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And as he fill'd the reeking vase,
Let fly a rouser in her face.
The little Cupids hov'ring round,
(As pictures prove), with garlands crown'd,
Abaih'd at what they saw and heard,
Flew off, nor ever more appear’d.
Adieu to ravishing delights,
High raptures, and romantic flights ;
To goddesses so heav'nly sweet,
Expiring shepherds at their feet;
To silver meads and shady bow'rs,
Dress'd up with amaranthine flow'rs.
How great a change! how quickly made!
They learn to call a spade a spade.
They soon from all constraint are freed';
Can see each other do their need,
On box of cedar fits the wife,
And makes it warm for dearest life;
And, by the beastly way of thinking,
Find great society in stinking,
Now Strephon daily entertains
His Chloe in the homeli'st strains ;
And Chloe, more experience'd grown,
With int'rest pays him back his own.
No maid at court less asham'd
Howe'er for selling bargains fam'd,
Than she, to name her parts behind,
Or when abed to let out wind.
Fair Decency, celestial maid,
Descend from heav'n to beauty's aid ;
Though Beauty may beget desire,
'Tis thou must fan the lover's fire ;
For Beauty like supreme dominion,
Is best supported by Opinion :
If Decency bring no fupplies,
Opinion falls, and Beauty dies.
To fee fome radient nymph appear
In all her glittring birth-day gear,
You think some goddess from the sky
Descended, ready cut and dry :
But ere you sell yourself to laughter,
Consider well what may come after ;
For fine ideas vanish fast,
While all the gross and filthy laft.
O Strephon, ere that fatal day
When Chloe stole your heart away,
Had you but through a cranny spy'd
On house of ease your future bride,
In all the postures of her face,
Which nature gives in such a case ;
Distortions, groanings, strainings, heavings,
'Twere better you had lick'd her leavings,
Than from experience find too late
Your goddess grown a filthy mate.
Your fancy then had always dwelt
On what you saw, and what you smelt;
Would still the same ideas give ye,
As when you spy'd her on the privy.
And, 'spite of Chloe's charms divine,
Your heart had been as whole as mine.
Authorities, both old and recent,
Direct that women must be decent;
And from the spouse each blemish hide,
More than from all the world beside *.
* If virtue, as fume writers pretend, be that which produces happiness, it must be granted that to practise decency is a moral obligaii. on; and if virtue confifts in obedience to a law, as the nuptial laws injoin both parties to avoid offence, decency will still be duty, and the breach of it will incur some degree of guilt.
Unjustly all our nymphs complain
Their empire holds so thurt a reign ;
Is after marriage loft fo foon,
It hardly holds the honey-moon:
For if they keep not what they caught,
It is entirely their own fault.
They take poffeffion of the crown,
And then throw all their weapons
Though, by the politicians icheme,
Whoe'er arrives at pow'r fupreme,
Those arts by which at first they gain it,
They still must practise to maintain it.
What various ways our females take
To pass for wits before a rake?
And in the fruitless search pursue
All other methods but the true.
Some try to learn polite behaviour
By reading books against their Saviour :
Some call it witty to reflect
On ev'ry natural defect :
Some shew they never want explaining
To comprehend a double meaning.
But sure a tell-tale out of school
Is of all wits the greatest fool:
Whofe rank iinagination fills
Her heart, and from her lips distils ;
You'd think she utter'd from behind,
Or at her mouth was breaking wind.
Why is a handsome wife ador'd
Ry ev'ry coxcomb but her lord ?
From yonder puppet-man inquire,
Who wisely hides his wood and wire;
Shew's Sheba's queen completely drest,
And Solomon in royal veft ;
But view them litter'd on the floor,
Or ftrung on pegs behind the door ;
Punch is exactly of a piece
With Lorrain's Duke, and Prince of Greece *.
A prudent builder should forecast
How long the stuff is like to last ;
And carefully observe the ground
To build on some fonndation found :
What house, when its materials crumble,
Must not inevitably tumble ?
What edifice can long endure
Rais'd on a basis unsecure ?
Rash mortals, ere you take a wife,
Contrive your pile to last for life:
Since beauty scarce endures a day,
And youth fo fwiftly glides away ;
Why will you make yourself a bubble,
To build on sand with hay and stubble ?
On senfe and wit your passion found,
By decency cemented round ;
Let prudence with good nature strive
To keep esteem and love alive.
Then come old age whene'er it will,
Your friendship shall continue still :
And thus a mutual gentle fire
Shall never but with life expire.
APOLLO; or, A PROBLEM folved.
Written in the year 1731.
A Pollo, god of light and wit,
Could verse inspire, but feldom writ;
* For the same reason many an handsome wife is neglected for an homely mistress, who better knows her interest, and confiders love as her trade.
Refin'd all metals with his looks,
As well as chymifts by their books :
As handsome as my lady's page ;
Sweet five and twenty was his age.
His wig was made of funny rays,
He crown'd his youthful head with bays :
Not all the court of heav'n could show
So nice and fo complete a beau.
his first appearance,
With twenty-thousand pounds a-year rents,
E'er drove, before he fold his land,
So fine a coach along tbe strand;
The spokes, we are by Ovid told,
Were silver, and the axle gold.
(I own, 'twas but a coach and four,
For Jupiter allows no more).
Yet with his beauty, wealth, and parts,
Enough to win ten thousand hearts,
No vulgar deity above
Was so unfortunate in love.
Three weighty causes were assign’d,
That mov'd the nymphs to be unkind.
Nine mufes always waiting round him,
He left them virgins as he found 'em.
His finging was another fault;
For he could reach to B in alt:
And, by the sentiments of Pliny,
Such fingers are like Nicolini *.
At last the point was fully clear’d:
In short Apollo had no beard.