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But having amply stuff'd his skin,
Sir, you may spare your application,
To set this matter full before ye,
Harley, the nation's great support," — But you may read it ; I stop short.
Hoc erat in votis: modus agri non ita magnus,
Ver. 22. And to be kept in my right wits ;] An apprehension of the loss of intellect gave the Dean great uneasiness through life. Some hereditary expectation, or some peculiarity of feeling, I presume, occasioned a perpetual anticipation of that sad event, which at length befel him. Pope's part of the imitation begins at verse 125, but I cannot accede to Warburton's opinion, that his portion of the performance is executed with more dexterity than that of Swift, who is unexceptionably excellent, and preserves with most happy accommodation the playful urbanity of his author. There are indeed several strokes in the more humorous passages of Pope's division, after Swift's best manner ; but the following seems to me the most successful:
Tells all their names, lays down the law :
THE FIRST PART IMITATED IN THE YEAR 1714, BY DR. SWIFT;
THE LATTER PART ADDED AFTERWARDS.
I've often wish'd that I had clear
Well, now I have all this and more,
10 I can't but think 'twould sound more clever, To me and to my heirs for ever.
If I ne'er got or lost a groat, By any trick, or any fault; And if I pray by reason's rules,
15 And not like forty other fools : As thus, “ Vouchsafe, oh gracious Maker ! To grant me this and t'other acre: Or, if it be thy will and pleasure, Direct my plough to find a treasure:” But only what my station fits, And to be kept in my right wits ;
20 Hercule: si, quod adest, gratum juvat: hâc prece
Pingue pecus domino facias, et cætera, præter Ingenium; utque soles, custos mihi maximus adsis. Ergo ubi me in montes et in arcem ex urbe re
movi, (Quid prius illustrem Satiris Musâque pedestri?) Nec mala me ambitio perdit, nec plumbeus Auster, Autumnusque gravis, Libitinæ quæstus acerbæ.
Matutine pater, seu Jane libentiùs audis, Unde homines operum primos vitæque labores Instituunt (sic Dis placitum) tu carminis esto Principium. Romæ sponsorem me rapis: Eia, Ne prior officio quisquam respondeat, urge: Sive Aquilo radit terras, seu bruma nivalem Interiore diem gyro trahit, ire necesse est. Postmodo, quod mi obsit, clarè certumque locuto, Luctandum in turbâ ; facienda injuria tardis. Quid vis, insane? et quas res agis ? improbus ur
Ver. 30. on this side Trent;] He was perpetually expressing his discontent at his Irish preferment, and forming schemes for exchanging it for a smaller in England; and courted Queen Caroline and Sir Robert Walpole to effect such a change. A negociation had nearly taken place between the Dean and a Mr. Talbot for the living of Burfield, in Berkshire. Mr. Talbot himself informed me of this negociation. Burfield is in the neighbourhood of Bucklebery, Lord Bolingbroke's seat.
Preserve, Almighty Providence !
In short, I'm perfectly content,
I must by all means come to town,
“Good Mr. Dean, go change your gown,