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Thus while he ftrives to pleafe, he's forc'd to do 't,
Like Volfcius, hip-hop, in a fingle boot.
Criticks, he knows, for this may damn his books:
But he makes feafts for friends, and not for cooks.
Though errant-knights of late no favour find,
Sure you will be to ladies-errant kind.
To follow fame, knights-errant make profeffion
We damfels fly, to fave our reputation:
So they, their valour fhow; we, our difcretion.
To lands of monsters and fierce beasts they go :
We to those islands where rich husbands grow:
Though they're no monsters, we may make them fo.
If they're of English growth, they'll bear 't with
But fave us from a spouse of Oroonoko's nations!
Then bless your stars, you happy London wives,
Who love at large, each day, yet keep your lives :
Nor envy poor Imoinda's doating blindness,
Who thought her husband kill'd her out of kindness.
Death with a husband ne'er had fhewn fuch charms,
Had the once died within a lover's arms.
Her error was from ignorance proceeding:
Poor foul! fhe wanted fome of our town-breeding!
Forgive this Indian's fondness of her spouse;
Their law no chriftian liberty allows :
Alas! they make a confcience of their vows!
If virtue in a heathen be a fault;
Then damn the heathen school where she was taught. She might have learn'd to cuckold, jilt, and fham, Had Covent-Garden been in Surinam.
A COMEDY, WRITTEN BY MR. J. DRYDEN, JUN.
has been remarkable two ways,
For blooming poets, and for blafted plays s
We've been by much appearing plenty mock'd,
At once both tantaliz'd and over-ftock'd.
Our authors too, by their success of late,
Begin to think third-days are out of date.
What can the caufe be, that our plays won't keep
Unless they have a rot fome years like sheep?
For our parts, we confefs, we 're quite afham'd,
To read fuch weekly bills of poets damn'd.
Each parifh knows 'tis but a mournful cafe
When chriftenings fall, and funerals increase.
Thus 'tis, and thus 'twill be when we are dead,
There will be writers which will ne'er be read.
Why will you be fuch wits, and write fuch things?
You're willing to be wafps, but want the stings.
Let not your fpleen provoke you to that height,
'Odslife you don't know what you do, firs, when you
You'll find that Pegafus has tricks, when try'd,
Though you make nothing on 't, but up and ride;
Ladies and all, I'faith, now get aftride.
Contriving characters, and fcenes, and plots,
Is grown as common now, as knitting knots:
With the fame eafe, and negligence of thought,
The charming play is writ, and fringe is wrought.
Though this be frightful, yet we're more afraid,
When ladies leave, that beaux will take the trade :
Thus far 'tis well enough, if here 'twould stop,
But fhould they write, we muft e'en fhut up shop.
How fhall we make this mode of writing fink?
A mode, faid I? 'tis a difeafe, I think,
A ftubborn tetter that 's not cur'd with ink.
For ftill it fpreads, 'till each th' infection takes,
And feizes ten, for one that it forfakes.
Our play to-day is fprung from none of these;
Nor fhould you damn it, though it does not please,
Since born without the bounds of your four feas.
For if you grant no favour as 'tis new,
Yet as a stranger, there is fomething due:
From Rome (to try its fate) this play was fent ;
Start not at Rome! for there's no popery meant ;
Though there the poet may his dwelling chufe,
Yet ftill he knows his country claims his Muse.
Hither an offering his first-born he fends,
Whofe good, or ill fuccefs, on you depends.
Yet he has hope fome kindness may be shown,
As due to greater merit than his own,
And begs the fire may for the son atone.
There's his last refuge, if the play don't take,
Yet fpare young Dryden for his father's fake.
HERE's a young fellow here-an actor-Powell—
One whose person, perhaps, you all may know well;
And he has writ a play---this very play
Which you are all come here to fee, to-day;
And fo, it being an ufual thing, to speak
Something or other, for the author's fake,
Before the play (in hopes to make it take)
I'm come, being his friend and fellow-player,
To fay what (if you please) you 're like to hear.
First know, that favour which I'd fain have shown,
I afk not for, in his name, but my own;
For, without vanity, I'm better known.
Mean time then, let me beg you would forbear
Your cat-calls, and the inftruments of war.
For mercy, mercy, at your feet we fall,
Before your roaring gods deftroy us all!
I'll fpeak with words sweet as diftilling honey,
With words---as if I meant to borrow money;
Fair, gentle firs, most soft alluring beaux,
Think 'tis a lady, that for pity fues..
Bright ladies---but to gain the ladies grace,
I think I need no more than fhew my face.
Next then, you authors, be not you fevere;
Why, what a fwarm of fcribblers have we here!
One, two, three, four, five, fix, feven, eight, nine, ten,
All in one row, and brothers of the pen.
All would be poets; well, your favour's due
To this day's author, for he 's one of you.
Among the few which are of noted fame,
I'm fafe; for I myself am one of them.
You've seen me fmoak at Will's among the wits;
I'm witty too, as they are---that's by fits.
Now, you, our city friends, who hither come
By three o'clock, to make fure elbow-room:
While spouse, tuckt-up, does in her pattens trudge it,
With handkerchief of prog, like trull with budget,
And here, by turns, you eat plumb-cake and judge it;
Pray be you kind, let me your grace importune,
Or elfe---egad, I'll tell you
Well now, I have but one thing more to say,
And that's in reference to our third day;
An odd request---may be you 'll think it so;
Pray come, whether you like the play or no :
And if you'll stay, we shall be glad to see you,
If not---leave your half-crowns, and peace be wi' you!