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Loaded and bleft with all the affluent ftore,
Which human vows at fmoaking shrines implore;
My life fubfervient only to thy joy ;
And at my death to bless thy kindness shown
To her, who of mankind could love but thee alone.
WHILE thus the conftant pair alternate faid,
The Queen of Beauty ftopt her bridled doves;
Now, Mars, fe faid, let Fame exalt her voice:
The fwift-wing'd power fhall take her trump again,
The British foldier from his high command
Renown'd for truth, let all thy fons appear;
Thy gentle rays and kindest influence smile,
Be fet afide; and, in the fofteft lays
Of thy poetic fons, be folemn praise
To the true Lover, and the Nut-brown Maid.
A N O D E,
Humbly infcribed to the QUEEN,
Glorious Succefs of her MAJESTY's Arms, 1706..
Written in Imitation of SPENSER'S Style.
"Te non paventis funera Galliæ,
"Te cæde gaudentes Sicambri
PRE FAC E.
HEN I first thought of writing upon this occa fion, I found the ideas fo great and numerous, that I judged them more proper for the warmth of anOde, than for any other fort of poetry: I therefore fet Horace before me for a pattern, and particularly his famous ode, the fourth of the fourth book,
"Qualem miniftrum fulminis alitem, &c."
which he wrote in praise of Drufus after his expedition into Germany, and of Auguftus upon his happy choice of that general. And in the following poem, though I have endeavoured to imitate all the great ftrokes of
that ode, I have taken the liberty to go off from it, and to add variously, as the fubject and my own imagination carried me. As to the style, the choice I made of following the ode in Latin determined me in English to the ftanza; and herein it was impoffible not to have a mind to follow our great countryman Spenfer; which I have done (as well at leaft as I could) in the manner of my expreffion, and the turn of my number : having only added one verfe to his ftanza, which I thought made the number more harmonious; and avoided fuch of his words as I found too obfolete. I have however retained fome few of them, to make the colouring look more like Spenfer's. Beheft, command; band, army; prowess, ftrength; I weet, I know; I ween, I think; whilom, heretofore; and two or three more of that kind, which I hope the ladies will pardon me, and not judge my Mufe lefs handfome, though for once the appears in a farthingale. I have alfo, in Spenfer's manner, ufed Cæfar for the emperor, Boya for Bavaria, Bavar for that prince, Ifter for Danube, Iberia for Spain, &c.
That noble part of the Ode which I just now mentioned,
"Gens, quæ cremato fortis ab Ilio
Jactata Tufcis æquoribus, &c."
where Horace praifes the Romans as being defcended from Æneas, I have turned to the honour of the British nation, defcended from Brute, likewise a Trojan. That this Brute, fourth or fifth from Æneas, fettled in
England, and built London, which is called Troja Nova, or Troynovante, is a story which (I think) owes its original, if not to Geoffry of Monmouth, at leaft to the Monkish writers; yet is not rejected by our great Camden; and is told by Milton, as if (at least) he was pleased with it, though poffibly he does not believe it however it carries a poetical authority, which is fufficient for our purpose. It is as certain that Brute came into England, as that Æneas went into Italy; and upon the fuppofition of these facts, Virgil wrote the best poem that the world ever read, and Spenfer paid queen Elizabeth the greatest compliment. I need not obviate one piece of criticism, that I bring my hero
"From burning Troy, and Xanthus red with blood :"whereas he was not born, when that city was deftroyed. Virgil, in the cafe of his own Æneas relating to Dido, will ftand as a fufficient proof, that a man in his poetical capacity is not accountable for a little fault in chronology.
My two great examples, Horace and Spenfer, in many things refemble each other: both have a height of imagination, and a majefty of expreffion in defcribing the fublime; and both know to temper those talents, and sweeten the defcription, fo as to make it lovely as well as pompous: both have equally that agreeable manner of mixing morality with their story, and that Curiofa Felicitas in the choice of their diction, which every writer aims at, and fo very few have reached ::