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I no man's property invade;
Bu hold bim now his drift attain: Corruption is yet no lawful trade.
He's made chief treasurer of the grain: 90 Nor would it inighty ills produce,
25 But as their antit. t laws are just, Could I shame bribery out of use.
And punish breach of public trust, I know 'twould eramp most politicians,
'Tis order'd (lett wrolig application Were they ty'd down to those conditions, Should starve triat wife industrious natier) "Twould stint their power, their riches bound, That all accoucts he fated clear,
95 And make their parts seem less profound. 30, Their trock, and wbat defray'd the year ; Were they deny their proper tools,
That auditors Tall Ukefe intjec, How could they lead their knaves and fools ? And public rapine thus be check'd. Were this the case, let's take a view
For this the folemo day was iets What dreadful mischiefs would ensue.
The auditors int council nici, Though it might aggrandize the state, 35 | The granary-kecper muft explain, Could private luxury dine on plate ?
And balance bis account of grain. Kings might indeed their friends reward, He brought (fince he could not refufe them). But miniiters find less regardi.
Some scraps of paper to amuse thein. laformers, fycophants, and spies,
An honest Pifmire, warm with zeal,
105 Would ng augment the year's supplies. 40 | In justice to the pu:blic weal, Perhaps, "200, take away this prop,
Thus fpoke : « The nation's board is low; An annual jobb or two might drop.
Trom whence does this profufon flow? Beicies, if penfions were deny'd,
I know our annual funds amount; Could Avarice support its pride?
Why such expence ? and where is th' account ?" It might ev'a ministers confound,
With wonted arrogance and pride, And yet the state be safe and found.
The Ant in office thus reply d. I care pot though 'tis understood ;
« Confider, Sirs, were secrets told, I only mean my country's good :
How could the belt-fehem'd projects hold ? And (let. who will my freedom blame)
Should we ítate mysteries disclotë, I wish all courtiers did the fame.
50 'T'would lay us open to our foes. Nay, though fome folks the lefs might get, My duty and iny well-known zeal I wish the nation out of debt.
Bid nie our present schemes conceal : I put no private mau's ambition
But, on my honours all th'expence With public good in competition:
(Though vaft) was for the fwarm's defence." 116 Rather than have our laws defac'd
35 They past the account as fair and juit, I'd vote a minifter disgrac’d,
Arid voted bim iinplicit truit. I strike at vice, be 't where it will ;
Next year again, the gränary draind, And what if great folks take it ill?
He thus his innocence naistair'd. I hope corruption, bribery, pennon,
“ Think how our prefent matters ftard, 125 One may with detestation mention ;
60 What dangers threat from every hand; Think you the law (let who will take it)
What hosts of turkeys firoll for food, Can soundulum magwatum make it?
No farmer's wife but hath her brood. I vent no Nander, owe no grudge,
Contder; when inval on's near, Nor of another's conscience judge :
Intelligence inuft coft us dear ;
130 At him or him I take 10 aim,
65 And, in this ticklish situatior, Yet dare against all vice declaim.
A secret told betrays the nation ; Shall I not cenfure breach of trust,
But, on my honour, all the expence Because knaves know themselves unjuft? (Though vast) was for the fwarm's defence." That steward, whofe account is clear,
Again, without examination, Demands his honour may appear :
70. They thank'd his fage administration, Flis actions never thun the light;
The year revolves. Their treasure, spent, He is, and would be provid, upright,
Again in secret service went. But then you think my Fable bears
His honour, too, again was pledgid, Allusion, too, to state-affairs.
To satisfy the charge alledg'l. I grant it does ; and who's so great, 75
When tõus, with pan nic thame poffefs’d, That has the privilege to cheat?
An auditor his friends address'd. J! then in any future reign
" What are we? ovinisterial tools! (For ministers may thirst for gain)
We little knaves are greater fools, Corrupted bands defraud the nation,
At last this fecret is explorid,
145 I bar no reader's application.
80 'Tis our ccrruption tbins the hoard. An Ant there was, whole forward prate For every grain we touchd, at least Control'd all matters in debate ;
A thousand his own leaps increas'd. Whether he knew the thing or no,
Then for his kin and favourite fpies,
150 For he had impudence at will,
85 Thus, for a paltry sneaking bribe, And boasted univerfil : ill.
We cheat ourselves and all the tribe; sin!ition was his point in view :
For all the magazine contains Thus by degrees to power he grew,
Grows from our annual toil and pains,"
They vote th' account Mall be infpected ; 155, Now, meddling in the foldier's trade, Te cunning plunderer is detected;
Troops must be hir'd, and levies made. The fraud is fentenc'd; and his hoard,
He gives ambassadors their cue,
His cobbled treaties to renew ;
His arrogance (nought undifmay'd)
60 On other rocks misguides the realm,
And thinks a pilot at the helm.
He ne'er suspects his want of skill,
But blunders on from ill to ill;
And, when he fails of all intent, ,
Blames only unforeseen event, WHAT man must daily wiser grow,
Left you mistake the application,
The Fable calls me to relation. Inpartially, he weighs his scope,
A Bear of thag and manners rough, And on firm reason founds his hope ;
At climbing trees expert enough;
70 He tries his strength before the race,
For dextroully, and safe from harm, And never seeks his own disgrace ;
Year after year he robb’d the swarm. He knows the compass, fail, and oar,
Thus thriving on industrious toil, Or never launches from the bore ;
He glory'd in his pilfer'd spoil. Before he builds, computes the cost,
This trick so swell d him with conceit,
75 And in no proud pursuit is loft':
He thought no enterprise too great. He learns the bounds of human sense,
Alike in sciences and arts, And safely walks within the fence.
He boafted universal parts : Thus, conscious of his own defect,
Pragmatic, busy, bultling, bold, Are pride and self-importance check'd,
His arrogance was uncontrold:
80 If then, self-knowledge to pursue,
And thus he made his party good, Direct our life in every view,
And grew dictator of the wood. Of all the fools that pride cau boaft,
The beasts, with admiration, ftare, A Coxcomb claims distinction most,
And think him a prodigious Bear. Coxcombs are of all ranks and kind :
Were any common booty got, They 're not to fex or age confin'd,
'Twas his each portion to allot: Or rich, or poor, or great, or small,
For why ? he found there night be picking, And vanity befots them all.
Ev’n in the carving of a chicken. By igororance is pride increasd:
Intruding thus, he by degrees Thole moft affume, who know the least;
Claim'd, too, the butcher's larger fees.
90 Their own false balance gives them weight,
And now his over-weeping pride But every other finds them I gbt.
In every province will prefde. Not that all Coxcombs' follies strike,
No talk too difficult was found : And draw our ridicule alike ;
His lfundering nose misleads the hound, To different merits each pretends :
In stratagem and subtle arts
95 This in love-vanity transcends ;
He over-rules the fox's parts, That, fmitten with his face and thape,
It chanc'd, as on a certain day, By dress distinguishes the ape;
Along the bank he took his way, T'other with learning crams his 1.elf,
A boat, with rudder, fail, and oar, Knows books, anrl all things but himself. At anchor Hoated near the thore.
All these are fools of low condition; 35 He stopt, and, turning to his train, Compard with Coxcombs of ambition :
Thus pertly vents his vaunting strain. For those, putt'd up with tattery, dare,
“ What blundering puppies are mankind ! Afsume a nation's various care,
In every science always blind! They ne'er the grosselt praise miltruit,
I mock the pedantry of schools : Their fycophants seen hardly jult;
40 What are their compa Tes and rules ? For these, in part alone, atteft
From me that helm shall conduct learr, The flattery their own thoughts suggest.
And man his ignorance discern." In this wide fphere a Coxcomb 's nown
So saying, with audacious pride, In other realnis besides his own:
He gains the Boat, and climbs the side. 110 The felf-deem'd Machiavel at large
45 The beasts, astonish’d, line the strand . By turns controls in every charge.
The anchor 's weigh’d; he drives from land : Does Comiñerce suffer in her rights?
The fack fail shifts from side to side ; 'Tis be directs the naval flights.
The Boat untrimm'd admits the tide. What failor dares dispute luis skill?
Borne down, adrift, at random toft,
115 He'll be an admiral when hs will,
50 His oar breaks tort, the rudder 's lost,
The Bear, presuming on lois kill,
From wipe what sudden friendftip springa! 45 Is here and there officious ftill;
Frankly they talk'd of courts and kings. Till, striking on the dangerous sands,
“ We country-tolks (the Clown replies) Aground the shatter'd vellel stands. 120 Could ope our gracious monarch's eyes. To see the bungler thus diftreft,
The King, (as all our neighbours say) The very fishes freer, and jeft:
Might he (God bless him!) have his way, Ev’n gudgeons join in ridicule,
Is found at heart, and means our good, To mortify the meddling fool.
And he would do it if we could. The clamorous watermen appear ;
If truth in courts were not forbid,
But, that transferr'd to those about him,
co FABLE VI.
From kings to cobler: 'tis the same;
Bad fervants wound their master's fame,
In this our neighbours all agree :
Would the King knew as much as we!”
Here lie stopt mort. Repose they fought, 65 THE man of pure and simple heart
The Peasant flept, the monarch thought,
The courtiers learn'd, at early dawn,
Where their loft Sovereign was withdrawn, His inward bosom tò disguise.
The guards'approach our host alarms; In vain mialicious tongues affail;
5 With gaudy coats the cottage swarms. 70 Let envy fnarl, let flander rail,
The crown and purple robes they bring, From Virtue's shield (fécure from wound)
And proflrate fall before the King. Thoir blunted venom'd shafts rebound.
The Clown was called; the royal guest So shines his light before mankind,
Gy due reward his thanks expreft. His actions prove his honeft mind.
The King then turning to the crowd, 75 If in his country's cause he rise,
Who fawningly before him bow'd, Debating fenates to advise,
Thus fpoke. « Since, bent on private gain, Unb:ib', unaw'il, he dares impart
Your counsels firî misled my reign. The boneit dictates of his heart.
Taught and inform'd by you alone, No ministerial frowń he fears, , 15 Notruth tle royal ear hath known,
&o But in his virtue perleveres.
Till here conversing; hence, ye crew ; But would you play the politician,
For now I know myself and you." Whole heart's averse to intuition,
Whene'er the royal ear's engroft, Your lips at all times, nay, your reason,
State lyes but little genius cost, Muft be controll ly place and season, 20
The favourite tben securely robs,
85 What faterman could his power support,
And gleans a nation by his jobbs. Were lying tongues forbid the court?
Franker and bolder grown in ill, Did priocely cars to truth attend,
He daily poisons dares infiil; What minitter could gain bis end?
And, as his present views fuggeft, How could be raise his tools to place,
Intiames and foothies the royal breast. And how his honest foes disgrace ? '
Thus wicked minifters oppress, That politician tops his part,
When oft' the monarch means redress. Who readily car lye with art :
Would kings their private subjects hear, The man's proficient in bis trade;
A minister muft talk with fear; Pis power is strong, his fortune's made, 30 If honesty oppos'd his views.
95 By that the interest of the throne
He dar'd not innocence accufe; ]; made subfervient to his own :
'Twould keep him in such narrow bound, By that, bave kings of old, deluded,
He could not right and wrong confound.
Happy were kings, could they disclose
Were both themselves and subjects known,
A monarchi’s will might be his own, Provok'd the dangers of the chace;
Had he the use of ears and eyes, Ard, loft from all his menial train,
Koaves would no more be counted wife, Trivers'ıl the wood and pathlefs plain. 40 But then a minister might lose
ICS A cottage ludg'd the royal guest;
(Hard case !) his own ambitious views. The Parthian clown brought forth his best,
When such as these have vex'd a fiate, The King unknown his feast enjoy’d,
Pursued by universal hate,
Their falfe fupport at once hath famigl,
And persevering truth prevailid.
Expos'd, their train of fraud is seen;
THE COUNTRYMAN AND JUPITER.
friend (look round and spy) By lies had banish'd all the rest. Yap had his ear; and defamation
Your faults, so obvious to mankind, Gave him full scope of conversation,
My partial eyes could never find! His fycophants must be preferrd ;
When by the breath of Fortune blown, Room must be inade for all his herd :
Your airy castles were o‘erthrown, Where ore, to bring his schemes about,
Have I been ever prone to blame, Old faithful servants all must out,
Or mortify'd your hours with thanie? The Cur on every creature flew
125 Was I c'er known to damp your spirit, (As other great men's puppies do),
Or twit you with the want of merit? Unless due court to him were shown,
T'is not fo ftrange that Fortune's frown And both their face and business known:
Still perseveres to keep you down. No honeft tongue an audience found;
Look round, and see what others rlos, He worried all the tenants round;
130 Would you be rich and honest too? For why? he liv'd in constant fear,
Have you (like those she rais'l to place) Leit truth by chance should interfere.
Been opportunely mean and base? If any stranger dar'd intrude,
Have you (as times requird) resign'd
Truth, honour, virtue, peace of mind ?
Write, practice inorals, and be poor.
The gifts of Fortune truly rate,
Then tell me what would mend your state.
His fears, his wants, increase the more.
Think, Gay, (what ne'er may be the cale) Their words were lost, the voice was drown'd. Should Fortune take you into grace, Ever in awe of honeft tongues,
145 Would that your happiness augment? Thus every day he strain’d his lungs,
What can she give beyond content? It happen'd in ill-omen'd hour,
Suppose yourself a wealthy heir, That Yap, unmindful of his power,
With a vast annual income clear! Forsook his post, to love inclip'd;
In all the affluence you possess, A fayourite bitch was in the wind.
150 You might not feel one care the less. By her seduc'd, in amorous play,
Miglat you not then (like others) find They frisk'd the joyous hours away.
With change of fortune change of mind ? Tbus by untimely love pursuing,
Perhaps, profuse beyond all rule, Like Antony he fought his ruin.
You might start out a glaring fool; For now the 'Squire, unvex'd with noise, 155 Your luxury night brea's all bounds : An honeft neighbour's chat enjoys.
Plate, table, horses, stewards, hounds, “ Be free, says he; your mind impart;
Might swell your debts: then, luft of play I love a friendly open heart.
No regal income can defray. Methinks my tenants Thun my gate ;
Sunk is all credit, writs a fail, Why such a stranger grown of late ? 260 And doom your future life to gaol. Pray tell me what offence they find,
Or, were you dignity' with power, 'Tis plain they're not so well inclin'd."
Would that avert one pensive hour? “ Turn off your Cur (the Farmer cries) You might give avarice its swing, Who feeds your ear with daily lyes.
Defraud a nation, blind a king : His snarling insolence offends :
165 | Then, froin the hireling: in your cause 'Tis he that keeps you from your friends.
Though daily fed with falfe applause, Were but that faucy puppy checkt,
Could it a real joy impart? You'd find again the fame respect,
Great guilt knew never joy at heart. Hear only him, he 'll twear it too,
Is happiness your point in view ? That all our hatred is to you.
190 (I mean th' intrinfc and the true) But learn froin us your true esate ;
She nor in ca nips or courts reldes, 'Tis that curs'd Cur alone we hate."
Nor in the humble cottage hides ; The 'Squire heard Truth. Now Yap rusk'd in ; Yet found alike in every sphere; The wide hall echoes with his din;
Who finds content will find her there. Yet Truth prevaild; and, with disgrace, 175
O'erspent witle toil, bencath the thade, The dog was cudgeld out of place.
A Peasant refted on his spa:zde.
" Good Gods! he cries, 'tis hard to bear He next, confirmed by speculation, 145 This load of life from year to year!
Rejects the lawyer's occupation ; Soon as the morning streaks the skies,
For he the statesman seemid in part, Industrious Labour bids me rise ;
And bore lumilitude of heart, With sweat I earn iny homely fare,
65 Nor did the soldier's trade infiame And every day renews my care."
His hopes with thirst of fpo l'andfame.. 130 Jove heard tire discontented itrain,
The miferies of war he mournd; And thus rebuk'd the murmuring fwain.
Whole nations into deserts turn'd. « Speak out your wants, tben, honest Friend : “ By there have laws and rights been brar'd; Unjust complaints the gods offend,
yo By there was free-born man enllav'd: If you'repine at partial Fate,
When battles and invasion ecase,
135 Infiruet me what could mend your state.
Why fwarm they in the lands of peace ?
Such change (says he).may I decline ;
Thus, weighing life in each condition, The Clown survey'd the anxious crowd.
The Clown withdrew his raih petition, 10 “ You face of care, says Jove, behold,
When thus the God : “How mortals err! His bulky bags are fill'd with gold.
If you true happiness prefer, See with what joy he counts it o'er!
'Tis to no rank of life confin'd, That fum to-day hath swelyd his store." 80 But dwells in every honest mind. “ Were I that man, (the Peasant cryod)
Be justice then your fole pursuit :
145 What blessing could I ask bę fide ?»
Plant virtue, and content's the fruit,” “ Hold, says the God; first learn to know So Jove, to gratify the Clown, True happinese from outward show.
Where first he found him, set him down,
He look'd, and saw the miter's breast
THE MAN, THE CAT, THE DOG, AND THE His breait admits one happy gleam,
« May Jove, he cries, reject my prayer, 95
To my native Country.
The liquid fence of Neptune bounds ; On hiin what happiness attends,
By bounteous Nature set apart, Who thus rewards bis grateful friends!"
The seat of Industry and Art !
May luxury ne'er thy fou's invalle !
Corrupt thy ftate ! If jealous foes
Thy rights of commerce dare oppose, I see him with polluted hand
Shall not thy Heets their rapine awe? Spread the contagion o'er the land.
I10 Who is 't prescribes the ocean law? Now Av'rice with insatiate jaws.
Whenever neighbouring states contend, Now Rapine with her harpy claws,
'Tis thine to be the general friend. His bosom tears. His conscious breast
What is 't who rules in other lands?
15 Groans with a load of crimes oppreft.
On trade alone thy glory ftands ; See him, mad and drunk with power, 115 That benefit is unconfin’d, . Stand tottering on Ambition's tower,
Diffusing good among mankind : Sometimes, in speeches vain and proud,
That first gave luftre to thy reigns, His bouts insult the nether crowd;
And scatter'd plenty o'er thy plains : Now seiz'd with giddiness and fear,
'Tis that alone thy Wealth supplies, He trenibles left his fall is near.”.
1 20 And draws all Europe's envious eyes. " Was ever wretch like this! he cries;
Be commerce, then, thy sole design; Such misery in such disguise !
Keep that, and all the world is thine, The change, O Jove! i disavow ;
wben naval traffic plows the maio, 25 Still be my lot the spade and plough.”
Who Ihares not in the merchant's gain ?