The following sections of this BookRags Literature Study Guide is offprint from Gale's For Students Series: Presenting Analysis, Context, and Criticism on Commonly Studied Works: Introduction, Author Biography, Plot Summary, Characters, Themes, Style, Historical Context, Critical Overview, Criticism and Critical Essays, Media Adaptations, Topics for Further Study, Compare & Contrast, What Do I Read Next?, For Further Study, and Sources.
(c)1998-2002; (c)2002 by Gale. Gale is an imprint of The Gale Group, Inc., a division of Thomson Learning, Inc. Gale and Design and Thomson Learning are trademarks used herein under license.
The following sections, if they exist, are offprint from Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction: "Social Concerns", "Thematic Overview", "Techniques", "Literary Precedents", "Key Questions", "Related Titles", "Adaptations", "Related Web Sites". (c)1994-2005, by Walton Beacham.
The following sections, if they exist, are offprint from Beacham's Guide to Literature for Young Adults: "About the Author", "Overview", "Setting", "Literary Qualities", "Social Sensitivity", "Topics for Discussion", "Ideas for Reports and Papers". (c)1994-2005, by Walton Beacham.
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|Table of Contents|
|Start of eBook||1|
|PROLOGUES AND EPILOGUE:—||3|
|EPIGRAMS, EPITAPHS, AND FRAGMENTS:—||3|
|POEMS UPON SEVERAL OCCASIONS.||3|
|THE POETICAL WORKS||4|
|OF HIS MAJESTY’S RECEIVING THE NEWS OF THE DUKE OF BUCKINGHAM’S||7|
|ON THE TAKING OF SALLE.||8|
|UPON HIS MAJESTY’S REPAIRING OF ST PAUL’S.||9|
|THE COUNTESS OF CARLISLE IN MOURNING.||10|
|IN ANSWER TO ONE WHO WRIT A LIBEL AGAINST THE COUNTESS OF CARLISLE.||11|
|OF HER CHAMBER.||11|
|ON MY LADY DOROTHY SIDNEY’S PICTURE.||12|
|OF THE LADY WHO CAN SLEEP WHEN SHE PLEASES.||13|
|OF THE MISREPORT OF HER BEING PAINTED.||14|
|OF HER PASSING THROUGH A CROWD OF PEOPLE.||14|
|THE STORY OF PHOEBUS AND DAPHNE, APPLIED.||15|
|ON THE FRIENDSHIP BETWIXT SACCHARISSA AND AMORET.||15|
|THE BATTLE OF THE SUMMER ISLANDS.||16|
|OF THE QUEEN.||20|
|A LA MALADE.||23|
|UPON THE DEATH OF MY LADY RICH.||23|
|FOR DRINKING OF HEALTHS.||26|
|OF MY LADY ISABELLA, PLAYING ON THE LUTE.||26|
|OF MRS ARDEN.||26|
|OF THE MARRIAGE OF THE DWARFS.||27|
|FROM A CHILD.||27|
|ON A GIRDLE.||28|
|ON THE DISCOVERY OF A LADY’S PAINTING.||29|
|OF LOVING AT FIRST SIGHT.||29|
|ON THE HEAD OF A STAG.||33|
|IN ANSWER OF SIR JOHN SUCKLING’S VERSES.||34|
|AN APOLOGY FOR HAVING LOVED BEFORE.||35|
|OF A WAR WITH SPAIN, AND FIGHT AT SEA.||37|
|UPON THE DEATH OF THE LORD PROTECTOR.||39|
|ON ST JAMES’S PARK, AS LATELY IMPROVED BY HIS MAJESTY.||39|
|UPON HER MAJESTY’S NEW BUILDINGS AT SOMERSET HOUSE.||42|
|OF A TREE CUT IN PAPER.||43|
|OF ENGLISH VERSE.||49|
|THESE VERSES WERE WRIT IN THE TASSO OF HER ROYAL HIGHNESS.||50|
|THE TRIPLE COMBAT.||50|
|UPON OUR LATE LOSS OF THE DUKE OF CAMBRIDGE.||51|
|OF THE LADY MARY, PRINCESS OF ORANGE.||51|
|UPON BEN JONSON.||52|
|ON MR JOHN FLETCHER’S PLAYS.||52|
|OF AN ELEGY MADE BY MRS WHARTON ON THE EARL OF ROCHESTER.||55|
|OF HER MAJESTY, ON NEW-YEAR’S DAY, 1683.||55|
|OF TEA, COMMENDED BY HER MAJESTY.||55|
|OF THE INVASION AND DEFEAT OF THE TURKS, IN THE YEAR 1683.||55|
|THE COUNTRY TO MY LADY CARLISLE.||59|
|TO THE QUEEN-MOTHER OF FRANCE, UPON HER LANDING.||60|
|TO MY LORD OF LEICESTER.||61|
|TO MRS BRAUGHTON, SERVANT TO SACCHARISSA.||62|
|TO MY YOUNG LADY LUCY SIDNEY.||62|
|TO MY LORD OF FALKLAND.||64|
|TO MY LORD NORTHUMBERLAND, UPON THE DEATH OF HIS LADY.||64|
|TO MY LORD ADMIRAL, OF HIS LATE SICKNESS AND RECOVERY.||65|
|TO THE QUEEN, OCCASIONED UPON SIGHT OF HER MAJESTY’S PICTURE.||66|
|TO MY WORTHY FRIEND, MR WASE, THE TRANSLATOR OF GRATIUS.||69|
|TO A FRIEND, ON THE DIFFERENT SUCCESS OF THEIR LOVES.||69|
|TO A FAIR LADY, PLAYING WITH A SNAKE.||72|
|TO THE MUTABLE FAIR.||73|
|TO A LADY IN RETIREMENT.||75|
|TO THE KING.||80|
|PEACE, BABBLING MUSE!||82|
|BEHOLD THE BRAND OF BEAUTY TOSS’D!||83|
|WHILE I LISTEN TO THY VOICE.||83|
|GO, LOVELY ROSE!||84|
|PROLOGUES AND EPILOGUES.||85|
|PROLOGUE TO THE ’MAID’S TRAGEDY.’||85|
|EPIGRAMS, EPITAPHS, AND FRAGMENTS.||86|
|OF A LADY WHO WRIT IN PRAISE OF MIRA.||86|
|TO ONE MARRIED TO AN OLD MAN.||87|
|AN EPIGRAM ON A PAINTED LADY WITH ILL TEETH.||87|
|EPIGRAM UPON THE GOLDEN MEDAL.||87|
|WRITTEN ON A CARD THAT HER MAJESTY TORE AT OMBRE.||87|
|LONG AND SHORT LIFE.||87|
|TRANSLATED OUT OF SPANISH.||87|
|TRANSLATED OUT OF FRENCH.||88|
|ON THE STATUE OF KING CHARLES I., AT CHARING CROSS, IN THE YEAR 1674.||88|
|EPITAPH ON SIR GEORGE SPEKE.||88|
|EPITAPH ON COLONEL CHARLES CAVENDISH.||89|
|EPITAPH ON THE LADY SEDLEY.||90|
|SOME REFLECTIONS OF HIS UPON THE SEVERAL PETITIONS IN THE SAME PRAYER.||101|
|ON THE FOREGOING DIVINE POEMS.||102|
|END OF WALLER’S POEMS.||102|
|LIFE OF SIR JOHN DENHAM.||102|
|DENHAM’S POETICAL WORKS.||109|
|THE DESTRUCTION OF TROY.||116|
|ON THE EARL OF STRAFFORD’S TRIAL AND DEATH.||125|
|ON MY LORD CROFT’S AND MY JOURNEY INTO POLAND,||126|
|TO SIR JOHN MENNIS,||127|
|SARPEDON’S SPEECH TO GLAUCUS, IN THE TWELFTH BOOK OF HOMER.||128|
|A SPEECH AGAINST PEACE AT THE CLOSE COMMITTEE.||132|
|A WESTERN WONDER.||134|
|A SECOND WESTERN WONDER.||135|
|ON MR JOHN FLETCHER’S WORKS.||135|
|AN OCCASIONAL IMITATION OF A MODERN AUTHOR UPON THE GAME OF CHESS.||137|
|THE PASSION OF DIDO FOR AENEAS.||138|
|THE PROGRESS OF LEARNING.||149|
|ELEGY ON THE DEATH OF HENRY LORD HASTINGS, 1650.||152|
|OF OLD AGE.||153|
|THE FIRST PART.||155|
|THE SECOND PART.||158|
|THE THIRD PART.||161|
|THE FOURTH PART.||165|
|END OF DENHAM’S POETICAL WORKS.||170|
Of the Danger His Majesty (being Prince) Escaped in
the Road at St
Of His Majesty’s receiving the News of the Duke of Buckingham’s Death
On the Taking of Salle
Upon His Majesty’s Repairing of St. Paul’s
The Countess of Carlisle in Mourning
In Answer to One who writ a Libel against the Countess of Carlisle
Of her Chamber
On my Lady Dorothy Sidney’s Picture
Of the Lady who can Sleep when she Pleases
Of the Misreport of her being Painted
Of her Passing through a Crowd of People
The Story of Phoebus and Daphne, applied
On the Friendship betwixt Saccharissa and Amoret
The Battle of the Summer Islands
Of the Queen
The Apology of Sleep, for not Approaching the Lady who can do anything but Sleep when she Pleases
A La Malade
Upon the Death of my Lady Rich
For Drinking of Healths
Of my Lady Isabella, Playing on the Lute
Of Mrs. Arden
Of the Marriage of the Dwarfs
From a Child
On a Girdle
On the Discovery of a Lady’s Painting
Of Loving at First Sight
A Panegyric to my Lord Protector, of the Present Greatness,
Interest, of His Highness, and this Nation
On the Head of a Stag
The Miser’s Speech, in a Masque
Chloris and Hylas, made to a Saraband
In Answer of Sir John Suckling’s Verses
An Apology for having Loved Before
The Night-Piece; or, a Picture Drawn in the Dark
On the Picture of a Fair Youth, Taken after he was Dead
On a Brede of Divers Colours, Woven by Four Ladies
Of a War with Spain, and Fight at Sea
Upon the Death of the Lord Protector
On St. James’s Park, as lately Improved by His Majesty
Of Her Royal Highness, Mother to the Prince of Orange;
and of her
Portrait, Written by the Late Duchess of York, while she Lived with her
Upon Her Majesty’s New Buildings at Somerset House
Of a Tree Cut in Paper
Verses to Dr. George Rogers, on his Taking the Degree of Doctor of Physic at Padua, in the Year 1664
Instructions to a Painter, for the Drawing of the Posture and Progress of His Majesty’s Forces at Sea, under the Command of His Highness-Royal; together with the Battle and Victory obtained over the Dutch, June 3, 1665
Of English Verse
These Verses were Writ in the Tasso of Her Royal Highness
The Triple Combat
Upon our Late Loss of the Duke of Cambridge
Of the Lady Mary, Princess of Orange
Upon Ben Johnson
On Mr. John Fletcher’s Plays
Upon the Earl of Roscommon’s Translation of Horace, ‘De Arte Poetica;’ and of the Use of Poetry
On the Duke of Monmouth’s Expedition into Scotland
in the Summer
Of an Elegy made by Mrs. Wharton on the Earl of Rochester
Of Her Majesty, on New-Year’s Day, 1683
Of Tea, Commended by Her Majesty
Of the Invasion and Defeat of the Turks, in the Year 1683
A Presage of the Ruin of the Turkish Empire; Presented
to His Majesty
King James II. on His Birthday
To the King, on His Navy
To Mr. Henry Lawes, who had then newly set a Song of mine in the Year 1635
The Country to my Lady Carlisle
To the Queen-Mother of France, upon Her Landing
To my Lord of Leicester
To Mrs. Braughton, Servant to Saccharissa
To my Young Lady Lucy Sydney
To my Lord of Falkland
To my Lord Northumberland, upon the Death of his Lady
Lord Admiral, of his late Sickness and Recovery
To the Queen, occasioned upon sight of Her Majesty’s Picture
To Sir William Davenant, upon his Two First Books of Gondibert
To my Worthy Friend, Mr. Wase, the Translator of Gratius
To a Friend, on the different Success of their Loves
To my Lady Morton, on New-Year’s Day, at the Louvre in Paris
To a Fair Lady, Playing with a Snake
To his Worthy Friend Master Evelyn, upon his Translation of ‘Lucretius.’
To his Worthy Friend Sir Thomas Higgons, upon his
Translation of ’The
To a Lady Singing a Song of his Composing
To the Mutable Fair
To a Lady, from whom he Received a Silver Pen
To a Lady in Retirement
To Mr. George Sandys, on his Translation of some Parts of the Bible
To the King, upon His Majesty’s Happy Return
To a Lady, from whom he Received the Copy of the Poem
entitled, ’Of a
Tree Cut in Paper,’ which for many years had been Lost
To the Queen, upon Her Majesty’s Birthday, after Her happy Recovery from a Dangerous Sickness
To Mr. Killigrew, upon his Altering his Play, ‘Pandora,’ from a Tragedy into a Comedy, because not Approved on the Stage
To a Person of Honour, upon his Incomparable, Incomprehensible Poem, entitled, ‘The British Princes,’
To a Friend of the Author, a Person of Honour, who
lately Writ a
Religious Book, entitled, ’Historical Applications, and Occasional
Meditations, upon several Subjects
To the Duchess of Orleans, when she was taking Leave
of the Court at
To the King
To the Duchess, when he Presented this Book to Her Royal Highness
To Mr. Creech, on his Translation of ‘Lucretius’
Peace, Babbling Muse
Behold the Brand of Beauty Toss’d
While I Listen to thy Voice
Go, Lovely Rose
Sung by Mrs. Knight to Her Majesty, on Her Birthday
Prologue for the Lady-Actors, Spoken before King Charles II
Prologue to the ‘Maid’s Tragedy’
Epilogue to the ‘Maid’s Tragedy,’ Spoken by the the King
Another Epilogue to the ‘Maid’s Tragedy,’
Designed upon the first
Alteration of the Play, when the King only was left Alive
Under a Lady’s Picture
Of a Lady who Writ in Praise of Mira
To One Married to an Old Man
An Epigram on a Painted Lady with ill Teeth
Epigram upon the Golden Medal
Written on a Card that Her Majesty tore at Ombre
To Mr. Granville (now Lord Lansdowne), on his Verses to King James II
Long and Short Life
Translated out of Spanish
Translated out of French
Some Verses of an Imperfect Copy, Designed for a Friend,
Translation of Ovid’s ‘Fasti’
On the Statue of King Charles I., at Charing Cross, in the Year 1674
Epitaph on Sir George Speke
Epitaph on Colonel Charles Cavendish
Epitaph on the Lady Sedley
Epitaph to be Written under the Latin Inscription upon the Tomb of the only Son of the Lord Andover
Of Divine Love
Of the Fear of God
Of Divine Poesy
On the Paraphrase of the Lord’s Prayer, Written by Mrs. Wharton
Some Reflections of his upon the Several Petitions in the same Prayer
On the Foregoing Divine Poems
LIFE OF SIR JOHN DENHAM
The Destruction of Troy, an Essay on the 2d Book of Virgil’s Eneis
On the Earl of Stafford’s Trial and Death
On my Lord Croft’s and my Journey into Poland
On Mr. Thomas Killigrew’s Return from Venice, and Mr. William Murrey’s from Scotland
To Sir John Mennis
Sarpedon’s Speech to Glaucus, in the Twelfth Book of Homer
Friendship and Single Life, against Love and Marriage
On Mr. Abraham Cowley, his Death, and Burial amongst the Ancient Poets
A Speech against Peace at the Close Committee
To the Five Members of the Honourable House of Commons,
Petition of the Poets
A Western Wonder
A Second Western Wonder
On Mr. John Fletcher’s Works
To Sir Richard Fanshaw, upon his Translation of ‘Pastor Fido’
To the Hon. Edward Howard, on ‘The British Princes’
An Occasional Imitation of a Modern Author upon the Game of Chess
The Passion of Dido for Aeneas
The Progress of Learning
Elegy on the Death of Helfry Lord Hastings, 1650
Of Old Age
WALLER’S POETICAL WORKS.
OF THE DANGER HIS MAJESTY [BEING PRINCE] ESCAPED IN THE ROAD AT ST ANDERO.
Now bad his Highness bid farewell to Spain,
And reach’d the sphere of his own power—the main;
With British bounty in his ship he feasts
Th’ Hesperian princes, his amazed guests,
To find that watery wilderness exceed
The entertainment of their great Madrid.
Healths to both kings, attended with the roar
Of cannons, echo’d from th’affrighted shore,
With loud resemblance of his thunder, prove
Bacchus the seed of cloud-compelling Jove; 10
While to his harp divine Arion sings
The loves and conquests of our Albion kings.
Of the Fourth Edward was his noble song,
Fierce, goodly, valiant, beautiful, and young;
He rent the crown from vanquish’d Henry’s head,
Raised the White Rose, and trampled on the Red;
Till love, triumphing o’er the victor’s pride,
Brought Mars and Warwick to the conquer’d side:
Neglected Warwick (whose bold hand, like Fate,
Gives and resumes the sceptre of our state) 20
Woos for his master; and with double shame,
Himself deluded, mocks the princely dame,
The Lady Bona, whom just anger burns,
And foreign war with civil rage returns.
Ah! spare your swords, where beauty is to blame;
Love gave th’affront, and must repair the same;
When France shall boast of her, whose conqu’ring eyes
Have made the best of English hearts their prize;
Have power to alter the decrees of Fate,
And change again the counsels of our state. 30
What the prophetic Muse intends, alone
To him that feels the secret wound is known.
With the sweet sound of this harmonious
The pale Iberians had expired with fear,
But that their wonder did divert their care,
To see the Prince with danger moved no more
Than with the pleasures of their court before; 80
Godlike his courage seem’d, whom nor delight
Could soften, nor the face of death affright.
Next to the power of making tempests cease,
Was in that storm to have so calm a peace.
Great Maro could no greater tempest feign,
When the loud winds usurping on the main,
For angry Juno labour’d to destroy
The hated relics of confounded Troy;
His bold Aeneas, on like billows toss’d
In a tall ship, and all his country lost, 90
Dissolves with fear; and both his hands upheld,
Proclaims them happy whom the Greeks had quell’d
From Cupid’s string, of many shafts that fled
Wing’d with those plumes which noble Fame had shed,
As through the wond’ring world she flew, and told
Of his adventures, haughty, brave, and bold,
Some had already touch’d the royal maid,
But Love’s first summons seldom are obey’d; 130
Light was the wound, the Prince’s care unknown,
She might not, would not, yet reveal her own.
His glorious name had so possess’d her ears,
That with delight those antique tales she hears
Of Jason, Theseus, and such worthies old,
As with his story best resemblance hold.
And now she views, as on the wall it hung,
What old Musaeus so divinely sung;
Which art with life and love did so inspire,
That she discerns and favours that desire, 140
Which there provokes th’advent’rous youth to swim,
And in Leander’s danger pities him;
Whose not new love alone, but fortune, seeks
To frame his story like that amorous Greek’s.
For from the stern of some good ship appears
A friendly light, which moderates their fears;
New courage from reviving hope they take,
And climbing o’er the waves that taper make,
On which the hope of all their lives depends,
As his on that fair Hero’s hand extends. 150
The ship at anchor, like a fixed rock,
Well sung the Roman bard, ’All human things
Of dearest value hang on slender strings.’
Oh, see the then sole hope, and, in design
Of Heaven, our joy, supported by a line!
Which for that instant was Heaven’s care above
The chain that’s fixed to the throne of Jove,
On which the fabric of our world depends;
One link dissolved, the whole creation ends. 170
 ‘St. Andero’: St. Andrews.
He had newly abandoned his suit
for the Infanta.—
 ‘Arion sings’: Alluding to the deliverance of Charles I., on his
return from Spain, from a violent storm in the Bay of Biscay,
 ‘Sort’: a company.  ‘Adventurous son’: Phaeton.  Henrietta, afterwards Queen.  Venus.
So earnest with thy God! can no new care,
No sense of danger, interrupt thy prayer?
The sacred wrestler, till a blessing given,
Quits not his hold, but halting conquers Heaven;
Nor was the stream of thy devotion stopp’d,
When from the body such a limb was lopp’d,
As to thy present state was no less maim,
Though thy wise choice has since repair’d the same.
Bold Homer durst not so great virtue feign
In his best pattern: of Patroclus slain, 10
With such amazement as weak mothers use,
And frantic gesture, he receives the news.
Yet fell his darling by th’impartial chance
Of war, imposed by royal Hector’s lance;
Thine, in full peace, and by a vulgar hand
Torn from thy bosom, left his high command.
The famous painter could allow no place
For private sorrow in a prince’s face:
Yet, that his piece might not exceed belief,
He cast a veil upon supposed grief. 20
’Twas want of such a precedent as this
Made the old heathen frame their gods amiss.
Their Phoebus should not act a fonder part
For the fair boy, than he did for his heart;
Nor blame for Hyacinthus’ fate his own,
That kept from him wish’d death, hadst thou been known.
He that with thine shall weigh good David’s
Shall find his passion, nor his love, exceeds: 28
He cursed the mountains where his brave friend died,
But let false Ziba with his heir divide;
Where thy immortal love to thy bless’d friends,
Like that of Heaven, upon their seed descends.
Such huge extremes inhabit thy great mind,
Godlike, unmoved, and yet, like woman, kind!
Which of the ancient poets had not brought
Our Charles’s pedigree from Heaven, and taught
How some bright dame, compress’d by mighty Jove,
Produced this mix’d Divinity and Love?
 ‘Buckingham’s death’: Buckingham
was murdered by Felton at
Portsmouth, on the 23d of August 1628, while equipping a fleet for
the relief of Rochelle. Lord Lindsey succeeded him. The king was at
prayers when the news arrived, and had the resolution to disguise
his emotion till they were over.
 ‘Pattern’: Achilles.
 ‘Painter’: Timanthes in his picture of Iphigenia.
 ‘Fair boy’: Cyparissus.
Of Jason, Theseus, and such worthies old,
Light seem the tales antiquity has told;
Such beasts and monsters as their force oppress’d,
Some places only, and some times, infest.
Salle, that scorn’d all power and laws of men,
Goods with their owners hurrying to their den,
And future ages threat’ning with a rude
And savage race, successively renew’d;
Their king despising with rebellious pride,
And foes profess’d to all the world beside; 10
This pest of mankind gives our hero fame,
And through the obliged world dilates his name.
The prophet once to cruel Agag said,
’As thy fierce sword has mothers childless made,
So shall the sword make thine;’ and with that word
He hew’d the man in pieces with his sword.
Just Charles like measure has return’d to these
Whose Pagan hands had stain’d the troubled seas;
With ships they made the spoiled merchant mourn;
With ships their city and themselves are torn.
One squadron of our winged castles sent,
O’erthrew their fort, and all their navy rent;
For, not content the dangers to increase,
And act the part of tempests in the seas,
Like hungry wolves, those pirates from our shore
Whole flocks of sheep, and ravish’d cattle bore.
Safely they might on other nations prey—
Fools to provoke the sovereign of the sea!
Mad Cacus so, whom like ill fate persuades,
The herd of fair Alcmena’s seed invades, 30
Who for revenge, and mortals’ glad relief,
Sack’d the dark cave and crush’d that horrid thief.
Morocco’s monarch, wond’ring at this fact,
Save that his presence his affairs exact,
Had come in person to have seen and known
The injured world’s revenger and his own.
Hither he sends the chief among his peers,
Who in his bark proportion’d presents bears,
To the renown’d for piety and force,
Poor captives manumised, and matchless horse. 40
 ‘Salle’: Salle, a town of Fez,
given to piracy, was taken and
destroyed in 1632 by the army of the Emperor of Morocco, assisted by
some English vessels.
 ‘Horse’: the Emperor of Morocco, in gratitude to Charles, sent him a
present of Barbary horses, and three hundred manumitted Christian
That shipwreck’d vessel which th’Apostle
Scarce suffer’d more upon Melita’s shore,
Than did his temple in the sea of time,
Our nation’s glory, and our nation’s crime.
When the first monarch of this happy isle,
Moved with the ruin of so brave a pile,
This work of cost and piety begun,
To be accomplish’d by his glorious son,
Who all that came within the ample thought
Of his wise sire has to perfection brought; 10
He, like Amphion, makes those quarries leap
Into fair figures from a confused heap;
For in his art of regiment is found
A power like that of harmony in sound.
Those antique minstrels, sure, were Charles-like kings,
Cities their lutes, and subjects’ hearts their strings,
On which with so divine a hand they strook,
Consent of motion from their breath they took:
So all our minds with his conspire to grace
The Gentiles’ great Apostle, and deface 20
Those state-obscuring sheds, that like a chain
Seem’d to confine and fetter him again;
Which the glad saint shakes off at his command,
As once the viper from his sacred hand:
So joys the aged oak, when we divide
The creeping ivy from his injured side.
Ambition rather would affect the fame
Of some new structure, to have borne her name.
Two distant virtues in one act we find,
The modesty and greatness of his mind; 30
Which, not content to be above the rage,
And injury of all-impairing age,
In its own worth secure, doth higher climb,
And things half swallow’d from the jaws of Time
Reduce; an earnest of his grand design,
To frame no new church, but the old refine;
Which, spouse-like, may with comely grace command,
More than by force of argument or hand.
For doubtful reason few can apprehend,
And war brings ruin where it should amend; 40
But beauty, with a bloodless conquest finds
A welcome sovereignty in rudest minds.
Not aught which Sheba’s wond’ring queen
Amongst the works of Solomon, excell’d
His ships and building; emblems of a heart
Large both in magnanimity and art.
While the propitious heavens this work attend,
Long-wanted showers they forget to send;
As if they meant to make it understood
Of more importance than our vital food. 50
The sun, which riseth to salute the quire
Already finished, setting shall admire
How private bounty could so far extend:
The King built all, but Charles the western end.
So proud a fabric to devotion given,
At once it threatens and obliges Heaven!
Laomedon, that had the gods in pay,
Neptune, with him that rules the sacred day,
Could no such structure raise: Troy wall’d so high,
Th’ Atrides might as well have forced the sky. 60
Glad, though amazed, are our neighbour kings,
To see such power employ’d in peaceful things;
They list not urge it to the dreadful field;
The task is easier to destroy than build.
... Sic gratia regum
Pieriis tentam modis...—HORACE.
 ‘St. Paul’s’: these repairs
commenced in the spring of 1633.  ‘Monarch’:
King James I.  ‘Western end’:
the western end, built at Charles’ own expense,
consisted of a splendid portico, built by Inigo Jones.
 ‘Sacred day’: Apollo.
When from black clouds no part of sky is clear,
But just so much as lets the sun appear,
Heaven then would seem thy image, and reflect
Those sable vestments, and that bright aspect.
A spark of virtue by the deepest shade
Of sad adversity is fairer made;
Nor less advantage doth thy beauty get,
A Venus rising from a sea of jet!
Such was th’appearance of new-formed light,
While yet it struggled with eternal night. 10
Then mourn no more, lest thou admit increase
Of glory by thy noble lord’s decease.
We find not that the laughter-loving dame
Mourn’d for Anchises; ’twas enough she came
To grace the mortal with her deathless bed,
And that his living eyes such beauty fed;
Had she been there, untimely joy, through all
Men’s hearts diffused, had marr’d the funeral.
Those eyes were made to banish grief: as well
Bright Phoebus might affect in shades to dwell, 20
As they to put on sorrow: nothing stands,
But power to grieve, exempt from thy commands.
If thou lament, thou must do so alone;
Grief in thy presence can lay hold on none.
Yet still persist the memory to love
Of that great Mercury of our mighty Jove,
Who, by the power of his enchanting tongue,
Swords from the hands of threat’ning monarchs wrung.
War he prevented, or soon made it cease, 29
Instructing princes in the arts of peace;
Such as made Sheba’s curious queen resort
To the large-hearted Hebrew’s famous court.
Had Homer sat amongst his wond’ring guests,
He might have learn’d at those stupendous feasts,
With greater bounty, and more sacred state,
The banquets of the gods to celebrate.
But oh! what elocution might he use,
What potent charms, that could so soon infuse
His absent master’s love into the heart
Of Henrietta! forcing her to part 40
From her loved brother, country, and the sun,
And, like Camilla, o’er the waves to run
Into his arms! while the Parisian dames
Mourn for the ravish’d glory; at her flames
No less amazed than the amazed stars,
When the bold charmer of Thessalia wars
With Heaven itself, and numbers does repeat,
Which call descending Cynthia from her seat.
 ‘Mourning’: Carlisle was a luxurious
liver, and died in 1636, poor,
but, like many spendthrifts, popular. He had represented Prince
Charles at his marriage with Princess Henrietta at Paris.
 ‘Dame’: Venus.
1 What fury has provoked thy wit to dare,
With Diomede, to wound the Queen of Love?
Thy mistress’ envy, or thine own despair?
Not the just Pallas in thy breast did move
So blind a rage, with such a diff’rent fate;
He honour won, where thou hast purchased hate.
2 She gave assistance to his Trojan foe;
Thou, that without a rival thou may’st love,
Dost to the beauty of this lady owe,
While after her the gazing world does move.
Canst thou not be content to love alone?
Or is thy mistress not content with one?
3 Hast thou not read of Fairy Arthur’s shield,
Which, but disclosed, amazed the weaker eyes
Of proudest foes, and won the doubtful field?
So shall thy rebel wit become her prize.
Should thy iambics swell into a book,
All were confuted with one radiant look.
4 Heaven he obliged that placed her in the skies;
Rewarding Phoebus, for inspiring so
His noble brain, by likening to those eyes
His joyful beams; but Phoebus is thy foe,
And neither aids thy fancy nor thy sight,
So ill thou rhym’st against so fair a light.
They taste of death that do at heaven arrive;
But we this paradise approach alive.
Instead of death, the dart of love does strike,
And renders all within these walls alike.
The high in titles, and the shepherd, here
Forgets his greatness, and forgets his fear.
All stand amazed, and gazing on the fair,
Lose thought of what themselves or others are;
Ambition lose, and have no other scope, 9
Save Carlisle’s favour, to employ their hope.
The Thracian could (though all those tales were true
The bold Greeks tell) no greater wonders do;
Before his feet so sheep and lions lay,
Fearless and wrathless while they heard him play.
The gay, the wise, the gallant, and the grave,
Subdued alike, all but one passion have;
No worthy mind but finds in hers there is
Something proportion’d to the rule of his;
While she with cheerful, but impartial grace,
(Born for no one, but to delight the race 20
Of men) like Phoebus so divides her light,
And warms us, that she stoops not from her height.
 ‘Thracian’: Orpheus.—
As lately I on silver Thames did ride,
Sad Galatea on the bank I spied;
Such was her look as sorrow taught to shine,
And thus she graced me with a voice divine.
You that can tune your sounding strings so well,
Of ladies’ beauties, and of love to tell,
Once change your note, and let your lute report
The justest grief that ever touch’d the Court.
Fair nymph! I have in your delights no share,
Nor ought to be concerned in your care;
Yet would I sing if I your sorrows knew,
And to my aid invoke no Muse but you.
Hear then, and let your song augment our grief,
Which is so great as not to wish relief.
She that had all which Nature gives, or Chance,
Whom Fortune join’d with Virtue to advance
To all the joys this island could afford,
The greatest mistress, and the kindest lord;
Who with the royal mix’d her noble blood,
And in high grace with Gloriana stood; 20
Her bounty, sweetness, beauty, goodness, such,
That none e’er thought her happiness too much;
So well-inclined her favours to confer,
And kind to all, as Heaven had been to her!
The virgin’s part, the mother, and the wife,
So well she acted in this span of life,
That though few years (too flew, alas!) she told,
She seem’d in all things, but in beauty, old.
As unripe fruit, whose verdant stalks do cleave
Close to the tree, which grieves no less to leave 30
The smiling pendant which adorns her so,
And until autumn on the bough should grow;
So seem’d her youthful soul not eas’ly forced,
Or from so fair, so sweet a seat divorced.
Her fate at once did hasty seem and slow;
At once too cruel, and unwilling too.
Under how hard a law are mortals born!
Whom now we envy, we anon must mourn;
What Heaven sets highest, and seems most to prize,
Is soon removed from our wond’ring eyes!
But since the Sisters did so soon untwine
So fair a thread, I’ll strive to piece the line.
Vouchsafe, sad nymph! to let me know the dame,
And to the Muses I’ll commend her name;
Make the wide country echo to your moan,
The list’ning trees and savage mountains groan.
What rock’s not moved when the death is sung
Of one so good, so lovely, and so young?
’Twas Hamilton!—whom I had named
But naming her, grief lets me say no more. 50
 ‘Galatea’: the lady here mourned
was the Duchess of Hamilton, a
niece of Buckingham; she died in 1638.
 ‘Gloriana’: Queen Henrietta.  ‘Sisters’: Parcae—
Such was Philoclea, and such Dorus’ flame!
The matchless Sidney, that immortal frame
Of perfect beauty on two pillars placed,
Not his high fancy could one pattern, graced
With such extremes of excellence, compose;
Wonders so distant in one face disclose!
Such cheerful modesty, such humble state,
Moves certain love, but with as doubtful fate
As when, beyond our greedy reach, we see 9
Inviting fruit on too sublime a tree.
All the rich flowers through his Arcadia found,
Amazed we see in this one garland bound.
Had but this copy (which the artist took
From the fair picture of that noble book)
Stood at Kalander’s, the brave friends had jarr’d,
And, rivals made, th’ensuing story marr’d.
Just nature, first instructed by his thought,
In his own house thus practised what he taught;
This glorious piece transcends what he could think,
So much his blood is nobler than his ink! 20
 ‘Dorothy Sidney’: see Life for
an account of ‘Saccharissa.’
 ‘Philoclea and Dorus’: the reader may turn for these names and their
histories, to the glorious, flowery wilderness of the ‘Arcadia.’
Sidney was granduncle to Dorothy.
Had Dorothea lived when mortals made
Choice of their deities, this sacred shade
Had held an altar to her power, that gave
The peace and glory which these alleys have;
Embroider’d so with flowers where she stood,
That it became a garden of a wood.
Her presence has such more than human grace,
That it can civilise the rudest place;
And beauty too, and order, can impart,
Where nature ne’er intended it, nor art. 10
The plants acknowledge this, and her admire,
No less than those of old did Orpheus’ lyre;
If she sit down, with tops all tow’rds her bow’d,
They round about her into arbours crowd;
Or if she walk, in even ranks they stand,
Like some well-marshall’d and obsequious band.
Amphion so made stones and timber leap
Into fair figures from a confused heap;
And in the symmetry of her parts is found
A power like that of harmony in sound. 20
Ye lofty beeches, tell this matchless dame,
That if together ye fed all one flame,
It could not equalise the hundredth part
Of what her eyes have kindled in my heart!
Go, boy, and carve this passion on the bark
Of yonder tree, which stands the sacred mark
Of noble Sidney’s birth; when such benign,
Such more than mortal-making stars did shine,
That there they cannot but for ever prove
The monument and pledge of humble love; 30
His humble love whose hope shall ne’er rise higher,
Than for a pardon that he dares admire.
No wonder sleep from careful lovers flies,
To bathe himself in Saccharissa’s eyes.
As fair Astraae once from earth to heaven,
By strife and loud impiety was driven;
So with our plaints offended, and our tears,
Wise Somnus to that paradise repairs;
Waits on her will, and wretches does forsake,
To court the nymph for whom those wretches wake.
More proud than Phoebus of his throne of gold 9
Is the soft god those softer limbs to hold;
Nor would exchange with Jove, to hide the skies
In dark’ning clouds, the power to close her eyes;
Eyes which so far all other lights control,
They warm our mortal parts, but these our soul!
Let her free spirit, whose unconquer’d breast
Holds such deep quiet and untroubled rest,
Know that though Venus and her son should spare
Her rebel heart, and never teach her care,
Yet Hymen may in force his vigils keep,
And for another’s joy suspend her sleep. 20
 She is said to have been like Dudu—
’Large, and languishing, and lazy,
Yet of a beauty that might drive you crazy.’
As when a sort of wolves infest the night
With their wild howlings at fair Cynthia’s light,
The noise may chase sweet slumber from our eyes,
But never reach the mistress of the skies;
So with the news of Saccharissa’s wrongs,
Her vexed servants blame those envious tongues;
Call Love to witness that no painted fire
Can scorch men so, or kindle such desire;
While, unconcern’d, she seems moved no more
With this new malice than our loves before; 10
But from the height of her great mind looks down
On both our passions without smile or frown.
So little care of what is done below
Hath the bright dame whom Heaven affecteth so!
Paints her, ’tis true, with the same hand which spreads
Like glorious colours through the flow’ry meads,
When lavish Nature, with her best attire, 17
Clothes the gay spring, the season of desire;
Paints her, ’tis true, and does her cheek adorn
With the same art wherewith she paints the morn;
With the same art wherewith she gildeth so
Those painted clouds which form Thaumantias’ bow.
As in old chaos (heaven with earth confused,
And stars with rocks together crush’d and bruised)
The sun his light no further could extend
Than the next hill, which on his shoulders lean’d;
So in this throng bright Saccharissa fared,
Oppress’d by those who strove to be her guard;
As ships, though never so obsequious, fall
Foul in a tempest on their admiral.
A greater favour this disorder brought
Unto her servants than their awful thought
 ‘Insults’: exults.
 ‘Palm’: Ovalle informs us that the palm-trees in Chili have this
wonderful property, that they never will bear any fruit but when
they are planted near each other; and when they find one standing
barren by itself, if they plant another, be it never so small (which
they call the female), it will become prolific.—FENTON.
Thyrsis, a youth of the inspired train,
Fair Saccharissa loved, but loved in vain;
Like Phoebus sung the no less am’rous boy;
Like Daphne she, as lovely, and as coy!
With numbers he the flying nymph pursues,
With numbers such as Phoebus’ self might use!
Such is the chase when Love and Fancy leads,
O’er craggy mountains, and through flow’ry meads;
Invoked to testify the lover’s care,
Or form some image of his cruel fair. 10
Urged with his fury, like a wounded deer,
O’er these he fled; and now approaching near,
Had reach’d the nymph with his harmonious lay,
Whom all his charms could not incline to stay.
Yet what he sung in his immortal strain,
Though unsuccessful, was not sung in vain;
All, but the nymph that should redress his wrong,
Attend his passion, and approve his song.
Like Phoebus thus, acquiring unsought praise,
He catch’d at love, and fill’d his arms with bays. 20
 ‘Daphne’: Ovid’s Metamorphoses, b. i.
1 Tell me, lovely, loving pair!
Why so kind, and so severe?
Why so careless of our care,
Only to yourselves so dear?
2 By this cunning change of hearts,
You the power of Love control;
While the boy’s deluded darts
Can arrive at neither soul.
3 For in vain to either breast
Still beguiled Love does come,
Where he finds a foreign guest,
Neither of your hearts at home.
4 Debtors thus with like design,
When they never mean to pay,
That they may the law decline,
To some friend make all away.
5 Not the silver doves that fly,
Yoked in Cytherea’s car;
Not the wings that lift so high,
And convey her son so far;
6 Are so lovely, sweet, and fair,
Or do more ennoble love;
Are so choicely match’d a pair,
Or with more consent do move.
While in this park I sing, the list’ning deer
Attend my passion, and forget to fear;
When to the beeches I report my flame,
They bow their heads, as if they felt the same.
To gods appealing, when I reach their bowers
With loud complaints, they answer me in showers.
To thee a wild and cruel soul is given,
More deaf than trees, and prouder than the heaven!
Love’s foe profess’d! why dost thou falsely feign
Thyself a Sidney? from which noble strain 10
He sprung, that could so far exalt the name
Of love, and warm our nation with his flame;
That all we can of love, or high desire,
Seems but the smoke of am’rous Sidney’s fire.
Nor call her mother, who so well does prove
One breast may hold both chastity and love.
Never can she, that so exceeds the spring
In joy and bounty, be supposed to bring
One so destructive. To no human stock
We owe this fierce unkindness, but the rock, 20
That cloven rock produced thee, by whose side
Nature, to recompense the fatal pride
Of such stern beauty, placed those healing springs,
Which not more help, than that destruction, brings.
Thy heart no ruder than the rugged stone,
I might, like Orpheus, with my num’rous moan
Melt to compassion; now, my trait’rous song
With thee conspires to do the singer wrong;
While thus I suffer not myself to lose 29
The memory of what augments my woes;
But with my own breath still foment the fire,
Which flames as high as fancy can aspire!
This last complaint th’indulgent ears did pierce
Of just Apollo, president of verse;
Highly concerned that the Muse should bring
Damage to one whom he had taught to sing,
Thus he advised me: ’On yon aged tree
Hang up thy lute, and hie thee to the sea,
That there with wonders thy diverted mind
Some truce, at least, may with this passion find.’ 40
Ah, cruel nymph! from whom her humble swain
Flies for relief unto the raging main,
And from the winds and tempests does expect
A milder fate than from her cold neglect!
Yet there he’ll pray that the unkind may prove
Bless’d in her choice; and vows this endless love
Springs from no hope of what she can confer,
But from those gifts which Heaven has heap’d on her.
 ‘Penshurst’: his farewell verses to Dorothy.  ‘Sprung’: Sir Philip Sidney.  ‘Springs’: Tunbridge Wells.
What fruits they have, and how Heaven
Upon these late-discovered isles.
Aid me, Bellona! while the dreadful fight
Betwixt a nation and two whales I write.
Seas stain’d with gore I sing, advent’rous toil!
And how these monsters did disarm an isle.
Bermuda, wall’d with rocks, who does not know?
That happy island where huge lemons grow,
And orange-trees, which golden fruit do bear,
Th’ Hesperian garden boasts of none so fair;
Where shining pearl, coral, and many a pound,
On the rich shore, of ambergris is found. 10
The lofty cedar, which to heaven aspires,
The prince of trees! is fuel to their fires;
The smoke by which their loaded spits do turn,
For incense might on sacred altars burn;
Their private roofs on od’rous timber borne,
Such as might palaces for kings adorn.
The sweet palmettos a new Bacchus yield,
With leaves as ample as the broadest shield,
Under the shadow of whose friendly boughs
They sit, carousing where their liquor grows. 20
Figs there unplanted through the fields do grow,
Such as fierce Cato did the Romans show,
With the rare fruit inviting them to spoil
Carthage, the mistress of so rich a soil.
The naked rocks are not unfruitful there,
But, at some constant seasons, every year,
Their barren tops with luscious food abound,
And with the eggs of various fowls are crown’d.
Tobacco is the worst of things, which they
To English landlords, as their tribute, pay. 30
Such is the mould, that the bless’d tenant feeds
On precious fruits, and pays his rent in weeds.
With candied plantains, and the juicy pine,
On choicest melons, and sweet grapes, they dine,
And with potatoes fat their wanton swine.
Nature these cates with such a lavish hand
Pours out among them, that our coarser land
Tastes of that bounty, and does cloth return,
Which not for warmth, but ornament, is worn;
For the kind spring, which but salutes us here, 40
Inhabits there, and courts them all the year.
Ripe fruits and blossoms on the same trees live;
At once they promise what at once they give.
So sweet the air, so moderate the clime,
None sickly lives, or dies before his time.
Heaven sure has kept this spot of earth uncursed,
To show how all things were created first.
The tardy plants in our cold orchards placed,
Reserve their fruit for the next age’s taste;
There a small grain in some few months will be 50
A firm, a lofty, and a spacious tree.
The palma-christi, and the fair papa,
Now but a seed (preventing nature’s law),
In half the circle of the hasty year
Project a shade, and lovely fruits do wear.
And as their trees in our dull region set,
But faintly grow, and no perfection get,
So, in this northern tract, our hoarser throats
Utter unripe and ill-constrained notes,
There while I sing, if gentle love be by,
That tunes my lute, and winds the string so high,
With the sweet sound of Saccharissa’s name
I’ll make the list’ning savages grow tame.—
But while I do these pleasing dreams indite,
I am diverted from the promised fight.
 ‘Summer Islands’: the Bermudas,
which received the name of the
Summer Islands, or more properly, Somers’ Islands, from Sir George
Somers, who was cast away on the coast early in the seventeenth
century, and established a colony there.
 ‘Bacchus yield’: from the palmetto,
a species of palm in the West
Indies, is extracted an intoxicating drink.
Of their alarm, and how their foes
Discover’d were, this Canto shows.
Though rocks so high about this island rise,
That well they may the num’rous Turk despise,
Yet is no human fate exempt from fear,
Which shakes their hearts, while through the isle they hear
A lasting noise, as horrid and as loud
As thunder makes before it breaks the cloud.
Three days they dread this murmur, ere they know 80
From what blind cause th’unwonted sound may grow.
At length two monsters of unequal size,
Hard by the shore, a fisherman espies;
Two mighty whales! which swelling seas had toss’d,
And left them pris’ners on the rocky coast.
One as a mountain vast, and with her came
A cub, not much inferior to his dam.
Here in a pool, among the rocks engaged,
They roar’d like lions caught in toils, and raged.
The man knew what they were, who heretofore 90
Had seen the like lie murder’d on the shore;
By the wild fury of some tempest cast,
The fate of ships, and shipwreck’d men, to taste.
As careless dames, whom wine and sleep betray
To frantic dreams, their infants overlay:
So there, sometimes, the raging ocean fails,
And her own brood exposes; when the whales
Against sharp rocks, like reeling vessels quash’d,
Though huge as mountains, are in pieces dash’d;
Along the shore their dreadful limbs lie scatter’d, 100
Like hills with earthquakes shaken, torn, and shatter’d.
Hearts, sure, of brass they had, who tempted first
Rude seas that spare not what themselves have nursed.
The welcome news through all the nation spread,
To sudden joy and hope converts their dread;
What lately was their public terror, they
Behold with glad eyes as a certain prey;
Dispose already of th’untaken spoil,
And as the purchase of their future toil,
These share the bones, and they divide the oil. 110
So was the huntsman by the bear oppress’d,
Whose hide he sold—before he caught the beast!
They man their boats, and all their young men arm
With whatsoever may the monsters harm;
Pikes, halberts, spits, and darts that wound so far,
The tools of peace, and instruments of war.
Now was the time for vig’rous lads to show
What love, or honour, could incite them to;
A goodly theatre! where rocks are round
With rev’rend age, and lovely lasses, crown’d. 120
Such was the lake which held this dreadful pair,
Within the bounds of noble Warwick’s share:
Warwick’s bold Earl! than which no title bears
A greater sound among our British peers;
And worthy he the memory to renew,
The fate and honour to that title due,
Whose brave adventures have transferr’d his name, 127
And through the new world spread his growing fame.—
But how they fought, and what their valour gain’d,
Shall in another Canto be contain’d.
 ‘Warwick’s share’: Robert
Rich, Earl of Warwick, possessed a portion
of the Bermudas, which bore his name. He was a jolly sailor in his
habits, although a Puritan in his profession.
The bloody fight, successless toil,
And how the fishes sack’d the isle.
The boat which, on the first assault did go,
Struck with a harping-iron the younger foe;
Who, when he felt his side so rudely gored,
Loud as the sea that nourished him he roar’d.
As a broad bream, to please some curious taste,
While yet alive, in boiling water cast,
Vex’d with unwonted heat he flings about
The scorching brass, and hurls the liquor out;
So with the barbed jav’lin stung, he raves,
And scourges with his tail the suffering waves. 140
Like Spenser’s Talus with his iron flail,
He threatens ruin with his pond’rous tail;
Dissolving at one stroke the batter’d boat,
And down the men fall drenched in the moat;
With every fierce encounter they are forced
To quit their boats, and fare like men unhorsed.
The bigger whale like some huge carrack lay,
Which wanteth sea-room with her foes to play;
Slowly she swims; and when, provoked, she would
Advance her tail, her head salutes the mud; 150
The shallow water doth her force infringe,
And renders vain her tail’s impetuous swinge;
The shining steel her tender sides receive,
And there, like bees, they all their weapons leave.
This sees the cub, and does himself oppose
Betwixt his cumber’d mother and her foes;
With desp’rate courage he receives her wounds,
And men and boats his active tail confounds.
Their forces join’d, the seas with billows fill,
And make a tempest, though the winds be still. 160
Now would the men with half their hoped prey
Be well content, and wish this cub away;
Their wish they have: he (to direct his dam
 ‘Trojan’: Aeneas.
The lark, that shuns on lofty boughs to build
Her humble nest, lies silent in the field;
But if (the promise of a cloudless day)
Aurora smiling bids her rise and play,
Then straight she shows ’twas not for want of voice,
Or power to climb, she made so low a choice;
Singing she mounts; her airy wings are stretch’d
T’wards heaven, as if from heaven her note she fetch’d.
So we, retiring from the busy throng,
Use to restrain the ambition of our song; 10
But since the light which now informs our age
Breaks from the Court, indulgent to her rage,
Thither my Muse, like bold Prometheus, flies,
To light her torch at Gloriana’s eyes;
Those sov’reign beams which heal the wounded soul,
And all our cares, but once beheld, control!
There the poor lover that has long endured
Some proud nymph’s scorn, of his fond passion cured,
Fares like the man who first upon the ground
A glow-worm spied, supposing he had found 20
A moving diamond, a breathing stone;
For life it had, and like those jewels shone;
He held it dear, till by the springing day
Inform’d, he threw the worthless worm away.
She saves the lover as we gangrenes stay,
By cutting hope, like a lopp’d limb, away;
This makes her bleeding patients to accuse
High Heaven, and these expostulations use:
’Could Nature then no private woman grace,
Whom we might dare to love, with such a face, 30
Such a complexion, and so radiant eyes,
Such lovely motion, and such sharp replies?
Beyond our reach, and yet within our sight,
What envious power has placed this glorious light?’
Thus, in a starry night, fond children cry
For the rich spangles that adorn the sky,
Which, though they shine for ever fixed there,
With light and influence relieve us here.
All her affections are to one inclined;
Her bounty and compassion to mankind; 40
To whom, while she so far extends her grace,
She makes but good the promise of her face;
For Mercy has, could Mercy’s self be seen,
No sweeter look than this propitious queen.
Such guard, and comfort, the distressed find
From her large power, and from her larger mind,
That whom ill Fate would ruin, it prefers,
For all the miserable are made hers.
So the fair tree whereon the eagle builds,
Poor sheep from tempests, and their shepherds, shields; 50
The royal bird possesses all the boughs,
But shade and shelter to the flock allows.
Joy of our age, and safety of the next!
For which so oft thy fertile womb is vex’d;
Nobly contented, for the public good,
To waste thy spirits and diffuse thy blood,
What vast hopes may these islands entertain,
Where monarchs, thus descended, are to reign?
Led by commanders of so fair a line,
Our seas no longer shall our power confine. 60
A brave romance who would exactly frame,
First brings his knight from some immortal dame,
And then a weapon, and a flaming shield,
Bright as his mother’s eyes, he makes him wield.
None might the mother of Achilles be,
But the fair pearl and glory of the sea;
The man to whom great Maro gives such fame,
From the high bed of heavenly Venus came;
And our next Charles, whom all the stars design
Like wonders to accomplish, springs from thine. 70
 ‘Sea’: Thetis  ‘Maro’: Aeneas
THE APOLOGY OF SLEEP,
FOR NOT APPROACHING THE LADY WHO CAN DO ANYTHING BUT SLEEP WHEN SHE
My charge it is those breaches to repair
Which Nature takes from sorrow, toil, and care;
Rest to the limbs, and quiet I confer
On troubled minds; but nought can add to her
Whom Heaven, and her transcendent thoughts have placed
Above those ills which wretched mortals taste.
Bright as the deathless gods, and happy, she
From all that may infringe delight is free;
Love at her royal feet his quiver lays,
And not his mother with more haste obeys. 10
Such real pleasures, such true joys’ suspense,
What dream can I present to recompense?
Should I with lightning fill her awful hand,
And make the clouds seem all at her command;
Or place her in Olympus’ top, a guest
Among the immortals, who with nectar feast;
That power would seem, that entertainment, short
Of the true splendour of her present Court,
Where all the joys, and all the glories, are
Of three great kingdoms, sever’d from the care.
I, that of fumes and humid vapours made,
Ascending, do the seat of sense invade,
No cloud in so serene a mansion find,
To overcast her ever-shining mind,
Which holds resemblance with those spotless skies,
Where flowing Nilus want of rain supplies;
That crystal heaven, where Phoebus never shrouds
His golden beams, nor wraps his face in clouds.
But what so hard which numbers cannot force?
So stoops the moon, and rivers change their course. 30
The bold Maeonian made me dare to steep
Jove’s dreadful temples in the dew of sleep;
And since the Muses do invoke my power,
I shall no more decline that sacred bower
Where Gloriana their great mistress lies;
But, gently taming those victorious eyes,
Charm all her senses, till the joyful sun
Without a rival half his course has run;
Who, while my hand that fairer light confines,
May boast himself the brightest thing that shines. 40
 ‘Maeonian’: Homer.
1 You gods that have the power
To trouble and compose
All that’s beneath your bower,
Calm silence on the seas, on earth impose.
2 Fair Venus! in thy soft arms
The God of Rage confine;
For thy whispers are the charms
Which only can divert his fierce design.
3 What though he frown, and to tumult do incline?
Thou the flame
Kindled in his breast canst tame,
With that snow which unmelted lies on thine.
4 Great goddess! give this thy sacred island rest;
Make heaven smile,
That no storm disturb us while
Thy chief care, our halcyon, builds her nest.
5 Great Gloriana! fair Gloriana!
Bright as high heaven is, and fertile as earth,
Whose beauty relieves us,
Whose royal bed gives us
Both glory and peace,
Our present joy, and all our hopes’ increase.
 ’Puerperium ’: Fenton conjectures
that this poem was written in
1640, when the Queen was delivered of her fourth son, the Duke of
Ah, lovely Amoret! the care
Of all that know what’s good or fair!
Is heaven become our rival too?
Had the rich gifts conferr’d on you
So amply thence, the common end
Of giving lovers—to pretend?
Hence, to this pining sickness (meant
To weary thee to a consent
Of leaving us) no power is given 9
Thy beauties to impair; for heaven
Solicits thee with such a care,
As roses from their stalks we tear,
When we would still preserve them new
And fresh, as on the bush they grew.
With such a grace you entertain,
And look with such contempt on pain,
That languishing you conquer more,
And wound us deeper than before.
So lightnings which in storms appear,
Scorch more than when the skies are clear. 20
And as pale sickness does invade
Your frailer part, the breaches made
In that fair lodging, still more clear
Make the bright guest, your soul, appear.
So nymphs o’er pathless mountains borne,
Their light robes by the brambles torn
From their fair limbs, exposing new
And unknown beauties to the view
Of following gods, increase their flame
And haste to catch the flying game. 30
May those already cursed Essexian plains,
Where hasty death and pining sickness reigns,
Prove all a desert! and none there make stay,
But savage beasts, or men as wild as they!
There the fair light which all our island graced,
Like Hero’s taper in the window placed,
Such fate from the malignant air did find, 7
As that exposed to the boist’rous wind.
Ah, cruel Heaven! to snatch so soon away
Her for whose life, had we had time to pray,
With thousand vows and tears we should have sought
That sad decree’s suspension to have wrought.
But we, alas! no whisper of her pain
Heard, till ’twas sin to wish her here again.
That horrid word, at once, like lightning spread,
Struck all our ears—The Lady Rich is dead!
Heart-rending news! and dreadful to those few
Who her resemble, and her steps pursue;
That death should license have to rage among
The fair, the wise, the virtuous, and the young! 20
The Paphian queen from that fierce battle borne,
With gored hand, and veil so rudely torn,
Like terror did among th’immortals breed,
Taught by her wound that goddesses may bleed.
All stand amazed! but beyond the rest
th’heroic dame whose happy womb she bless’d,
Moved with just grief, expostulates with Heaven,
Urging the promise to th’obsequious given,
Of longer life; for ne’er was pious soul
More apt t’obey, more worthy to control. 30
A skilful eye at once might read the race
Of Caledonian monarchs in her face,
And sweet humility; her look and mind
At once were lofty, and at once were kind.
There dwelt the scorn of vice, and pity too,
For those that did what she disdain’d to do;
So gentle and severe, that what was bad,
At once her hatred and her pardon had.
Gracious to all; but where her love was due,
So fast, so faithful, loyal, and so true,
That a bold hand as soon might hope to force
The rolling lights of heaven, as change her course.
Some happy angel, that beholds her there,
Instruct us to record what she was here!
And when this cloud of sorrow’s overblown,
Through the wide world we’ll make her graces known.
So fresh the wound is, and the grief so vast,
That all our art and power of speech is waste.
Here passion sways, but there the Muse shall raise
Eternal monuments of louder praise. 50
There our delight, complying with her fame,
Shall have occasion to recite thy name,
Fair Saccharissa!—and now only fair!
To sacred friendship we’ll an altar rear
(Such as the Romans did erect of old),
Where, on a marble pillar, shall be told
The lovely passion each to other bare,
With the resemblance of that matchless pair.
Narcissus to the thing for which he pined
Was not more like than yours to her fair mind, 60
Save that she graced the several parts of life,
A spotless virgin, and a faultless wife.
Such was the sweet converse ’twixt her and you,
As that she holds with her associates now.
How false is hope, and how regardless fate,
That such a love should have so short a date!
Lately I saw her, sighing, part from thee;
(Alas that that the last farewell should be!)
So looked Astraea, her remove design’d,
On those distressed friends she left behind. 70
Consent in virtue knit your hearts so fast,
That still the knot, in spite of death, does last;
For as your tears, and sorrow-wounded soul,
Prove well that on your part this bond is whole,
So all we know of what they do above,
Is that they happy are, and that they love.
Let dark oblivion, and the hollow grave,
Content themselves our frailer thoughts to have;
Well-chosen love is never taught to die,
But with our nobler part invades the sky. 80
Then grieve no more that one so heavenly shaped
The crooked hand of trembling age escaped;
Rather, since we beheld her not decay,
But that she vanish’d so entire away,
Her wondrous beauty, and her goodness, merit
We should suppose that some propitious spirit
In that celestial form frequented here,
And is not dead, but ceases to appear.
 ‘Lady Rich’: she was the daughter
of the Earl of Devonshire, and
married to the heir of the Earl of Warwick.
 ‘Womb she blessed’: the Countess of Devonshire, a very old woman,
the only daughter of Lord Bruce, descended from Robert the Bruce.
Anger, in hasty words or blows,
Itself discharges on our foes;
And sorrow, too, finds some relief
In tears, which wait upon our grief;
So every passion, but fond love,
Unto its own redress does move;
But that alone the wretch inclines
To what prevents his own designs;
Makes him lament, and sigh, and weep,
Disorder’d, tremble, fawn, and creep; 10
Postures which render him despised,
Where he endeavours to be prized.
For women (born to be controll’d)
Stoop to the forward and the bold;
Affect the haughty and the proud,
The gay, the frolic, and the loud.
Who first the gen’rous steed oppress’d,
Not kneeling did salute the beast;
But with high courage, life, and force,
Approaching, tamed th’unruly horse. 20
Unwisely we the wiser East
Pity, supposing them oppress’d
With tyrants’ force, whose law is will,
By which they govern, spoil and kill:
Each nymph, but moderately fair,
Commands with no less rigour here.
Should some brave Turk, that walks among
His twenty lasses, bright and young,
And beckons to the willing dame,
Preferr’d to quench his present flame, 30
Behold as many gallants here,
With modest guise and silent fear,
All to one female idol bend,
While her high pride does scarce descend
To mark their follies, he would swear
That these her guard of eunuchs were,
And that a more majestic queen,
Or humbler slaves, he had not seen.
All this with indignation spoke,
In vain I struggled with the yoke 40
Of mighty Love; that conqu’ring look,
When next beheld, like lightning strook
My blasted soul, and made me bow
Lower than those I pitied now.
So the tall stag, upon the brink
Of some smooth stream about to drink,
Surveying there his armed head, 47
With shame remembers that he fled
The scorned dogs, resolves to try
The combat next; but if their cry
Invades again his trembling ear,
He straight resumes his wonted care,
Leaves the untasted spring behind,
And, wing’d with fear, outflies the wind.
Let brutes and vegetals, that cannot think,
So far as drought and nature urges, drink;
A more indulgent mistress guides our sp’rits,
Reason, that dares beyond our appetites;
(She would our care, as well as thirst, redress),
And with divinity rewards excess.
Deserted Ariadne, thus supplied,
Did perjured Theseus’ cruelty deride;
Bacchus embraced, from her exalted thought
Banish’d the man, her passion, and his fault. 10
Bacchus and Phoebus are by Jove allied,
And each by other’s timely heat supplied;
All that the grapes owe to his rip’ning fires
Is paid in numbers which their juice inspires.
Wine fills the veins, and healths are understood
To give our friends a title to our blood;
Who, naming me, doth warm his courage so,
Shows for my sake what his bold hand would do.
Such moving sounds from such a careless touch!
So unconcern’d herself, and we so much!
What art is this, that with so little pains
Transports us thus, and o’er our spirits reigns?
The trembling strings about her fingers crowd,
And tell their joy for every kiss aloud.
Small force there needs to make them tremble so;
Touch’d by that hand, who would not tremble too?
Here Love takes stand, and while she charms the ear,
Empties his quiver on the list’ning deer. 10
Music so softens and disarms the mind,
That not an arrow does resistance find.
Thus the fair tyrant celebrates the prize,
And acts herself the triumph of her eyes:
So Nero once, with harp in hand, survey’d
His flaming Rome, and as it burn’d he play’d.
Behold, and listen, while the fair
Breaks in sweet sounds the willing air,
And with her own breath fans the fire
Which her bright eyes do first inspire.
What reason can that love control,
Which more than one way courts the soul?
So when a flash of lightning falls
On our abodes, the danger calls
For human aid, which hopes the flame 9
To conquer, though from heaven it came;
But if the winds with that conspire,
Men strive not, but deplore the fire.
 ‘Mrs. Arden’: some suggest that
this lady was probably either a maid
of honour, or a gentlewoman of the bed-chamber to King Charles the
Design, or chance, makes others wive;
But Nature did this match contrive;
Eve might as well have Adam fled,
As she denied her little bed
To him, for whom Heaven seemed to frame,
And measure out, this only dame.
Thrice happy is that humble pair,
Beneath the level of all care!
Over whose heads those arrows fly
Of sad distrust and jealousy; 10
Secured in as high extreme,
As if the world held none but them.
To him the fairest nymphs do show
Like moving mountains, topp’d with snow;
And every man a Polypheme
Does to his Galatea seem;
None may presume her faith to prove;
He proffers death that proffers love.
Ah, Chloris! that kind Nature thus
From all the world had severed us; 20
Creating for ourselves us two,
As love has me for only you!
 ‘Dwarfs’: Gibson and Shepherd,
each three feet ten inches in height.
They were pages at Court, and Charles I. gave away the female
1 Treading the path to nobler ends,
A long farewell to love I gave,
Resolved my country, and my friends,
All that remain’d of me should have.
2 And this resolve no mortal dame,
None but those eyes could have o’erthrown;
The nymph I dare not, need not name,
So high, so like herself alone.
3 Thus the tall oak, which now aspires
Above the fear of private fires,
Grown and design’d for nobler use,
Not to make warm, but build the house,
Though from our meaner flames secure,
Must that which falls from heaven endure.
Madam, as in some climes the warmer sun
Makes it full summer ere the spring’s begun,
And with ripe fruit the bending boughs can load,
Before our violets dare look abroad;
So measure not by any common use
The early love your brighter eyes produce.
When lately your fair hand in woman’s weed
Wrapp’d my glad head, I wish’d me so indeed,
That hasty time might never make me grow
Out of those favours you afford me now; 10
That I might ever such indulgence find,
And you not blush, nor think yourself too kind;
Who now, I fear, while I these joys express,
Begin to think how you may make them less.
The sound of love makes your soft heart afraid,
And guard itself, though but a child invade,
And innocently at your white breast throw
A dart as white-a ball of new fallen snow.
That which her slender waist confined,
Shall now my joyful temples bind;
No monarch but would give his crown,
His arms might do what this has done.
It was my heaven’s extremest sphere,
The pale which held that lovely deer.
My joy, my grief, my hope, my love,
Did all within this circle move!
A narrow compass! and yet there
Dwelt all that’s good, and all that’s fair;
Give me but what this ribband bound,
Take all the rest the sun goes round.
See! how the willing earth gave way,
To take th’impression where she lay.
See! how the mould, as both to leave
So sweet a burden, still doth cleave
Close to the nymph’s stain’d garment. Here
The coming spring would first appear,
And all this place with roses strow,
If busy feet would let them grow.
Here Venus smiled to see blind chance
Itself before her son advance, 10
And a fair image to present,
Of what the boy so long had meant.
’Twas such a chance as this, made all
The world into this order fall;
Thus the first lovers, on the clay,
Of which they were composed, lay;
So in their prime, with equal grace,
Met the first patterns of our race.
Then blush not, fair! or on him frown,
Or wonder how you both came down; 20
But touch him, and he’ll tremble straight,
How could he then support your weight?
How could the youth, alas! but bend,
When his whole heaven upon him lean’d?
If aught by him amiss were done,
’Twas that he let you rise so soon.
1 Our sighs are heard; just Heaven declares
The sense it has of lovers’ cares;
She that so far the rest outshined,
Sylvia the fair, while she was kind,
As if her frowns impair’d her brow,
Seems only not unhandsome now.
So, when the sky makes us endure
A storm, itself becomes obscure.
2 Hence ’tis that I conceal my flame,
Hiding from Flavia’s self her name,
Lest she, provoking Heaven, should prove
How it rewards neglected love.
Better a thousand such as I,
Their grief untold, should pine and die;
Than her bright morning, overcast
With sullen clouds, should be defaced.
1 Lately on yonder swelling bush,
Big with many a coming rose,
This early bud began to blush,
And did but half itself disclose;
I pluck’d it, though no better grown,
And now you see how full ’tis blown.
2 Still as I did the leaves inspire,
With such a purple light they shone,
As if they had been made of fire,
And spreading so, would flame anon.
All that was meant by air or sun,
To the young flower, my breath has done.
3 If our loose breath so much can do,
What may the same in forms of love,
Of purest love, and music too,
When Flavia it aspires to move?
When that, which lifeless buds persuades
To wax more soft, her youth invades?
1 Pygmalion’s fate reversed is mine;
His marble love took flesh and blood;
All that I worshipp’d as divine,
That beauty! now ’tis understood,
Appears to have no more of life
Than that whereof he framed his wife.
2 As women yet, who apprehend
Some sudden cause of causeless fear,
Although that seeming cause take end,
And they behold no danger near,
A shaking through their limbs they find,
Like leaves saluted by the wind:
3 So though the beauty do appear
No beauty, which amazed me so;
Yet from my breast I cannot tear
The passion which from thence did grow;
Nor yet out of my fancy raze
The print of that supposed face.
4 A real beauty, though too near,
The fond Narcissus did admire:
I dote on that which is nowhere;
The sign of beauty feeds my fire.
No mortal flame was e’er so cruel
As this, which thus survives the fuel!
 ‘Mine’: Ovid, Met. x.
1 Not caring to observe the wind,
Or the new sea explore,
Snatch’d from myself, how far behind
Already I behold the shore!
2 May not a thousand dangers sleep
In the smooth bosom of this deep?
No; ’tis so reckless and so clear,
That the rich bottom does appear
Paved all with precious things; not torn
From shipwreck’d vessels, but there born.
3 Sweetness, truth, and every grace
Which time and use are wont to teach,
The eye may in a moment reach,
And read distinctly in her face.
4 Some other nymphs, with colours faint,
And pencil slow, may Cupid paint,
And a weak heart in time destroy;
She has a stamp, and prints the boy:
Can, with a single look, inflame
The coldest breast, the rudest tame.
1 It is not that I love you less,
Than when before your feet I lay;
But to prevent the sad increase
Of hopeless love, I keep away.
2 In vain, alas! for everything
Which I have known belong to you,
Your form does to my fancy bring,
And makes my old wounds bleed anew.
3 Who in the spring, from the new sun,
Already has a fever got,
Too late begins those shafts to shun,
Which Phoebus through his veins has shot;
4 Too late he would the pain assuage,
And to thick shadows does retire;
About with him he bears the rage,
And in his tainted blood the fire.
5 But vow’d I have, and never must
Your banish’d servant trouble you;
For if I break, you may mistrust
The vow I made—to love you too.
A PANEGYRIC TO MY LORD PROTECTOR,
OF THE PRESENT GREATNESS, AND JOINT INTEREST, OF HIS HIGHNESS, AND THIS
1 While with a strong and yet a gentle hand,
You bridle faction, and our hearts command,
Protect us from ourselves, and from the foe,
Make us unite, and make us conquer too;
2 Let partial spirits still aloud complain,
Think themselves injured that they cannot reign,
And own no liberty but where they may
Without control upon their fellows prey.
3 Above the waves as Neptune show’d his face,
To chide the winds, and save the Trojan race,
So has your Highness, raised above the rest,
Storms of ambition, tossing us, repress’d.
4 Your drooping country, torn with civil hate,
Restored by you, is made a glorious state;
The seat of empire, where the Irish come,
And the unwilling Scots, to fetch their doom.
5 The sea’s our own; and now all nations greet,
With bending sails, each vessel of our fleet;
Your power extends as far as winds can blow,
Or swelling sails upon the globe may go.
6 Heaven (that hath placed this island to give law,
To balance Europe, and her states to awe),
In this conjunction doth on Britain smile;
The greatest leader, and the greatest isle!
7 Whether this portion of the world were rent,
By the rude ocean, from the continent,
Or thus created, it was sure design’d
To be the sacred refuge of mankind.
8 Hither th’oppressed shall henceforth resort,
Justice to crave, and succour, at your court;
And then your Highness, not for ours alone,
But for the world’s Protector shall be known.
9 Fame, swifter than your winged navy, flies
Through every land that near the ocean lies,
Sounding your name, and telling dreadful news
To all that piracy and rapine use.
10 With such a chief the meanest nation bless’d,
Might hope to lift her head above the rest;
What may be thought impossible to do
By us, embraced by the sea and you?
11 Lords of the world’s great waste, the ocean,
Whole forests send to reign upon the sea,
And every coast may trouble, or relieve;
But none can visit us without your leave.
12 Angels and we have this prerogative,
That none can at our happy seats arrive;
While we descend at pleasure, to invade
The bad with vengeance, and the good to aid.
13 Our little world, the image of the great,
Like that, amidst the boundless ocean set,
Of her own growth hath all that Nature craves,
And all that’s rare, as tribute from the waves.
14 As Egypt does not on the clouds rely,
But to the Nile owes more than to the sky;
So what our earth, and what our heaven denies,
Our ever constant friend, the sea, supplies.
15 The taste of hot Arabia’s spice we know,
Free from the scorching sun that makes it grow;
Without the worm, in Persian silks we shine;
And, without planting, drink of every vine.
16 To dig for wealth we weary not our limbs;
Gold, though the heaviest metal, hither swims;
Ours is the harvest where the Indians mow;
We plough the deep, and reap what others sow.
17 Things of the noblest kind our own soil breeds;
Stout are our men, and warlike are our steeds;
Rome, though her eagle through the world had flown,
Could never make this island all her own.
18 Here the Third Edward, and the Black Prince, too,
France-conqu’ring Henry flourish’d, and now you;
For whom we stay’d, as did the Grecian state,
Till Alexander came to urge their fate.
19 When for more worlds the Macedonian cried,
He wist not Thetis in her lap did hide
Another yet; a world reserved for you,
To make more great than that he did subdue.
20 He safely might old troops to battle lead,
Against th’unwarlike Persian and the Mede,
Whose hasty flight did, from a bloodless field,
More spoils than honour to the victor yield.
21 A race unconquer’d, by their clime made bold,
The Caledonians, arm’d with want and cold,
Have, by a fate indulgent to your fame,
Been from all ages kept for you to tame.
22 Whom the old Roman wall so ill confined,
With a new chain of garrisons you bind;
Here foreign gold no more shall make them come;
Our English iron holds them fast at home.
23 They, that henceforth must be content to know
No warmer regions than their hills of snow,
May blame the sun, but must extol your grace,
Which in our senate hath allowed them place.
24 Preferr’d by conquest, happily o’erthrown,
Falling they rise, to be with us made one;
So kind Dictators made, when they came home,
Their vanquish’d foes free citizens of Rome.
25 Like favour find the Irish, with like fate,
Advanced to be a portion of our state;
While by your valour and your bounteous mind,
Nations, divided by the sea, are join’d.
26 Holland, to gain your friendship, is content
To be our outguard on the Continent;
She from her fellow-provinces would go,
Rather than hazard to have you her foe.
27 In our late fight, when cannons did diffuse,
Preventing posts, the terror and the news,
Our neighbour princes trembled at their roar;
But our conjunction makes them tremble more.
28 Your never-failing sword made war to cease;
And now you heal us with the acts of peace;
Our minds with bounty and with awe engage,
Invite affection, and restrain our rage.
29 Less pleasure take brave minds in battles won,
Than in restoring such as are undone;
Tigers have courage, and the rugged bear,
But man alone can, whom he conquers, spare.
30 To pardon willing, and to punish loth,
You strike with one hand, but you heal with both;
Lifting up all that prostrate lie, you grieve
You cannot make the dead again to live.
31 When fate, or error, had our age misled,
And o’er this nation such confusion spread,
The only cure, which could from Heaven come down,
Was so much power and piety in one!
32 One! whose extraction from an ancient line
Gives hope again that well-born men may shine;
The meanest in your nature, mild and good,
The noblest rest secured in your blood.
33 Oft have we wonder’d how you hid in peace
A mind proportion’d to such things as these;
How such a ruling sp’rit you could restrain,
And practise first over yourself to reign.
34 Your private life did a just pattern give,
How fathers, husbands, pious sons should live;
Born to command, your princely virtues slept,
Like humble David’s, while the flock he kept.
35 But when your troubled country called you forth,
Your flaming courage, and your matchless worth,
Dazzling the eyes of all that did pretend,
To fierce contention gave a prosp’rous end.
36 Still as you rise, the state, exalted too,
Finds no distemper while ’tis changed by you;
Changed like the world’s great scene! when, without noise,
The rising sun night’s vulgar light destroys.
37 Had you, some ages past, this race of glory
Run, with amazement we should read your story;
But living virtue, all achievements past,
Meets envy still, to grapple with at last.
38 This Caesar found; and that ungrateful age,
With losing him went back to blood and rage;
Mistaken Brutus thought to break their yoke,
But cut the bond of union with that stroke.
39 That sun once set, a thousand meaner stars
Gave a dim light to violence and wars,
To such a tempest as now threatens all,
Did not your mighty arm prevent the fall.
40 If Rome’s great senate could not wield that
Which of the conquer’d world had made them lord;
What hope had ours, while yet their power was new,
To rule victorious armies, but by you?
41 You! that had taught them to subdue their foes,
Could order teach, and their high sp’rits compose;
To every duty could their minds engage,
Provoke their courage, and command their rage.
42 So when a lion shakes his dreadful mane,
And angry grows, if he that first took pain
To tame his youth approach the haughty beast,
He bends to him, but frights away the rest.
43 As the vex’d world, to find repose, at last
Itself into Augustus’ arms did cast;
So England now does, with like toil oppress’d,
Her weary head upon your bosom rest.
44 Then let the Muses, with such notes as these,
Instruct us what belongs unto our peace;
Your battles they hereafter shall indite,
And draw the image of our Mars in fight;
45 Tell of towns storm’d, of armies overrun,
And mighty kingdoms by your conduct won;
How, while you thunder’d, clouds of dust did choke
Contending troops, and seas lay hid in smoke.
46 Illustrious acts high raptures do infuse,
And every conqueror creates a Muse.
Here, in low strains, your milder deeds we sing;
But there, my lord! we’ll bays and olive bring,
47 To crown your head; while you in triumph ride
O’er vanquish’d nations, and the sea beside;
While all your neighbour princes unto you,
Like Joseph’s sheaves, pay reverence, and bow.
 Written about 1654.  ‘Joseph’s sheaves’: Gen. xxxvii.
So we some antique hero’s strength
Learn by his lance’s weight and length,
As these vast beams express the beast
Whose shady brows alive they dress’d.
Such game, while yet the world was new,
The mighty Nimrod did pursue.
What huntsman of our feeble race,
Or dogs, dare such a monster chase,
Resembling, with each blow he strikes, 9
The charge of a whole troop of pikes?
O fertile head! which every year
Could such a crop of wonder bear!
The teeming earth did never bring
So soon, so hard, so huge a thing;
Which might it never have been cast
(Each year’s growth added to the last),
These lofty branches had supplied
The earth’s bold sons’ prodigious pride;
Heaven with these engines had been scaled,
When mountains heap’d on mountains fail’d. 20
THE MISER’S SPEECH. IN A MASQUE.
Balls of this metal slack’d At’lanta’s
And on the am’rous youth bestow’d the race;
Venus (the nymph’s mind measuring by her own),
Whom the rich spoils of cities overthrown
Had prostrated to Mars, could well advise
Th’ advent’rous lover how to gain the prize.
Nor less may Jupiter to gold ascribe;
For, when he turn’d himself into a bribe,
Who can blame Danae, or the brazen tower,
That they withstood not that almighty shower 10
Never till then did love make Jove put on
A form more bright, and nobler than his own;
Nor were it just, would he resume that shape,
That slack devotion should his thunder ’scape.
’Twas not revenge for griev’d Apollo’s wrong, 15
Those ass’s ears on Midas’ temples hung,
But fond repentance of his happy wish,
Because his meat grew metal like his dish.
Would Bacchus bless me so, I’d constant hold
Unto my wish, and die creating gold.
 ‘Am’rous youth’: Hippomenes.
 Transcriber’s note: The original text has a single dot over the
second “a” and another over the “e”, rather than the more
conventional diaresis shown here.
CHLORIS AND HYLAS. MADE TO A SARABAND.
Hylas, O Hylas! why sit we mute,
Now that each bird saluteth the spring?
Wind up the slacken’d strings of thy lute,
Never canst thou want matter to sing;
For love thy breast does fill with such a fire,
That whatsoe’er is fair moves thy desire.
Sweetest! you know, the sweetest of things
Of various flowers the bees do compose;
Yet no particular taste it brings
Of violet, woodbine, pink, or rose; 10
So love the result is of all the graces
Which flow from a thousand sev’ral faces.
Hylas! the birds which chant in this grove,
Could we but know the language they use,
They would instruct us better in love,
And reprehend thy inconstant Muse;
For love their breasts does fill with such a fire, 17
That what they once do choose, bounds their desire.
Chloris! this change the birds do approve,
Which the warm season hither does bring; 20
Time from yourself does further remove
You, than the winter from the gay spring;
She that like lightning shined while her face lasted,
The oak now resembles which lightning hath blasted.
Stay here, fond youth! and ask no more; be wise;
Knowing too much long since lost Paradise.
And, by your knowledge, we should be bereft
Of all that Paradise which yet is left.
The virtuous joys thou hast, thou wouldst should still
Last in their pride; and wouldst not take it ill
If rudely from sweet dreams, and for a toy,
Thou waked; he wakes himself that does enjoy.
How can the joy, or hope, which you allow
Be styled virtuous, and the end not so? 10
Talk in your sleep, and shadows still admire!
’Tis true, he wakes that feels this real fire;
But—to sleep better; for whoe’er drinks deep
Of this Nepenthe, rocks himself asleep.
Fruition adds no new wealth, but destroys,
And while it pleaseth much, yet still it cloys.
Who thinks he should be happier made for that,
As reasonably might hope he might grow fat
By eating to a surfeit; this once past,
What relishes? even kisses lose their taste. 20
Blessings may be repeated while they cloy;
But shall we starve, ’cause surfeitings destroy?
And if fruition did the taste impair
Of kisses, why should yonder happy pair,
Whose joys just Hymen warrants all the night,
Consume the day, too, in this less delight?
Urge not ’tis necessary; alas! we know
The homeliest thing that mankind does is so.
The world is of a large extent we see,
And must be peopled; children there must be: 30
So must bread too; but since there are enow
Born to that drudgery, what need we plough?
I need not plough, since what the stooping hine
Gets of my pregnant land must all be mine;
But in this nobler tillage ’tis not so;
For when Anchises did fair Venus know,
What interest had poor Vulcan in the boy,
Famous Aeneas, or the present joy?
Women enjoy’d, whate’er before they’ve
Are like romances read, or scenes once seen;
Fruition dulls or spoils the play much more
Than if one read, or knew the plot before.
Plays and romances read and seen, do fall
In our opinions; yet not seen at all,
Whom would they please? To an heroic tale
Would you not listen, lest it should grow stale?
’Tis expectation makes a blessing dear;
Heaven were not heaven, if we knew what it were.
If ’twere not heaven if we knew what it were,
’Twould not be heaven to those that now are there. 50
And as in prospects we are there pleased most,
Where something keeps the eye from being lost,
And leaves us room to guess; so here, restraint
Holds up delight, that with excess would faint.
Restraint preserves the pleasure we have got,
But he ne’er has it that enjoys it not.
In goodly prospects, who contracts the space,
Or takes not all the bounty of the place?
We wish remov’d what standeth in our light,
And nature blame for limiting our sight; 60
Where you stand wisely winking, that the view
Of the fair prospect may be always new.
They, who know all the wealth they have, are poor;
He’s only rich that cannot tell his store.
Not he that knows the wealth he has is poor,
But he that dares not touch, nor use, his store.
 ‘Hine’: hind.
1 They that never had the use
Of the grape’s surprising juice,
To the first delicious cup
All their reason render up;
Neither do, nor care to know,
Whether it be best or no.
2 So they that are to love inclined,
Sway’d by chance, not choice or art,
To the first that’s fair, or kind,
Make a present of their heart;
’Tis not she that first we love,
But whom dying we approve.
3 To man, that was in th’ev’ning made,
Stars gave the first delight,
Admiring, in the gloomy shade,
Those little drops of light;
Then at Aurora, whose fair hand
Removed them from the skies,
He gazing t’ward the east did stand,
She entertain’d his eyes.
4 But when the bright sun did appear,
All those he ’gan despise;
His wonder was determined there,
And could no higher rise;
He neither might, nor wished to know
A more refulgent light;
For that (as mine your beauties now)
Employ’d his utmost sight.
THE NIGHT-PIECE; OR, A PICTURE DRAWN IN THE DARK.
Darkness, which fairest nymphs disarms,
Defends us ill from Mira’s charms;
Mira can lay her beauty by,
Take no advantage of the eye,
Quit all that Lely’s art can take,
And yet a thousand captives make.
Her speech is graced with sweeter sound
Than in another’s song is found!
And all her well-placed words are darts,
Which need no light to reach our hearts. 10
As the bright stars and Milky Way,
Show’d by the night, are hid by day;
So we, in that accomplish’d mind,
Help’d by the night, new graces find,
Which, by the splendour of her view,
Dazzled before, we never knew.
While we converse with her, we mark
No want of day, nor think it dark;
Her shining image is a light
Fix’d in our hearts, and conquers night. 20
Like jewels to advantage set,
Her beauty by the shade does get;
There blushes, frowns, and cold disdain,
All that our passion might restrain,
Is hid, and our indulgent mind
Presents the fair idea kind.
Yet, friended by the night, we dare
Only in whispers tell our care;
He that on her his bold hand lays,
With Cupid’s pointed arrows plays; 30
They with a touch (they are so keen!)
Wound us unshot, and she unseen.
All near approaches threaten death;
We may be shipwreck’d by her breath;
Love, favour’d once with that sweet gale,
Doubles his haste, and fills his sail,
Till he arrive where she must prove
The haven, or the rock, of love.
So we th’Arabian coast do know
At distance, when the spices blow; 40
By the rich odour taught to steer,
Though neither day nor stars appear.
ON THE PICTURE OF A FAIR YOUTH, TAKEN AFTER HE WAS DEAD.
As gather’d flowers, while their wounds are
Look gay and fresh, as on the stalk they grew;
Torn from the root that nourish’d them, awhile
(Not taking notice of their fate) they smile,
And, in the hand which rudely pluck’d them, show
Fairer than those that to their autumn grow;
So love and beauty still that visage grace;
Death cannot fright them from their wonted place.
Alive, the hand of crooked Age had marr’d,
Those lovely features which cold Death has spared.
No wonder then he sped in love so well,
When his high passion he had breath to tell;
When that accomplish’d soul, in this fair frame,
No business had but to persuade that dame,
Whose mutual love advanced the youth so high,
That, but to heaven, he could no higher fly.
ON A BREDE OF DIVERS COLOURS, WOVEN BY FOUR LADIES.
Twice twenty slender virgin-fingers twine
This curious web, where all their fancies shine.
As Nature them, so they this shade have wrought,
Soft as their hands, and various as their thought;
Not Juno’s bird when, his fair train dispread,
He woos the female to his painted bed,
No, not the bow, which so adorns the skies,
So glorious is, or boasts so many dyes.
Now, for some ages, had the pride of Spain
Made the sun shine on half the world in vain;
While she bid war to all that durst supply
The place of those her cruelty made die.
Of Nature’s bounty men forebore to taste,
And the best portion of the earth lay waste.
From the new world, her silver and her gold
Came, like a tempest, to confound the old;
Feeding with these the bribed electors’ hopes,
Alone she gives us emperors and popes; 10
With these accomplishing her vast designs,
Europe was shaken with her Indian mines.
When Britain, looking with a just disdain
Upon this gilded majesty of Spain,
And knowing well that empire must decline,
Whose chief support and sinews are of coin,
Our nation’s solid virtue did oppose
To the rich troublers of the world’s repose.
And now some months, encamping on the main,
Our naval army had besieged Spain; 20
They that the whole world’s monarchy design’d,
Are to their ports by our bold fleet confined;
From whence our Red Cross they triumphant see,
Riding without a rival on the sea.
Others may use the ocean as their road,
Only the English make it their abode,
Whose ready sails with every wind can fly,
And make a cov’nant with th’inconstant sky;
Our oaks secure, as if they there took root, 29
We tread on billows with a steady foot.
Meanwhile the Spaniards in America,
Near to the line the sun approaching saw,
And hoped their European coasts to find
Clear’d from our ships by the autumnal wind;
Their huge capacious galleons stuff’d with plate,
The lab’ring winds drive slowly t’wards their fate.
Before St. Lucar they their guns discharge
To tell their joy, or to invite a barge;
This heard some ships of ours (though out of view),
And, swift as eagles, to the quarry flew; 40
So heedless lambs, which for their mothers bleat,
Wake hungry lions, and become their meat.
Arrived, they soon begin that tragic play,
And with their smoky cannons banish day;
Night, horror, slaughter, with confusion meets,
And in their sable arms embrace the fleets.
Through yielding planks the angry bullets fly,
And, of one wound, hundreds together die;
Born under diff’rent stars, one fate they have,
The ship their coffin, and the sea their grave! 50
Bold were the men which on the ocean first
Spread their new sails, when shipwreck was the worst;
More danger now from man alone we find
Than from the rocks, the billows, or the wind.
They that had sail’d from near th’Antarctic Pole,
Their treasure safe, and all their vessels whole,
In sight of their dear country ruin’d be,
Without the guilt of either rock or sea!
What they would spare, our fiercer art destroys,
Surpassing storms in terror and in noise. 60
Once Jove from Ida did both hosts survey,
And, when he pleased to thunder, part the fray;
Here, heaven in vain that kind retreat should sound,
The louder cannon had the thunder drown’d.
Some we made prize; while others, burn’d and rent,
With their rich lading to the bottom went;
Down sinks at once (so Fortune with us sports:)
The pay of armies, and the pride of courts.
Vain man! whose rage buries as low that store,
As avarice had digg’d for it before; 70
What earth, in her dark bowels, could not keep
From greedy hands, lies safer in the deep,
Where Thetis kindly does from mortals hide
Those seeds of luxury, debate, and pride.
And now, into her lap the richest prize
Fell, with the noblest of our enemies;
The Marquis(glad to see the fire destroy
Wealth that prevailing foes were to enjoy)
Out from his flaming ship his children sent,
To perish in a milder element; 80
Then laid him by his burning lady’s side,
And, since he could not save her, with her died.
Spices and gums about them melting fry,
And, phoenix-like, in that rich nest they die;
Alive, in flames of equal love they burn’d,
And now together are to ashes turn’d;
Ashes! more worth than all their fun’ral cost,
Than the huge treasure which was with them lost.
These dying lovers, and their floating sons,
Suspend the fight, and silence all our guns; 90
Beauty and youth about to perish, finds
Such noble pity in brave English minds,
That (the rich spoil forgot, their valour’s prize,)
All labour now to save their enemies.
How frail our passions! how soon changed are
Our wrath and fury to a friendly care!
They that but now for honour, and for plate,
Made the sea blush with blood, resign their hate;
And, their young foes endeav’ring to retrieve,
With greater hazard than they fought, they dive. 100
With these, returns victorious Montague,
With laurels in his hand, and half Peru.
Let the brave generals divide that bough,
Our great Protector hath such wreaths enow;
His conqu’ring head has no more room for bays;
Then let it be as the glad nation prays;
Let the rich ore forthwith be melted down,
And the state fix’d by making him a crown;
With ermine clad, and purple, let him hold
A royal sceptre, made of Spanish gold. 110
 ‘Fight at sea’: see any good English History, under date 1656.  ‘Marquis’: of Badajos, viceroy of Mexico.
We must resign! Heaven his great soul does claim
In storms, as loud as his immortal fame;
His dying groans, his last breath, shakes our isle,
And trees uncut fall for his funeral pile;
About his palace their broad roots are toss’d
Into the air.—So Romulus was lost!
New Rome in such a tempest miss’d her king,
And from obeying fell to worshipping.
On Oeta’s top thus Hercules lay dead, 9
With ruin’d oaks and pines about him spread;
The poplar, too, whose bough he wont to wear
On his victorious head, lay prostrate there;
Those his last fury from the mountain rent:
Our dying hero from the Continent
Ravish’d whole towns: and forts from Spaniards reft
As his last legacy to Britain left.
The ocean, which so long our hopes confined,
Could give no limits to his vaster mind;
Our bounds’ enlargement was his latest toil,
Nor hath he left us pris’ners to our isle; 20
Under the tropic is our language spoke,
And part of Flanders hath received our yoke.
From civil broils he did us disengage,
Found nobler objects for our martial rage;
And, with wise conduct, to his country show’d
The ancient way of conquering abroad.
Ungrateful then! if we no tears allow
To him, that gave us peace and empire too.
Princes, that fear’d him, grieve, concern’d to see
No pitch of glory from the grave is free. 30
Nature herself took notice of his death,
And, sighing, swell’d the sea with such a breath,
That, to remotest shores her billows roll’d,
The approaching fate of their great ruler told.
 ‘The air’: a tremendous tempest
blew over England (not on the day),
but a day or two before Cromwell’s death. It was said that something
of the same sort, along with an eclipse of the sun, took place on
the removal of Romulus.
Of the first Paradise there’s nothing found;
Plants set by Heaven are vanish’d, and the ground;
Yet the description lasts; who knows the fate
Of lines that shall this paradise relate?
Instead of rivers rolling by the side
Of Eden’s garden, here flows in the tide;
The sea, which always served his empire, now
Pays tribute to our Prince’s pleasure too.
Of famous cities we the founders know;
But rivers, old as seas, to which they go, 10
Are Nature’s bounty; ’tis of more renown
To make a river, than to build a town.
For future shade, young trees upon the banks
Of the new stream appear in even ranks;
The voice of Orpheus, or Amphion’s hand,
In better order could not make them stand;
May they increase as fast, and spread their boughs,
As the high fame of their great owner grows!
May he live long enough to see them all
Dark shadows cast, and as his palace tall! 20
Methinks I see the love that shall be made,
The lovers walking in that am’rous shade;
The gallants dancing by the river side;
They bathe in summer, and in winter slide.
Methinks I hear the music in the boats,
And the loud echo which returns the notes;
While overhead a flock of new-sprung fowl
Hangs in the air, and does the sun control,
Dark’ning the sky; they hover o’er, and shroud 29
The wanton sailors with a feather’d cloud.
Beneath, a shoal of silver fishes glides,
And plays about the gilded barges’ sides;
The ladies, angling in the crystal lake,
Feast on the waters with the prey they take;
At once victorious with their lines, and eyes,
They make the fishes, and the men, their prize.
A thousand Cupids on the billows ride,
And sea-nymphs enter with the swelling tide,
From Thetis sent as spies, to make report,
And tell the wonders of her sovereign’s court. 40
All that can, living, feed the greedy eye,
Or dead, the palate, here you may descry;
The choicest things that furnish’d Noah’s ark,
Or Peter’s sheet, inhabiting this park;
All with a border of rich fruit-trees crown’d,
Whose loaded branches hide the lofty mound,
Such various ways the spacious alleys lead,
My doubtful Muse knows not what path to tread.
Yonder, the harvest of cold months laid up,
Gives a fresh coolness to the royal cup; 50
There ice, like crystal firm, and never lost,
Tempers hot July with December’s frost;
Winter’s dark prison, whence he cannot fly,
Though the warm spring, his enemy, draws nigh.
Strange! that extremes should thus preserve the snow,
High on the Alps, or in deep caves below.
Here, a well-polished Mall gives us the joy
To see our Prince his matchless force employ;
His manly posture, and his graceful mien,
Vigour and youth in all his motions seen; 60
His shape so lovely and his limbs so strong,
Confirm our hopes we shall obey him long.
No sooner has he touch’d the flying ball,
But ’tis already more than half the Mall;
And such a fury from his arm has got,
As from a smoking culv’rin it were shot.
Near this my Muse, what most delights her, sees
A living gallery of aged trees;
Bold sons of earth, that thrust their arms so high,
As if once more they would invade the sky. 70
In such green palaces the first kings reign’d,
Slept in their shades, and angels entertain’d;
With such old counsellors they did advise,
And, by frequenting sacred groves, grew wise.
Free from th’impediments of light and noise,
Man, thus retired, his nobler thoughts employs.
Here Charles contrives th’ordering of his states,
Here he resolves his neighb’ring princes’ fates;
What nation shall have peace, where war be made,
Determined is in this oraculous shade; 80
The world, from India to the frozen north,
Concern’d in what this solitude brings forth.
His fancy objects from his view receives;
The prospect thought and contemplation gives.
That seat of empire here salutes his eye,
To which three kingdoms do themselves apply;
The structure by a prelate raised, Whitehall,
Built with the fortune of Rome’s capitol;
Both, disproportion’d to the present state
Of their proud founders, were approved by Fate. 90
From hence he does that antique pile behold,
Where royal heads receive the sacred gold;
It gives them crowns, and does their ashes keep;
There made like gods, like mortals there they sleep;
Making the circle of their reign complete,
Those suns of empire! where they rise, they set.
When others fell, this, standing, did presage
The crown should triumph over popular rage;
Hard by that House, where all our ills were shaped,
Th’ auspicious temple stood, and yet escaped. 100
So snow on Aetna does unmelted lie,
Whence rolling flames and scatter’d cinders fly;
The distant country in the ruin shares;
What falls from heaven the burning mountain spares.
Next, that capacious Hall he sees, the room
Where the whole nation does for justice come;
Under whose large roof flourishes the gown,
And judges grave, on high tribunals, frown.
Here, like the people’s pastor he does go,
His flock subjected to his view below; 110
On which reflecting in his mighty mind,
No private passion does indulgence find;
The pleasures of his youth suspended are,
And made a sacrifice to public care.
Here, free from court compliances, he walks,
And with himself, his best adviser, talks;
How peaceful olives may his temples shade,
For mending laws, and for restoring trade;
Or, how his brows may be with laurel charged,
For nations conquer’d and our bounds enlarged. 120
Of ancient prudence here he ruminates,
Of rising kingdoms, and of falling states;
What ruling arts gave great Augustus fame,
And how Alcides purchased such a name.
His eyes, upon his native palace bent,
Close by, suggest a greater argument.
His thoughts rise higher, when he does reflect
On what the world may from that star expect
Which at his birth appear’d, to let us see
Day, for his sake, could with the night agree; 130
A prince, on whom such diff’rent lights did smile,
Born the divided world to reconcile!
Whatever Heaven, or high extracted blood
Could promise, or foretell, he will make good;
Reform these nations, and improve them more,
Than this fair park, from what it was before.
 See ‘Macaulay.’  Pall Mall derived
its name from a particular game at bowls, in which
Charles II. excelled.
 ‘Prelate’: Cardinal Wolsey.  ‘Antique pile’: Westminster Abbey.  ‘House’: House of Commons.  ‘Hall’: Westminster Hall.  ‘Palace’: St. James’s Palace, where Charles II. was born.  ’Birth appeared ’: it seems a new star appeared in the heavens at
the birth of the king.
OF HER ROYAL HIGHNESS, MOTHER TO THE PRINCE OF ORANGE;
AND OF HER PORTRAIT, WRITTEN BY THE LATE DUCHESS OF YORK, WHILE SHE
LIVED WITH HER.
Heroic nymph! in tempests the support,
In peace the glory of the British Court!
Into whose arms the church, the state, and all
That precious is, or sacred here, did fall.
Ages to come, that shall your bounty hear,
Will think you mistress of the Indies were;
Though straiter bounds your fortunes did confine,
In your large heart was found a wealthy mine;
Like the bless’d oil, the widow’s lasting feast,
Your treasure, as you pour’d it out, increased. 10
While some your beauty, some your bounty sing,
Your native isle does with your praises ring;
But, above all, a nymph of your own train
Gives us your character in such a strain,
As none but she, who in that Court did dwell,
Could know such worth, or worth describe so well.
So while we mortals here at heaven do guess,
And more our weakness, than the place, express,
Some angel, a domestic there, comes down,
And tells the wonders he hath seen and known. 20
 ‘Prince of Orange’: Mary, Princess
of Orange, and sister to Charles
 ‘Train’: Lady Anne Hyde, daughter of the Earl of Clarendon, and
afterwards Duchess of York, and mother of Queen Mary and Queen Anne.
Great Queen! that does our island bless
With princes and with palaces;
Treated so ill, chased from your throne,
Returning you adorn the Town;
And, with a brave revenge, do show
Their glory went and came with you.
While peace from hence and you were gone,
Your houses in that storm o’erthrown,
Those wounds which civil rage did give,
At once you pardon, and relieve. 10
Constant to England in your love,
As birds are to their wonted grove,
Though by rude hands their nests are spoil’d,
There the next spring again they build.
Accusing some malignant star,
Not Britain, for that fatal war,
Your kindness banishes your fear,
Resolved to fix for ever here.
But what new mine this work supplies?
Can such a pile from ruin rise? 20
This, like the first creation, shows
As if at your command it rose.
Frugality and bounty too
(Those diff’ring virtues), meet in you;
From a confined, well-managed store,
You both employ and feed the poor.
Let foreign princes vainly boast
The rude effects of pride, and cost
Of vaster fabrics, to which they
Contribute nothing but the pay; 30
This, by the Queen herself design’d,
Gives us a pattern of her mind;
The state and order does proclaim
The genius of that Royal Dame.
Each part with just proportion graced,
And all to such advantage placed,
That the fair view her window yields,
The town, the river, and the fields,
Ent’ring, beneath us we descry,
And wonder how we came so high. 40
She needs no weary steps ascend;
All seems before her feet to bend;
And here, as she was born, she lies;
High, without taking pains to rise.
 ‘Somerset House’: Henrietta,
Queen-mother, who returned to England
in 1660, and lived in Somerset House, which she greatly improved.
 ‘Ever here’: she left, however, in 1665.
Fair hand! that can on virgin paper write,
Yet from the stain of ink preserve it white;
Whose travel o’er that silver field does show
Like track of leverets in morning snow.
Love’s image thus in purest minds is wrought,
Without a spot or blemish to the thought.
Strange, that your fingers should the pencil foil,
Without the help of colours or of oil!
For though a painter boughs and leaves can make,
’Tis you alone can make them bend and shake;
Whose breath salutes your new-created grove,
Like southern winds, and makes it gently move.
Orpheus could make the forest dance; but you
Can make the motion and the forest too.
VERSES TO DR GEORGE ROGERS, ON HIS TAKING THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHYSIC AT PADUA, IN THE YEAR 1664.
When as of old the earth’s bold children strove,
With hills on hills, to scale the throne of Jove,
Pallas and Mars stood by their sovereign’s side,
And their bright arms in his defence employ’d;
While the wise Phoebus, Hermes, and the rest,
Who joy in peace, and love the Muses best,
Descending from their so distemper’d seat,
Our groves and meadows chose for their retreat.
INSTRUCTIONS TO A PAINTER,
FOR THE DRAWING OF THE POSTURE AND PROGRESS OF HIS MAJESTY’S FORCES AT
SEA, UNDER THE COMMAND OF HIS HIGHNESS-ROYAL; TOGETHER WITH THE BATTLE
AND VICTORY OBTAINED OVER THE DUTCH, JUNE 3, 1665.
First draw the sea, that portion which between
The greater world and this of ours is seen;
Here place the British, there the Holland fleet,
Vast floating armies! both prepared to meet.
Draw the whole world, expecting who should reign,
After this combat, o’er the conquer’d main.
Make Heaven concern’d, and an unusual star
Declare th’importance of th’approaching war.
Make the sea shine with gallantry, and all
The English youth flock to their Admiral,
The valiant Duke! whose early deeds abroad,
Such rage in fight, and art in conduct show’d.
His bright sword now a dearer int’rest draws,
His brother’s glory, and his country’s cause.
Let thy bold pencil hope and courage spread,
Through the whole navy, by that hero led;
Make all appear, where such a Prince is by,
Resolved to conquer, or resolved to die.
With his extraction, and his glorious mind,
Make the proud sails swell more than with the wind; 20
Preventing cannon, make his louder fame
Check the Batavians, and their fury tame.
So hungry wolves, though greedy of their prey,
Stop when they find a lion in their way.
Make him bestride the ocean, and mankind
Ask his consent to use the sea and wind;
While his tall ships in the barr’d channel stand,
He grasps the Indies in his armed hand.
Paint an east wind, and make it blow away
Th’ excuse of Holland for their navy’s stay; 30
Make them look pale, and, the bold Prince to shun,
Through the cold north and rocky regions run.
To find the coast where morning first appears,
By the dark pole the wary Belgian steers;
Confessing now he dreads the English more
Than all the dangers of a frozen shore;
While from our arms security to find,
They fly so far, they leave the day behind.
Describe their fleet abandoning the sea,
And all their merchants left a wealthy prey; 40
Our first success in war make Bacchus crown,
And half the vintage of the year our own.
The Dutch their wine, and all their brandy lose,
Disarm’d of that from which their courage grows;
While the glad English, to relieve their toil,
In healths to their great leader drink the spoil.
His high command to Afric’s coast extend,
And make the Moors before the English bend;
Those barb’rous pirates willingly receive
Conditions, such as we are pleased to give. 50
Deserted by the Dutch, let nations know
We can our own and their great business do;
False friends chastise, and common foes restrain,
Which, worse than tempests, did infest the main.
Within those Straits, make Holland’s Smyrna fleet
With a small squadron of the English meet;
Like falcons these, those like a numerous flock
Of fowl, which scatter to avoid the shock.
There paint confusion in a various shape;
Some sink, some yield; and, flying, some escape. 60
Europe and Africa, from either shore,
Spectators are, and hear our cannon roar;
While the divided world in this agree,
Men that fight so, deserve to rule the sea.
But, nearer home, thy pencil use once more,
And place our navy by the Holland shore;
The world they compass’d, while they fought with Spain,
But here already they resign the main;
Those greedy mariners, out of whose way
Diffusive Nature could no region lay, 70
At home, preserved from rocks and tempests, lie,
Compell’d, like others, in their beds to die.
Their single towns th’Iberian armies press’d;
We all their provinces at once invest;
And, in a month, ruin their traffic more
Than that long war could in an age before.
But who can always on the billows lie?
The wat’ry wilderness yields no supply.
Spreading our sails, to Harwich we resort,
And meet the beauties of the British Court. 80
Th’ illustrious Duchess, and her glorious train
(Like Thetis with her nymphs), adorn the main.
The gazing sea-gods, since the Paphian Queen
Sprung from among them, no such sight had seen.
Charm’d with the graces of a troop so fair,
Those deathless powers for us themselves declare,
Resolved the aid of Neptune’s court to bring,
And help the nation where such beauties spring;
The soldier here his wasted store supplies,
And takes new valour from the ladies’ eyes. 90
Meanwhile, like bees, when stormy winter’s gone,
The Dutch (as if the sea were all their own)
Desert their ports, and, falling in their way,
Our Hamburg merchants are become their prey.
Thus flourish they, before th’approaching fight;
As dying tapers give a blazing light.
To check their pride, our fleet half-victuall’d
Enough to serve us till we reach our foes;
Who now appear so numerous and bold,
The action worthy of our arms we hold. 100
A greater force than that which here we find,
Ne’er press’d the ocean, nor employ’d the wind.
Restrain’d a while by the unwelcome night,
Th’ impatient English scarce attend the light.
But now the morning (heaven severely clear!)
To the fierce work indulgent does appear;
And Phoebus lifts above the waves his light,
That he might see, and thus record, the fight.
As when loud winds from diff’rent quarters rush,
Vast clouds encount’ring one another crush;
With swelling sails so, from their sev’ral coasts,
Join the Batavian and the British hosts.
For a less prize, with less concern and rage,
The Roman fleets at Actium did engage;
They, for the empire of the world they knew,
These, for the Old contend, and for the New.
At the first shock, with blood and powder stain’d,
Nor heaven, nor sea, their former face retain’d;
Fury and art produce effects so strange,
They trouble Nature, and her visage change. 120
Where burning ships the banish’d sun supply,
And no light shines, but that by which men die,
There York appears! so prodigal is he
Of royal blood, as ancient as the sea,
Which down to him, so many ages told,
Has through the veins of mighty monarchs roll’d!
The great Achilles march’d not to the field
Till Vulcan that impenetrable shield,
And arms, had wrought; yet there no bullets flew,
But shafts and darts which the weak Phrygians threw, 130
Our bolder hero on the deck does stand
Exposed, the bulwark of his native land;
Defensive arms laid by as useless here,
Where massy balls the neighb’ring rocks do tear.
Some power unseen those princes does protect,
Who for their country thus themselves neglect.
Against him first Opdam his squadron leads,
Proud of his late success against the Swedes;
Made by that action, and his high command,
Worthy to perish by a prince’s hand. 140
The tall Batavian in a vast ship rides,
Bearing an army in her hollow sides;
Yet, not inclined the English ship to board,
More on his guns relies than on his sword;
From whence a fatal volley we received;
It miss’d the Duke, but his great heart it grieved;
Three worthy persons from his side it tore,
And dyed his garment with their scatter’d gore.
Happy! to whom this glorious death arrives,
More to be valued than a thousand lives! 150
On such a theatre as this to die,
For such a cause, and such a witness by!
Who would not thus a sacrifice be made,
To have his blood on such an altar laid?
The rest about him struck with horror stood,
The Belgian ship unmoved, like some huge rock
Inhabiting the sea, expects the shock.
From both the fleets men’s eyes are bent this way,
Neglecting all the business of the day;
Bullets their flight, and guns their noise suspend;
The silent ocean does th’event attend,
Which leader shall the doubtful victory bless,
And give an earnest of the war’s success;
When Heaven itself, for England to declare,
Turns ship, and men, and tackle, into air.
Their new commander from his charge is toss’d,
Which that young prince had so unjustly lost,
Whose great progenitors, with better fate,
And better conduct, sway’d their infant state. 190
His flight t’wards heaven th’aspiring Belgian took,
But fell, like Phaeton, with thunder strook;
From vaster hopes than his he seemed to fall,
That durst attempt the British Admiral;
From her broad sides a ruder flame is thrown
Than from the fiery chariot of the sun;
That bears the radiant ensign of the day,
And she the flag that governs in the sea.
The Duke (ill pleased that fire should thus prevent
The work which for his brighter sword he meant), 200
Anger still burning in his valiant breast,
Goes to complete revenge upon the rest.
So on the guardless herd, their keeper slain,
Rushes a tiger in the Libyan plain.
The Dutch, accustom’d to the raging sea,
And in black storms the frowns of heaven to see,
Never met tempest which more urged’ their fears.
Than that which in the Prince’s look appears.
Fierce, goodly, young! Mars he resembles, when
Jove sends him down to scourge perfidious men;
Such as with foul ingratitude have paid
Both those that led, and those that gave them aid.
Where he gives on, disposing of their fates,
Terror and death on his loud cannon waits,
With which he pleads his brother’s cause so well,
He shakes the throne to which he does appeal.
The sea with spoils his angry bullets strow,
Widows and orphans making as they go;
Before his ship fragments of vessels torn,
Flags, arms, and Belgian carcasses are borne; 220
And his despairing foes, to flight inclined,
Spread all their canvas to invite the wind.
So the rude Boreas, where he lists to blow,
Makes clouds above, and billows fly below,
Beating the shore; and, with a boist’rous rage,
Does heaven at once, and earth, and sea engage.
The Dutch, elsewhere, did through the wat’ry
Perform enough to have made others yield;
But English courage, growing as they fight,
In danger, noise, and slaughter, takes delight; 230
Their bloody task, unwearied still, they ply,
Only restrain’d by death, or victory.
Iron and lead, from earth’s dark entrails torn,
Like showers of hail from either side are borne;
So high the rage of wretched mortals goes,
Hurling their mother’s bowels at their foes!
Ingenious to their ruin, every age
Improves the arts and instruments of rage.
Death-hast’ning ills Nature enough has sent,
And yet men still a thousand more invent! 240
But Bacchus now, which led the Belgians on,
So fierce at first, to favour us begun;
Brandy and wine (their wonted friends) at length
Render them useless, and betray their strength.
So corn in fields, and in the garden flowers,
Revive and raise themselves with mod’rate showers;
But overcharged with never-ceasing rain,
Become too moist, and bend their heads again.
Their reeling ships on one another fall,
Without a foe, enough to ruin all. 250
Of this disorder, and the favouring wind,
The watchful English such advantage find,
Ships fraught with fire among the heap they throw,
And up the so-entangled Belgians blow.
The flame invades the powder-rooms, and then,
Their guns shoot bullets, and their vessels men.
The scorch’d Batavians on the billows float,
Sent from their own, to pass in Charon’s boat.
And now, our royal Admiral success
(With all the marks of victory) does bless; 260
The burning ships, the taken, and the slain,
Proclaim his triumph o’er the conquer’d main.
Nearer to Holland, as their hasty flight
Carries the noise and tumult of the fight,
His cannons’ roar, forerunner of his fame,
Makes their Hague tremble, and their Amsterdam;
’What wonders may not English valour work,
Led by th’example of victorious York?
Or what defence against him can they make,
Who, at such distance, does their country shake?
His fatal hand their bulwarks will o’erthrow,
And let in both the ocean, and the foe;’
Thus cry the people;—and, their land to keep,
Allow our title to command the deep;
Blaming their States’ ill conduct, to provoke
Those arms, which freed them from the Spanish yoke.
Painter! excuse me, if I have a while
Forgot thy art, and used another style;
For, though you draw arm’d heroes as they sit,
The task in battle does the Muses fit; 290
They, in the dark confusion of a fight,
Discover all, instruct us how to write;
And light and honour to brave actions yield,
Hid in the smoke and tumult of the field,
Ages to come shall know that leader’s toil,
And his great name, on whom the Muses smile;
Their dictates here let thy famed pencil trace,
And this relation with thy colours grace.
Then draw the Parliament, the nobles met,
And our great Monarch high above them set; 300
Like young Augustus let his image be,
Triumphing for that victory at sea,
Where Egypt’s Queen, and Eastern kings o’erthrown,
Made the possession of the world his own.
Last draw the Commons at his royal feet,
Pouring out treasure to supply his fleet;
They vow with lives and fortunes to maintain
Their King’s eternal title to the main;
And with a present to the Duke, approve 309
His valour, conduct, and his country’s love.
 See History of England.  ‘Young prince’: Prince of Orange.  ‘Egypt’s Queen’: Cleopatra.
1 Poets may boast, as safely vain,
Their works shall with the world remain:
Both, bound together, live or die,
The verses and the prophecy.
2 But who can hope his line should long
Last in a daily changing tongue?
While they are new, envy prevails;
And as that dies, our language fails.
3 When architects have done their part,
The matter may betray their art;
Time, if we use ill-chosen stone,
Soon brings a well-built palace down.
4 Poets that lasting marble seek,
Must carve in Latin, or in Greek;
We write in sand, our language grows,
And like the tide, our work o’erflows.
5 Chaucer his sense can only boast;
The glory of his numbers lost!
Years have defaced his matchless strain;
And yet he did not sing in vain.
6 The beauties which adorn’d that age,
The shining subjects of his rage,
Hoping they should immortal prove,
Rewarded with success his love.
7 This was the gen’rous poet’s scope;
And all an English pen can hope,
To make the fair approve his flame,
That can so far extend their fame.
8 Verse, thus design’d, has no ill fate,
If it arrive but at the date
Of fading beauty; if it prove
But as long-lived as present love.
Tasso knew how the fairer sex to grace,
But in no one durst all perfection place.
In her alone that owns this book is seen
Clorinda’s spirit, and her lofty mien,
Sophronia’s piety, Erminia’s truth,
Armida’s charms, her beauty, and her youth.
Our Princess here, as in a glass, does dress
Her well-taught mind, and every grace express.
More to our wonder than Rinaldo fought,
The hero’s race excels the poet’s thought.
When through the world fair Mazarin had run,
Bright as her fellow-traveller, the sun,
Hither at length the Roman eagle flies,
As the last triumph of her conqu’ring eyes.
As heir to Julius, she may pretend
A second time to make this island bend;
But Portsmouth, springing from the ancient race
Of Britons, which the Saxon here did chase,
As they great Caesar did oppose, makes head,
And does against this new invader lead. 10
That goodly nymph, the taller of the two,
Careless and fearless to the field does go.
Becoming blushes on the other wait,
And her young look excuses want of height.
Beauty gives courage; for she knows the day
Must not be won the Amazonian way.
Legions of Cupids to the battle come,
For Little Britain these, and those for Rome.
Dress’d to advantage, this illustrious pair
Arrived, for combat in the list appear. 20
What may the Fates design! for never yet
From distant regions two such beauties met.
Venus had been an equal friend to both,
And vict’ry to declare herself seems loth;
Over the camp, with doubtful wings, she flies,
Till Chloris shining in the fields she spies.
The lovely Chloris well-attended came,
A thousand Graces waited on the dame;
Her matchless form made all the English glad, 29
And foreign beauties less assurance had;
Yet, like the Three on Ida’s top, they all
Pretend alike, contesting for the ball;
Which to determine, Love himself declined,
Lest the neglected should become less kind.
 ‘Triple combat’: the Duchess
of Mazarin was a divorced demirep, who
came to England with some designs on Charles II., in which she was
counteracted by the Duchess of Portsmouth.
The failing blossoms which a young plant bears,
Engage our hope for the succeeding years;
And hope is all which art or nature brings,
At the first trial, to accomplish things.
Mankind was first created an essay;
That ruder draught the Deluge wash’d away.
How many ages pass’d, what blood and toil,
Before we made one kingdom of this isle!
How long in vain had nature striven to frame
A perfect princess, ere her Highness came!
For joys so great we must with patience wait;
’Tis the set price of happiness complete.
As a first fruit, Heaven claim’d that lovely boy;
The next shall live, and be the nation’s joy.
 ‘Duke of Cambridge’: The Duke
of York’s second son by Mary d’Este.
He died when he was only a month old, November 1677.
1 As once the lion honey gave,
Out of the strong such sweetness came;
A royal hero, no less brave,
Produced this sweet, this lovely dame.
2 To her the prince, that did oppose
Such mighty armies in the field,
And Holland from prevailing foes
Could so well free, himself does yield.
3 Not Belgia’s fleet (his high command)
Which triumphs where the sun does rise,
Nor all the force he leads by land,
Could guard him from her conqu’ring eyes.
4 Orange, with youth, experience has;
In action young, in council old;
Orange is, what Augustus was,
Brave, wary, provident, and bold.
5 On that fair tree which bears his name,
Blossoms and fruit at once are found;
In him we all admire the same,
His flow’ry youth with wisdom crown’d!
6 Empire and freedom reconciled
In Holland are by great Nassau;
Like those he sprung from, just and mild,
To willing people he gives law.
7 Thrice happy pair! so near allied
In royal blood, and virtue too!
Now love has you together tied,
May none this triple knot undo!
8 The church shall be the happy place
Where streams, which from the same source run,
Though divers lands a while they grace,
Unite again, and are made one.
9 A thousand thanks the nation owes
To him that does protect us all;
For while he thus his niece bestows,
About our isle he builds a wall;
10 A wall! like that which Athens had,
By th’oracle’s advice, of wood;
Had theirs been such as Charles has made,
That mighty state till now had stood.
 ‘Princess of Orange’: The Princess
Mary was married to the Prince of
Orange at St. James’s, in November 1677.
Mirror of poets! mirror of our age!
Which her whole face beholding on thy stage,
Pleased and displeased with her own faults, endures
A remedy like those whom music cures.
Thou hast alone those various inclinations
Which Nature gives to ages, sexes, nations;
So traced with thy all-resembling pen,
That whate’er custom has imposed on men,
Or ill-got habit (which deforms them so,
That scarce a brother can his brother know) 10
Is represented to the wond’ring eyes
Of all that see, or read, thy comedies.
Whoever in those glasses looks, may find
The spots return’d, or graces, of his mind;
And by the help of so divine an art,
At leisure view, and dress, his nobler part.
Narcissus, cozen’d by that flatt’ring well,
Which nothing could but of his beauty tell,
Had here, discov’ring the deformed estate
Of his fond mind, preserved himself with hate. 20
But virtue too, as well as vice, is clad
In flesh and blood so well, that Plato had
Beheld, what his high fancy once embraced,
Virtue with colours, speech, and motion graced.
The sundry postures of thy copious Muse
Who would express, a thousand tongues must use;
Whose fate’s no less peculiar than thy art;
For as thou couldst all characters impart,
So none could render thine, which still escapes,
Like Proteus, in variety of shapes; 30
Who was nor this nor that; but all we find,
And all we can imagine, in mankind.
Fletcher! to thee we do not only owe
All these good plays, but those of others too;
Thy wit repeated does support the stage,
Credits the last, and entertains this age.
No worthies, form’d by any Muse but thine,
Could purchase robes to make themselves so fine.
What brave commander is not proud to see
Thy brave Melantius in his gallantry?
Our greatest ladies love to see their scorn
Outdone by thine, in what themselves have worn; 10
Th’ impatient widow, ere the year be done,
Sees thy Aspasia weeping in her gown.
I never yet the tragic strain essay’d,
Deterr’d by that inimitable Maid;
And when I venture at the comic style,
Thy Scornful Lady seems to mock my toil.
Thus has thy Muse at once improved and marr’d
Our sport in plays, by rend’ring it too hard!
So when a sort of lusty shepherds throw
The bar by turns, and none the rest outgo 20
So far, but that the best are measuring casts,
Their emulation and their pastime lasts;
But if some brawny yeoman of the guard
Step in, and toss the axletree a yard,
Or more, beyond the furthest mark, the rest
Despairing stand; their sport is at the best.
 ‘Inimitable Maid’: the Maid’s
Tragedy, the joint production
of Beaumont and Fletcher.
UPON THE EARL OF ROSCOMMON’S TRANSLATION OF HORACE, ‘DE ARTE POETICA;’ AND OF THE USE OF POETRY.
Rome was not better by her Horace taught,
Than we are here to comprehend his thought;
The poet writ to noble Piso there;
A noble Piso does instruct us here,
Gives us a pattern in his flowing style,
And with rich precepts does oblige our isle:
Britain! whose genius is in verse express’d,
Bold and sublime, but negligently dress’d.
Horace will our superfluous branches prune,
Give us new rules, and set our harp in tune;
Direct us how to back the winged horse,
Favour his flight, and moderate his force.
Though poets may of inspiration boast,
Their rage, ill-govern’d, in the clouds is lost.
He that proportion’d wonders can disclose,
At once his fancy and his judgment shows.
Chaste moral writing we may learn from hence,
Neglect of which no wit can recompense.
The fountain which from Helicon proceeds,
That sacred stream! should never water weeds, 20
Nor make the crop of thorns and thistles grow,
Which envy or perverted nature sow.
Well-sounding verses are the charm we use,
Heroic thoughts and virtue to infuse;
Things of deep sense we may in prose unfold,
But they move more in lofty numbers told.
By the loud trumpet, which our courage aids,
We learn that sound, as well as sense, persuades.
The Muses’ friend, unto himself severe,
With silent pity looks on all that err; 30
But where a brave, a public action shines,
That he rewards with his immortal lines.
Whether it be in council or in fight,
His country’s honour is his chief delight;
Praise of great acts he scatters as a seed,
Which may the like in coming ages breed.
Here taught the fate of verses (always prized
With admiration, or as much despised),
Men will be less indulgent to their faults,
And patience have to cultivate their thoughts. 40
Poets lose half the praise they should have got,
Could it be known what they discreetly blot;
Finding new words, that to the ravish’d ear
May like the language of the gods appear,
ON THE DUKE OF MONMOUTH’S EXPEDITION INTO SCOTLAND IN THE SUMMER SOLSTICE.
Swift as Jove’s messenger (the winged god),
With sword as potent as his charmed rod,
He flew to execute the King’s command,
And in a moment reach’d that northern land,
Where day contending with approaching night,
Assists the hero with continued light.
On foes surprised, and by no night conceal’d,
He might have rush’d; but noble pity held
His hand a while, and to their choice gave space,
Which they would prove, his valour or his grace. 10
This not well heard, his cannon louder spoke,
And then, like lightning, through that cloud he broke.
His fame, his conduct, and that martial look,
The guilty Scots with such a terror strook,
That to his courage they resign the field,
Who to his bounty had refused to yield.
Glad that so little loyal blood it cost,
He grieves so many Britons should be lost;
Taking more pains, when he beheld them yield,
To save the flyers, than to win the field; 20
And at the Court his int’rest does employ,
That none, who ’scaped his fatal sword, should die.
And now, these rash bold men their error find,
Not trusting one beyond his promise kind;
One! whose great mind, so bountiful and brave,
Had learn’d the art to conquer and to save.
In vulgar breasts no royal virtues dwell;
Such deeds as these his high extraction tell,
And give a secret joy to him that reigns,
To see his blood triumph in Monmouth’s veins; 30
To see a leader whom he got and chose,
Firm to his friends, and fatal to his foes.
But seeing envy, like the sun, does beat,
With scorching rays, on all that’s high and great,
This, ill-requited Monmouth! is the bough
The Muses send to shade thy conqu’ring brow.
Lampoons, like squibs, may make a present blaze;
But time and thunder pay respect to bays.
Achilles’ arms dazzle our present view,
Kept by the Muse as radiant and as new 40
As from the forge of Vulcan first they came;
Thousands of years are past, and they the same;
Such care she takes to pay desert with fame!
Than which no monarch, for his crown’s defence,
Knows how to give a nobler recompence.
Thus mourn the Muses! on the hearse
Not strewing tears, but lasting verse,
Which so preserve the hero’s name,
They make him live again in fame.
Chloris, in lines so like his own,
Gives him so just and high renown,
That she th’afflicted world relieves,
And shows that still in her he lives;
Her wit as graceful, great, and good;
Allied in genius, as in blood.
His loss supplied, now all our fears
Are, that the nymph should melt in tears.
Then, fairest Chloris! comfort take,
For his, your own, and for our sake,
Lest his fair soul, that lives in you,
Should from the world for ever go.
 ‘Mrs. Wharton’: the daughter, and co-heiress with the Countess of
Abingdon, of Sir Henry Lee, of Ditchley, in Oxfordshire.
 ‘In blood’: the Earl of Rochester’s mother was Mrs. Wharton’s grand
What revolutions in the world have been,
How are we changed since we first saw the Queen!
She, like the sun, does still the same appear,
Bright as she was at her arrival here!
Time has commission mortals to impair,
But things celestial is obliged to spare.
May every new year find her still the same
In health and beauty as she hither came!
When Lords and Commons, with united voice,
Th’ Infanta named, approved the royal choice;
First of our Queens whom not the King alone,
But the whole nation, lifted to the throne.
With like consent, and like desert, was crown’d
The glorious Prince that does the Turk confound.
Victorious both! his conduct wins the day,
And her example chases vice away;
Though louder fame attend the martial rage,
’Tis greater glory to reform the age.
 ‘Royal choice’: a royal message,
announcing the king’s intention to
marry the Infanta of Portugal, was delivered in Parliament in May
 ‘Prince’: John Sobieski, king of Poland.
Venus her myrtle, Phoebus has his bays;
Tea both excels, which she vouchsafes to praise.
The best of Queens, and best of herbs, we owe
To that bold nation which the way did show
To the fair region where the sun does rise,
Whose rich productions we so justly prize.
The Muse’s friend, tea does our fancy aid,
Repress those vapours which the head invade,
And keeps that palace of the soul serene,
Fit on her birth-day to salute the Queen.
The modern Nimrod, with a safe delight
Pursuing beasts, that save themselves by flight,
Grown proud, and weary of his wonted game,
Would Christians chase, and sacrifice to fame.
A prince, with eunuchs and the softer sex
Shut up so long, would warlike nations vex,
Provoke the German, and, neglecting heaven,
Forget the truce for which his oath was given.
His Grand Vizier, presuming to invest
The chief imperial city of the west, 10
With the first charge compell’d in haste to rise,
His treasure, tents, and cannon, left a prize;
The standard lost, and janizaries slain,
Render the hopes he gave his master vain.
The flying Turks, that bring the tidings home,
Renew the memory of his father’s doom;
And his guard murmurs, that so often brings
Down from the throne their unsuccessful kings.
The trembling Sultan’s forced to expiate
His own ill-conduct by another’s fate. 20
The Grand Vizier, a tyrant, though a slave,
A fair example to his master gave;
He Bassa’s head, to save his own, made fly,
And now, the Sultan to preserve, must die.
The fatal bowstring was not in his thought,
When, breaking truce, he so unjustly fought;
Made the world tremble with a numerous host,
And of undoubted victory did boast.
Strangled he lies! yet seems to cry aloud,
To warn the mighty, and instruct the proud,
That of the great, neglecting to be just,
Heaven in a moment makes a heap of dust.
The Turks so low, why should the Christians lose
Such an advantage of their barb’rous foes?
Neglect their present ruin to complete,
Before another Solyman they get?
Too late they would with shame, repenting, dread
That numerous herd, by such a lion led;
He Rhodes and Buda from the Christians tore,
Which timely union might again restore. 40
But, sparing Turks, as if with rage possess’d,
The Christians perish, by themselves oppress’d;
Cities and provinces so dearly won,
That the victorious people are undone!
What angel shall descend to reconcile
The Christian states, and end their guilty toil?
A prince more fit from heaven we cannot ask
Than Britain’s king, for such a glorious task;
His dreadful navy, and his lovely mind,
Give him the fear and favour of mankind; 50
His warrant does the Christian faith defend;
On that relying, all their quarrels end.
The peace is sign’d, and Britain does obtain
What Rome had sought from her fierce sons in vain.
In battles won Fortune a part doth claim,
And soldiers have their portion in the same;
In this successful union we find
Only the triumph of a worthy mind.
’Tis all accomplish’d by his royal word,
Without unsheathing the destructive sword; 60
Without a tax upon his subjects laid,
Their peace disturb’d, their plenty, or their trade.
And what can they to such a prince deny,
With whose desires the greatest kings comply?
The arts of peace are not to him unknown;
This happy way he march’d into the throne;
And we owe more to Heaven than to the sword,
The wish’d return of so benign a lord.
Charles! by old Greece with a new freedom graced,
Above her antique heroes shall be placed. 70
What Theseus did, or Theban Hercules,
Holds no compare with this victorious peace,
Which on the Turks shall greater honour gain,
Than all their giants and their monsters slain:
Those are bold tales, in fabulous ages told;
This glorious act the living do behold.
 ‘Year 1683’: see History.  ‘Peace is signed’: the Peace of Nimeguen.
A PRESAGE OF THE RUIN OF THE TURKISH EMPIRE; PRESENTED TO HIS MAJESTY KING JAMES II. ON HIS BIRTHDAY.
Since James the Second graced the British throne,
Truce, well observed, has been infring’d by none;
Christians to him their present union owe,
And late success against the common foe;
While neighb’ring princes, both to urge their fate,
Court his assistance, and suspend their hate.
So angry bulls the combat do forbear,
When from the wood a lion does appear.
This happy day peace to our island sent,
As now he gives it to the Continent. 10
A prince more fit for such a glorious task,
Than England’s king, from Heaven we cannot ask;
He, great and good! proportion’d to the work,
Their ill-drawn swords shall turn against the Turk.
Such kings, like stars with influence unconfined,
Shine with aspect propitious to mankind;
Favour the innocent, repress the bold,
And, while they flourish, make an age of gold.
Bred in the camp, famed for his valour, young;
At sea successful, vigorous, and strong; 20
His fleet, his array, and his mighty mind,
Esteem and rev’rence through the world do find.
A prince with such advantages as these,
Where he persuades not, may command a peace.
Britain declaring for the juster side,
The most ambitious will forget their pride;
They that complain will their endeavours cease,
Advised by him, inclined to present peace,
Join to the Turk’s destruction, and then bring
All their pretences to so just a king. 30
If the successful troublers of mankind,
With laurel crown’d, so great applause do find,
Shall the vex’d world less honour yield to those
That stop their progress, and their rage oppose?
Next to that power which does the ocean awe,
Is to set bounds, and give ambition law.
The British monarch shall the glory have,
That famous Greece remains no longer slave;
That source of art and cultivated thought!
Which they to Rome, and Romans hither brought. 40
The banish’d Muses shall no longer mourn,
But may with liberty to Greece return;
Though slaves (like birds that sing not in a cage),
They lost their genius, and poetic rage;
Homers again, and Pindars, may be found,
And his great actions with their numbers crown’d.
The Turk’s vast empire does united stand;
Christians, divided under the command
Of jarring princes, would be soon undone,
Did not this hero make their int’rest one; 50
Peace to embrace, ruin the common foe,
Exalt the Cross, and lay the Crescent low.
Thus may the Gospel to the rising sun
Be spread, and flourish where it first began;
And this great day, (so justly honour’d here!)
Known to the East, and celebrated there.
Haec ego longaevus cecini
tibi, maxime regum!
Ausus et ipse manu juvenum tentare laborem.—VIRG.
TO THE KING, ON HIS NAVY.
Where’er thy navy spreads her canvas wings,
Homage to thee, and peace to all she brings;
The French and Spaniard, when thy flags appear,
Forget their hatred, and consent to fear.
So Jove from Ida did both hosts survey,
And when he pleased to thunder, part the fray.
Ships heretofore in seas like fishes sped,
The mightiest still upon the smallest fed;
Thou on the deep imposest nobler laws,
And by that justice hast removed the cause 10
Of those rude tempests, which for rapine sent,
Too oft, alas! involved the innocent.
Now shall the ocean, as thy Thames, be free
From both those fates, of storms and piracy.
But we most happy, who can fear no force
But winged troops, or Pegasean horse.
’Tis not so hard for greedy foes to spoil
Another nation, as to touch our soil.
Should Nature’s self invade the world again,
And o’er the centre spread the liquid main, 20
Thy power were safe, and her destructive hand
Would but enlarge the bounds of thy command;
Thy dreadful fleet would style thee lord of all,
And ride in triumph o’er the drowned ball;
Those towers of oak o’er fertile plains might go,
And visit mountains where they once did grow.
The world’s Restorer once could not endure
That finish’d Babel should those men secure,
Whose pride design’d that fabric to have stood
Above the reach of any second flood; 30
To thee, his chosen, more indulgent, he
Dares trust such power with so much piety.
TO MR HENRY LAWES, WHO HAD THEN NEWLY SET A SONG OF MINE IN THE YEAR 1635.
Verse makes heroic virtue live;
But you can life to verses give.
As when in open air we blow,
The breath, though strain’d, sounds flat and low;
But if a trumpet take the blast,
It lifts it high, and makes it last:
So in your airs our numbers dress’d,
Make a shrill sally from the breast
Of nymphs, who, singing what we penn’d,
Our passions to themselves commend; 10
While love, victorious with thy art,
Governs at once their voice and heart.
You by the help of tune and time,
Can make that song that was but rhyme.
Noy pleading, no man doubts the cause;
Or questions verses set by Lawes.
As a church window, thick with paint,
Lets in a light but dim and faint;
So others, with division, hide
The light of sense, the poet’s pride: 20
But you alone may proudly boast
That not a syllable is lost;
The writer’s and the setter’s skill
At once the ravish’d ears do fill.
Let those which only warble long,
And gargle in their throats a song,
Content themselves with Ut, Re, Mi:
Let words, and sense, be set by thee.
 ‘Lawes’: an eminent musical composer, who composed the music for
 ‘Noy’: Attorney-General to Charles I., had died in 1635. By a
poetical licence Waller represents him still pleading.
 ‘Ut, Re, Mi’: Lawes opposed the Italian music.
1 Madam, of all the sacred Muse inspired,
Orpheus alone could with the woods comply;
Their rude inhabitants his song admired,
And Nature’s self, in those that could not lie:
Your beauty next our solitude invades,
And warms us, shining through the thickest shades.
2 Nor ought the tribute, which the wond’ring
Pays your fair eyes, prevail with you to scorn
The answer and consent to that report
Which, echo-like, the country does return:
Mirrors are taught to flatter, but our springs
Present th’impartial images of things.
3 A rural judge disposed of beauty’s prize;
A simple shepherd was preferr’d to Jove;
Down to the mountains from the partial skies,
Came Juno, Pallas, and the Queen of Love,
To plead for that which was so justly given
To the bright Carlisle of the court of heaven.
4 Carlisle! a name which all our woods are taught,
Loud as their Amaryllis, to resound;
Carlisle! a name which on the bark is wrought
Of every tree that’s worthy of the wound.
From Phoebus’ rage our shadows and our streams
May guard us better than from Carlisle’s beams.
 ‘Lady Carlisle’: the Lady Lucy
Percy, daughter of the Earl of
Northumberland, married against her father’s wishes to the Earl of
Carlisle. She was a wit and intriguante.
Phyllis! ’twas love that injured you,
And on that rock your Thrysis threw;
Who for proud Celia could have died,
While you no less accused his pride.
Fond Love his darts at random throws,
And nothing springs from what he sows;
From foes discharged, as often meet
The shining points of arrows fleet,
In the wide air creating fire,
As souls that join in one desire. 10
Love made the lovely Venus burn
In vain, and for the cold youth mourn,
Who the pursuit of churlish beasts
Preferr’d to sleeping on her breasts.
Love makes so many hearts the prize
Of the bright Carlisle’s conqu’ring eyes,
Which she regards no more than they
The tears of lesser beauties weigh.
So have I seen the lost clouds pour
Into the sea an useless shower; 20
And the vex’d sailors curse the rain
For which poor shepherds pray’d in vain.
Then, Phyllis, since our passions are
Govern’d by chance, and not the care,
But sport of heaven, which takes delight
To look upon this Parthian fight
Of love, still flying, or in chase,
Never encount’ring face to face;
No more to Love we’ll sacrifice,
But to the best of deities; 30
And let our hearts, which Love disjoin’d,
By his kind mother be combin’d.
 ’Cold youth ’: Adonis.
Great Queen of Europe! where thy offspring wears
All the chief crowns; where princes are thy heirs;
As welcome thou to sea-girt Britain’s shore,
As erst Latona (who fair Cynthia bore)
To Delos was; here shines a nymph as bright,
By thee disclosed, with like increase of light.
Why was her joy in Belgia confined?
Or why did you so much regard the wind?
Scarce could the ocean, though enraged, have toss’d
Thy sov’reign bark, but where th’obsequious coast 10
Pays tribute to thy bed. Rome’s conqu’ring hand
More vanquished nations under her command
Never reduced. Glad Berecynthia so
Among her deathless progeny did go;
A wreath of towers adorn’d her rev’rend head,
Mother of all that on ambrosia fed.
Thy godlike race must sway the age to come,
As she Olympus peopled with her womb.
Would those commanders of mankind obey
Their honour’d parent, all pretences lay 20
Down at your royal feet, compose their jars,
And on the growing Turk discharge these wars;
The Christian knights that sacred tomb should wrest
From Pagan hands, and triumph o’er the East;
Our England’s Prince, and Gallia’s Dolphin, might
Like young Rinaldo and Tancredi fight;
In single combat by their swords again
The proud Argantes and fierce Soldan slain;
Again might we their valiant deeds recite,
And with your Tuscan Muse exalt the fight. 30
 ‘Her landing’: Mary de Medicis,
widow of Henry IV., and mother of
the King of France, and of the Queens of England and Spain, coming
to England in 1638, was very ill received by the people, and forced
ultimately to leave the country.
 ‘Tuscan Muse’: Tasso.
Rare Artisan, whose pencil moves
Not our delights alone, but loves!
From thy shop of beauty we
Slaves return, that enter’d free.
The heedless lover does not know
Whose eyes they are that wound him so;
But, confounded with thy art,
Inquires her name that has his heart.
Another, who did long refrain,
Feels his old wound bleed fresh again 10
With dear remembrance of that face,
Where now he reads new hope of grace:
Nor scorn nor cruelty does find,
But gladly suffers a false wind
To blow the ashes of despair
From the reviving brand of care.
Fool! that forgets her stubborn look
This softness from thy finger took.
Strange! that thy hand should not inspire
The beauty only, but the fire; 20
Not the form alone, and grace,
But act and power of a face.
Mayst thou yet thyself as well,
As all the world besides, excel!
So you th’unfeigned truth rehearse
(That I may make it live in verse),
Why thou couldst not at one assay,
The face to aftertimes convey,
Which this admires. Was it thy wit
To make her oft before thee sit? 30
Confess, and we’ll forgive thee this;
For who would not repeat that bliss,
And frequent sight of such a dame
Buy with the hazard of his fame?
Yet who can tax thy blameless skill,
Though thy good hand had failed still,
When Nature’s self so often errs?
She for this many thousand years 38
Seems to have practised with much care,
To frame the race of women fair;
Yet never could a perfect birth
Produce before to grace the earth,
Which waxed old ere it could see
Her that amazed thy art and thee.
But now ’tis done, oh, let me know
Where those immortal colours grow,
That could this deathless piece compose!
In lilies? or the fading rose?
No; for this theft thou hast climb’d higher
Than did Prometheus for his fire. 50
 ‘Vandyck’: some think this refers
to a picture of Saccharissa, by
Vandyck, in Hall-Barn.
 ‘Assay’: attempt.
1 Not that thy trees at Penshurst groan,
Oppressed with their timely load,
And seem to make their silent moan,
That their great lord is now abroad:
They to delight his taste, or eye,
Would spend themselves in fruit, and die.
2 Not that thy harmless deer repine,
And think themselves unjustly slain
By any other hand than thine,
Whose arrows they would gladly stain;
No, nor thy friends, which hold too dear
That peace with France which keeps thee there.
3 All these are less than that great cause
Which now exacts your presence here,
Wherein there meet the divers laws
Of public and domestic care.
For one bright nymph our youth contends,
And on your prudent choice depends.
4 Not the bright shield of Thetis’ son
(For which such stern debate did rise,
That the great Ajax Telamon
Refused to live without the prize),
Those Achive peers did more engage
Than she the gallants of our age.
5 That beam of beauty, which begun
To warm us so when thou wert here,
Now scorches like the raging sun,
When Sirius does first appear.
Oh, fix this flame! and let despair
Redeem the rest from endless care.
 ‘Lord of Leicester’: Saccharissa’s
father. He was employed at this
time in foreign service.
 ‘Thetis’ son’: Achilles.
Fair fellow-servant! may your gentle ear
Prove more propitious to my slighted care
Than the bright dame’s we serve: for her relief
(Vex’d with the long expressions of my grief)
Receive these plaints; nor will her high disdain
Forbid my humble Muse to court her train.
So, in those nations which the sun adore,
Some modest Persian, or some weak-eyed Moor,
No higher dares advance his dazzled sight,
Than to some gilded cloud, which near the light 10
Of their ascending god adorns the east,
And, graced with his beams, outshines the rest.
Thy skilful hand contributes to our woe,
And whets those arrows which confound us so.
A thousand Cupids in those curls do sit
(Those curious nets!) thy slender fingers knit.
The Graces put not more exactly on
Th’ attire of Venus, when the ball she won,
Than Saccharissa by thy care is dress’d,
When all our youth prefers her to the rest. 20
You the soft season know when best her mind
May be to pity, or to love, inclined:
In some well-chosen hour supply his fear,
Whose hopeless love durst never tempt the ear
Of that stern goddess. You, her priest, declare
What offerings may propitiate the fair;
Rich orient pearl, bright stones that ne’er decay,
Or polish’d lines, which longer last than they;
For if I thought she took delight in those,
To where the cheerful morn does first disclose, 30
(The shady night removing with her beams),
Wing’d with bold love, I’d fly to fetch such gems.
But since her eyes, her teeth, her lip excels
All that is found in mines or fishes’ shells,
Her nobler part as far exceeding these,
None but immortal gifts her mind should please.
The shining jewels Greece and Troy bestow’d
On Sparta’s queen, her lovely neck did load,
And snowy wrists; but when the town was burn’d,
Those fading glories were to ashes turn’d; 40
Her beauty, too, had perished, and her fame,
Had not the Muse redeemed them from the flame.
 ‘Sparta’s queen’: Helen.
1 Why came I so untimely forth
Into a world which, wanting thee,
Could entertain us with no worth
Or shadow of felicity?
That time should me so far remove
From that which I was born to love!
2 Yet, fairest blossom! do not slight
That age which you may know so soon;
The rosy morn resigns her light
And milder glory to the noon;
And then what wonders shall you do,
Whose dawning beauty warms us so?
3 Hope waits upon the flow’ry prime;
And summer, though it be less gay,
Yet is not look’d on as a time
Of declination or decay;
For with a full hand that does bring
All that was promised by the spring.
 ‘Lady Lucy Sidney’: the younger
sister of Lady Dorothea; afterwards
married to Sir John Pelham.
Fair! that you may truly know
What you unto Thyrsis owe,
I will tell you how I do
Saccharissa love and you.
Joy salutes me, when I set
My bless’d eyes on Amoret;
But with wonder I am strook, 7
While I on the other look.
If sweet Amoret complains,
I have sense of all her pains;
But for Saccharissa I
Do not only grieve, but die.
All that of myself is mine,
Lovely Amoret! is thine;
Saccharissa’s captive fain
Would untie his iron chain,
And, those scorching beams to shun,
To thy gentle shadow run.
If the soul had free election
To dispose of her affection, 20
I would not thus long have borne
Haughty Saccharissa’s scorn;
But ’tis sure some power above,
Which controls our wills in love!
If not love, a strong desire
To create and spread that fire
In my breast, solicits me,
Beauteous Amoret! for thee.
’Tis amazement more than love,
Which her radiant eyes do move; 30
If less splendour wait on thine,
Yet they so benignly shine,
I would turn my dazzled sight
To behold their milder light;
But as hard ’tis to destroy
That high flame, as to enjoy;
Which how eas’ly I may do,
Heaven (as eas’ly scaled) does know!
Amoret! as sweet and good
As the most delicious food, 40
Which, but tested, does impart
Life and gladness to the heart.
Saccharissa’s beauty’s wine,
Which to madness doth incline;
Such a liquor as no brain
That is mortal can sustain.
Scarce can I to heaven excuse
The devotion which I use
Unto that adored dame;
For ’tis not unlike the same 50
Which I thither ought to send;
So that if it could take end,
’Twould to heaven itself be due
To succeed her, and not you,
Who already have of me
All that’s not idolatry;
Which, though not so fierce a flame,
Is longer like to be the same.
Then smile on me, and I will prove
Wonder is shorter-liv’d than love. 60
 ‘Amoret’: see ‘Life.’
Brave Holland leads, and with him Falkland goes:
Who hears this told, and does not straight suppose
We send the Graces and the Muses forth
To civilise and to instruct the north?
Not that these ornaments make swords less sharp;
Apollo bears as well his bow as harp;
And though he be the patron of that spring,
Where, in calm peace, the sacred virgins sing,
He courage had to guard th’invaded throne 9
Of Jove, and cast th’ambitious giants down.
Ah, noble friend! with what impatience all
That know thy worth, and know how prodigal
Of thy great soul thou art (longing to twist
Bays with that ivy which so early kiss’d
Thy youthful temples), with what horror we
Think on the blind events of war and thee!
To fate exposing that all-knowing breast
Among the throng, as cheaply as the rest;
Where oaks and brambles (if the copse be burn’d)
Confounded lie, to the same ashes turn’d. 20
Some happy wind over the ocean blow
This tempest yet, which frights our island so!
Guarded with ships, and all the sea our own,
From heaven this mischief on our heads is thrown.
In a late dream, the genius of this land,
Amazed, I saw, like the fair Hebrew, stand,
When first she felt the twins begin to jar,
And found her womb the seat of civil war.
Inclined to whose relief, and with presage
Of better fortune for the present age, 30
Heaven sends, quoth I, this discord for our good,
To warm, perhaps, but not to waste our blood;
To raise our drooping spirits, grown the scorn
Of our proud neighbours, who ere long shall mourn
(Though now they joy in our expected harms)
We had occasion to resume our arms.
A lion so with self-provoking smart
(His rebel tail scourging his nobler part)
Calls up his courage; then begins to roar,
And charge his foes, who thought him mad before. 40
 ‘Lord of Falkland’: referring
to the unsuccessful expedition of
Charles I. against Scotland in 1639, frustrated by the cowardice or
treachery of Lord Holland.
 ‘Bow as harp’: Horace, Ode iv., lib. 3.
 ‘Twins begin to jar’: Gen. xxv. 22.
To this great loss a sea of tears is due;
But the whole debt not to be paid by you.
Charge not yourself with all, nor render vain
Those show’rs the eyes of us your servants rain.
Shall grief contract the largeness of that heart,
In which nor fear, nor anger, has a part?
Virtue would blush if time should boast (which dries,
Her sole child dead, the tender mother’s eyes)
Your mind’s relief, where reason triumphs so
Over all passions, that they ne’er could grow 10
Beyond their limits in your noble breast,
To harm another, or impeach your rest.
This we observed, delighting to obey
One who did never from his great self stray;
Whose mild example seemed to engage
Th’ obsequious seas, and teach them not to rage.
The brave Aemilius, his great charge laid down
(The force of Rome, and fate of Macedon),
In his lost sons did feel the cruel stroke
Of changing fortune, and thus highly spoke 20
Before Rome’s people: ’We did oft implore,
That if the heavens had any bad in store
For your Aemilius, they would pour that ill
On his own house, and let you flourish still.’
You on the barren seas, my lord, have spent
Whole springs and summers to the public lent;
Suspended all the pleasures of your life,
And shorten’d the short joy of such a wife;
For which your country’s more obliged than 29
For many lives of old less happy men.
You, that have sacrificed so great a part
Of youth, and private bliss, ought to impart
Your sorrow too, and give your friends a right
As well in your affliction as delight.
Then with Aemilian courage bear this cross,
Since public persons only public loss
Ought to affect. And though her form and youth,
Her application to your will, and truth,
That noble sweetness, and that humble state
(All snatch’d away by such a hasty fate!) 40
Might give excuse to any common breast,
With the huge weight of so just grief oppress’d;
Yet let no portion of your life be stain’d
With passion, but your character maintain’d
To the last act. It is enough her stone
May honour’d be with superscription
Of the sole lady who had power to move
The great Northumberland to grieve, and love.
 ‘His lady’: the Lady Anne Cecil,
daughter of the Earl of Salisbury.
See a previous note.
With joy like ours the Thracian youth invades
Orpheus, returning from th’Elysian shades;
Embrace the hero, and his stay implore;
Make it their public suit he would no more
Desert them so, and for his spouse’s sake,
His vanish’d love, tempt the Lethean lake.
The ladies, too, the brightest of that time
(Ambitious all his lofty bed to climb),
Or, thus withheld, what hasty soul would go,
Though to the blest? O’er young Adonis so
Fair Venus mourn’d, and with the precious shower
Of her warm tears cherish’d the springing flower.
The next support, fair hope of your great name,
And second pillar of that noble frame,
By loss of thee would no advantage have,
But step by step pursue thee to the grave.
And now relentless Fate, about to end
The line which backward does so far extend 50
That antique stock, which still the world supplies
With bravest spirits, and with brightest eyes,
Kind Phoebus, interposing, bid me say,
Such storms no more shall shake that house; but they,
Like Neptune, and his sea-born niece, shall be
The shining glories of the land and sea;
With courage guard, and beauty warm, our age,
And lovers fill with like poetic rage.
 ‘Nation spread’: the Earl of
Northumberland, appointed Lord High
Admiral in the year 1638.
Well fare the hand, which to our humble sight
Presents that beauty, which the dazzling light
Of royal splendour hides from weaker eyes,
And all access, save by this art, denies.
Here only we have courage to behold
This beam of glory; here we dare unfold
In numbers thus the wonders we conceive; 7
The gracious image, seeming to give leave,
Propitious stands, vouchsafing to be seen;
And by our Muse saluted Mighty Queen,
In whom th’extremes of power and beauty move,
The Queen of Britain and the Queen of Love!
As the bright sun (to which we owe no sight
Of equal glory to your beauty’s light)
Is wisely placed in so sublime a seat,
T’ extend his light, and moderate his heat;
So, happy ’tis you move in such a sphere,
As your high Majesty with awful fear
In human breasts might qualify that fire,
Which, kindled by those eyes, had flamed higher 20
Than when the scorched world like hazard run,
By the approach of the ill-guided sun.
No other nymphs have title to men’s hearts,
But as their meanness larger hope imparts;
Your beauty more the fondest lover moves
With admiration than his private loves;
With admiration! for a pitch so high
(Save sacred Charles his) never love durst fly.
Heaven, that preferr’d a sceptre to your hand,
Favour’d our freedom more than your command; 30
Beauty had crown’d you, and you must have been
The whole world’s mistress, other than a Queen.
All had been rivals, and you might have spared,
Or kill’d, and tyrannised, without a guard;
No power achieved, either by arms or birth,
Equals love’s empire both in heaven and earth.
Such eyes as yours on Jove himself have thrown
As bright and fierce a lightning as his own;
Witness our Jove, prevented by their flame
In his swift passage to th’Hesperian dame; 40
When, like a lion, finding, in his way
To some intended spoil, a fairer prey,
The royal youth pursuing the report
Of beauty, found it in the Gallic court;
There public care with private passion fought
A doubtful combat in his noble thought:
Should he confess his greatness, and his love,
And the free faith of your great brother prove;
With his Achates breaking through the cloud
Of that disguise which did their graces shroud; 50
And mixing with those gallants at the ball,
Dance with the ladies, and outshine them all;
Or on his journey o’er the mountains ride?—
So when the fair Leucothoe he espied,
To check his steeds impatient Phoebus yearn’d,
Though all the world was in his course concern’d.
What may hereafter her meridian do,
Whose dawning beauty warm’d his bosom so?
Not so divine a flame, since deathless gods
Forbore to visit the defiled abodes 60
Of men, in any mortal breast did burn;
Nor shall, till piety and they return.
 ‘Sea-born niece’: Venus. 
‘Majesty’s picture’: Henrietta,
daughter of Henry IV., married by
proxy to Charles I. in Paris, 1st May 1625. Marriages made in May
are said to be unlucky—this certainly was.
 ‘Great brother’: Louis XIII., King of France.  ‘Graces shroud’: ‘Achates,’ the Duke of Buckingham.
1 Amoret! the Milky Way
Framed of many nameless stars!
The smooth stream where none can say
He this drop to that prefers!
2 Amoret! my lovely foe!
Tell me where thy strength does lie?
Where the pow’r that charms us so?
In thy soul, or in thy eye?
3 By that snowy neck alone,
Or thy grace in motion seen,
No such wonders could he done;
Yet thy waist is straight and clean
As Cupid’s shaft, or Hermes’ rod,
And pow’rful, too, as either god.
Phyllis! why should we delay
Pleasures shorter than the day?
Could we (which we never can!)
Stretch our lives beyond their span,
Beauty like a shadow flies,
And our youth before us dies.
Or would youth and beauty stay,
Love hath wings, and will away.
Love hath swifter wings than Time,
Change in love to heaven does climb. 10
Gods, that never change their state,
Vary oft their love and hate.
Phyllis! to this truth we owe
All the love betwixt us two.
Let not you and I inquire
What has been our past desire;
On what shepherds you have smiled,
Or what nymphs I have beguiled;
Leave it to the planets too, 19
What we shall hereafter do;
For the joys we now may prove,
Take advice of present love.
TO SIR WILLIAM DAVENANT, UPON HIS TWO FIRST BOOKS OF GONDIBERT. WRITTEN IN FRANCE.
Thus the wise nightingale that leaves her home,
Her native wood, when storms and winter come,
Pursuing constantly the cheerful spring,
To foreign groves does her old music bring.
The drooping Hebrews’ banish’d harps,
At Babylon upon the willows hung;
Yours sounds aloud, and tells us you excel
No less in courage, than in singing well;
While, unconcern’d, you let your country know
They have impoverish’d themselves, not you; 10
Who, with the Muses’ help, can mock those fates
Which threaten kingdoms, and disorder states.
So Ovid, when from Caesar’s rage he fled,
The Roman Muse to Pontus with him led;
Where he so sung, that we, through pity’s glass,
See Nero milder than Augustus was.
Hereafter such, in thy behalf, shall be
Th’ indulgent censure of posterity.
To banish those who with such art can sing,
Is a rude crime, which its own curse doth bring; 20
Ages to come shall ne’er know how they fought,
Nor how to love, their present youth be taught.
This to thyself.—Now to thy matchless book,
Wherein those few that can with judgment look,
May find old love in pure fresh language told,
Like new-stamp’d coin made out of angel-gold.
Such truth in love as th’antique world did know,
In such a style as courts may boast of now;
Which no bold tales of gods or monsters swell,
But human passions, such as with us dwell. 30
Man is thy theme; his virtue or his rage
Drawn to the life in each elaborate page.
Mars nor Bellona are not named here,
But such a Gondibert as both might fear;
Venus had here, and Hebe, been outshined
By the bright Birtha and thy Rhodalind.
Such is thy happy skill, and such the odds
Betwixt thy worthies and the Grecian gods!
Whose deities in vain had here come down,
Where mortal beauty wears the Sovereign crown; 40
Such as of flesh compos’d, by flesh and blood,
Though not resisted, may be understood.
 ‘Sir William Davenant’: Davenant
fled to France in fear of the
displeasure of the Parliament, and there wrote the two first cantos
1 Thus, by the music, we may know
When noble wits a-hunting go,
Through groves that on Parnassus grow.
2 The Muses all the chase adorn;
My friend on Pegasus is borne;
And young Apollo winds the horn.
3 Having old Gratius in the wind,
No pack of critics e’er could find,
Or he know more of his own mind.
4 Here huntsmen with delight may read
How to choose dogs for scent or speed,
And how to change or mend the breed;
5 What arms to use, or nets to frame,
Wild beasts to combat or to tame;
With all the myst’ries of that game.
6 But, worthy friend! the face of war
In ancient times doth differ far
From what our fiery battles are.
7 Nor is it like, since powder known,
That man, so cruel to his own,
Should spare the race of beasts alone.
8 No quarter now, but with the gun
Men wait in trees from sun to sun,
And all is in a moment done.
9 And therefore we expect your next
Should be no comment, but a text
To tell how modern beasts are vex’d.
10 Thus would I further yet engage
Your gentle Muse to court the age
With somewhat of your proper rage;
11 Since none does more to Phoebus owe,
Or in more languages can show
Those arts which you so early know.
 ‘Mr. Wase’: Wase was a fellow
of Cambridge, tutor to Lord Herbert,
and translator of Grathis on ‘Hunting,’ a very learned man.
Thrice happy pair! of whom we cannot know
Which first began to love, or loves most now;
Fair course of passion! where two lovers start,
And run together, heart still yoked with heart;
Successful youth! whom love has taught the way
To be victorious in the first essay.
Sure love’s an art best practised at first,
And where th’experienced still prosper worst!
I, with a different fate, pursued in vain
The haughty Caelia, till my just disdain 10
Of her neglect, above that passion borne,
Did pride to pride oppose, and scorn to scorn.
Now she relents; but all too late to move
A heart directed to a nobler love.
The scales are turn’d, her kindness weighs no more
Now, than my vows and service did before.
So in some well-wrought hangings you may see
How Hector leads, and how the Grecians flee;
Here, the fierce Mars his courage so inspires,
That with bold hands the Argive fleet he fires; 20
But there, from heaven the blue-eyed virgin falls,
And frighted Troy retires within her walls;
They that are foremost in that bloody race,
Turn head anon, and give the conqu’rors chase.
So like the chances are of love and war,
That they alone in this distinguish’d are,
In love the victors from the vanquish’d fly;
They fly that wound, and they pursue that die.
 ‘Their loves’: supposed to be
Alexander Hampden, involved with
Waller in the plot. See ‘Life’
 ‘Blue-eyed virgin’: Minerva.
Fairest piece of well-form’d earth!
Urge not thus your haughty birth;
The power which you have o’er us lies
Not in your race, but in your eyes.
’None but a prince!’—Alas! that voice
Confines you to a narrow choice.
Should you no honey vow to taste,
But what the master-bees have placed
In compass of their cells, how small
A portion to your share would fall! 10
Nor all appear, among those few,
Worthy the stock from whence they grew.
The sap which at the root is bred
In trees, through all the boughs is spread;
But virtues which in parents shine,
Make not like progress through the line.
’Tis not from whom, but where, we live;
The place does oft those graces give.
Great Julius, on the mountains bred,
A flock perhaps, or herd, had led. 20
He that the world subdued, had been
But the best wrestler on the green.
’Tis art and knowledge which draw forth
The hidden seeds of native worth;
They blow those sparks, and make them rise
Into such flames as touch the skies.
To the old heroes hence was given
A pedigree which reached to heaven;
Of mortal seed they were not held, 29
Which other mortals so excell’d.
 ‘Zelinda’: referring to a novel
where the lady, a princess, refuses
a lover, saying, ‘I will have none but a prince!’
 ‘World subdued’: Alexander.
TO MY LADY MORTON, ON NEW-YEAR’S DAY, AT THE LOUVRE IN PARIS.
Madam! new years may well expect to find
Welcome from you, to whom they are so kind;
Still as they pass, they court and smile on you,
And make your beauty, as themselves, seem new.
To the fair Villiers we Dalkeith prefer,
And fairest Morton now as much to her;
So like the sun’s advance your titles show,
Which as he rises does the warmer grow.
But thus to style you fair, your sex’s praise,
Gives you but myrtle, who may challenge bays; 10
From armed foes to bring a royal prize,
Shows your brave heart victorious as your eyes.
If Judith, marching with the gen’ral’s head,
Can give us passion when her story’s read,
What may the living do, which brought away,
Though a less bloody, yet a nobler prey;
Who from our flaming Troy, with a bold hand,
Snatch’d her fair charge, the Princess, like a brand?
A brand! preserved to warm some prince’s heart,
And make whole kingdoms take her brother’s part. 20
So Venus, from prevailing Greeks, did shroud
The hope of Rome, and saved him in a cloud.
This gallant act may cancel all our rage,
Begin a better, and absolve this age.
Dark shades become the portrait of our time;
Here weeps Misfortune, and there triumphs Crime!
Let him that draws it hide the rest in night;
This portion only may endure the light,
Where the kind nymph, changing her faultless shape,
Becomes unhandsome, handsomely to ’scape, 30
When through the guards, the river, and the sea,
Faith, beauty, wit, and courage, made their way.
As the brave eagle does with sorrow see
The forest wasted, and that lofty tree
Which holds her nest about to be o’erthrown,
Before the feathers of her young are grown,
She will not leave them, nor she cannot stay,
But bears them boldly on her wings away;
So fled the dame, and o’er the ocean bore
Her princely burthen to the Gallic shore. 40
Born in the storms of war, this royal fair,
Produced like lightning in tempestuous air,
Though now she flies her native isle (less kind,
Less safe for her than either sea or wind!)
Shall, when the blossom of her beauty’s blown,
See her great brother on the British throne;
Where peace shall smile, and no dispute arise,
But which rules most, his sceptre, or her eyes.
 ‘New-year’s day’: Lady
Morton, daughter of Sir Edward Villiers,
niece of the Duke of Buckingham, and wife of Lord Douglas, of
Dalkeith, one of the most celebrated beauties of her day. She
accompanied the Princess Henrietta in disguise to Paris. Waller,
then in France, wrote these lines in 1650.
1 Strange! that such horror and such grace
Should dwell together in one place;
A fury’s arm, an angel’s face!
2 ’Tis innocence, and youth, which makes
In Chloris’ fancy such mistakes,
To start at love, and play with snakes.
3 By this and by her coldness barr’d,
Her servants have a task too hard;
The tyrant has a double guard!
4 Thrice happy snake! that in her sleeve
May boldly creep; we dare not give
Our thoughts so unconfined a leave.
5 Contented in that nest of snow
He lies, as he his bliss did know,
And to the wood no more would go.
6 Take heed, fair Eve! you do not make
Another tempter of this snake;
A marble one so warm’d would speak.
TO HIS WORTHY FRIEND MASTER EVELYN, UPON HIS TRANSLATION
Lucretius, (with a stork-like fate,
Born, and translated, in a state)
Comes to proclaim, in English verse,
No Monarch rules the universe;
But chance, and atoms, make this All
In order democratical,
Where bodies freely run their course,
Without design, or fate, or force.
And this in such a strain he sings,
As if his Muse, with angels’ wings, 10
Had soar’d beyond our utmost sphere,
And other worlds discover’d there;
For his immortal, boundless wit,
To Nature does no bounds permit,
But boldly has removed those bars
Of heaven, and earth, and seas, and stars,
By which they were before supposed,
By narrow wits, to be enclosed,
Till his free Muse threw down the pale,
And did at once dispark them all. 20
So vast this argument did seem,
That the wise author did esteem
The Roman language (which was spread
O’er the whole world, in triumph led)
A tongue too narrow to unfold
The wonders which he would have told.
This speaks thy glory, noble friend!
And British language does commend;
For here Lucretius whole we find,
His words, his music, and his mind. 30
Thy art has to our country brought
All that he writ, and all he thought.
Ovid translated, Virgil too,
Show’d long since what our tongue could do;
Nor Lucan we, nor Horace spared;
Only Lucretius was too hard.
Lucretius, like a fort, did stand 37
Untouch’d, till your victorious hand
Did from his head this garland bear,
Which now upon your own you wear:
A garland made of such new bays,
And sought in such untrodden ways,
As no man’s temples e’er did crown,
Save this great author’s, and your own!
 ‘Master Evelyn’: the well-known
author of ‘Sylva,’ translated the
first book of Lucretius, ‘De Rerum Natura.’
TO HIS WORTHY FRIEND SIR THOMAS HIGGONS, UPON HIS TRANSLATION OF ‘THE VENETIAN TRIUMPH.’
The winged lion’s not so fierce in fight
As Liberi’s hand presents him to our sight;
Nor would his pencil make him half so fierce,
Or roar so loud, as Businello’s verse;
But your translation does all three excel,
The fight, the piece, and lofty Businel.
As their small galleys may not hold compare
With our tall ships, whose sails employ more air;
So does th’Italian to your genius vail,
Moved with a fuller and a nobler gale. 10
Thus, while your Muse spreads the Venetian story,
You make all Europe emulate her glory;
You make them blush weak Venice should defend
The cause of Heaven, while they for words contend;
Shed Christian blood, and pop’lous cities raze,
Because they’re taught to use some different phrase.
If, list’ning to your charms, we could our jars
Compose, and on the Turk discharge these wars,
Our British arms the sacred tomb might wrest 19
From Pagan hands, and triumph o’er the East;
And then you might our own high deeds recite,
And with great Tasso celebrate the fight.
 ‘Sir T. Higgons’: a knight of
some note, who translated the
‘Venetian Triumph,’ an Italian poem by Businello, addressed to
Liberi, the painter.
TO A LADY SINGING A SONG OF HIS COMPOSING.
1 Chloris! yourself you so excel,
When you vouchsafe to breathe my thought,
That, like a spirit, with this spell
Of my own teaching, I am caught.
2 That eagle’s fate and mine are one,
Which, on the shaft that made him die,
Espied a feather of his own,
Wherewith he wont to soar so high.
3 Had Echo, with so sweet a grace,
Narcissus’ loud complaints return’d,
Not for reflection of his face,
But of his voice, the boy had burn’d.
 ‘Eagle’s fate’: Byron copies
this thought in his verses on Kirke
Here, Caelia! for thy sake I part
With all that grew so near my heart;
The passion that I had for thee,
The faith, the love, the constancy!
And, that I may successful prove,
Transform myself to what you love.
Fool that I was! so much to prize
Those simple virtues you despise;
Fool! that with such dull arrows strove,
Or hoped to reach a flying dove; 10
For you, that are in motion still,
Decline our force, and mock our skill;
Who, like Don Quixote, do advance
Against a windmill our vain lance.
Now will I wander through the air,
Mount, make a stoop at every fair;
And, with a fancy unconfined
(As lawless as the sea or wind),
Pursue you wheresoe’er you fly,
And with your various thoughts comply. 20
The formal stars do travel so,
As we their names and courses know;
And he that on their changes looks,
Would think them govern’d by our books;
But never were the clouds reduced
To any art; the motions used
By those free vapours are so light,
So frequent, that the conquer’d sight
Despairs to find the rules that guide
Those gilded shadows as they slide; 30
And therefore of the spacious air,
Jove’s royal consort had the care;
And by that power did once escape,
Declining bold Ixion’s rape;
She with her own resemblance graced
A shining cloud, which he embraced.
Such was that image, so it smiled
With seeming kindness which beguiled
Your Thyrsis lately, when he thought
He had his fleeting Caelia caught. 40
’Twas shaped like her, but, for the fair,
He fill’d his arms with yielding air.
A fate for which he grieves the less,
Because the gods had like success;
For in their story one, we see,
Pursues a nymph, and takes a tree;
A second, with a lover’s haste,
Soon overtakes whom he had chased,
But she that did a virgin seem,
Possess’d, appears a wand’ring stream; 50
For his supposed love, a third
Lays greedy hold upon a bird,
And stands amazed to find his dear
A wild inhabitant of the air.
To these old tales such nymphs as you
Give credit, and still make them new;
The am’rous now like wonders find
In the swift changes of your mind.
But, Caelia, if you apprehend
The Muse of your incensed friend, 60
Nor would that he record your blame,
And make it live, repeat the same;
Again deceive him, and again,
And then he swears he’ll not complain;
For still to be deluded so,
Is all the pleasure lovers know;
Who, like good falc’ners, take delight,
Not in the quarry, but the flight.
TO A LADY, FROM WHOM HE RECEIVED A SILVER PEN.
1 Madam! intending to have tried
The silver favour which you gave,
In ink the shining point I dyed,
And drench’d it in the sable wave;
When, grieved to be so foully stain’d,
On you it thus to me complain’d.
2 ’Suppose you had deserved to take
From her fair hand so fair a boon,
Yet how deserved I to make
So ill a change, who ever won
Immortal praise for what I wrote,
Instructed by her noble thought?
3 ’I, that expressed her commands
To mighty lords, and princely dames,
Always most welcome to their hands,
Proud that I would record their names,
Must now be taught an humble style,
Some meaner beauty to beguile!’
4 So I, the wronged pen to please,
Make it my humble thanks express
Unto your ladyship, in these:
And now ’tis forced to confess
That your great self did ne’er indite,
Nor that, to one more noble, write.
Chloris! since first our calm of peace
Was frighted hence, this good we find,
Your favours with your fears increase,
And growing mischiefs make you kind.
So the fair tree, which still preserves
Her fruit and state while no wind blows,
In storms from that uprightness swerves,
And the glad earth about her strows
With treasure, from her yielding boughs.
1 Sees not my love how time resumes
The glory which he lent these flowers?
Though none should taste of their perfumes,
Yet must they live but some few hours:
Time what we forbear devours!
2 Had Helen, or the Egyptian Queen,
Been ne’er so thrifty of their graces,
Those beauties must at length have been
The spoil of age, which finds out faces
In the most retired places.
3 Should some malignant planet bring
A barren drought, or ceaseless shower,
Upon the autumn or the spring,
And spare us neither fruit nor flower;
Winter would not stay an hour.
4 Could the resolve of love’s neglect
Preserve you from the violation
Of coming years, then more respect
Were due to so divine a fashion,
Nor would I indulge my passion.
 ‘Egyptian Queen’: Cleopatra.
TO MR GEORGE SANDYS, ON HIS TRANSLATION OF SOME PARTS OF THE BIBLE.
1 How bold a work attempts that pen,
Which would enrich our vulgar tongue
With the high raptures of those men
Who, here, with the same spirit sung
Wherewith they now assist the choir
Of angels, who their songs admire!
2 Whatever those inspired souls
Were urged to express, did shake
The aged deep and both the poles;
Their num’rous thunder could awake
Dull earth, which does with Heaven consent
To all they wrote, and all they meant.
3 Say, sacred bard! what could bestow
Courage on thee to soar so high?
Tell me, brave friend! what help’d thee so
To shake off all mortality?
To light this torch, thou hast climb’d higher
Than he who stole celestial fire.
 ‘Sandys,’ besides his ‘Ovid,’
which Pope read and relished in his
boyhood, versified some of the poetical parts of the Bible.
 ‘Celestial fire’: Prometheus.
TO THE KING, UPON HIS MAJESTY’S HAPPY RETURN.
The rising sun complies with our weak sight,
First gilds the clouds, then shows his globe of light
At such a distance from our eyes, as though
He knew what harm his hasty beams would do.
But your full majesty at once breaks forth
In the meridian of your reign. Your worth,
Your youth, and all the splendour of your state,
(Wrapp’d up, till now, in clouds of adverse fate!)
With such a flood of light invade our eyes,
And our spread hearts with so great joy surprise, 10
That if your grace incline that we should live,
You must not, sir! too hastily forgive.
Our guilt preserves us from th’excess of joy,
Which scatters spirits, and would life destroy.
All are obnoxious! and this faulty land,
Like fainting Esther, does before you stand,
Watching your sceptre. The revolted sea
Trembles to think she did your foes obey.
Great Britain, like blind Polypheme, of late,
In a wild rage, became the scorn and hate 20
Of her proud neighbours, who began to think
She, with the weight of her own force, would sink.
But you are come, and all their hopes are vain;
This giant isle has got her eye again.
Now she might spare the ocean, and oppose
Your conduct to the fiercest of her foes.
Naked, the Graces guarded you from all
Dangers abroad; and now your thunder shall.
Princes that saw you, diff’rent passions prove,
For now they dread the object of their love; 30
Nor without envy can behold his height,
Whose conversation was their late delight.
So Semele, contented with the rape
Of Jove disguised in a mortal shape,
When she beheld his hands with lightning fill’d,
And his bright rays, was with amazement kill’d.
And though it be our sorrow, and our crime,
To have accepted life so long a time
Without you here, yet does this absence gain
No small advantage to your present reign; 40
For, having view’d the persons and the things,
The councils, state, and strength of Europe’s kings,
You know your work; ambition to restrain,
And set them bounds, as Heaven does to the main.
We have you now with ruling wisdom fraught,
Not such as books, but such as practice, taught.
So the lost sun, while least by us enjoy’d,
Is the whole night for our concern employ’d;
He ripens spices, fruits, and precious gums,
Which from remotest regions hither comes. 50
This seat of yours (from th’other world removed)
Had Archimedes known, he might have proved
His engine’s force, fix’d here; your power and skill
Make the world’s motion wait upon your will.
Much suffring monarch! the first English born
That has the crown of these three nations worn!
How has your patience, with the barb’rous rage
Of your own soil, contended half an age?
Till (your tried virtue, and your sacred word,
At last preventing your unwilling sword) 60
Armies and fleets which kept you out so long,
Own’d their great sov’reign, and redress’d
Offenders now, the chiefest, do begin
To strive for grace, and expiate their sin.
All winds blow fair, that did the world embroil;
Your vipers treacle yield, and scorpions oil.
If then such praise the Macedonian got,
For having rudely cut the Gordian knot,
What glory’s due to him that could divide
Such ravell’d interests; has the knot untied, 80
And without stroke so smooth a passage made,
Where craft and malice such impeachments laid?
But while we praise you, you ascribe it all
To His high hand, which threw the untouch’d wall
Of self-demolish’d Jericho so low;
His angel ’twas that did before you go,
Tamed savage hearts, and made affections yield,
Like ears of corn when wind salutes the field.
Thus, patience-crown’d, like Job’s, your
Having your foes to pardon, and your friends; 90
For, though your courage were so firm a rock,
What private virtue could endure the shock?
Like your Great Master, you the storm withstood,
And pitied those who love with frailty show’d.
Rude Indians, tort’ring all the royal race,
Him with the throne and dear-bought sceptre grace
That suffers best. What region could be found, 97
Where your heroic head had not been crown’d?
The next experience of your mighty mind
Is, how you combat Fortune, now she’s kind.
And this way, too, you are victorious found;
She flatters with the same success she frown’d.
While to yourself severe, to others kind,
With pow’r unbounded, and a will confined,
Of this vast empire you possess the care,
The softer parts fall to the people’s share.
Safety, and equal government, are things
Which subjects make as happy as their kings.
Faith, Law, and Piety, (that banished train!)
Justice and Truth, with you return again. 110
The city’s trade, and country’s easy life,
Once more shall flourish without fraud or strife.
Your reign no less assures the ploughman’s peace,
Than the warm sun advances his increase;
And does the shepherds as securely keep
From all their fears, as they preserve their sheep.
But, above all, the Muse-inspired train
Triumph, and raise their drooping heads again!
Kind Heaven at once has, in your person, sent
Their sacred judge, their guard, and argument. 120
Nec magis expressi vultus per ahenea signa,
Quam per vatis opus mores, animique, virorum
Clarorum apparent.... HOR.
 ‘Macedonian’: Alexander.
TO A LADY,
FROM WHOM HE RECEIVED THE COPY OF THE POEM ENTITLED ’OF A TREE CUT IN
PAPER,’ WHICH FOR MANY YEARS HAD BEEN LOST.
Nothing lies hid from radiant eyes;
All they subdue become their spies.
Secrets, as choicest jewels, are
Presented to oblige the fair;
No wonder, then, that a lost thought
Should there be found, where souls are caught.
The picture of fair Venus (that
For which men say the goddess sat)
Was lost, till Lely from your book
Again that glorious image took.
If Virtue’s self were lost, we might
From your fair mind new copies write.
All things but one you can restore;
The heart you get returns no more.
TO THE QUEEN, UPON HER MAJESTY’S BIRTHDAY, AFTER HER HAPPY RECOVERY FROM A DANGEROUS SICKNESS.
Farewell the year! which threaten’d so
The fairest light the world can show.
Welcome the new! whose every day,
Restoring what was snatch’d away
By pining sickness from the fair,
That matchless beauty does repair
So fast, that the approaching spring
(Which does to flow’ry meadows bring
What the rude winter from them tore)
Shall give her all she had before. 10
But we recover not so fast
The sense of such a danger past;
We that esteem’d you sent from heaven,
A pattern to this island given,
To show us what the bless’d do there,
And what alive they practised here,
When that which we immortal thought,
We saw so near destruction brought,
Felt all which you did then endure,
And tremble yet, as not secure. 20
So though the sun victorious be,
And from a dark eclipse set free,
The influence, which we fondly fear,
Afflicts our thoughts the following year.
But that which may relieve our care
Is, that you have a help so near
For all the evil you can prove,
The kindness of your royal love;
He that was never known to mourn,
So many kingdoms from him torn, 30
His tears reserved for you, more dear,
More prized, than all those kingdoms were!
For when no healing art prevail’d,
When cordials and elixirs fail’d,
On your pale cheek he dropp’d the shower,
Revived you like a dying flower.
 ‘Dangerous sickness’: the Queen
of Charles II. These verses belong
to the year 1663.
TO MR KILLIGREW,
UPON HIS ALTERING HIS PLAY, ‘PANDORA,’ FROM A TRAGEDY INTO A COMEDY,
BECAUSE NOT APPROVED ON THE STAGE.
Sir, you should rather teach our age the way
Of judging well, than thus have changed your play;
You had obliged us by employing wit,
Not to reform Pandora, but the pit;
For as the nightingale, without the throng
Of other birds, alone attends her song,
While the loud daw, his throat displaying, draws
The whole assemblage of his fellow-daws;
So must the writer, whose productions should
Take with the vulgar, be of vulgar mould;
Whilst nobler fancies make a flight too high
For common view, and lessen as they fly.
 ‘Mr. Killigrew’: a gentleman
usher to Charles II., and one of the
playwrights of the period.
TO A PERSON OF HONOUR,
UPON HIS INCOMPARABLE, INCOMPREHENSIBLE POEM, ENTITLED, ’THE BRITISH
Sir! you’ve obliged the British nation more
Than all their bards could ever do before,
And, at your own charge, monuments as hard
As brass or marble to your fame have rear’d;
For, as all warlike nations take delight
To hear how their brave ancestors could fight,
You have advanced to wonder their renown, 7
And no less virtuously improved your own;
That ’twill be doubtful whether you do write,
Or they have acted, at a nobler height.
You of your ancient princes, have retrieved
More than the ages knew in which they lived;
Explain’d their customs and their rights anew,
Better than all their Druids ever knew;
Unriddled those dark oracles as well
As those that made them could themselves foretell.
For as the Britons long have hoped, in vain,
Arthur would come to govern them again,
You have fulfill’d that prophecy alone,
And in your poem placed him on his throne. 20
Such magic power has your prodigious pen
To raise the dead, and give new life to men,
Make rival princes meet in arms and love,
Whom distant ages did so far remove;
For as eternity has neither past
Nor future, authors say, nor first nor last,
But is all instant, your eternal Muse
All ages can to any one reduce.
Then why should you, whose miracles of art
Can life at pleasure to the dead impart, 30
Trouble in vain your better-busied head,
T’observe what times they lived in, or were dead?
For since you have such arbitrary power,
It were defect in judgment to go lower,
Or stoop to things so pitifully lewd,
As use to take the vulgar latitude;
For no man’s fit to read what you have writ,
That holds not some proportion with your wit;
As light can no way but by light appear,
He must bring sense that understands it here. 40
 ‘The British Princes’: an heroic
poem, by the Hon. Edward Howard,
was universally laughed at. See our edition of ‘Butler.’
TO A FRIEND OF THE AUTHOR,
A PERSON OF HONOUR, WHO LATELY WRIT A RELIGIOUS BOOK, ENTITLED,
’HISTORICAL APPLICATIONS, AND OCCASIONAL MEDITATIONS, UPON SEVERAL
Bold is the man that dares engage
For piety in such an age!
Who can presume to find a guard
From scorn, when Heaven’s so little spared?
Divines are pardon’d; they defend
Altars on which their lives depend;
But the profane impatient are,
When nobler pens make this their care;
For why should these let in a beam
Of divine light to trouble them, 10
And call in doubt their pleasing thought,
That none believes what we are taught?
High birth and fortune warrant give
That such men write what they believe;
And, feeling first what they indite,
New credit give to ancient light.
Amongst these few, our author brings
His well-known pedigree from kings.
This book, the image of his mind,
Will make his name not hard to find; 20
I wish the throng of great and good
Made it less eas’ly understood!
 ‘Several subjects’: supposed
to be Lord Berkeley. It contained
testimonies of celebrated men to the value of religion.
 ‘Pedigree from kings’: the Earl of Berkeley was descended from the
royal house of Denmark.
TO THE DUCHESS OF ORLEANS, WHEN SHE WAS TAKING LEAVE OF THE COURT AT DOVER.
That sun of beauty did among us rise;
England first saw the light of your fair eyes;
In English, too, your early wit was shown;
Favour that language, which was then your own,
When, though a child, through guards you made your way;
What fleet or army could an angel stay?
Thrice happy Britain! if she could retain
Whom she first bred within her ambient main.
Our late burnt London, in apparel new,
Shook off her ashes to have treated you; 10
But we must see our glory snatch’d away,
And with warm tears increase the guilty sea;
No wind can favour us; howe’er it blows,
We must be wreck’d, and our dear treasure lose!
Sighs will not let us half our sorrows tell,—
Fair, lovely, great, and best of nymphs, farewell!
 ‘Court at Dover’: the Duchess
of Orleans, the youngest daughter of
Charles I., came to England on the 14th May 1670, on a political
Chloris! what’s eminent, we know
Must for some cause be valued so;
Things without use, though they be good,
Are not by us so understood.
The early rose, made to display
Her blushes to the youthful May,
Doth yield her sweets, since he is fair,
And courts her with a gentle air.
Our stars do show their excellence
Not by their light, but influence;
When brighter comets, since still known
Fatal to all, are liked by none.
So your admired beauty still
Is, by effects, made good or ill.
Great Sir! disdain not in this piece to stand,
Supreme commander both of sea and land.
Those which inhabit the celestial bower,
Painters express with emblems of their power;
His club Alcides, Phoebus has his bow,
Jove has his thunder, and your navy you.
But your great providence no colours here
Can represent, nor pencil draw that care,
Which keeps you waking to secure our peace,
The nation’s glory, and our trade’s increase; 10
You, for these ends, whole days in council sit,
And the diversions of your youth forget.
Small were the worth of valour and of force,
If your high wisdom governed not their course;
You as the soul, as the first mover you,
Vigour and life on every part bestow;
How to build ships, and dreadful ordnance cast,
Instruct the artists, and reward their haste.
So Jove himself, when Typhon heaven does brave,
Descends to visit Vulcan’s smoky cave, 20
Teaching the brawny Cyclops how to frame
His thunder, mix’d with terror, wrath, and flame.
Had the old Greeks discover’d your abode,
Crete had not been the cradle of their god;
On that small island they had looked with scorn,
And in Great Britain thought the Thunderer born.
TO THE DUCHESS, WHEN HE PRESENTED THIS BOOK TO HER ROYAL HIGHNESS.
Madam! I here present you with the rage,
And with the beauties of a former age;
Wishing you may with as great pleasure view
This, as we take in gazing upon you.
Thus we writ then: your brighter eyes inspire
A nobler flame, and raise our genius higher.
While we your wit and early knowledge fear,
To our productions we become severe;
Your matchless beauty gives our fancy wing,
Your judgment makes us careful how we sing. 10
Lines not composed, as heretofore, in haste,
Polish’d like marble, shall like marble last,
And make you through as many ages shine,
As Tasso has the heroes of your line.
Though other names our wary writers use,
You are the subject of the British Muse;
Dilating mischief to yourself unknown,
Men write, and die of wounds they dare not own.
So the bright sun burns all our grass away,
While it means nothing but to give us day. 20
TO MR CREECH, ON HIS TRANSLATION OF ’LUCRETIUS.’
What all men wish’d, though few could hope to
We are now bless’d with, and obliged by thee.
Thou, from the ancient, learned Latin store,
Giv’st us one author, and we hope for more.
May they enjoy thy thoughts!—Let not the stage
The idlest moment of thy hours engage;
Each year that place some wondrous monster breeds,
And the wits’ garden is o’errun with weeds.
There, Farce is Comedy; bombast called strong;
But let not this disturb thy tuneful head;
Thou writ’st for thy delight, and not for bread;
Thou art not cursed to write thy verse with care;
But art above what other poets fear.
What may we not expect from such a hand,
That has, with books, himself at free command?
Thou know’st in youth, what age has sought in vain;
And bring’st forth sons without a mother’s pain.
So easy is thy sense, thy verse so sweet,
Thy words so proper, and thy phrase so fit, 30
We read, and read again; and still admire
Whence came this youth, and whence this wondrous fire!
Pardon this rapture, sir! but who can be
Cold, and unmoved, yet have his thoughts on thee?
Thy goodness may my several faults forgive,
And by your help these wretched lines may live.
But if, when view’d by your severer sight,
They seem unworthy to behold the light,
Let them with speed in deserv’d flames be thrown!
They’ll send no sighs, nor murmur out a groan; 40
But, dying silently, your justice own.
 ‘Lucretius’: this piece is not
contained in Anderson, or the edition
1 Stay, Phoebus! stay;
The world to which you fly so fast,
From us to them, can pay your haste
With no such object, nor salute your rise,
With no such wonder as De Mornay’s eyes.
2 Well does this prove
The error of those antique books,
Which made you move
About the world; her charming looks
Would fix your beams, and make it ever day,
Did not the rolling earth snatch her away.
1 Peace, babbling Muse!
I dare not sing what you indite;
Her eyes refuse
To read the passion which they write.
She strikes my lute, but, if it sound,
Threatens to hurl it on the ground;
And I no less her anger dread,
Than the poor wretch that feigns him dead,
While some fierce lion does embrace
His breathless corpse, and lick his face;
Wrapp’d up in silent fear he lies,
Torn all in pieces if he cries.
1 Chloris! farewell. I now must go;
For if with thee I longer stay,
Thy eyes prevail upon me so,
I shall prove blind, and lose my way.
2 Fame of thy beauty, and thy youth,
Among the rest, me hither brought;
Finding this fame fall short of truth,
Made me stay longer than I thought.
3 For I’m engaged by word and oath,
A servant to another’s will;
Yet, for thy love, I’d forfeit both,
Could I be sure to keep it still.
4 But what assurance can I take,
When thou, foreknowing this abuse,
For some more worthy lover’s sake,
Mayst leave me with so just excuse?
5 For thou mayst say, ’twas not thy fault
That thou didst thus inconstant prove;
Being by my example taught
To break thy oath, to mend thy love.
6 No, Chloris! no: I will return,
And raise thy story to that height,
That strangers shall at distance burn,
And she distrust me reprobate.
7 Then shall my love this doubt displace,
And gain such trust, that I may come
And banquet sometimes on thy face,
But make my constant meals at home.
1 ’Tis not your beauty can engage
My wary heart;
The sun, in all his pride and rage,
Has not that art;
And yet he shines as bright as you,
If brightness could our souls subdue.
2 ’Tis not the pretty things you say,
Nor those you write,
Which can make Thyrsis’ heart your prey:
For that delight,
The graces of a well-taught mind,
In some of our own sex we find.
3 No, Flavia! ’tis your love I fear;
Love’s surest darts,
Those which so seldom fail him, are
Headed with hearts;
Their very shadows make us yield;
Dissemble well, and win the field.
1 Behold the brand of beauty toss’d!
See how the motion does dilate the flame!
Delighted Love his spoils does boast,
And triumph in this game.
Fire, to no place confined,
Is both our wonder and our fear;
Moving the mind,
As lightning hurled through the air.
2 High heaven the glory does increase
Of all her shining lamps, this artful way;
The sun in figures, such as these,
Joys with the moon to play;
To the sweet strains they advance,
Which do result from their own spheres,
As this nymph’s dance
Moves with the numbers which she hears.
1 While I listen to thy voice,
Chloris! I feel my life decay;
That powerful noise
Calls my fleeting soul away.
Oh! suppress that magic sound,
Which destroys without a wound.
2 Peace, Chloris! peace! or singing die,
That together you and I
To heaven may go;
For all we know
Of what the blessed do above,
Is, that they sing, and that they love.
1 Go, lovely Rose!
Tell her that wastes her time and me,
That now she knows,
When I resemble her to thee,
How sweet and fair she seems to be.
2 Tell her that’s young,
And shuns to have her graces spied,
That hadst thou sprung
In deserts, where no men abide,
Thou must have uncommended died.
3 Small is the worth
Of beauty from the light retired;
Bid her come forth,
Suffer herself to be desired,
And not blush so to be admired.
4 Then die! that she
The common fate of all things rare
May read in thee;
How small a part of time they share
That are so wondrous sweet and fair!
SUNG BY MRS KNIGHT TO HER MAJESTY, ON HER BIRTHDAY.
This happy day two lights are seen,
A glorious saint, a matchless queen;
Both named alike, both crown’d appear,
The saint above, th’Infanta here.
May all those years which Catherine
The martyr did for heaven resign,
Be added to the line
Of your bless’d life among us here!
For all the pains that she did feel,
And all the torments of her wheel,
May you as many pleasures share!
May heaven itself content
With Catherine the Saint!
Without appearing old,
An hundred times may you,
With eyes as bright as now,
This welcome day behold!
 ‘Matchless queen’: Queen Catherine
was born on the day set apart in
the calendar for the commemoration of the martyrdom of St.
1 Say, lovely dream! where couldst thou find
Shades to counterfeit that face?
Colours of this glorious kind
Come not from any mortal place.
2 In heaven itself thou sure wert dress’d
With that angel-like disguise:
Thus deluded am I bless’d,
And see my joy with closed eyes.
3 But, ah! this image is too kind
To be other than a dream;
Cruel Saccharissa’s mind
Never put on that sweet extreme!
4 Fair dream! if thou intend’st me grace,
Change that heavenly face of thine;
Paint despised love in thy face,
And make it to appear like mine.
5 Pale, wan, and meagre let it look,
With a pity-moving shape,
Such as wander by the brook
Of Lethe, or from graves escape.
6 Then to that matchless nymph appear,
In whose shape thou shinest so;
Softly in her sleeping ear,
With humble words, express my woe.
7 Perhaps from greatness, state, and pride,
Thus surprised she may fall;
Sleep does disproportion hide,
And, death resembling, equals all.
PROLOGUE FOR THE LADY-ACTORS. SPOKEN BEFORE KING CHARLES II.
Amaze us not with that majestic frown,
But lay aside the greatness of your crown!
And for that look which does your people awe,
When in your throne and robes you give them law,
Lay it by here, and give a gentler smile,
Such as we see great Jove’s in picture, while
He listens to Apollo’s charming lyre,
Or judges of the songs he does inspire.
Comedians on the stage show all their skill,
And after do as Love and Fortune will. 10
We are less careful, hid in this disguise;
In our own clothes more serious and more wise.
Modest at home, upon the stage more bold,
We seem warm lovers, though our breasts be cold;
A fault committed here deserves no scorn,
If we act well the parts to which we’re born.
Scarce should we have the boldness to pretend
So long-renown’d a tragedy to mend,
Had not already some deserved your praise
With like attempt. Of all our elder plays
This and Philaster have the loudest fame;
Great are their faults, and glorious is their flame.
In both our English genius is express’d; 7
Lofty and bold, but negligently dress’d.
Above our neighbours our conceptions are;
But faultless writing is th’effect of care.
Our lines reform’d, and not composed in haste,
Polished like marble, would like marble last.
But as the present, so the last age writ;
In both we find like negligence and wit.
Were we but less indulgent to our faults,
And patience had to cultivate our thoughts,
Our Muse would flourish, and a nobler rage
Would honour this than did the Grecian stage.
Thus says our author, not content to see
That others write as carelessly as he; 20
Though he pretends not to make things complete,
Yet, to please you, he’d have the poets sweat.
In this old play, what’s new we have express’d
In rhyming verse, distinguish’d from the rest;
That as the Rhone its hasty way does make
(Not mingling waters) through Geneva’s lake,
So having here the different styles in view,
You may compare the former with the new.
If we less rudely shall the knot untie,
Soften the rigour of the tragedy, 30
And yet preserve each person’s character,
Then to the other this you may prefer.
’Tis left to you: the boxes and the pit,
Are sov’reign judges of this sort of wit.
In other things the knowing artist may
Judge better than the people; but a play,
(Made for delight, and for no other use)
If you approve it not, has no excuse.
 ‘Maid’s Tragedy’: Waller altered this tragedy without success.  ‘Marble last’: these lines occur in a previous poem.
EPILOGUE TO THE ‘MAID’S TRAGEDY.’ SPOKEN BY THE KING.
The fierce Melantius was content, you see,
The king should live; be not more fierce than he;
Too long indulgent to so rude a time,
When love was held so capital a crime,
That a crown’d head could no compassion find,
But died—because the killer had been kind!
Nor is’t less strange, such mighty wits as those
Should use a style in tragedy like prose.
Well-sounding verse, where princes tread the stage,
Should speak their virtue, or describe their rage. 10
By the loud trumpet, which our courage aids,
We learn that sound, as well as sense, persuades;
And verses are the potent charms we use,
Heroic thoughts and virtue to infuse.
When next we act this tragedy again,
Unless you like the change, we shall be slain.
The innocent Aspasia’s life or death,
Amintor’s too, depends upon your breath.
Excess of love was heretofore the cause;
Now if we die, ’tis want of your applause. 20
ANOTHER EPILOGUE TO THE ‘MAID’S TRAGEDY.’
DESIGNED UPON THE FIRST ALTERATION OF THE PLAY, WHEN THE KING ONLY WAS
Aspasia bleeding on the stage does lie,
To show you still ’tis the Maid’s Tragedy.
The fierce Melantius was content, you see,
The king should live; be not more fierce than he;
Too long indulgent to so rude a time,
When love was held so capital a crime,
That a crown’d head could no compassion find,
But died—because the killer had been kind!
This better-natured poet had reprieved
Gentle Amintor too, had he believed 10
The fairer sex his pardon could approve,
Who to ambition sacrificed his love.
Aspasia he has spared; but for her wound
(Neglected love!) there could no salve be found.
When next we act this tragedy again,
Unless you like the change, I must be slain.
Excess of love was heretofore the cause;
Now if I die, ’tis want of your applause.
UNDER A LADY’S PICTURE.
Such Helen was! and who can blame the boy
That in so bright a flame consumed his Troy?
But had like virtue shined in that fair Greek,
The am’rous shepherd had not dared to seek
Or hope for pity; but with silent moan,
And better fate, had perished alone.
While she pretends to make the graces known
Of matchless Mira, she reveals her own;
And when she would another’s praise indite,
Is by her glass instructed how to write.
Since thou wouldst needs (bewitch’d with some
Be buried in those monumental arms,
All we can wish is, may that earth lie light
Upon thy tender limbs! and so good night.
Were men so dull they could not see
That Lyce painted; should they flee,
Like simple birds, into a net
So grossly woven and ill set,
Her own teeth would undo the knot,
And let all go that she had got.
Those teeth fair Lyce must not show
If she would bite; her lovers, though
Like birds they stoop at seeming grapes,
Are disabused when first she gapes;
The rotten bones discover’d there,
Show ’tis a painted sepulchre.
Our guard upon the royal side!
On the reverse our beauty’s pride!
Here we discern the frown and smile,
The force and glory of our isle.
In the rich medal, both so like
Immortals stand, it seems antique;
Carved by some master, when the bold
Greeks made their Jove descend in gold,
And Danae wond’ring at their shower,
Which, falling, storm’d her brazen tower.
Britannia there, the fort in vain
Had batter’d been with golden rain;
Thunder itself had fail’d to pass;
Virtue’s a stronger guard than brass.
 ‘Golden Medal’: it is said that
a Miss Stewart, the favourite of the
unprincipled king, is the original of the figure of Britannia on the
medals to which the poet here alludes.
 Transcriber’s note: The original text has a single dot over the
second “a” and another over the “e”, rather than the more
conventional diaresis shown here.
The cards you tear in value rise;
So do the wounded by your eyes.
Who to celestial things aspire,
Are by that passion raised the higher.
TO MR GRANVILLE (NOW LORD LANSDOWNE), ON HIS VERSES TO KING JAMES II.
An early plant! which such a blossom bears,
And shows a genius so beyond his years;
A judgment! that could make so fair a choice;
So high a subject to employ his voice;
Still as it grows, how sweetly will he sing
The growing greatness of our matchless king!
Circles are praised, not that abound
In largeness, but th’exactly round:
So life we praise that does excel
Not in much time, but acting well.
Though we may seem importunate,
While your compassion we implore;
They whom you make too fortunate,
May with presumption vex you more.
Fade, flowers! fade, Nature will have it so;
’Tis but what we must in our autumn do!
And as your leaves lie quiet on the ground,
The loss alone by those that loved them found;
So in the grave shall we as quiet lie,
Miss’d by some few that loved our company;
But some so like to thorns and nettles live,
That none for them can, when they perish, grieve.
SOME VERSES OF AN IMPERFECT COPY, DESIGNED FOR A FRIEND, ON HIS TRANSLATION OF OVID’S ‘FASTI.’
Rome’s holy-days you tell, as if a guest
With the old Romans you were wont to feast.
Numa’s religion, by themselves believed,
Excels the true, only in show received.
They made the nations round about them bow,
With their dictators taken from the plough;
Such power has justice, faith, and honesty!
The world was conquer’d by morality.
Seeming devotion does but gild a knave,
That’s neither faithful, honest, just, nor brave;
But where religion does with virtue join,
It makes a hero like an angel shine.
That the First Charles does here in triumph ride,
See his son reign where he a martyr died,
And people pay that rev’rence as they pass,
(Which then he wanted!) to the sacred brass,
Is not the effect of gratitude alone,
To which we owe the statue and the stone;
But Heaven this lasting monument has wrought,
That mortals may eternally be taught
Rebellion, though successful, is but vain,
And kings so kill’d rise conquerors again.
This truth the royal image does proclaim,
Loud as the trumpet of surviving Fame.
Not the brave Macedonian youth alone,
But base Caligula, when on the throne,
Boundless in power, would make himself a god,
As if the world depended on his nod.
The Syrian king to beasts was headlong thrown,
Ere to himself he could be mortal known.
The meanest wretch, if Heaven should give him line,
Would never stop till he were thought divine.
All might within discern the serpent’s pride,
If from ourselves nothing ourselves did hide.
Let the proud peacock his gay feathers spread,
And woo the female to his painted bed;
Let winds and seas together rage and swell—
This Nature teaches, and becomes them well.
’Pride was not made for men;’ a conscious sense
Of guilt, and folly, and their consequence,
Destroys the claim, and to beholders tells,
Here nothing but the shape of manhood dwells.
 ‘Macedonian youth’: Alexander.  ‘Syrian king’: Nebuchadnezzar.  ‘For men’: Ecclus. x. 18.
Under this stone lies virtue, youth,
Unblemish’d probity, and truth,
Just unto all relations known,
A worthy patriot, pious son;
Whom neighb’ring towns so often sent
To give their sense in Parliament;
With lives and fortunes trusting one
Who so discreetly used his own.
Sober he was, wise, temperate, 9
Contented with an old estate,
Which no foul avarice did increase,
Nor wanton luxury make less.
While yet but young his father died,
And left him to a happy guide;
Not Lemuel’s mother with more care
Did counsel or instruct her heir,
Or teach with more success her son
The vices of the time to shun.
An heiress she; while yet alive,
All that was hers to him did give; 20
And he just gratitude did show
To one that had obliged him so;
Nothing too much for her he thought,
By whom he was so bred and taught.
So (early made that path to tread,
Which did his youth to honour lead)
His short life did a pattern give
How neighbours, husbands, friends, should live.
The virtues of a private life
Exceed the glorious noise and strife 30
Of battles won; in those we find
The solid int’rest of mankind.
Approved by all, and loved so well,
Though young, like fruit that’s ripe, he fell.
Here lies Charles Ca’ndish; let the marble stone
That hides his ashes make his virtue known.
Beauty and valour did his short life grace,
The grief and glory of his noble race!
Early abroad he did the world survey,
As if he knew he had not long to stay;
Saw what great Alexander in the East,
And mighty Julius conquer’d in the West;
Then, with a mind as great as theirs, he came
To find at home occasion for his fame; 10
Where dark confusion did the nations hide,
And where the juster was the weaker side.
Two loyal brothers took their sov’reign’s part,
Employ’d their wealth, their courage, and their art;
The elder did whole regiments afford;
The younger brought his conduct and his sword.
Born to command, a leader he begun,
And on the rebels lasting honour won.
The horse, instructed by their general’s worth,
Still made the king victorious in the north. 20
Where Ca’ndish fought, the Royalists prevail’d;
Neither his courage nor his judgment fail’d.
The current of his vict’ries found no stop,
Till Cromwell came, his party’s chiefest prop.
Equal success had set these champions high,
And both resolved to conquer or to die.
Virtue with rage, fury with valour strove;
But that must fall which is decreed above!
Cromwell, with odds of number and of fate,
Removed this bulwark of the church and state; 30
Which the sad issue of the war declared,
And made his task, to ruin both, less hard.
So when the bank, neglected, is o’erthrown,
The boundless torrent does the country drown.
Thus fell the young, the lovely, and the brave;—
Strew bays and flowers on his honoured grave!
 ‘Charles Cavendish’: younger
son of the Earl of Devonshire, and
brother of Lady Rich; slain in 1643 at Gainsborough, fighting on the
king’s side, in the twenty-third year of his age.
 ‘The elder’: afterwards Earl of Devonshire.
Here lies the learned Savil’s heir,
So early wise, and lasting fair,
That none, except her years they told,
Thought her a child, or thought her old.
All that her father knew or got,
His art, his wealth, fell to her lot;
And she so well improved that stock,
Both of his knowledge and his flock,
That wit and fortune, reconciled
In her, upon each other smiled. 10
While she to every well-taught mind
Was so propitiously inclined,
And gave such title to her store,
That none, but th’ignorant, were poor.
The Muses daily found supplies,
Both from her hands and from her eyes.
Her bounty did at once engage,
And matchless beauty warm their rage.
Such was this dame in calmer days,
Her nation’s ornament and praise! 20
But when a storm disturb’d our rest,
The port and refuge of the oppress’d.
This made her fortune understood,
And look’d on as some public good.
So that (her person and her state,
Exempted from the common fate)
In all our civil fury she
Stood, like a sacred temple, free.
May here her monument stand so,
To credit this rude age! and show
To future times, that even we
Some patterns did of virtue see;
And one sublime example had
Of good, among so many bad.
 ‘Lady Sedley’: daughter of Sir
Henry Savil, provost of Eton, and who
married Sir John Sedley.
TO BE WRITTEN UNDER THE LATIN INSCRIPTION UPON THE TOMB OF THE ONLY SON
OF THE LORD ANDOVER.
’Tis fit the English reader should be told,
In our own language, what this tomb does hold.
’Tis not a noble corpse alone does lie
Under this stone, but a whole family.
His parents’ pious care, their name, their joy,
And all their hope, lies buried with this boy;
This lovely youth! for whom we all made moan,
That knew his worth, as he had been our own.
Had there been space and years enough allow’d,
His courage, wit, and breeding to have show’d, 10
We had not found, in all the num’rous roll
Of his famed ancestors, a greater soul;
His early virtues to that ancient stock
Gave as much honour, as from thence he took.
Like buds appearing ere the frosts are past,
To become man he made such fatal haste,
And to perfection labour’d so to climb,
Preventing slow experience and time,
That ’tis no wonder Death our hopes beguiled; 19
He’s seldom old that will not be a child.
 ‘Lord Andover’: the eldest son of the Earl of Berkshire.
Great soul! for whom Death will no longer stay,
But sends in haste to snatch our bliss away.
O cruel Death! to those you take more kind,
Than to the wretched mortals left behind!
Here beauty, youth, and noble virtue shined,
Free from the clouds of pride that shade the mind.
Inspired verse may on this marble live,
But can no honour to thy ashes give—
OF DIVINE LOVE. A POEM IN SIX CANTOS.
Floriferis ut apes in saltibus omnia libant,
Sic nos Scripturae depascimur aurea dicta;
Aurea! perpetua semper dignissima vita!
Nam divinus amor cum coepit vociferari,
Diffugiunt animi terrores.... Lucretius, lib. iii.
Exul eram, requiesque mihi, non fama, petita est,
Mens intenta suis ne foret usque malis:
Namque ubi mota calent sacra mea pectora Musa,
Altior humano spiritua ille malo est.
OVID. De Trist. lib. iv. el. I.
I. Asserting the authority of the Scripture, in which this love is revealed.—II. The preference and love of God to man in the creation.— III. The same love more amply declared in our redemption.—IV. How necessary this love is to reform mankind, and how excellent in itself.— V. Showing how happy the world would be, if this love were universally embraced.—VI. Of preserving this love in our memory, and how useful the contemplation thereof is.
 These were Waller’s latest poems, composed when he was eighty-two.
The Grecian Muse has all their gods survived,
Nor Jove at us, nor Phoebus is arrived;
Frail deities! which first the poets made,
And then invoked, to give their fancies aid.
Yet if they still divert us with their rage,
What may be hoped for in a better age,
When not from Helicon’s imagined spring,
But Sacred Writ, we borrow what we sing?
This with the fabric of the world begun,
Elder than light, and shall outlast the sun. 10
Before this oracle, like Dagon, all
The false pretenders, Delphos, Ammon, fall;
Long since despised and silent, they afford
Honour and triumph to th’Eternal Word.
As late philosophy our globe has graced,
And rolling earth among the planets placed,
So has this book entitled us to heaven,
And rules to guide us to that mansion given;
Tells the conditions how our peace was made,
And is our pledge for the great Author’s aid. 20
His power in Nature’s ample book we find,
But the less volume does express his mind.
This light unknown, bold Epicurus taught
That his bless’d gods vouchsafe us not a thought,
But unconcern’d let all below them slide,
As fortune does, or human wisdom, guide.
Religion thus removed, the sacred yoke,
And band of all society, is broke.
What use of oaths, of promise, or of test,
Where men regard no God but interest? 30
What endless war would jealous nations tear,
If none above did witness what they swear?
Sad fate of unbelievers, and yet just,
Among themselves to find so little trust!
Were Scripture silent, Nature would proclaim,
Without a God, our falsehood and our shame.
To know our thoughts the object of his eyes,
Is the first step t’wards being good or wise;
For though with judgment we on things reflect,
Our will determines, not our intellect. 40
Slaves to their passion, reason men employ
Only to compass what they would enjoy.
His fear to guard us from ourselves we need,
And Sacred Writ our reason does exceed;
For though heaven shows the glory of the Lord,
Yet something shines more glorious in His Word;
His mercy this (which all His work excels!)
His tender kindness and compassion tells;
While we, inform’d by that celestial Book,
Into the bowels of our Maker look. 50
Love there reveal’d (which never shall have end,
Nor had beginning) shall our song commend;
Describe itself, and warm us with that flame
Which first from heaven, to make us happy, came.
 ‘Late philosophy’: that of Copernicus.
The fear of hell, or aiming to be bless’d,
Savours too much of private interest.
This moved not Moses, nor the zealous Paul, 57
Who for their friends abandon’d soul and all;
A greater yet from heaven to hell descends,
To save, and make his enemies his friends.
What line of praise can fathom such a love,
Which reach’d the lowest bottom from above?
The royal prophet, that extended grace
From heaven to earth, measured but half that space.
The law was regnant, and confined his thought;
Hell was not conquer’d when that poet wrote;
Heaven was scarce heard of until He came down,
To make the region where love triumphs known.
That early love of creatures yet unmade,
To frame the world the Almighty did persuade; 70
For love it was that first created light,
Moved on the waters, chased away the night
From the rude Chaos, and bestow’d new grace
On things disposed of to their proper place;
Some to rest here, and some to shine above;
Earth, sea, and heaven, were all th’effects of love.
And love would be return’d; but there was none
That to themselves or others yet were known;
The world a palace was without a guest,
When, by His Word, God had accomplish’d all,
Man to create He did a council call;
Employed His hand, to give the dust He took
A graceful figure, and majestic look;
With His own breath convey’d into his breast
Life, and a soul fit to command the rest;
Worthy alone to celebrate His name
For such a gift, and tell from whence it came.
Birds sing His praises in a wilder note,
But not with lasting numbers and with thought,
Man’s great prerogative! but above all
His grace abounds in His new fav’rite’s fall. 100
If He create, it is a world He makes;
If He be angry, the creation shakes;
From His just wrath our guilty parents fled;
He cursed the earth, but bruised the serpent’s head.
Amidst the storm His bounty did exceed,
In the rich promise of the Virgin’s seed;
Though justice death, as satisfaction, craves,
Love finds a way to pluck us from our graves.
 ‘Abandoned soul and all’: Exodus xxxii. 32. Ep. to the Romans ix. 3. : ‘Royal prophet’: David.
Not willing terror should His image move;
He gives a pattern of eternal love; 110
His Son descends to treat a peace with those
Which were, and must have ever been, His foes.
Poor He became, and left His glorious seat
To make us humble, and to make us great;
His business here was happiness to give
To those whose malice could not let Him live.
Legions of angels, which He might have used,
(For us resolved to perish) He refused;
While they stood ready to prevent His loss,
Love took Him up, and nail’d Him to the cross. 120
Immortal love! which in His bowels reign’d,
That we might be by such great love constrain’d
To make return of love. Upon this pole
Our duty does, and our religion, roll.
To love is to believe, to hope, to know;
’Tis an essay, a taste of heaven below!
He to proud potentates would not be known;
Of those that loved Him He was hid from none.
Till love appear we live in anxious doubt;
But smoke will vanish when the flame breaks out; 130
This is the fire that would consume our dross,
Refine, and make us richer by the loss.
Could we forbear dispute, and practise love,
We should agree as angels do above.
Where love presides, not vice alone does find
No entrance there, but virtues stay behind;
Both faith, and hope, and all the meaner train
Of mortal virtues, at the door remain.
Love only enters as a native there,
For, born in heaven, it does but sojourn here. 140
He that alone would wise and mighty be,
Commands that others love as well as He.
Love as He loved!—How can we soar so high?—
He can add wings, when He commands to fly.
Nor should we be with this command dismay’d;
He that examples gives, will give His aid;
For He took flesh, that where His precepts fail,
His practice as a pattern may prevail.
His love, at once, and dread, instruct our thought;
As man He suffer’d, and as God He taught. 150
Will for the deed He takes; we may with ease
Obedient be, for if we love we please.
Weak though we are, to love is no hard task,
And love for love is all that Heaven does ask.
Love! that would all men just and temp’rate make, 155
Kind to themselves, and others, for His sake.
’Tis with our minds as with a fertile ground,
Wanting this love they must with weeds abound,
(Unruly passions), whose effects are worse
Than thorns and thistles springing from the curse. 160
To glory man, or misery, is born,
Of his proud foe the envy, or the scorn;
Wretched he is, or happy, in extreme;
Base in himself, but great in Heaven’s esteem;
With love, of all created things the best;
Without it, more pernicious than the rest;
For greedy wolves unguarded sheep devour
But while their hunger lasts, and then give o’er;
Man’s boundless avarice his wants exceeds,
And on his neighbours round about him feeds. 170
His pride and vain ambition are so vast,
That, deluge-like, they lay whole nations waste.
Debauches and excess (though with less noise)
As great a portion of mankind destroys.
The beasts and monsters Hercules oppress’d,
Might in that age some provinces infest;
These more destructive monsters are the bane
Of every age, and in all nations reign;
But soon would vanish, if the world were bless’d
With sacred love, by which they are repress’d. 180
Impendent death, and guilt that threatens hell,
Are dreadful guests, which here with mortals dwell;
And a vex’d conscience, mingling with their joy
Thoughts of despair, does their whole life annoy;
But love appearing, all those terrors fly;
We live contented, and contented die.
They in whose breast this sacred love has place, 187
Death, as a passage to their joy, embrace.
Clouds and thick vapours, which obscure the day,
The sun’s victorious beams may chase away;
Those which our life corrupt and darken, love
(The nobler star!) must from the soul remove.
Spots are observed in that which bounds the year;
This brighter sun moves in a boundless sphere;
Of heaven the joy, the glory, and the light,
Shines among angels, and admits no night.
This Iron Age (so fraudulent and bold!)
Touch’d with this love, would be an Age of Gold;
Not, as they feign’d, that oaks should honey drop,
Or land neglected bear an unsown crop; 200
Love would make all things easy, safe, and cheap;
None for himself would either sow or reap;
Our ready help, and mutual love, would yield
A nobler harvest than the richest field.
Famine and death, confined to certain parts,
Extended are by barrenness of hearts.
Some pine for want where others surfeit now;
But then we should the use of plenty know.
Love would betwixt the rich and needy stand,
And spread heaven’s bounty with an equal hand; 210
At once the givers and receivers bless,
Increase their joy, and make their suff’ring less.
Who for Himself no miracle would make,
Dispensed with sev’ral for the people’s sake;
He that, long fasting, would no wonder show,
Made loaves and fishes, as they ate them, grow.
Of all His power, which boundless was above,
Here He used none but to express His love;
And such a love would make our joy exceed, 219
Not when our own, but other mouths we feed.
Laws would be useless which rude nature awe;
Love, changing nature, would prevent the law;
Tigers and lions into dens we thrust,
But milder creatures with their freedom trust.
Devils are chain’d, and tremble; but the Spouse
No force but love, nor bond but bounty, knows.
Men (whom we now so fierce and dangerous see)
Would guardian angels to each other be;
Such wonders can this mighty love perform,
Vultures to doves, wolves into lambs transform! 230
Love what Isaiah prophesied can do,
Exalt the valleys, lay the mountains low,
Humble the lofty, the dejected raise,
Smooth and make straight our rough and crooked ways.
Love, strong as death, and like it, levels all;
With that possess’d, the great in title fall;
Themselves esteem but equal to the least,
Whom Heaven with that high character has bless’d.
This love, the centre of our union, can
Alone bestow complete repose on man; 240
Tame his wild appetite, make inward peace,
And foreign strife among the nations cease.
No martial trumpet should disturb our rest,
Nor princes arm, though to subdue the East,
Where for the tomb so many heroes (taught
By those that guided their devotion) fought.
Thrice happy we, could we like ardour have
To gain His love, as they to win His grave!
Love as He loved! A love so unconfined,
With arms extended, would embrace mankind. 250
Self-love would cease, or be dilated, when
We should behold as many selfs as men;
All of one family, in blood allied,
His precious blood, that for our ransom died.
 ‘Prophesied can do’: Isaiah xl. 4.
Though the creation (so divinely taught!)
Prints such a lively image on our thought,
That the first spark of new-created light,
From Chaos struck, affects our present sight:
Yet the first Christians did esteem more bless’d
The day of rising, than the day of rest, 260
That every week might new occasion give,
To make His triumph in their mem’ry live.
Then let our Muse compose a sacred charm,
To keep His blood among us ever warm,
And singing as the blessed do above,
With our last breath dilate this flame of love.
But on so vast a subject who can find
Words that may reach th’idea of his mind?
Our language fails; or, if it could supply,
What mortal thought can raise itself so high? 270
Despairing here, we might abandon art,
And only hope to have it in our heart.
But though we find this sacred task too hard,
Yet the design, th’endeavour, brings reward.
The contemplation does suspend our woe,
And makes a truce with all the ills we know.
As Saul’s afflicted spirit from the sound
Of David’s harp, a present solace found;
So, on this theme while we our Muse engage,
No wounds are felt, of fortune or of age. 280
On divine love to meditate is peace,
And makes all care of meaner things to cease.
Amazed at once, and comforted, to find
A boundless power so infinitely kind,
The soul contending to that light to flee
From her dark cell, we practise how to die;
Employing thus the poet’s winged art,
To reach this love, and grave it in our heart.
Joy so complete, so solid, and severe,
Would leave no place for meaner pleasures there; 290
Pale they would look, as stars that must be gone,
When from the East the rising sun comes on.
 ‘Solace found’: 1 Sam. xvi. 23.
OF THE FEAR OF GOD. IN TWO CANTOS.
The fear of God is freedom, joy, and peace,
And makes all ills that vex us here to cease.
Though the word fear some men may ill endure,
’Tis such a fear as only makes secure.
Ask of no angel to reveal thy fate;
Look in thy heart, the mirror of thy state.
He that invites will not th’invited mock,
Opening to all that do in earnest knock.
Our hopes are all well-grounded on this fear;
All our assurance rolls upon that sphere. 10
This fear, that drives all other fears away,
Shall be my song, the morning of our day;
Where that fear is, there’s nothing to be fear’d;
It brings from heaven an angel for a guard.
Tranquillity and peace this fear does give;
Hell gapes for those that do without it live.
 ‘Great conqueror’: Alexander.
Earth praises conquerors for shedding blood,
Heaven those that love their foes, and do them good.
It is terrestrial honour to be crown’d
For strewing men, like rushes, on the ground.
True glory ’tis to rise above them all,
Without th’advantage taken by their fall. 70
He that in sight diminishes mankind,
Does no addition to his stature find;
But he that does a noble nature show,
Silence, my Muse! make not these jewels cheap,
Exposing to the world too large a heap.
Of all we read, the Sacred Writ is best,
Where great truths are in fewest words express’d. 110
Wrestling with death, these lines I did indite;
No other theme could give my soul delight.
Oh that my youth had thus employ’d my pen! 113
Or that I now could write as well as then!
But ’tis of grace, if sickness, age, and pain,
Are felt as throes, when we are born again;
Timely they come to wean us from this earth,
As pangs that wait upon a second birth.
OF DIVINE POESY. TWO CANTOS.
Occasioned upon sight of the 53d chapter of Isaiah
turned into verse by
Poets we prize, when in their verse we find
Some great employment of a worthy mind.
Angels have been inquisitive to know
The secret which this oracle does show.
What was to come, Isaiah did declare,
Which she describes as if she had been there;
Had seen the wounds, which, to the reader’s view,
She draws so lively that they bleed anew.
As ivy thrives which on the oak takes hold,
So, with the prophet’s, may her lines grow old! 10
Of bounty ’tis that He admits our praise,
Which does not Him, but us that yield it, raise;
For as that angel up to heaven did rise,
Borne on the flame of Manoah’s sacrifice,
So, wing’d with praise, we penetrate the sky;
Teach clouds and stars to praise Him as we fly;
The whole creation, (by our fall made groan!)
His praise to echo, and suspend their moan. 40
For that He reigns, all creatures should rejoice,
And we with songs supply their want of voice.
The church triumphant, and the church below,
In songs of praise their present union show;
Their joys are full; our expectation long;
In life we differ, but we join in song.
Angels and we, assisted by this art,
May sing together, though we dwell apart.
Thus we reach heaven, while vainer poems must
No higher rise than winds may lift the dust. 50
From that they spring; this from His breath that gave,
To the first dust, th’immortal soul we have;
His praise well sung (our great endeavour here),
Shakes off the dust, and makes that breath appear.
He that did first this way of writing grace,
Conversed with the Almighty face to face;
Wonders he did in sacred verse unfold,
When he had more than eighty winters told.
The writer feels no dire effect of age,
Nor verse, that flows from so divine a rage. 60
Eldest of Poets, he beheld the light,
When first it triumph’d o’er eternal night;
Chaos he saw, and could distinctly tell
How that confusion into order fell.
As if consulted with, he has express’d
The work of the Creator, and His rest;
How the flood drown’d the first offending race,
Which might the figure of our globe deface.
For new-made earth, so even and so fair,
Which well observing, he, in numerous lines,
Taught wretched man how fast his life declines;
In whom he dwelt before the world was made,
And may again retire when that shall fade.
The lasting Iliads have not lived so long
As his and Deborah’s triumphant song.
Delphos unknown, no Muse could them inspire,
But that which governs the celestial choir. 90
Heaven to the pious did this art reveal,
And from their store succeeding poets steal.
Homer’s Scamander for the Trojans fought,
And swell’d so high, by her old Kishon taught.
His river scarce could fierce Achilles stay;
Hers, more successful, swept her foes away.
The host of heaven, his Phoebus and his Mars,
He arms, instructed by her fighting stars.
She led them all against the common foe;
But he (misled by what he saw below!) 100
The powers above, like wretched men, divides,
And breaks their union into different sides.
The noblest parts which in his heroes shine,
May be but copies of that heroine.
Homer himself, and Agamemnon, she
The writer could, and the commander, be.
Truth she relates in a sublimer strain,
Than all the tales the boldest Greeks could feign;
For what she sung that Spirit did indite,
Which gave her courage and success in fight. 110
A double garland crowns the matchless dame;
From heaven her poem and her conquest came.
Though of the Jews she merit most esteem,
Yet here the Christian has the greater theme;
Her martial song describes how Sis’ra fell;
This sings our triumph over death and hell.
The rising light employ’d the sacred breath 117
Of the blest Virgin and Elizabeth.
In songs of joy the angels sung His birth;
Here how He treated was upon the earth
Trembling we read! th’affliction and the scorn,
Which for our guilt so patiently was borne!
Conception, birth, and suff’ring, all belong
(Though various parts) to one celestial song;
And she, well using so divine an art,
Has in this concert sung the tragic part.
As Hannah’s seed was vow’d to sacred use,
So here this lady consecrates her Muse.
With like reward may Heaven her bed adorn,
With fruit as fair as by her Muse is born! 130
 ‘Writing grace’: Moses.
ON THE PARAPHRASE OF THE LORD’S PRAYER. WRITTEN BY MRS WHARTON.
Silence, you winds! listen, ethereal lights!
While our Urania sings what Heaven indites;
The numbers are the nymph’s; but from above
Descends the pledge of that eternal love.
Here wretched mortals have not leave alone,
But are instructed to approach His throne;
And how can He to miserable men
Deny requests which His own hand did pen?
In the Evangelists we find the prose
Which, paraphrased by her, a poem grows;
A devout rapture! so divine a hymn,
It may become the highest seraphim!
For they, like her, in that celestial choir,
Sing only what the Spirit does inspire.
Taught by our Lord, and theirs, with us they may
For all but pardon for offences pray.
1 His sacred name with reverence profound
Should mention’d be, and trembling at the sound!
It was Jehovah; ’tis Our Father now;
So low to us does Heaven vouchsafe to bow!
He brought it down that taught us how to pray,
And did so dearly for our ransom pay.
2 His kingdom come. For this we pray in vain
Unless he does in our affections reign.
Absurd it were to wish for such a King,
And not obedience to His sceptre bring,
Whose yoke is easy, and His burthen light,
His service freedom, and his judgments right.
3 His will be done. In fact ’tis always
But, as in heaven, it must be made our own.
His will should all our inclinations sway,
Whom Nature, and the universe, obey.
Happy the man! whose wishes are confined
To what has been eternally designed;
Referring all to His paternal care,
To whom more dear than to ourselves we are.
4 It is not what our avarice hoards up;
’Tis He that feeds us, and that fills our cup;
Like new-born babes depending on the breast,
From day to day we on His bounty feast;
Nor should the soul expect above a day,
To dwell in her frail tenement of clay;
The setting sun should seem to bound our race,
And the new day a gift of special grace.
5 That he should all our trespasses forgive,
While we in hatred with our neighbours live;
Though so to pray may seem an easy task,
We curse ourselves when thus inclined we ask,
This prayer to use, we ought with equal care
Our souls, as to the sacrament, prepare.
The noblest worship of the Power above,
Is to extol, and imitate his love;
Not to forgive our enemies alone,
But use our bounty that they may be won.
6 Guard us from all temptations of the foe;
And those we may in several stations know;
The rich and poor in slipp’ry places stand.
Give us enough, but with a sparing hand!
Not ill-persuading want, nor wanton wealth,
But what proportion’d is to life and health.
For not the dead, but living, sing thy praise,
Exalt thy kingdom, and thy glory raise.
Virginibus puerisque canto.—HOR.
 ‘Vouchsafe to bow’: Psalm xviii. 9.
When we for age could neither read nor write,
The subject made us able to indite;
The soul, with nobler resolutions deck’d,
The body stooping, does herself erect.
No mortal parts are requisite to raise
Her that, unbodied, can her Maker praise.
The seas are quiet when the winds give o’er;
So, calm are we when passions are no more!
For then we know how vain it was to boast
Of fleeting things, so certain to be lost.
Clouds of affection from our younger eyes
Conceal that emptiness which age descries.
The soul’s dark cottage, batter’d and
Lets in new light through chinks that time has made;
Stronger by weakness, wiser men become,
As they draw near to their eternal home.
Leaving the old, both worlds at once they view,
That stand upon the threshold of the new.
....Miratur limen Olympi.—VIRG.
* * * * *
THE POETICAL WORKS
SIR JOHN DENHAM.
Next to those poets who have exerted an influence on the matter, should be ranked those who have improved the manner, of our song. So that thus the same list may include the names of a Chaucer and a Waller, of a Milton and a Denham—the more as we suspect none but a true poet can materially improve even a poetical mode, can contrive even a new stirrup to Pegasus, or even to retune the awful organ of Pythia. Neither Denham nor Waller were great poets; but they have produced lines and verses so good, and have, besides, exerted an influence so considerable on modern versification, and the style of poetical utterance, that they are entitled to a highly respectable place amidst the sons of British song.
Sir John Denham, although thoroughly English both in descent and in complexion of mind, was born in Dublin in 1615. His father, whose name also was Sir John (of Little Horseley, in Essex), was, at the time of our poet’s birth, the Chief Baron of Exchequer in Ireland. His mother was Eleanor More, daughter of Sir Garret More, Baron of Mellefont. Two years after the son’s birth, the father,
“In 1642 he broke out,” as Waller remarks of him, “like the Irish Rebellion, threescore thousand strong, when nobody was aware, or in the least suspected it,” in the play of “Sophy;” and, sooth to say, like that rebellion, his outbreak is lawless and irregular, as well as strong; as in that rebellion, too, there is a rather needless expenditure of blood. What Byron says of Dr. Polidori’s tragedy, is nearly true of “Sophy”—
“All stab, and everybody dies.”
Nothing can be more horrible and disgusting than many of the incidents. A father suspecting and plotting against a dear and noble son; a son deprived of sight by the command of a father, and meditating in his rage and revenge the murder of his own favourite daughter, because she is beloved by his father; and the deaths of both son and father by poison, administered through means of a courtier who has betrayed both. Such are the main hinges on which the plot of the piece turns. The versification, too, is exceedingly
Are the same thing, and when our actions are not,
Our fears are crimes.
The east and west
Upon the globe, a mathematic point
Only divides; thus happiness and misery,
And all extremes, are still contiguous.
More gallant actions have been lost, for
want of being
Completely wicked, than have been performed
By being exactly virtuous. ’Tis hard to be
Exact in good, or excellent in ill;
Our will wants power, or else our power wants skill.
When in the midst of fears we are surprised
With unexpected happiness, the first
Degrees of joy are mere astonishment.
Fear, the shadow
Of danger, like the shadow of our bodies,
Is greater, then, when that which is the cause
Is farthest off.”
The blinded prince’s soliloquy, in the first scene of the fifth act, is worthy of Shakspeare. We must quote the following lines:—
“Reason, my soul’s
eye, still sees
Clearly, and clearer for the want of eyes,
For gazing through the windows of the body
It met such several, such distracting objects;
But now confined within itself it sees
A strange and unknown world, and there discovers
Torrents of anger, mountains of ambition,
Gulfs of desire, and towers of hope, large giants,
Monsters and savage beasts; to vanquish these
Will be a braver conquest, than the old
Or the new world.”
Shortly after the appearance of “Sophy,” he was admitted, by the form then usual, Sheriff of Surrey, and appointed governor of Farnham Castle for the king; this important post, however, he soon resigned, and retreated to Oxford, where, in 1643, he published his poem entitled “Cooper’s Hill.” This instantly became popular, and many who might have seen in “Sophy” greater powers than were disclosed in this new effort, envied its fame, and gave out that he had bought it of a vicar for forty pounds. For this there was, of course, no proof, and it is only worth mentioning because it is one of a large class of cases, in which envious mediocrity,
“Bless’d be the man who spares
But curs’d be he who moves my bones”—
a worse outrage has been recently committed on his memory, than were his dust, like Wickliffe’s, tossed out of his tomb into the Avon—his plays have been, with as much stupidity as malice, attributed to Lord Bacon! Homer, too, has been found out to be a myth; and we know not if even Dante’s originality has altogether passed unquestioned in this age of disbelief and downpulling; although what brow, save that thunder-scathed pile, could wear those scorched laurels, and who but the “man who had been in hell” could have written the “Inferno?” Worst of all, a class of writers have of late sought to prove that there is no such thing as originality—that genius means just dexterous borrowing-that the “Appropriation Clause” is of divine right—and have certainly proved themselves true to their own principles.
In 1647, circumstances brought our poet more closely in connexion with the royal family, and on one occasion he carried a message from the Queen to King Charles, then in prison. He subsequently conducted, with great success, the King’s correspondence; and in April 1648 he conveyed the young Duke of York (afterwards James II.) from London to France, and delivered him to the charge of the Queen and the Prince of Wales. He had, ere leaving Britain, written a translation of Cato-Major on Old Age. While in France, attending on the exiled prince, he wrote a number of poetical pieces at his master’s desire; among others, a song in honour of an embassy to Poland, which he and Lord Crofts undertook for Charles II., and during which they are said to have collected L10,000 for the royal cause from the Scotchmen who then abounded in that country as travelling merchants or pedlars. Meanwhile his political misdemeanours were punished by the Parliament confiscating the remnant of his estate. In 1652, he returned to England penniless, and was supported by the Earl of Pembroke. After
This is all we can definitely state of the history of Sir John Denham, and certainly the light it casts on his character is neither very plentiful nor very pleasing. A gambler in his early days, he became a political intriguer, an unhappy husband, a maniac, and died in the prime of life. It need only further be recorded of him, that, according to some accounts, he first discovered the merits of Milton’s “Paradise Lost,” and went about with the book new from the press in his hands, shewing it to everybody, and exclaiming, “This beats us all, and the ancients too!” If this story be true, it says as much for his heart as his head for the generous disposition which made him praise a political adversary, as for the critical taste which discerned at a glance the value of the world’s greatest poem. On the whole, however, Denham as a man stands on the same general level with the Cavalier wits in the days of Charles. If he did not rise so high as Cowley, he did not sink so low as Rochester, or even as Butler.
We may now regret, both that he did not live better, and that he did not write more. He had unquestionably in him greater powers than he ever expressed in his works. These are few, fragmentary, and unequal; but, nevertheless, must be reckoned productions of no ordinary merit. They discover a great deal of the body, and not a little of the soul, of poetry. In the passages we cited from “Sophy,” and throughout the whole of that play, there is a vigorous and profound vein of reflection, as well as of imagination. Like Shakspeare, although on a scale very much inferior, he carries on a constant stream of subtle reflection amidst all the windings of his story; and even the most critical points of the drama are studded with pearls. Coleridge speaks of himself, or some one else, as wishing to live “collaterally, or aside, to the onward progress of society;” and thus, in the drama, there should ever be, as it were, a projection, or alias, of the author standing collaterally, or aside, to the bustling incidents and whirling passions, and calmly adding the commentary of wisdom, as they rush impetuously on. Such essentially was the chorus of the ancient Greek play; and a similar end is answered in Shakspeare by the subtle asides, the glancing bye-lights, which his wondrous intellect interposes amidst the rapid play of his fancy, the exuberance of his wit, and the crowded incident and interchange of passion created by his genius. Some have maintained that the philosophy of a drama should be chiefly confined to the conceptions of the characters, the development of the plot, and the management of the dialogue—that all the reflection should be molten into the mass of the play, and none of it embossed on the surface; but certainly neither Shakspeare’s, nor Schiller’s, nor Goethe’s dramas answer to this ideal— all of them, besides the philosophy, so to speak, afoot in the progress of the story, contain a great deal standing still, quietly lurking in nooks and corners, and yet exerting a powerful influence on the ultimate effect and explanation of the whole. And so, according to its own proportions, it is with Denham’s “Sophy.” Indeed, as we have above hinted, its power lies more in these interesting individual beauties than in its general structure.
“Cooper’s Hill,” next to “Sophy,” is undoubtedly his best production. Dr. Johnson calls it the first English specimen of local poetry—i.e., of poetry in which a special scene is, through the embellishments of traditionary recollection, moral reflections, and the power of association generally, uplifted into a poetical light. This has been done afterwards by Garth, in his “Claremont;” Pope, in his “Windsor Forest;” Dyer, in his “Gronger-hill,” and a hundred other instances. The great danger in this class of poems, is lest imported sentiment and historical reminiscence should overpower the living lineaments, and all but blot out the memory of the actual landscape. And so it is to some extent in “Cooper’s Hill,” the scene beheld from which is speedily lost in a torrent of political reflection and moralising. The well-known lines on the Thames are rhetorical and forcible, but not, we think, highly poetical:—
“Oh, could I flow like thee, and
make thy stream
My great example, as it is my theme!
Though deep, yet clear, though gentle, yet not dull,
Strong without rage, without o’erflowing full.”
The poem closes with another river-picture, which some will admire:—
“When a calm river, raised with
Or snows dissolved, o’erflows the adjoining plains,
The husbandmen, with high-raised banks, secure
Their greedy hopes, and this he can endure;
But, if with bays and dams they strive to force
His channel to a new or narrow course,
No longer then—within his banks he dwells,
First to a torrent, then a deluge swells,
Stronger and fiercer by restraint he roars,
And knows no bound, but makes his power his shores.”
Again, he says of Thames:—
“Thames, the most loved of all the
By his old sire, to his embraces runs,
Hasting to pay his tribute to the sea,
Like mortal life to meet eternity.
Though with those streams he no resemblance hold
Whose foam is amber and their gravel gold.
His genuine and less guilty wealth t’explore,
Search not his bottom, but survey his shore.”
Yet, though fond of, and great in, describing rivers, he is not, after all, the “river-god” of poetry. Professor Wilson speaks with a far deeper voice:—
“Down falls the drawbridge with
a thund’ring shock,
And, in an instant, ere the eye can know,
Binds the stern castle to the opposing rock,
And hangs in calmness o’er the flood below;
A raging flood, that, born among the hills,
Flows dancing on through many a nameless glen,
Till, join’d by all his tributary rills
From lake and tarn, from marsh and from fen,
He leaves his empire with a kingly glee,
And fiercely bids retire the billows of the sea!”
Different poets are made to write on different rivers as well as on different mountains. Denham paints well the calm majestic Thames; Wilson, the rapid Spey; Scott, the immemorial and historic Forth; Burns, the wild lonely Lugar and the Doon; and Thomas Aird (see his exquisitely beautiful “River"), the pastoral Cluden. But the poet of the St. Lawrence, with Niagara flinging itself over its crag like a mad ocean—of the Ganges or the Orellana—has yet to be born, or at least has yet to bring forth his conceptions of such a stupendous object in poetry.
In “Cooper’s Hill” we find well, if not fully exhibited, what were Denham’s leading qualities—not high imagination or a fertile fancy, although in neither of these was he conspicuously deficient, but manly strength of thought and clearness of language. There are in him no quaintnesses, no crotchets, no conceits, and no involutions or affectations—all is transparent, masculine, and energetic. It is in these respects that he became a model to Dryden and Pope, and may even still be read with advantage for at least his style, which is
“Strong without rage, without o’erflowing full.”
His translations we have included, not for their surpassing merit, but because, in the first place, there is little of our author extant, and we are happy to reprint every scrap of him we can find, and because again he, according to Dr. Johnson, was “one of the first that understood the necessity of emancipating translation from the drudgery of counting lines and interpreting single words.” There has, indeed, been recently a reaction, attended in some cases with brilliant success—as in Bulwer’s “Ballads of Schiller”—in favour of the literal and lineal method; but since such popular pieces as Dryden’s “Virgil” and Pope’s “Homer” have been written on Denham’s plan, it is interesting to preserve the model, however rude, which they avowedly had in their eye.
His smaller pieces are not remarkable, unless we except his vigorous lines “On the Earl of Stafford’s Trial and Death,” containing such noble sentiments as these—
“Such was his force of eloquence, to make The hearers more concern’d than he that spake, Each seem’d to act that part he came to see, And none was more a looker-on than he; So did he move our passions, some were known To wish for the defence, the crime their own. Now private pity strove with public hate, Reason with rage, and eloquence with fate.”
Nor let us forget his verses on “Cowley’s Death,” which, although unequal, and in their praise exaggerated, yet are in parts exceedingly felicitous, as for instance, in the lines to which Macaulay, in his “Milton,” refers:—
“To him no author was unknown,
Yet what he wrote was all his own;
He melted not the ancient gold,
Nor with Ben Jonson did make bold
To plunder all the Roman stores
Of poets and of orators;
Horace’s wit and Virgil’s state
He did not steal, but emulate!
And when he would like them appear,
Their garb, but not their clothes, did wear.”
Such is true criticism, which, in our judgment, means clear, sharp, discriminating judgment expressed in the language and with the feelings of poetry.
POEMS UPON SEVERAL OCCASIONS.
Sure there are poets which did never dream
Upon Parnassus, nor did taste the stream
Of Helicon; we therefore may suppose
Those made not poets, but the poets those,
And as courts make not kings, but kings the court,
So where the Muses and their train resort,
Parnassus stands; if I can be to thee
A poet, thou Parnassus art to me.
Nor wonder, if (advantaged in my flight,
By taking wing from thy auspicious height) 10
Through untraced ways and airy paths I fly,
More boundless in my fancy than my eye:
 ‘Such a Muse’: Mr. Waller. 
‘Great Edward, and thy greater son’:
Edward III. and the Black
 ‘Thy Bellona’: Queen Phillippa.  ‘Captive king’: the kings of France and Scotland.  ‘The stars’: the Forest.  ‘Self-enamour’d youth’: Narcissus.  ‘Liberty pursued’: Runimede, where Magna Charta was first sealed.
AN ESSAY ON THE SECOND BOOK OF VIRGIL’S AENEIS,
WRITTEN IN THE YEAR 1636.
The first book speaks of Aeneas’s voyage by sea, and how, being cast by tempest upon the coast of Carthage, he was received by Queen Dido, who, after the feast, desires him to make the relation of the destruction of Troy; which is the argument of this book.
While all with silence and attention wait,
Thus speaks Aeneas from the bed of state:—
Madam, when you command us to review
Our fate, you make our old wounds bleed anew,
And all those sorrows to my sense restore,
Whereof none saw so much, none suffer’d more.
Not the most cruel of our conqu’ring foes
So unconcern’dly can relate our woes,
As not to lend a tear; then how can I
Repress the horror of my thoughts, which fly 10
The sad remembrance? Now th’expiring night
And the declining stars to rest invite;
Yet since ’tis your command, what you so well
Are pleased to hear, I cannot grieve to tell.
By fate repell’d and with repulses tired,
The Greeks, so many lives and years expired,
A fabric like a moving mountain frame, 17
Pretending vows for their return; this Fame
Divulges; then within the beast’s vast womb
The choice and flower of all their troops entomb;
In view the isle of Tenedos, once high,
In fame and wealth, while Troy remain’d, doth lie;
(Now but an unsecure and open bay)
Thither by stealth the Greeks their fleet convey.
We gave them gone, and to Mycenae sail’d,
And Troy reviv’d, her mourning face unveil’d;
All through th’unguarded gates with joy resort
To see the slighted camp, the vacant port;
Here lay Ulysses, there Achilles; here
The battles join’d; the Grecian fleet rode there; 30
But the vast pile th’amazed vulgar views,
Till they their reason in their wonder lose.
And first Thymoetes moves (urged by the power
Of fate, or fraud) to place it in the tower;
But Capys and the graver sort thought fit
The Greeks’ suspected present to commit
To seas or flames, at least to search and bore
The sides, and what that space contains, t’explore.
Th’ uncertain multitude with both engaged,
Divided stands, till from the tower, enraged 40
Laocoon ran, whom all the crowd attends,
Crying, ’What desp’rate frenzy’s this, O friends!
To think them gone? Judge rather their retreat
But a design; their gifts but a deceit;
For our destruction ’twas contrived no doubt,
Or from within by fraud, or from without
By force. Yet know ye not Ulysses’ shifts?
Their swords less danger carry than their gifts.’
(This said) against the horse’s side his spear 49
Thus by his fraud and our own faith o’ercome,
A feigned tear destroys us, against whom
Tydides nor Achilles could prevail,
Nor ten years’ conflict, nor a thousand sail.
This seconded by a most sad portent,
Which credit to the first imposture lent;
Laocoon, Neptune’s priest, upon the day
Devoted to that god, a bull did slay;
When two prodigious serpents were descried,
Whose circling strokes the sea’s smooth face divide;
Above the deep they raise their scaly crests, 200
And stem the flood with their erected breasts,
Their winding tails advance and steer their course,
And ’gainst the shore the breaking billows force.
Now landing, from their brandish’d tongues there came
A dreadful hiss, and from their eyes a flame.
Amazed we fly, directly in a line
Laocoon they pursue, and first entwine
(Each preying upon one) his tender sons;
Then him, who armed to their rescue runs,
They seized, and with entangling folds embraced, 210
His neck twice compassing, and twice his waist:
Their pois’nous knots he strives to break and tear,
While slime and blood his sacred wreaths besmear;
Then loudly roars, as when th’enraged bull
From th’altar flies, and from his wounded skull
Shakes the huge axe; the conqu’ring serpents fly
To cruel Pallas’ altar, and there lie
Under her feet, within her shield’s extent. 218
We, in our fears, conclude this fate was sent
Justly on him, who struck the sacred oak
With his accursed lance. Then to invoke
The goddess, and let in the fatal horse,
We all consent.
A spacious breach we make, and Troy’s proud
Built by the gods, by our own hands doth fall;
Thus, all their help to their own ruin give,
Some draw with cords, and some the monster drive
With rolls and levers: thus our works it climbs
Big with our fate; the youth with songs and rhymes,
Some dance, some hale the rope; at last let down 230
It enters with a thund’ring noise the town.
Oh Troy! the seat of gods, in war renown’d!
Three times it struck; as oft the clashing sound
Of arms was heard; yet blinded by the power
Of Fate, we place it in the sacred tower.
Cassandra then foretells th’event, but she
Finds no belief (such was the gods’ decree).
The altars with fresh flowers we crown, and waste
In feasts that day, which was (alas!) our last.
Now by the revolution of the skies 240
Night’s sable shadows from the ocean rise,
Which heaven and earth, and the Greek frauds involved,
The city in secure repose dissolved,
When from the admiral’s high poop appears
A light, by which the Argive squadron steers
Their silent course to Ilium’s well-known shore,
When Sinon (saved by the gods’ partial power)
Opens the horse, and through the unlock’d doors
To the free air the armed freight restores:
Ulysses, Stheneleus, Tisander slide 250
Down by a rope, Machaon was their guide;
Atrides, Pyrrhus, Thoas, Athamas,
And Epeus who the fraud’s contriver was.
The gates they seize; the guards, with sleep and wine
Oppress’d, surprise, and then their forces join.
’Twas then, when the first sweets of sleep repair
Our bodies spent with toil, our minds with care,
(The gods’ best gift), when, bathed in tears and blood,
Before my face lamenting Hector stood,
His aspect such when, soil’d with bloody dust, 260
Dragg’d by the cords which through his feet were thrust
By his insulting foe; oh, how transform’d,
How much unlike that Hector, who return’d
Clad in Achilles’ spoils! when he, among
A thousand ships (like Jove) his lightning flung!
His horrid beard and knotted tresses stood
Stiff with his gore, and all his wounds ran blood:
Entranced I lay, then (weeping) said, ’The joy,
The hope and stay of thy declining Troy!
What region held thee? whence, so much desired, 270
Art thou restored to us, consumed and tired
With toils and deaths? But what sad cause confounds
Thy once fair looks, or why appear those wounds?’
Regardless of my words, he no reply
Returns, but with a dreadful groan doth cry,
’Fly from the flame, O goddess-born! our walls
The Greeks possess, and Troy confounded falls
From all her glories; if it might have stood
By any power, by this right hand it should.
What man could do, by me for Troy was done.
 ‘Gave them gone’: i.e., gave them up for gone.
Great Strafford! worthy of that name, though all
Of thee could be forgotten, but thy fall,
Crush’d by imaginary treason’s weight,
Which too much merit did accumulate.
As chemists gold from brass by fire would draw,
Pretexts are into treason forged by law.
His wisdom such, at once it did appear
Three kingdoms’ wonder, and three kingdoms’ fear;
Whilst single he stood forth, and seem’d, although
Each had an army, as an equal foe. 10
Such was his force of eloquence, to make
The hearers more concern’d than he that spake;
Each seem’d to act that part he came to see,
And none was more a looker-on than he;
So did he move our passions, some were known
To wish, for the defence, the crime their own.
Now private pity strove with public hate,
Reason with rage, and eloquence with fate:
Now they could him, if he could them, forgive;
He’s not too guilty, but too wise, to live: 20
Less seem those facts which treason’s nickname bore,
Than such a fear’d ability for more.
They after death their fears of him express,
FROM WHENCE WE BROUGHT L10,000 FOR HIS MAJESTY, BY
THE DECIMATION OF HIS SCOTTISH SUBJECTS THERE.
1 Toll, toll,
Gentle bell, for the soul
Of the pure ones in Pole,
Which are damn’d in our scroll.
2 Who having felt a touch
Of Cockram’s greedy clutch,
Which though it was not much,
Yet their stubbornness was such,
3 That when we did arrive,
’Gainst the stream we did strive;
They would neither lead nor drive;
4 Nor lend
An ear to a friend,
Nor an answer would send
To our letter so well penn’d;
5 Nor assist our affairs
With their moneys nor their wares,
As their answer now declares,
But only with their prayers.
6 Thus they did persist
Did and said what they list,
’Till the Diet was dismiss’d;
But then our breech they kiss’d.
7 For when
It was moved there and then,
They should pay one in ten,
The Diet said, Amen.
8 And because they are both
To discover the troth,
They must give word and oath,
Though they will forfeit both.
9 Thus the constitution
Condemns them every one,
From the father to the son.
10 But John
(Our friend) Mollesson
Thought us to have outgone
With a quaint invention.
11 Like the prophets of yore,
He complain’d long before,
Of the mischiefs in store,
Ay, and thrice as much more;
12 And with that wicked lie,
A letter they came by
From our King’s majesty.
13 But fate
Brought the letter too late,
’Twas of too old a date
To relieve their damn’d state.
14 The letter’s to be seen,
With seal of wax so green,
At Dantzig, where ’t has been
Turn’d into good Latin.
15 But he that gave the hint,
This letter for to print,
Must also pay his stint.
16 That trick,
Had it come in the nick,
Had touch’d us to the quick;
But the messenger fell sick.
17 Had it later been wrote,
And sooner been brought,
They had got what they sought;
But now it serves for nought.
18 On Sandys they ran aground,
And our return was crown’d
With full ten thousand pound.
ON MR THOMAS KILLIGREW’S RETURN FROM VENICE, AND MR WILLIAM MURREY’S FROM SCOTLAND.
1 Our resident Tom,
From Venice is come,
And hath left the statesman behind him;
Talks at the same pitch,
Is as wise, is as rich;
And just where you left him, you find him.
2 But who says he was not
A man of much plot,
May repent that false accusation;
Having plotted and penn’d
Six plays, to attend
The farce of his negotiation.
3 Before you were told
How Satan the old
Came here with a beard to his middle;
Though he changed face and name,
Old Will was the same,
At the noise of a can and a fiddle.
4 These statesmen, you believe,
Send straight for the shrieve,
For he is one too, or would be;
But he drinks no wine,
Which is a shrewd sign
That all’s not so well as it should be.
5 These three, when they drink,
How little do they think
Of banishment, debts, or dying?
Not old with their years,
Nor cold with their fears;
But their angry stars still defying.
6 Mirth makes them not mad,
Nor sobriety sad;
But of that they are seldom in danger;
At Paris, at Rome,
At the Hague, they’re at home;
The good fellow is no where a stranger.
 ‘Satan’: Mr. W. Murrey.
BEING INVITED FROM CALAIS TO BOULOGNE, TO EAT A PIG.
1 All on a weeping Monday,
With a fat vulgarian sloven,
Little admiral John
To Boulogne is gone,
Whom I think they call old Loven.
2 Hadst thou not thy fill of carting,
Will Aubrey, Count of Oxon,
When nose lay in breech,
And breech made a speech,
So often cried, A pox on?
3 A knight by land and water
Esteem’d at such a high rate,
When ’tis told in Kent,
In a cart that he went,
They’ll say now, Hang him, pirate.
4 Thou might’st have ta’en example
From what thou read’st in story;
Being as worthy to sit
On an ambling tit
As thy predecessor Dory.
5 But, oh, the roof of linen,
Intended for a shelter!
But the rain made an ass
Of tilt and canvas,
And the snow, which you know is a melter.
6 But with thee to inveigle
That tender stripling Astcot,
Who was soak’d to the skin,
Through drugget so thin,
Having neither coat nor waistcoat.
7 He being proudly mounted,
Clad in cloak of Plymouth,
Defied cart so base,
For thief without grace,
That goes to make a wry mouth.
8 Nor did he like the omen,
For fear it might be his doom
One day for to sing,
With gullet in string,
A hymn of Robert Wisdom.
9 But what was all this business?
For sure it was important;
For who rides i’ th’wet
When affairs are not great,
The neighbours make but a sport on’t.
10 To a goodly fat sow’s baby,
O John! thou hadst a malice;
The old driver of swine
That day sure was thine,
Or thou hadst not quitted Calais.
 ‘Fill of carting’: we three riding
in a cart from Dunkirk to Calais,
with a fat Dutch woman.
1 What gives us that fantastic fit,
That all our judgment and our wit
To vulgar custom we submit?
2 Treason, theft, murder, and all the rest
Of that foul legion we so detest,
Are in their proper names express’d.
3 Why is it then thought sin or shame
Those necessary parts to name,
From whence we went, and whence we came?
4 Nature, whate’er she wants, requires;
With love inflaming our desires,
Finds engines fit to quench those fires.
5 Death she abhors; yet when men die
We are present; but no stander by
Looks on when we that loss supply.
6 Forbidden wares sell twice as dear;
Even sack, prohibited last year,
A most abominable rate did bear.
7 ’Tis plain our eyes and ears are nice,
Only to raise, by that device,
Of those commodities the price.
8 Thus reason’s shadows us betray,
By tropes and figures led astray,
From Nature, both her guide and way.
Thus to Glaucus spake
Divine Sarpedon, since he did not find
Others, as great in place, as great in mind:—
Above the rest why is our pomp, our power?
Our flocks, our herds, and our possessions more?
Why all the tributes land and sea affords
Heap’d in great chargers, load our sumptuous boards?
Our cheerful guests carouse the sparkling tears
Of the rich grape, while music charms their ears?
Why, as we pass, do those on Xanthus’ shore, 10
As gods behold us, and as gods adore?
But that, as well in danger as degree,
We stand the first; that when our Licians see
Our brave examples, they admiring say,
Behold our gallant leaders! These are they
Deserve the greatness, and unenvied stand,
Since what they act transcends what they command.
Could the declining of this fate (O friend!)
Our date to immortality extend?
Or if death sought not them who seek not death, 20
Would I advance? or should my vainer breath
With such a glorious folly thee inspire?
But since with Fortune Nature doth conspire,
Since age, disease, or some less noble end,
Though not less certain, does our days attend;
Since ’tis decreed, and to this period lead
A thousand ways, the noblest path we’ll tread,
And bravely on, till they, or we, or all,
A common sacrifice to honour fall.
FRIENDSHIP AND SINGLE LIFE, AGAINST LOVE AND MARRIAGE.
1 Love! in what poison is thy dart
Dipp’d, when it makes a bleeding heart?
None know but they who feel the smart.
2 It is not thou, but we are blind,
And our corporeal eyes (we find)
Dazzle the optics of our mind.
3 Love to our citadel resorts;
Through those deceitful sally-ports,
Our sentinels betrays our forts.
4 What subtle witchcraft man constrains,
To change his pleasure into pains,
And all his freedom into chains?
5 May not a prison, or a grave,
Like wedlock, honour’s title have
That word makes freeborn man a slave.
6 How happy he that loves not, lives!
Him neither hope nor fear deceives,
To Fortune who no hostage gives.
7 How unconcern’d in things to come!
If here uneasy, finds at Rome,
At Paris, or Madrid, his home.
8 Secure from low and private ends,
His life, his zeal, his wealth attends
His prince, his country, and his friends.
9 Danger and honour are his joy;
But a fond wife, or wanton boy,
May all those gen’rous thoughts destroy.
10 Then he lays by the public care;
Thinks of providing for an heir;
Learns how to get, and how to spare.
11 Nor fire, nor foe, nor fate, nor night,
The Trojan hero did affright,
Who bravely twice renew’d the fight.
12 Though still his foes in number grew,
Thicker their darts and arrows flew,
Yet, left alone, no fear he knew.
13 But Death in all her forms appears,
From every thing he sees and hears,
For whom he leads, and whom he bears.
14 Love, making all things else his foes,
Like a fierce torrent, overflows
Whatever doth his course oppose.
15 This was the cause, the poets sung,
Thy mother from the sea was sprung;
But they were mad to make thee young.
16 Her father, not her son, art thou:
From our desires our actions grow;
And from the cause th’effect must flow.
17 Love is as old as place or time;
’Twas he the fatal tree did climb,
Grandsire of father Adam’s crime.
18 Well may’st thou keep this world in awe;
Religion, wisdom, honour, law,
The tyrant in his triumph draw.
19 ’Tis he commands the powers above;
Phoebus resigns his darts, and Jove
His thunder to the god of Love.
20 To him doth his feign’d mother yield;
Nor Mars (her champion’s) flaming shield
Guards him, when Cupid takes the field.
21 He clips Hope’s wings, whose airy bliss
Much higher than fruition is,
But less than nothing if it miss.
22 When matches Love alone projects,
The cause transcending the effects,
That wild fire’s quench’d in cold neglects;
23 Whilst those conjunctions prove the best,
Where Love’s of blindness dispossess’d
By perspectives of interest.
24 Though Sol’mon with a thousand wives,
To get a wise successor strives,
But one (and he a fool) survives.
25 Old Rome of children took no care;
They with their friends their beds did share,
Secure t’adopt a hopeful heir.
26 Love drowsy days and stormy nights
Makes; and breaks friendship, whose delights
Feed, but not glut our appetites.
27 Well-chosen friendship, the most noble
Of virtues, all our joys makes double,
And into halves divides our trouble.
28 But when th’unlucky knot we tie,
Care, av’rice, fear, and jealousy
Make friendship languish till it die.
29 The wolf, the lion, and the bear,
When they their prey in pieces tear,
To quarrel with themselves forbear;
30 Yet tim’rous deer, and harmless sheep,
When love into their veins doth creep,
That law of Nature cease to keep.
31 Who, then, can blame the am’rous boy,
Who, the fair Helen to enjoy,
To quench his own, set fire on Troy?
32 Such is the world’s prepost’rous fate,
Amongst all creatures, mortal hate
Love (though immortal) doth create.
33 But love may beasts excuse, for they
Their actions not by reason sway,
But their brute appetites obey.
34 But man’s that savage beast, whose mind
From reason to self-love declined,
Delights to prey upon his kind.
 ‘Whom he bears’: his father and son.
ON MR ABRAHAM COWLEY, HIS DEATH, AND BURIAL AMONGST THE ANCIENT POETS.
Old Chaucer, like the morning star,
To us discovers day from far;
His light those mists and clouds dissolved,
Which our dark nation long involved:
But he descending to the shades,
Darkness again the age invades.
Next (like Aurora) Spenser rose, 7
Whose purple blush the day foreshows;
The other three with his own fires
Phoebus, the poet’s god, inspires;
By Shakespeare’s, Jonson’s, Fletcher’s lines,
Our stage’s lustre Rome’s outshines:
These poets near our princes sleep,
And in one grave their mansion keep.
They lived to see so many days,
Till time had blasted all their bays:
But cursed be the fatal hour,
That pluck’d the fairest, sweetest flower
That in the Muses’ garden grew,
And amongst wither’d laurels threw! 20
Time, which made them their fame outlive,
To Cowley scarce did ripeness give.
Old mother Wit, and Nature, gave
Shakespeare and Fletcher all they have;
In Spenser, and in Jonson, Art
Of slower Nature got the start;
But both in him so equal are,
None knows which bears the happiest share;
To him no author was unknown,
Yet what he wrote was all his own; 30
 ‘Flaccus Horace’: his Pindarics.  ‘Strong’: his last works.
To the tune of, ‘I went from England.’
1 But will you now to peace incline,
And languish in the main design,
And leave us in the lurch?
I would not monarchy destroy,
But as the only way t’enjoy
The ruin of the church.
2 Is not the Bishops’ bill denied,
And we still threaten’d to be tried?
You see the King embraces
Those counsels he approved before:
Nor doth he promise, which is more,
That we shall have their places.
3 Did I for this bring in the Scot?
(For ’tis no secret now) the plot
Was Saye’s and mine together;
Did I for this return again,
And spend a winter there in vain,
Once more t’invite them hither?
4 Though more our money than our cause
Their brotherly assistance draws,
My labour was not lost.
At my return I brought you thence
Necessity, their strong pretence,
And these shall quit the cost.
5 Did I for this my country bring
To help their knight against their King,
And raise the first sedition?
Though I the business did decline,
Yet I contrived the whole design,
And sent them their petition.
6 So many nights spent in the City
In that invisible Committee,
The wheel that governs all;
From thence the change in church and state,
And all the mischief bears the date
From Haberdashers’ Hall.
7 Did we force Ireland to despair,
Upon the King to cast the war,
To make the world abhor him,
Because the rebels used his name?
Though we ourselves can do the same,
While both alike were for him.
8 Then the same fire we kindled here
With what was given to quench it there,
And wisely lost that nation:
To do as crafty beggars use,
To maim themselves, thereby t’abuse
The simple man’s compassion.
9 Have I so often pass’d between
Windsor and Westminster, unseen,
And did myself divide:
To keep his Excellence in awe,
And give the Parliament the law?
For they knew none beside.
10 Did I for this take pains to teach
Our zealous ignorants to preach,
And did their lungs inspire;
Gave them their texts, show’d them their parts,
And taught them all their little arts,
To fling abroad the fire?
11 Sometimes to beg, sometimes to threaten,
And say the Cavaliers are beaten,
To stroke the people’s ears;
Then straight, when victory grows cheap,
And will no more advance the heap,
To raise the price of fears.
12 And now the books, and now the bells,
And now our act, the preacher tells,
To edify the people;
All our divinity is news,
And we have made of equal use
The pulpit and the steeple.
13 And shall we kindle all this flame
Only to put it out again,
And must we now give o’er,
And only end where we begun?
In vain this mischief we have done,
If we can do no more.
14 If men in peace can have their right,
Where’s the necessity to fight,
That breaks both law and oath?
They’ll say they fight not for the cause,
Nor to defend the King and laws,
But us against them both.
15 Either the cause at first was ill,
Or, being good, it is so still;
And thence they will infer,
That either now or at the first
They were deceived; or, which is worst,
That we ourselves may err.
16 But plague and famine will come in,
For they and we are near of kin,
And cannot go asunder:
But while the wicked starve, indeed
The saints have ready at their need
God’s providence, and plunder.
17 Princes we are if we prevail,
And gallant villains if we fail.
When to our fame ’tis told,
It will not be our least of praise,
Since a new state we could not raise,
To have destroy’d the old.
18 Then let us stay and fight, and vote,
Till London is not worth a groat;
Oh! ’tis a patient beast!
When we have gall’d and tired the mule,
And can no longer have the rule,
We’ll have the spoil at least.
TO THE FIVE MEMBERS OF THE HONOURABLE HOUSE OF COMMONS, THE HUMBLE PETITION OF THE POETS.
After so many concurring petitions
From all ages and sexes, and all conditions,
We come in the rear to present our follies
To Pym, Stroud, Haslerig, Hampden, and Hollis.
Though set form of prayer be an abomination,
Set forms of petitions find great approbation;
Therefore, as others from th’bottom of their souls,
So we from the depth and bottom of our bowels,
According unto the bless’d form you have taught us,
We thank you first for the ills you have brought us: 10
For the good we receive we thank him that gave it,
And you for the confidence only to crave it.
Next in course, we complain of the great violation
Of privilege (like the rest of our nation),
But ’tis none of yours of which we have spoken,
Which never had being until they were broken;
But ours is a privilege ancient and native,
Hangs not on an ord’nance, or power legislative.
And, first, ’tis to speak whatever we please,
Without fear of a prison or pursuivants’ fees. 20
Next, that we only may lie by authority;
But in that also you have got the priority.
Next, an old custom, our fathers did name it
Poetical license, and always did claim it.
By this we have power to change age into youth,
Turn nonsense to sense, and falsehood to truth;
1 Do you not know, not a fortnight ago,
How they bragg’d of a Western Wonder?
When a hundred and ten slew five thousand men,
With the help of lightning and thunder?
2 There Hopton was slain, again and again,
Or else my author did lie;
With a new thanksgiving, for the dead who are living,
To God, and his servant Chidleigh.
3 But now on which side was the miracle tried?
I hope we at last are even;
For Sir Ralph and his knaves are risen from their graves,
To cudgel the clowns of Devon.
4 And there Stamford came, for his honour was lame
Of the gout three months together;
But it proved, when they fought, but a running gout,
For his heels were lighter than ever.
5 For now he outruns his arms and his guns,
And leaves all his money behind him;
But they follow after; unless he take water,
At Plymouth again they will find him.
6 What Reading hath cost, and Stamford hath lost,
Goes deep in the sequestrations;
These wounds will not heal, with your new great seal,
Nor Jephson’s declarations.
7 Now, Peters and Case, in your prayer and grace,
Remember the new thanksgiving;
Isaac and his wife, now dig for your life,
Or shortly you’ll dig for your living.
1 You heard of that wonder, of the lightning and thunder,
Which made the lie so much the louder:
Now list to another, that miracle’s brother,
Which was done with a firkin of powder.
2 Oh, what a damp it struck through the camp!
But as for honest Sir Ralph,
It blew him to the Vies without beard or eyes,
But at least three heads and a half.
3 When out came the book, which the newsmonger took,
From the preaching lady’s letter,
Where in the first place, stood the conqueror’s face,
Which made it show much the better.
4 But now, without lying, you may paint him flying,
At Bristol they say you may find him,
Great William the Con, so fast did he run,
That he left half his name behind him.
5 And now came the post, save all that was lost,
But, alas! we are past deceiving
By a trick so stale, or else such a tale
Might amount to a new thanksgiving.
6 This made Mr. Case, with a pitiful face,
In the pulpit to fall a weeping,
Though his mouth utter’d lies, truth fell from his eyes,
Which kept the Lord Mayor from sleeping.
7 Now shut up shops, and spend your last drops,
For the laws, not your cause, you that loathe ’em,
Lest Essex should start, and play the second part
Of worshipful Sir John Hotham.
1 Morpheus! the humble god, that dwells
In cottages and smoky cells,
Hates gilded roofs and beds of down;
And though he fears no prince’s frown,
Flies from the circle of a crown:
2 Come, I say, thou powerful god,
And thy leaden charming rod,
Dipp’d in the Lethean lake,
O’er his wakeful temples shake,
Lest he should sleep, and never wake.
3 Nature, (alas!) why art thou so
Obliged to thy greatest foe?
Sleep that is thy best repast,
Yet of death it bears a taste,
And both are the same thing at last.
So shall we joy, when all whom beasts and worms
Have turn’d to their own substances and forms:
Whom earth to earth, or fire hath changed to fire,
We shall behold more than at first entire;
As now we do to see all thine thy own
In this my Muse’s resurrection,
Whose scatter’d parts from thy own race more wounds
Hath suffer’d than Actaeon from his hounds;
Which first their brains, and then their belly fed,
And from their excrements new poets bred. 10
But now thy Muse enraged, from her urn,
Like ghosts of murder’d bodies, does return
T’ accuse the murderers, to right the stage,
And undeceive the long-abused age,
TO SIR RICHARD FANSHAW, UPON HIS TRANSLATION OF ‘PASTOR FIDO.’
Such is our pride, our folly, or our fate,
That few but such as cannot write, translate.
But what in them is want of art or voice,
In thee is either modesty or choice.
While this great piece, restored by thee, doth stand
Free from the blemish of an artless hand,
Secure of fame, thou justly dost esteem
Less honour to create than to redeem.
Nor ought a genius less than his that writ 9
Attempt translation; for transplanted wit
All the defects of air and soil doth share,
And colder brains like colder climates are:
In vain they toil, since nothing can beget
A vital spirit but a vital heat.
That servile path thou nobly dost decline
Of tracing word by word, and line by line.
Those are the labour’d births of slavish brains,
Not the effect of poetry, but pains;
Cheap vulgar arts, whose narrowness affords
No flight for thoughts, but poorly sticks at words. 20
A new and nobler way thou dost pursue
To make translations and translators too.
They but preserve the ashes, thou the flame,
True to his sense, but truer to his fame:
Fording his current, where thou find’st it low,
Let’st in thine own to make it rise and flow;
Wisely restoring whatsoever grace
It lost by change of times, or tongues, or place.
Nor fetter’d to his numbers and his times,
Betray’st his music to unhappy rhymes. 30
Nor are the nerves of his compacted strength
TO THE HON. EDWARD HOWARD, ON ‘THE BRITISH PRINCES.’
What mighty gale hath raised a flight so strong,
So high above all vulgar eyes, so long?
One single rapture scarce itself confines
Within the limits of four thousand lines:
And yet I hope to see this noble heat
Continue till it makes the piece complete,
That to the latter age it may descend,
And to the end of time its beams extend.
When poesy joins profit with delight,
Her images should be most exquisite; 10
Since man to that perfection cannot rise,
Of always virtuous, fortunate, and wise;
Therefore the patterns man should imitate
Above the life our masters should create.
Herein if we consult with Greece and Rome,
Greece (as in war) by Rome was overcome;
Though mighty raptures we in Homer find,
Yet, like himself, his characters were blind:
Virgil’s sublimed eyes not only gazed,
But his sublimed thoughts to heaven were raised. 20
Who reads the honours which he paid the gods
Would think he had beheld their bless’d abodes;
And that his hero might accomplish’d be,
From divine blood he draws his pedigree.
From that great judge your judgment takes its law,
And by the best original does draw
Bonduca’s honour, with those heroes Time 27
Had in oblivion wrapp’d, his saucy crime:
To them and to your nation you are just,
In raising up their glories from the dust;
And to Old England you that right have done,
To show no story nobler than her own.
A tablet stood of that abstersive tree,
Where Aethiop’s swarthy bird did build her nest;
Inlaid it was with Libyan ivory,
Drawn from the jaws of Afric’s prudent beast.
Two kings like Saul, much taller than the rest,
Their equal armies draw into the field;
Till one take th’other pris’ner they contest;
Courage and fortune must to conduct yield.
This game the Persian Magi did invent,
The force of Eastern wisdom to express; 10
Having at large declared Jove’s embassy,
Cyllenius from Aeneas straight doth fly;
He, loth to disobey the god’s command,
Nor willing to forsake this pleasant land,
Ashamed the kind Eliza to deceive,
But more afraid to take a solemn leave,
He many ways his lab’ring thoughts revolves;
But fear o’ercoming shame, at last resolves
(Instructed by the god of thieves) to steal
Himself away, and his escape conceal. 10
He calls his captains, bids them rig the fleet,
That at the port they privately should meet;
And some dissembled colour to project,
That Dido should not their design suspect;
But all in vain he did his plot disguise;
No art a watchful lover can surprise.
She the first motion finds; love though most sure,
Yet always to itself seems unsecure.
That wicked fame which their first love proclaim’d,
Foretells the end: the queen with rage inflamed, 20
Thus greets him: ’Thou dissembler! would’st thou fly
Out of my arms by stealth perfidiously?
Could not the hand I plighted, nor the love,
Nor thee the fate of dying Dido move?
And in the depth of winter, in the night,
Dark as thy black designs to take thy flight,
To plough the raging seas to coasts unknown,
The kingdom thou pretend’st to not thine own!
Were Troy restored, thou shouldst mistrust a wind
False as thy vows, and as thy heart unkind. 30
Fly’st thou from me? By these dear drops of brine
I thee adjure, by that right hand of thine,
By our espousals, by our marriage-bed,
If all my kindness ought have merited;
If ever I stood fair in thy esteem,
From ruin me and my lost house redeem.
Cannot my prayers a free acceptance find?
Nor my tears soften an obdurate mind?
My fame of chastity, by which the skies
I reached before, by thee extinguish’d dies. 40
Into my borders now Iarbas falls,
And my revengeful brother scales my walls;
The wild Numidians will advantage take;
For thee both Tyre and Carthage me forsake.
Hadst thou before thy flight but left with me
A young Aeneas who, resembling thee,
Might in my sight have sported, I had then
Not wholly lost, nor quite deserted been;
By thee, no more my husband, but my guest,
Betray’d to mischiefs, of which death’s the least.’ 50
With fixed looks he stands, and in his breast
By Jove’s command his struggling care suppress’d.
’Great queen! your favours and deserts so great,
Though numberless, I never shall forget;
No time, until myself I have forgot,
Out of my heart Eliza’s name shall blot:
But my unwilling flight the gods enforce,
And that must justify our sad divorce.
Since I must you forsake, would Fate permit,
To my desires I might my fortune fit; 60
Troy to her ancient splendour I would raise,
And where I first began, would end my days.
But since the Lycian lots, and Delphic god
Have destined Italy for our abode;
Since you proud Carthage (fled from Tyre) enjoy,
Why should not Latium us receive from Troy?
As for my son, my father’s angry ghost
Tells me his hopes by my delays are cross’d,
And mighty Jove’s ambassador appear’d
With the same message, whom I saw and heard; 70
We both are grieved when you or I complain,
But much the more when all complaints are vain;
I call to witness all the gods, and thy
Beloved head, the coast of Italy
Against my will I seek.’
Whilst thus he speaks, she rolls her sparkling eyes,
Surveys him round, and thus incensed replies;
’Thy mother was no goddess, nor thy stock
From Dardanus, but in some horrid rock,
Perfidious wretch! rough Caucasus thee bred, 80
And with their milk Hyrcanian tigers fed.
Dissimulation I shall now forget,
And my reserves of rage in order set,
Could all my prayers and soft entreaties force
Sighs from his breast, or from his look remorse.
Where shall I first complain? can mighty Jove
Or Juno such impieties approve?
The just Astraea sure is fled to hell;
Nor more in earth, nor heaven itself will dwell.
Oh, Faith! him on my coasts by tempest cast, 90
Receiving madly, on my throne I placed;
His men from famine, and his fleet from fire
I rescued: now the Lycian lots conspire
With Phoebus; now Jove’s envoy through the air
Brings dismal tidings; as if such low care
Could reach their thoughts, or their repose disturb!
Thou art a false impostor, and a fourbe;
Go, go, pursue thy kingdom through the main; 98
I hope, if Heaven her justice still retain,
Thou shalt be wreck’d, or cast upon some rock,
Where thou the name of Dido shalt invoke;
I’ll follow thee in fun’ral flames; when dead
My ghost shall thee attend at board and bed,
And when the gods on thee their vengeance show,
That welcome news shall comfort me below.’
This saying, from his hated sight she fled;
Conducted by her damsels to her bed;
Yet restless she arose, and looking out,
Beholds the fleet, and hears the seamen shout
When great Aeneas pass’d before the guard, 110
To make a view how all things were prepared.
Ah, cruel Love! to what dost thou enforce
Poor mortal breasts! Again she hath recourse
To tears and prayers, again she feels the smart
Of a fresh wound from his tyrannic dart.
That she no ways nor means may leave untried,
Thus to her sister she herself applied:
’Dear sister, my resentment had not been
So moving, if this fate I had foreseen:
Therefore to me this last kind office do, 120
Thou hast some int’rest in our scornful foe;
He trusts to thee the counsels of his mind,
Thou his soft hours, and free access canst find;
Tell him I sent not to the Ilian coast
My fleet to aid the Greeks; his father’s ghost
I never did disturb; ask him to lend
To this, the last request that I shall send,
A gentle ear; I wish that he may find
A happy passage, and a prosp’rous wind.
The contract I don’t plead, which he betray’d, 130
Nor that his promised conquest be delay’d;
All that I ask is but a short reprieve,
Till I forget to love, and learn to grieve;
Some pause and respite only I require,
Till with my tears I shall have quench’d my fire.
If thy address can but obtain one day
Or two, my death that service shall repay.’
Thus she entreats; such messages with tears
Condoling Anne to him, and from him bears:
But him no prayers, no arguments can move; 140
The Fates resist, his ears are stopp’d by Jove.
As when fierce northern blasts from th’Alps descend,
From his firm roots with struggling gusts to rend
An aged sturdy oak, the rattling sound
Grows loud, with leaves and scatter’d arms the ground
Is overlaid; yet he stands fixed; as high
As his proud head is raised towards the sky,
So low t’wards hell his roots descend. With prayers
And tears the hero thus assail’d, great cares
He smothers in his breast, yet keeps his post, 150
All their addresses and their labour lost.
Then she deceives her sister with a smile:
’Anne, in the inner court erect a pile;
Thereon his arms and once-loved portrait lay,
Thither our fatal marriage-bed convey;
All cursed monuments of him with fire
We must abolish (so the gods require).’
She gives her credit for no worse effect
Than from Sichaeus’ death she did suspect,
And her commands obeys. 160
Aurora now had left Tithonus’ bed,
And o’er the world her blushing rays did spread;
The Queen beheld, as soon as day appear’d,
The navy under sail, the haven clear’d;
Thrice with her hand her naked breast she knocks,
 ‘Cyllenius’—’God of thieves’: Mercury.
[The following two pieces are translated from the Latin of Mancini, an Italian, contemporary with Petrarch.]
Wisdom’s first progress is to take a view
What’s decent or indecent, false or true.
He’s truly prudent who can separate
Honest from vile, and still adhere to that;
Their difference to measure, and to reach
Reason well rectified must Nature teach.
And these high scrutinies are subjects fit
For man’s all-searching and inquiring wit;
That search of knowledge did from Adam flow;
Who wants it yet abhors his wants to show. 10
Wisdom of what herself approves makes choice,
Nor is led captive by the common voice.
Clear-sighted Reason Wisdom’s judgment leads,
And Sense, her vassal, in her footsteps treads.
That thou to Truth the perfect way may’st know,
To thee all her specific forms I’ll show:
He that the way to honesty will learn,
First what’s to be avoided must discern.
Thyself from flatt’ring self-conceit defend,
Nor what thou dost not know to know pretend. 20
Some secrets deep in abstruse darkness lie:
To search them thou wilt need a piercing eye.
’Tis the first sanction Nature gave to man,
Each other to assist in what they can;
Just or unjust, this law for ever stands;
All things are good by law which she commands;
The first step, man t’wards Christ must justly live,
Who t’us himself, and all we have, did give;
In vain doth man the name of just expect,
If his devotions he to God neglect;
So must we rev’rence God, as first to know 9
Justice from Him, not from ourselves, doth flow;
God those accepts who to mankind are friends,
Whose justice far as their own power extends;
In that they imitate the power Divine;
The sun alike on good and bad doth shine;
And he that doth no good, although no ill,
Does not the office of the just fulfil.
Virtue doth man to virtuous actions steer,
’Tis not enough that he should vice forbear;
We live not only for ourselves to care,
Whilst they that want it are denied their share. 20
Wise Plato said, the world with men was stored,
That succour each to other might afford;
Nor are those succours to one sort confined,
But sev’ral parts to sev’ral men consign’d;
He that of his own stores no part can give,
May with his counsel or his hands relieve.
If Fortune make thee powerful, give defence
’Gainst fraud and force, to naked innocence:
And when our Justice doth her tributes pay,
Method and order must direct the way. 30
First to our God we must with rev’rence bow;
The second honour to our prince we owe;
Next to wives, parents, children, fit respect,
And to our friends and kindred, we direct;
Then we must those who groan beneath the weight
Of age, disease, or want, commiserate.
’Mongst those whom honest lives can recommend,
Our Justice more compassion should extend;
To such, who thee in some distress did aid,
Thy debt of thanks with int’rest should be paid: 40
As Hesiod sings, spread waters o’er thy field,
And a most just and glad increase ’twill yield.
But yet take heed, lest doing good to one,
Mischief and wrong be to another done;
Such moderation with thy bounty join,
That thou may’st nothing give that is not thine;
That liberality’s but cast away,
Which makes us borrow what we cannot pay.
And no access to wealth let rapine bring;
Do nothing that’s unjust to be a king. 50
Justice must be from violence exempt,
But fraud’s her only object of contempt.
Fraud in the fox, force in the lion dwells;
But Justice both from human hearts expels;
But he’s the greatest monster (without doubt)
Who is a wolf within, a sheep without.
Nor only ill injurious actions are,
But evil words and slanders bear their share.
Truth Justice loves, and truth injustice fears,
My early mistress, now my ancient Muse,
That strong Circaean liquor cease t’infuse,
Wherewith thou didst intoxicate my youth,
Now stoop with disenchanted wings to truth;
As the dove’s flight did guide Aeneas, now
May thine conduct me to the golden bough:
Tell (like a tall old oak) how learning shoots
To heaven her branches, and to hell her roots.
When God from earth form’d Adam in the East,
He his own image on the clay impress’d;
As subjects then the whole creation came,
And from their natures Adam them did name,
Not from experience (for the world was new),
He only from their cause their natures knew.
Had memory been lost with innocence,
We had not known the sentence nor th’offence;
’Twas his chief punishment to keep in store
The sad remembrance what he was before; 10
And though th’offending part felt mortal pain,
Th’ immortal part its knowledge did retain.
After the flood, arts to Chaldea fell;
The father of the faithful there did dwell,
Who both their parent and instructor was;
From thence did learning into Egypt pass:
Moses in all the Egyptian arts was skill’d,
When heavenly power that chosen vessel fill’d;
And we to his high inspiration owe,
That what was done before the flood we know. 20
Prom Egypt, arts their progress made to Greece,
Wrapp’d in the fable of the golden fleece.
Musaeus first, then Orpheus, civilise
Mankind, and gave the world their deities;
To many gods they taught devotion,
Which were the distinct faculties of one;
Th’ Eternal Cause, in their immortal lines
Was taught, and poets were the first divines:
God Moses first, then David, did inspire,
To compose anthems, for his heavenly choir; 30
To th’one the style of friend he did impart,
On th’other stamp the likeness of his heart:
And Moses, in the old original,
Even God the poet of the world doth call.
Next those old Greeks Pythagoras did rise,
Then Socrates, whom th’oracle call’d Wise;
The divine Plato moral virtue shows,
Then his disciple Aristotle rose,
Who Nature’s secrets to the world did teach,
Yet that great soul our novelists impeach; 40
Too much manuring fill’d that field with weeds,
While sects, like locusts, did destroy the seeds;
The tree of knowledge, blasted by disputes,
Produces sapless leaves instead of fruits;
Proud Greece all nations else barbarians held,
Boasting her learning all the world excell’d.
Flying from thence to Italy it came, 47
And to the realm of Naples gave the name,
Till both their nation and their arts did come
A welcome trophy to triumphant Rome;
Then whereso’er her conqu’ring eagles
Ut metit Autumnus fruges quas parturit
Sic ortum Natura, dedit Deus his quoque finem.
’From thence’: Gracia Major.  ‘The name’: Vates.  ‘The tragedian’: Seneca.
Reader, preserve thy peace: those busy eyes
Will weep at their own sad discoveries,
When every line they add improves thy loss,
Till, having view’d the whole, they seem a cross,
Such as derides thy passions’ best relief,
And scorns the succours of thy easy grief;
Yet lest thy ignorance betray thy name
Of man and pious, read and mourn; the shame
Of an exemption from just sense doth show
Irrational, beyond excess of woe. 10
Since reason, then, can privilege a tear,
Manhood, uncensured, pay that tribute here
Upon this noble urn. Here, here remains
Dust far more precious than in India’s veins;
Within those cold embraces, ravish’d, lies
That which completes the age’s tyrannies;
Who weak to such another ill appear,
For what destroys our hope secures our fear.
What sin, unexpiated in this land
Of groans, hath guided so severe a hand? 20
The late great victim that your altars knew,
Ye angry gods! might have excused this new
Oblation, and have spared one lofty light
Of virtue, to inform our steps aright;
By whose example good, condemned, we
Might have run on to kinder destiny.
But as the leader of the herd fell first
A sacrifice, to quench the raging thirst
Of inflamed vengeance for past crimes, so none
But this white, fatted youngling could atone, 30
By his untimely fate, that impious smoke,
That sullied earth, and did Heaven’s pity choke.
Let it suffice for us that we have lost
In him more than the widow’d world can boast
In any lump of her remaining clay.
Fair as the gray-eyed morn he was; the day,
Youthful, and climbing upwards still, imparts
No haste like that of his increasing parts.
Like the meridian beam, his virtue’s light
Was seen as full of comfort, and as bright. 40
Had his noon been as fixed, as clear—but he,
That only wanted immortality
To make him perfect, now submits to night,
In the black bosom of whose sable spite
He leaves a cloud of flesh behind, and flies,
Refined, all ray and glory, to the skies.
Great saint! shine there in an eternal sphere, 47
And tell those powers to whom thou now draw’st near,
That by our trembling sense, in Hastings dead,
Their anger and our ugly faults are read,
The short lines of whose life did to our eyes
Their love and majesty epitomise;
Tell them, whose stern decrees impose our laws;
The feasted grave may close her hollow jaws.
Though Sin search Nature, to provide her here
A second entertainment half so dear,
She’ll never meet a plenty like this hearse,
Till Time present her with the universe!
 ‘Great victim’: Charles I.
CATO, SCIPIO, LAELIUS. SCIPIO TO CATO.
Though all the actions of your life are crown’d
With wisdom, nothing makes them more renown’d,
Than that those years, which others think extreme,
Nor to yourself nor us uneasy seem;
Under which weight most, like th’old giants, groan.
When Aetna on their backs by Jove was thrown.
CATO. What you urge, Scipio, from right reason
All parts of age seem burthensome to those
Who virtue’s and true wisdom’s happiness
Cannot discern; but they who those possess, 10
In what’s impos’d by Nature find no grief,
Of which our age is (next our death) the chief,
Which though all equally desire t’obtain,
Yet when they have obtain’d it, they complain;
Such our inconstancies and follies are,
We say it steals upon us unaware:
Our want of reas’ning these false measures makes,
Youth runs to age, as childhood youth o’ertakes.
How much more grievous would our lives appear,
To reach th’eighth hundred, than the eightieth year? 20
Of what in that long space of time hath pass’d,
To foolish age will no remembrance last.
My age’s conduct when you seem t’admire
(Which that it may deserve, I much desire),
’Tis my first rule, on Nature, as my guide
Appointed by the gods, I have relied;
And Nature (which all acts of life designs),
Not, like ill poets, in the last declines:
But some one part must be the last of all,
Which like ripe fruits, must either rot or fall. 30
And this from Nature must be gently borne,
Else her (as giants did the gods) we scorn.
LAELIUS. But, Sir, ’tis Scipio’s
and my desire,
Since to long life we gladly would aspire,
That from your grave instructions we might hear,
How we, like you, may this great burthen bear.
CAT. This I resolved before, but now shall do
With great delight, since ’tis required by you.
LAEL. If to yourself it will not tedious prove,
Nothing in us a greater joy can move, 40
That as old travellers the young instruct,
Your long, our short experience may conduct.
CAT. ’Tis true (as the old proverb doth
Equals with equals often congregate.
Two consuls (who in years my equals were)
When senators, lamenting I did hear
That age from them had all their pleasures torn, 47
And them their former suppliants now scorn:
They what is not to be accused accuse,
Not others, but themselves their age abuse;
Else this might me concern, and all my friends,
Whose cheerful age with honour youth attends,
Joy’d that from pleasure’s slav’ry they are free,
And all respects due to their age they see.
In its true colours, this complaint appears
The ill effect of manners, not of years;
For on their life no grievous burthen lies,
Who are well natured, temperate, and wise;
But an inhuman and ill-temper’d mind,
Not any easy part in life can find. 60
LAEL. This I believe; yet others may dispute,
Their age (as yours) can never bear such fruit
Of honour, wealth, and power to make them sweet;
Not every one such happiness can meet.
CAT. Some weight your argument, my Laelius, bears,
But not so much as at first sight appears.
This answer by Themistocles was made,
(When a Seriphian thus did him upbraid,
’You those great honours to your country owe,
Not to yourself’)-’Had I at Seripho 70
Been born, such honour I had never seen,
Nor you, if an Athenian you had been;’
So age, clothed in indecent poverty,
To the most prudent cannot easy be;
But to a fool, the greater his estate,
The more uneasy is his age’s weight.
Age’s chief arts and arms are to grow wise,
Virtue to know, and known, to exercise;
All just returns to age then virtue makes, 79
Nor her in her extremity forsakes;
The sweetest cordial we receive at last,
Is conscience of our virtuous actions past.
I (when a youth) with reverence did look
On Quintus Fabius, who Tarentum took;
Yet in his age such cheerfulness was seen,
As if his years and mine had equal been;
His gravity was mix’d with gentleness,
Nor had his age made his good humour less;
Then was he well in years (the same that he
Was Consul that of my nativity), 90
(A stripling then), in his fourth consulate
On him at Capua I in arms did wait.
I five years after at Tarentum wan
The quaestorship, and then our love began;
And four years after, when I praetor was,
He pleaded, and the Cincian law did pass.
With useful diligence he used t’engage,
Yet with the temperate arts of patient age
He breaks fierce Hannibal’s insulting heats;
Of which exploit thus our friend Ennius treats: 100
He by delay restored the commonwealth,
Nor preferr’d rumour before public health.
 This piece is adapted from Cicero, ‘De Seucctute.’  ‘Two consuls’: Caius Salinator, Spurius Albinus.  ‘Seripho’: an isle to which condemned men were banished.  ‘Cincian law’: against bribes.
When I reflect on age, I find there are Four causes, which its misery declare. 1. Because our body’s strength it much impairs: 2. That it takes off our minds from great affairs: 3. Next, that our sense of pleasure it deprives: 4. Last, that approaching death attends our lives.
Of all these sev’ral causes I’ll discourse,
And then of each, in order, weigh the force.
The old from such affairs is only freed,
Which vig’rous youth and strength of body need;
But to more high affairs our age is lent,
Most properly when heats of youth are spent.
Did Fabius and your father Scipio
(Whose daughter my son married) nothing do?
Fabricii, Coruncani, Curii;
Whose courage, counsel, and authority,
The Roman commonwealth restored did boast,
Nor Appius, with whose strength his sight was lost, 120
Who when the Senate was to peace inclined
With Pyrrhus, shew’d his reason was not blind,
Whither’s our courage and our wisdom come
When Rome itself conspires the fate of Rome?
The rest with ancient gravity and skill
He spake (for his oration’s extant still).
’Tis seventeen years since he had Consul been
The second time, and there were ten between;
Therefore their argument’s of little force,
Who age from great employments would divorce. 130
As in a ship some climb the shrouds, t’unfold
The sail, some sweep the deck, some pump the hold;
Whilst he that guides the helm employs his skill,
And gives the law to them by sitting still.
Great actions less from courage, strength, and speed,
Than from wise counsels and commands proceed;
Those arts age wants not, which to age belong,
Not heat but cold experience make us strong.
A Consul, Tribune, General, I have been,
All sorts of war I have pass’d through and seen; 140
And now grown old, I seem t’abandon it,
Yet to the Senate I prescribe what’s fit.
I every day ’gainst Carthage war proclaim,
(For Rome’s destruction hath been long her aim)
Nor shall I cease till I her ruin see,
Which triumph may the gods design for thee;
That Scipio may revenge his grandsire’s ghost,
Whose life at Cannae with great honour lost
Is on record; nor had he wearied been
With age, if he an hundred years had seen; 150
He had not used excursions, spears, or darts,
But counsel, order, and such aged arts,
Which, if our ancestors had not retain’d,
The Senate’s name our council had not gain’d.
The Spartans to their highest magistrate
The name of Elder did appropriate:
Therefore his fame for ever shall remain,
How gallantly Tarentum he did gain,
With vig’lant conduct; when that sharp reply
He gave to Salinator, I stood by, 160
Who to the castle fled, the town being lost,
Yet he to Maximus did vainly boast,
’Twas by my means Tarentum you obtain’d;—
’Tis true, had you not lost, I had not gain’d.
And as much honour on his gown did wait,
As on his arms, in his fifth consulate.
When his colleague Carvilius stepp’d aside,
The Tribune of the people would divide
To them the Gallic and the Picene field;
Against the Senate’s will he will not yield; 170
Now int’ our second grievance I must break,
‘That loss of strength makes understanding weak.’
I grieve no more my youthful strength to want,
Than, young, that of a bull, or elephant;
Then with that force content, which Nature gave,
Nor am I now displeased with what I have.
When the young wrestlers at their sport grew warm,
Old Milo wept, to see his naked arm;
And cried, ’twas dead. Trifler! thine heart and head,
And all that’s in them (not thy arm) are dead;
This folly every looker on derides,
To glory only in thy arms and sides.
Our gallant ancestors let fall no tears,
Their strength decreasing by increasing years; 290
Now must I draw my forces ’gainst that host
Of pleasures, which i’ th’sea of age are lost.
O thou most high transcendant gift of age!
Youth from its folly thus to disengage.
And now receive from me that most divine
Oration of that noble Tarentine,
Which at Tarentum I long since did hear,
When I attended the great Fabius there. 440
Ye gods, was it man’s nature, or his fate,
Betray’d him with sweet pleasure’s poison’d bait?
Which he, with all designs of art or power,
Doth with unbridled appetite devour:
And as all poisons seek the noblest part,
Pleasure possesses first the head and heart;
Intoxicating both by them, she finds,
And burns the sacred temples of our minds.
Furies, which reason’s divine chains had bound,
(That being broken) all the world confound. 450
Lust, murder, treason, avarice, and hell
Itself broke loose, in reason’s palace dwell:
Truth, honour, justice, temperance, are fled,
All her attendants into darkness led.
But why all this discourse? when pleasure’s rage
Hath conquer’d reason, we must treat with age.
Age undermines, and will in time surprise
Her strongest forts, and cut off all supplies;
And join’d in league with strong necessity,
Pleasure must fly, or else by famine die. 460
Flaminius, whom a consulship had graced,
(Then Censor) from the Senate I displaced;
When he in Gaul, a Consul, made a feast,
A beauteous courtesan did him request
To see the cutting off a pris’ner’s head;
This crime I could not leave unpunished,
Since by a private villany he stain’d
That public honour which at Rome he gain’d.
Then to our age (when not to pleasures bent)
This seems an honour, not disparagement. 470
We not all pleasures like the Stoics hate,
But love and seek those which are moderate.
 ‘Tarentine’: Archytas, much praised by Horace.  ‘Twins’ humours’: in his comedy called ‘Adelphi.’
Now against (that which terrifies our age)
The last, and greatest grievance, we engage;
To her grim Death appears in all her shapes,
The hungry grave for her due tribute gapes.
Fond, foolish man! with fear of death surprised,
Which either should be wish’d for, or despised; 700
This, if our souls with bodies death destroy;
That, if our souls a second life enjoy.
What else is to be fear’d, when we shall gain
Eternal life, or have no sense of pain?
The youngest in the morning are not sure
That till the night their life they can secure;