behind.
Nor was the work impair'd by storms alone,
But felt th' approaches of too warm a sun;

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