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Whence health from herbs; from feeds how groves hegun,
How vital streams in circling eddies run.
Some teach why round the fun the spheres advance,
In the fix'd meafures of their mystic dance,
How tides, when heav'd by pressing moons, o'erflow,
And sun-born Iris paints her showery bow.
In happy chains our daring language bound,
Shall sport no more in arbitrary sound,
But buskin'd bards henceforth shallowisely rage,
And Grecian plans reform Britannia's stage:
Till Congreve bids her smile, Augusta stands
And longs to weep when flowing Rowe commands.
Britain's Spectators shall their strength combine
Tomend our morals, and our taste refine,
Fight virtue's cause, stand up in wit's defence,
Win us from vice, and laugh us into sense.
Nor, Prior, hast thou hulh'd the trump in vain,
Thy lyre shall now revive her mirthful strain,
New tales shall now be told; if right I see,
The soul of Chaucer is restor'd in thee.
Garth, in majeitic numbers, to the stars
Shall raise mock heroes, and fantastic wars ;
Like the young spreading laurel, Pope, thy name
Shoots up with strength, and rises into fame ;
With Philips shall the peaceful vallies ring,
And Britain hear a second Spenser sing.
That much-lov’d youth, whom Utrecht's walls confines
To Bristol’s praises shall his Strafford's join :
He too, from whom attentive Oxford draws
Rules for just thinking, and poetic laws,
To growing bards his learned aid shall lend,
The strictest critic, and the kindest friend.
Ev'n mine, a bashful Muse, whose rude essays
Scarce hope for pardon, not aspire to praise,
Cherish'd by you in time may grow to fame,
And mine survive with Bristol's glorious name.
Fir'd with the views this glittering scene displays,
And smit with passion for my country's praise,
My artless reed attempts this lofty theme,
Where sacred Isis rolls her ancient stream ;
. In cloister'd domes the great Philippa's pride,
Where learning blooms, while fame and worth preside,
Where the fifth Henry arts and arms was taught,
And Edward form'd his Cressy, yet unfought,
Where laureld bards have struck the warbling strings,
The seat of sages, and the nurse of kings.
Here thy commands, O Lancaster, inflame
breast to raise the British name,
Urge on my soul, with no ignoble pride,
To woo the Muse, whom Addison enjoy’d,
See that bold swan to heaven sublimely soar,
Pursue at distance, and his steps adore.
TO MR. ADDISON, ON HIS OPERA OF
Ne fortè pudori “ Sit tibi Musa lyræ folers, & cantor Apollo." THE Opera first Italian masters taught,
Britannia's learned theatre disdains
Melodious trifles, and enervate strains ;
And blushes, on her injur'd stage to see
Nonsense well-tun'd, and sweet stupidity.
No charms are wanting to thy artful song,
Soft as Corelli, and as Virgil strong.
From words so sweet new grace the notes receive,
And music borrows helps, lhe us'd to give.
Thy style hath match'd what ancient Romans knew,
Thy flowing numbers far excel the new.
Their cadence in such easy found convey'd,
The height of thought may seem superfluous aid;
Yet in such charms the noble thoughts abound,
That needless seem the sweets of eafy sound.
Landskips how gay the bowery grotto yields,
Which thought creates, and lavish fancy builds !
What art can trace the visionary scenes,
The flowery groves, and everlasting greens,
The babbling sounds that mimic echo plays,
The fairy thade, and its eternal maze?
Nature and Art in all their charms combin'd,
And all Elysium to one view confin'd!
No further could imagination roam,
Till Vanbrugh fram'd, and Marlborough rais'd the dome.
Ten thousand pangs my anxious bofom tear,
When drown'd in tears I see th' imploring fair;
When bards less soft the moving words supply,
A seeming justice dooms the nymph to die ;
But here she begs, nor can the beg in vain
(In dirges thus expiring swans complain);
Each verse so swells expressive of her woes,
And every tear in lines so mournful flows;
We, spite of fame, her fate revers'd believe,
O’erlook her crimes, and think she ought to live.
Let joy salute fair Rosamonda's shade,
And wreaths of myrtie crown the lovely maid.
While now perhaps with Dido's ghost the roves,
And hears and tells the story of their loves,
Alike they mourn, alike they bless their fate,
Since love, which made them wretched, makes them great.
Nor longer that relentless doom bemoan,
Which gain’d a Virgil, and an Addison.
Accept, great monarch of the British lays, The tribute song an humble subject pays. So tries the artless lark her early Hight, And soars, to hail the god of verse and light. Unrival'd as unmatch'd be still thy fame, And thy own laurels shade thy envy'd name : Thy name, the boast of all the tuneful quire, Shall tremble on the strings of every lyre; While the charm'd reader with thy thought com plies Feels corresponding joys or sorrows rise, And views thy Rosamond with Henry's eyes.
TO THE SAME, ON HIS TRAGEDY OF
hath love engrossèd
By that alone did empires fall or rise,
And fate depended on a fair-one's eyes :
The fiveet infection, mixt with dangerous art,
Debas'd our manhood, while it footh'd the heart.
You scorn to raise a grief thyself must blame,
Nor from our weakness steal a vulgar fame :
A patriot's fall may justly melt the mind,
And tears flow nobly, shed for all mankind.
How do our souls with generous pleasure glow!
Our hearts exulting, while our eyes o’erflow,
When thy firm hero stands beneath the weight
Of all his sufferings venerably great;
Rome's poor remains fill sheltering by his fide,
With conscious virtue and becoming pride !
The aged oak thus rears his head in air,
His sap exhausted, and his branches hare ;
'Midst storms and earthquakes, he maintains his state,
Fixt deep in earth, and fasten’d by his weight:
His naked boughs still lend the Thepherds aid,
And his old trunk projects an awful thade.
Amidst the joys triumphant peace bestows, Our patriots fadden at his glorious woes ; Awhile they let the world's great business wait, Anxious for Rome, and sigh for Cato's fate. 13