Графични страници
PDF файл
ePub

RETALIATION.

A POEM.

[Dr. Goldsmith, and the Gentlemen characterised in this

Poem, occasionally dined at the St. James's Coffeehouse-One day it was proposed to write Epitaphs on him. His country, dialect, and person, furnished subjects of witticism. He was called on for RetaLIATION, and at their next meeting produced this Poem. It was first printed in the year 1774, after the Author's death.]

Op old, when Scarron his companions invited,
Each guest brought his dish, and the feast was united;
Ifour landlord(a) supplies us with beef, and with fish,
Let each guest bring himself, and he brings the best dish:
Our dean (6) shall be venison, just fresh from the plains;
Our Burke(c) Mallbetongue, with the garnish of brains;
Our Will(d) shall be wild fowl, of excellent flavour,
And Dick(e) with his pepper shall heighten the favour;
Our Cumberland's(f) sweet-bread its place shallobtain,
And Douglas (g) is pudding, substantial and plain;

(a) The master of the St. James's Coffeehouse.
(6) Dr. Bernard, dean of Derry, in Ireland.
(c) Mr. Edmund Burke.
(d) Mr.William Burke, late secretary to General Conway.
(e) Mr. Richard Burke, collector of Grenada.

1) Mr. Richard Cumberland, author of the West Indian, and other dramatic pieces.

(8) Dr. Douglas, canon of Windsor, an ingenious Scotch gentleman, who has no less distinguished himself as a citi

1

Our Garrick's(b) a sallad-for in him we see
Oil, vinegar, sugar, and faltness agree :
To make out the dinner, full certain I am,
That Ridge(i)is anchovy, and Reynolds(k) is lambs
That Hickey's(l) a capon, and, by the same rule,
Magnanimous Goldsmith a gooseberry fool.
At a dinner so various—at such a repast,
Who'd not be a glutton, and stick to the last!
Here, waiter, more wine-let me fit while I'm able,
'Till all my companions sink under the table;
Then, with chaos and blunders encircling my

head, Let me ponder, and tell what I think of the dead.

Here lies the good dean(m), re-united to earth,
Whomixt reason with pleasure, and wisdom with mirth:
If he had any faults, he has left us in doubt-
At least, in six weeks, I could not find 'em out;
Yet some have declar'd, and it can't be deny'd 'em,
That lly-boots was cursedly cunning to hide 'em.

HereliesourgoodEdmund(n), whosegenius was such,
We scarcely can praise it, or blame it too much;
Who, born for the universe, narrow'd his mind,
And to party gave up what was meant for mankind.
'Tho' fraught with all learning, yet straining his throat,
Topersuade Tommy Townshend() to lend hiina vote;
zen of the world, than a sound critic, in detecting several
literary mistakes (or rather forgeries) of his countrymen;
particularly Lauder on Milton, and Bower's History of the
Popes.

(1) David Garrick, esq.

(1) Counsellor John Ridge, a gentleman belonging to the Irish bar.

(k) Sir Joshua Reynolds. (1) An eminent attorney. (m) Vide page 63.

(n) Vide page 63. (0) Mr. T. Townshend, member for Whitchurch

a

a

Who, too deep for his hearers, still went on refining,
And thought of convincing, while they thoughtofdining;
Though equal to all things, for all things unfit-
Too nice for a statesman-too proud for a wit-
For a patriot, too cool-for a drudge, disobedient-
And too fond of the right to pursue the expedient.
In short, 'twas his fate, unemploy'd, or in place, fir,
To eat inutton cold, and cut blocks with a razor.

Herelies honest William(p),whose heart was a mint,
While the owner ne'er knew half the good that was in't;
The pupil of impulse, it forc'd him along-
His conduct still right, with his argument wrong ;
Still aiming at honour, yet fearing to roam,
The coachman was tipsey, the chariot drove home:
Would

you

ask for his merits ? alas! he had none; What was good was spontaneous, his faults were his own.

Here lies honest Richard, whose fate I must sigh atAlas, that such frolic should now be so quiet! What spirits were his! what wit and what whim! Now breaking a jest, and now breaking a limb!(9) Now wrangling and grumbling to keep up the ball! Now teazing and vexing, yet laughing at all! In short, so provoking a devil was Dick, That we wilh'd him full ten times a-day at Old Nick; But, missing his mirth and agreeable vein, As often we wilh’d to have Dick back again.

() Vide page 63.

(9) Mr. Richard Burke. This gentleman having slightly fractured one of his arms and legs, at different times, the doctor has rallied him on those accidents, as a kind of retributive justice for breaking his jests upon other people.

[ocr errors]

Here Cumberland(r) lies, having acted his parts The Terence of England, the mender of hearts; A flattering painter, who made it his care To draw men as they ought to be-not as they are : His gallants are all faultless, his women divine, And comedy wonders at being so fine Like a tragedy-queen he has dizen'd her out, Or rather like tragedy giving a rout: His fools have their follies so lost in a crowd Of virtues and failings, that folly grows proud; And coxcombs, alike in their failings alone, Adopting his portraits, are pleas'd with their own. Say, where has our poet this malady caught? Or wherefore his characters thus without fault? Say, was it that, vainly directing his view To find out men's virtues, and finding them few, Quite fick of pursuing each troublesome elf, He grew lazy at last, and drew froin himself?

Here Douglas(s) retires from his toils to relax, The scourge of impostors, the terror of quacks: Come, all ye quack-bards, and ye quacking divines, Come, and danceon the spot where your tyrant reclines: When satire and censure encircled his throne, I fear'd for your safety—I fear’d for my own; But now he is gone, and we want a detector, QurDodds(t)hall be pious,our Kenricks(u)thall lecture;

(1) Vide page 63.
(s) Ibid.
(t) The Rev. Dr. Dodd.

(6) Dr. Kenrick, who read lectures at the Devil Tavern, under the title of " The School of Shakespeare."

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

Macpherson(x) write bombast, and call it a style;
Our Townshend make speeches,and I shall compile;
NewLauders and Bowers(z)the Tweed shall cross over,
No countryman living their tricks to discover;
Detection her taper shall quench to a spark,
And Scotchman meet Scotchman, and cheat in the dark.

Here lies David Garrick, describe me who can,
An abridgment of all that was pleasant in man;
As an actor, confess'd without rival to shine-
As a wit, if not first, in the very first line;
Yet, with talents like these, and an excellent heart,
The man had his failings-a dupe to his art :
Like an ill-judging beauty, his colours he spread,
And beplaster'd with rouge his own natural red:
On the stage he was natural, simple, affecting-
'Twas only that when he was off he was acting.
With no reason on earth to go out of his way,
He turn'd and he varied full ten times a day-
Tho' secure of our hearts, yet confoundedly fick,
If they were not his own by finelling and trick,
He cast off his friends, as a huntsman his pack,
Forheknew when he pleas'd he couldwhistlethem back.
Of praise, a mere glutton, he swallow'd what came,
And the puff of a dunce, he mistook it for fame;
Till his relish, grown callous almost to disease,
Who pepper'd the highest, was surest to please.
But let us be candid, and speak out our mind-
If dunces applauded, he paid them in kind :

(x) James Macpherson, esq. who, from the mere force of his style, wrote down the first poet of all antiquity. (y) Vide page 64.

(2) Vide page 63.

« ПредишнаНапред »