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And mangled limbs, and dying groans,
And all that Misery's hand bestows,
CHARACTER OF A CRITICAL FRIBBLE.
With that low cunning which in fools supplies, And amply, too, the place of being wise, Which Nature, kind, indulgent parent, gave To qualify the blockhead for a knave; With that smooth falsehood, whose appearance
charms, And reason of each wholesome doubt disarms, Which to the lowest depths of guile descends, By vilest means pursues the vilest ends ; Wears friendship’s mask for purposes of spite, Fawns in the day, and butchers in the night ; With that malignant envy which turns pale And sickens even if a friend prevail, Which Merit and Success pursues with hate, And damns the worth it cannot imitate; With the cold caution of a coward's spleen, Which fears not guilt, but always seeks a screen; Which keeps this maxim ever in her view, What's basely done should be done safely too ; With that dull, rooted, callous impudence, Which, dead to shame and ev'ry nicer sense, Ne'er blush'd, unless, in spreading Vice's snares, She blunder'd on some virtue unawares : With all these blessings, which we seldom find Lavish'd by Nature on one happy mind, A motley figure of the fribble tribe, Which heart can scarce conceive or pen describe,
Came simp’ring on: to ascertain whose sex
Much did it talk, in its own pretty phrase,
Nor shall the Muse (for even there the pride of this vain nothing shall be mortified)Nor shall the Muse (should Fate ordain her rhymes, Fond, pleasing thought! to live in after-times) With such a trifler's name her pages blot ; Known be the character, the thing forgot; Let it, to disappoint each future aim, Live without sex, and die without a name !
WILLIAM FALCONER. 1730-1769.
FROM "THE SHIPWRECK." The sun's bright orb, declining all serene, Now glanced obliquely o'er the woodland scene. Creation smiles around; on every spray The warbling birds exalt their evening lay. Blithe skipping o'er yon hill, the fleecy train Join the deep chorus of the lowing plain : The golden lime and orange there were seen, On fragrant branches of perpetual green. The crystal streams, that velvet meadows lave; To the green ocean roll with chiding wave. The glassy ocean, hush’d, forgets to roar, But, trembling, murmurs on the sandy shore: And, lo! his surface, lovely to behold, Glows in the west, a sea of living gold ! While all above, a thousand liveries gay, The skies with pomp ineffable array: Arabian sweets perfume the happy plains : Above, beneath, around enchantment reigns ! While yet the shades, on Time's eternal scale, With long vibration deepen o'er the vale ; While yet the songsters of the vocal grove With dying numbers tune the soul of love, With joyful eyes th' attentive master sees Th' auspicious omens of an eastern breeze. Now radiant Vesper leads the starry train, And night slow draws her veil o'er land and main: Round the charged bowl the sailors form a ring ; By turns recount the wond'rous tale, or sing ; As love or battle, hardships of the main, Or genial wine, awake their homely strain : Then some the watch of night alternate keep, The rest lie buried in oblivious sleep.
Deep midnight now involves the livid skies, While infant breezes from the shore arise.
The waning moon, behind a wat’ry shroud,
From east to north the transient breezes play,
Now mom, her lamp pale glimmering on the sight,
With winning postures now the wanton sails Spread all their snares to charm th’inconstant gales. The swelling stu’nsails now their wings extend, Then staysails sidelong to the breeze ascend : While all to court the wandering breeze are placed, With yards now thwarting, now obliquely braced.
The dim horizon lowering vapours shroud, And blot the sun, yet struggling in the cloud : Through the wide atmosphere, condensed with haze, His glaring orb emits a sanguine blaze. The pilots now their rules of art apply, The mystic needle's devious aim to try. The compass placed to catch the rising ray, The quadrant's shadows studious they survey! Along the arch the gradual index slides, While Phæbus down the vertic circle glides. Now, seen on ocean's utmost verge to swim, He sweeps it vibrant with his nether limb. Their sage experience thus explores the height And polar distance of the source of light: Then through the chiliads triple maze they trace Th' analogy that proves the magnet's place.