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Angels, and Men, astonish'd, pause – and dread 385 To travel thro' the Depths of Providence,

Untry'd, unbounded. Ye vain Learned ! see,
And, prostrate in the Dust, adore that Power,
And Goodness, oft arraign'd. See now the Cause,

Why conscious Worth, oppress'd, in secret long 390 Mourn'd, unregarded: Why the Good Man's Share

In Life, was Gall, and Bitterness of Soul:
Why the lone Widow and her Orphans, pin'd,
In starving Solitude; while Luxury,

In Palaces, lay prompting her low Thought, 395 To form unreal Wants: why Heaven-born Faith,

And Charity, prime Grace! wore the red Marks Of Persecution's Scourge: Why licens'd Pain, That cruel Spoiler, that embosom'd Foe,

Imbitter'd all our Bliss. Ye Good Distrest! 400 Ye Noble Few! that, here, unbending, stand

Beneath Life's Pressures ... yet a little while,
And all your Woes are past. Time swiftly fleets,
And wish'd Eternity, approaching, brings

Life undecaying, Love without Allay,
405 Pure flowing Joy, and Happiness sincere.


Text (C) = ed. 1730, 4to. The variations from B are indicated by means of italics. D = ed. 1730, 8vo. The MS. notes were made on

the latter text.

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SEE Winter comes, to rule the varied year,
Sullen, and sad, with all his rising train,
Vapours, and Clouds, and Storms. Be these my theme.
These, that exalt the soul to solemn thought,
5 And heavenly musing. Welcome, kindred glooms!
Cogenial horrors, hail! With frequent foot,
Pleas'd have I, in my chearful morn of life,
When nurs'd by careless Solitude I liv'd,

And sung of Nature with unceasing joy,
10 Pleas'd have I wander'd thro' your rough domain ;

Trod the pure virgin-snows, my self as pure;
Heard the winds roar, and the big torrent burst;
Or seen the deep, fermenting tempest brew'd

In the red evening-sky. Thus pass'd the time,
15 Till thro' the lucid chambers of the south
Look'd out the joyous Spring: look'd out, and smild.
To thee, the patron of her first essay,

B- D17 The muse, O Wilmington! renews her song.

Since has she rounded the revolving Year: 20 Skim'd the gay Spring; on eagle-pinions borne,

Attempted thro' the Summer-blaze to rise;

MS 14 red] pale T


Teact (E): ed. 1744. (Variations from D in italics.) F ed. 1746.

The numbering of the lines in E and F is the same.


SEE, Winter comes, to rule the vary'd Year, Sullen, and sad, with all his rising Train; Vapours, and Clouds, and Storms. Be these my Theme, These, that exalt the Soul to solemn Thought, And heavenly Musing. Welcome, kindred Glooms! Cogenial Horrors, hail! with frequent Foot, Pleas'd have I, in my chearful Morn of Life, When nurs'd by careless Solitude I liv’d,

And sung of Nature with unceasing Joy,
10 Pleas'd have I wander'd thro' your rough Domain;

Trod the pure Virgin-Snows, myself as pure;
Heard the Winds roar, and the big Torrent burst;
Or seen the deep fermenting Tempest brew'd,

In the grim Evening-Sky. Thus pass'd the Time, 15 Till tbro' the lucid Chambers of the South

Look'd out the joyous Spring, look'd out, and smil'd.

To Thee, the Patron of her first Essay, The Muse, O Wilmington! renews her Song.

Since has she rounded the revolving Year: 20 Skim'd the gay Spring; on Eagle-Pinions borne,

Attempted thro' the Summer-Blaze to rise;

F 17 her ] this

Then swept o’er Autumn with the shadowy gale;
And now among the wintry clouds again,

Roll'd in the doubling storm, she tries to soar; 25 To swell her note with all the rushing winds;

To suit her sounding cadence to the floods;
As is her theme, her numbers wildly great:
Thrice happy! could she fill thy judging ear

With bold description, and with manly thought. 30 For thee the Graces smooth; thy softer thoughts

The Muses tune; nor art thou skill'd alone
In awful schemes, the management of states,
And how to make a mighty people thrive:

But equal goodness; sound integrity; 35 A firm, unshaken, uncorrupted soul,

Amid a sliding age; and burning strong,
Not vainly blazing, for thy country's weal,
A steady spirit, regularly free;

These, each exalting each, the statesman light 40 Into the patriot; and, the publick hope

And eye to thee converting, bid the muse
Record what envy dares not flattery call.

When Scorpió gives to Capricorn the sway,
And fierce Aquarius fouls th' inverted year;
45 Retiring to the verge of heaven, the sun

Scarce spreads o'er æther the dejected day.
Faint are his gleams; and ineffectual shoot
His struggling rays, in horizontal lines,

Thro' the thick air; as at dull distance seen,
50 Weak, wan, and broad, he skirts the southern sky;

And, soon descending, to the long dark night,
Wide-shading all, the prostrate world resigns.
Nor is the night unwish’d; while vital heat,
Light, life, and joy the dubious day forsake.

B- D43

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