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In active arts, or vent'rous arms would shine,
Yet shuns the paths which virtue bids decline ;
Who dignifies his wealth by gen'rous use,
To raife th' oppress’d, or merit to produce
Shall reason's voice impartial e'er condemn
The glorious purpose of fo wise an aim ?
Where virtue regulates this juft desire,
"Twere dangʻrous folly to suppress its fire.
Say, whence could fame supply, (its force unknown)
Her roll illustrious of fair renown?
What laurels prompt the hero's useful rage ?
What prize the patriot's weighty toils engage ?
Each publick paffion bound to endless froft,
Each deed of social worth for ever loft.
O! may the Muse inspire the love of praise,
Raise the bright passion, but with judgment raise !
For this she oft has tun'd her sacred voice,
Callid forth the patriót, and approv'd his choice;
Bid him the steep ascent to honor take,
Nor till the summit gain’d, her paths forsake,
Yet not success alone true fame attends
; He too shall reach it who but well intends. See ʼmidst the vanquish'd virtuous, a Falkland lies ; His gen'rous efforts vain, and vain his fighs ;, Yet true to merit faithful records tell, To distant
how the patriot fell :
* He was killed in the civil wars : see his character at large in Clarendon's history.
Blelt youth! insur'd the fweetest voice of praise;
Who lives approv'd in Pope's unrival'd lays.
Grave precepts fleeting notions may impart;
But bright example beft inftracts the heart :
Then look on Patrius, let his conduct shew
From active life what various bleflings flow.
In him a juft ambition stands confess'd;
It warms, but not inflames, his equal breast.
See him in fenates act the patriot's part,
Truth on his lips, the publick at his heart;
There neither fears can awe, nor hopes controul;
The honeft purpose of his steady soul.
No mean attachments e'er feduced his tongue
To gild the caufe his heart fufpe&ted wrong ;
But deaf to envy, faction, spleen, his voice
Joins here or there, as reason guides his choice.
To one great point his faithful labors tend,
And all his toils in Britain's intereft end.
To him each neighbour safe refers his claim,
The right he fettles, and abates the fame.
Nor arts nor worth to Patrius fue in vain,
Nor unreliev'd the injur'd e'er complain.
For him the hand unfeen, are pray’rs prefer'd,
And grateful vows in diftant temples heard;
Like nature's bleflings to no part confin'd,
His well-pois'd bounty reaches all mankind,
That insolence of wealth, the pomp of state
Which crowds the manfions of the vainly great,
Flios far the limits of his modest gate.
Just what is elegantly useful's there ;
Of aught beyond he scorns th' unworthy care ;
Nor wou'd, for all the trim that pride can show,
One fingle act of social aid forego ;
For this he labors to improve his store,
For this he wishes to enlarge his pow'r ;
This is his life's great purpose, end, and aim:
Such true ambition is, and worthy fame.
How different Rapax fpent his worthless hour !
With treasure indigent, a llave with pow'r :
Large fums o'erlooking, still intent on more,
He wasted, not enjoy'd, his tasteless store.
His growing greatness rais'd his hopes the high's,
And fan'd his restless pride's increasing fire,
'Twas thus amidst prosperity he pin’d;
For what can fill the falfe-ambitious mind ?
With all the honors that his prince cou'd give,
With all the wealth his av'rice cou'd receive,
'Midst outward opulence, but inward care,
Reproach and want was all he left his heir,
'Tis true, the patriot well deserves his fame,
And from his country just applause may claim.
But what avails it to the world beside,
That Brutus bravely stab’d, or Curtius dy'd ?
While Tully's merit, unconfin'd to place,
Diffuses blessings down thro' all our race ;
Remotest times his learned labors reach,
And Rome's great moralift e’en now shall teach.
Averse to publick noise, ambition's ftrife,
And all the splendid ills of busy life,
Thro' latent paths, unmark'd by vulgar eye,
Are there who wish to pass unheeded by?
Whom calm retirement's facred pleasures move,
The hour contemplative, or friend they love;
Yet not by spleen, or superstition led,
Forbear ambition's giddy heights to tread;
Who not inglorious spend their peaceful day,
Whilft science, lovely Atar! directs their way?
Flows there not something good from such as these?
No useful product from the men of ease ?
And shall the Muse no social merit boast ?
Are all her vigils to the publick lost?
Tho' noisy pride may scorn her silent toil,
Fair are the fruits which bless her happy soil :
There every plant of useful produce grows,
There science sprang, and thence instruction flows;
There true philosophy erects her school,
There plans her problem, and there forms her rule ;
There every feed of every art began,
And all that eases life, and brightens man.
'Twas hence great Newton, mighty genius! foar'd,
And all creation's wondrous range explor'd.
Far as th’ Almighty stretch'd his utmost line,
He pierc'd in thought, and view'd the vast design.
Too long had darker ages sought in vain
The secret scheme of nature to explain ;
Too long had truth escap'd each sage's eye,
Or faintly shone thro' vain philosophy.
Each shapely offspring of her feeble thought,
A darker veil o'er genuine science brought;
Still stubborn facts o'erthrew their fruitless toil;
For truth and fiction who shall reconcile ?
But Britain's fons a furer guide pursue ;
Tread fafe the maze, fince Newton
Where-e'er he turn'd true Science rear'd her head,
While far before her puzzled Ign'rance fled :
From each bleft truth these noble ends he draws;
Use to mankind, and to their God applause.
Taught by his rules fecure the merchant rides,
When threat'ning seas roll high their dreadful tides ;
And either India speeds her precious stores,
'Midit various dangers safe to Britain's shores.
Long as those orbs he weigh'd shall shed their rays;
His truth Mall guide us, and shall last his praise.
Yet if so just the fame, the use fo great,
Systems to poise, and spheres to regulate ;
To teach the secret well-adapted force;
That fteers of countless orbs th’ unvaried course ;
Far brighter honors wait the nobler part,
To balance manners, and conduct the heart:
Order without us, what imports it feens
If all is restless anarchy within ?