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Preach this among the brawny guards, fay'st thou, And see if they thy doctrine will allow : The dull fat captain, with a hound's deep throat, Would bellow out a laugh, in a base note ; And prize a hundred Zeno's just as much As à clipt fixpence, or a fchilling Dutch.
THIS fixth satire treats an admirable common-place
of moral philosophy; of the true use of riches. They certainly are intended, by the power who bestows them, as instruments and helps of living commodiously ourselves; and of administering to the wants of others, who are oppressed by fortune. There are two extremes in the opinions of men concerning them. One error, though on the right hand, yet a great one, is, that they are no helps to a virtuous life ; the other places all our happiness in the acquisition and possession of them; and this is, undoubtedly, the worse extreme. The menn betwixt these, is the opinion of the Stoicks; which is, that riches may be useful to the leading
a virtuous life; in case we rightly understand how to give according to right reason; and how to receive what is given us by others. The virtue of giving. well, is called liberality: and it is of this virtue that Perfius writes in this satire ; wherein he not only shews the lawful use of riches, but also Mharply inveighs against the vices which are opposed to it; and especially of those, which confift in the defects of giving or spending; or in the abuse of riches. He writes to Cæfius Bassus his friend, and a poet alfo. Enquires first of his health and studies; and afterwards informs him of his own, and where he is now resident. He gives an account of himself, that he is endeavouring, by little and little, to wear off his vices ; and particularly, that he is combating ambition, and the desire of wealth. He dwells upon the latter vice : and, being sensible that few men either defire or use riches as they
ought, he endeavours to convince them of their ** folly ; which is the main design of the whole fatire,
T H E SI X TH SAT I R E.
TO CÆSIUS BASSUS, A LYRIC POET.
AS winter caus'd thee, friend, to change thy seat,
And seek in. Sabine air a warm retreat? Say, dost thou yet the Roman harp command? Do the strings answer to thy noble hand ?
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Great master of the Mufe, inspir'd to fing
For me, my wariner constitution wants
Secure and free from business of the state,
dist a wrinkle to my even brow;
Nor, envious at the fight, will I forbear
yet unseal the dregs of wine that stinks
For me, I'll use my own; and take iny fhare ;
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