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It gives me such a jealous fit,
But now he's quite another thing: I cry, “ Pox take him and his wit!”
I wish he may hold out till spring!" I grieve to be outdone by Gay
They hug themselves, and reason thus: In my own humorous biting way.
“ It is not yet so bad with us!” Arbuthnot is no more my friend,
In such a case, they talk in tropes, Who dares to irony pretend,
And by their fears express their hopes. Which I was born to introduce,
Some great misfortune to portend, Refin'd it first, and show'd its use.
No enemy can match a friend. St. John, as well as Pulteney, knows
With all the kindness they profess, That I had some repute for prose;
The merit of a lucky guess And, till they drove me out of date,
(When daily how-d'ye's come of course, Could maul a minister of state.
And servants answer, “ Worse and worse !") If they have mortified my pride,
Would please them better, than to tell, And made me throw my pen aside ;
That, “ God be prais'd, the Dean is well." If with such talents beaven hath bless'd 'em, Then he who prophesy'd the best, Have I not reason to detest 'em?
Approves his foresight to the rest: To all my foes, dear fortune, send
“ You know I always fear'd the worst, Thy gifts; but never to my friend :
And often told you so at first." I tamely can endure the first;
He'd rather choose that I should die, But this with envy makes me burst.
Than his predictions prove a lie. Thus much may serve by way of proem;
Not one foretells I shall recover; Proceed we therefore to our poem.
But all agree to give me over. The time is not remote when I
Yet, should some neighbour feel a pain Must by the course of nature die;
Just in the parts where I complain; When, I foresee, my special friends
How many a message would he send ! Will try to find their private ends :
What hearty prayers that I should mend! And, though 'tis hardly understood
Inquire what regimen I kept; Which way my death can do them good,
What gave me ease, and how I slept? Yet thus, methirks, I hear them speak:
And more lament when I was dead, “ See how the Dean begins to break!
Than all the snivellers round my bed. Poor gentleman, he droops apace!
My good companions, never fear; You plainly find it in his face.
For, though you may mistake a year, That old vertigo in his head
Though your prognostics run too fast, Will never leave him, till he's dead.
They must be verify'd at last. Besides, his memory decays:
Behold the fatal day arrive! He recollects not what he says;
“ How is the Dean?"-"He's just alive." He cannot call his friends to mind;
Now the departing prayer is read; Forgets the place where last he din'd;
He hardly breathes—The Dean is dead. Plies you with stories o'er and o'er;
Before the passing-bell begun, He told them fifty times before.
The news through half the town is run. How does he fancy we can sit
“ Oh! may we all for death prepare ! To hear his out-of-fashion wit?
What has he left ? and who's his heir " But he takes up with younger folks,
“ I know no more than what the news is; Who for his wine will bear his jokes.
'Tis all bequeath'd to public uses." Faith! he must make his stories shorter,
“ To public uses ! there's a whim! Or change his comrades once a quarter:
What had the public done for him? In half the time he talks them round,
Mere envy, avarice, and pride : There must another set be found.
He gave it all—but first he dy'd. “ For poetry, he's past his prime:
And had the Dean, in all the nation, He takes an hour to find a rhyme;
No worthy friend, no poor relation ? His fire is out, his wit decay'd,
So ready to do strangers good, His fancy sunk, his Muse a jade.
Forgetting his own flesh and blood !” I'd have him throw away his pen ;
Now Grub-street wits are all employ’d; But there's no talking to some men !"
With elegies the town is cloy'd: And then their tenderness appears
Some paragraph in every paper, By adding largely to my years:
To curse the Dean, or bless the Drapier. “ He's older than he would be reckon'd,
The doctors, tender of their fame, And well remembers Charles the Second.
Wisely on me lay all the blame. He hardly drinks a pint of wine ;
* We must confess, his case was nice; And that, I doubt, is no good sign.
But he would never take advice. His stomach too begins to fail :
Had he been rul’d, for aught appears, Last year we thought him strong and hale;
He might have liv'd these twenty years:
For, when we open'd him, we found
My Lady Club will take it ill, That all his vital parts were sound."
If he should fail her at quadrille. From Dublin soon to London spread,
He lov'd the Dean—(I lead a heart.) 'Tis told at court, “ The Dean is dead."
But dearest friends, they say, must part. And Lady Suffolk, in the spleen,
His time was come; he ran his race; Runs laughing up to tell the queen.
We hope he's in a better place.” The queen, so gracious, mild, and good,
Why do we grieve that friends should die? Cries, “ Is he gone! 'tis time he shou’d.
No loss more easy to supply. He's dead, you say; then let him rot.
One year is past; a different scene! I'm glad the medals were forgot.
No farther mention of the Dean, I promis'd him, I own; but when ?
Who now, alas ! no more is miss'd, I only was the princess then :
Than if he never did exist. But now, as consort of the king,
Where's now the favourite of Apollo? You know, 'tis quite another thing."
Departed :—and his works must follow; Now Chartres, at Sir Robert's levee,
Must undergo the common fate ; Tells with a sneer the tidings heavy:
His kind of wit is out of date. “ Why, if he dy'd without his shoes,”
Some country squire to Lintot goes, Cries Bob, “ I'm sorry for the news:
Inquires for Swift in verse and prose. Oh, were the wretch but living still,
Says Lintot, “ I have heard the name ; And in his place my good friend Will!
He dy'd a year ago.”_“ The same.” Or had a mitre on his head,
He searches all the shop in vain. Provided Bolingbroke were dead!"
“ Sir, you may find them in Duck-lane: Now Curll his shop from rubbish drains :
I sent them, with a load of books, Three genuine tomes of Swift's remains !
Last Monday, to the pastry-cook's. And then, to make them pass the glibber,
To fancy they could live a year! Revis’d by Tibbalds, Moore, and Cibber.
I find you're but a stranger here. He'll treat me as he does my betters,
The Dean was famous in his time, Publish my will, my life, my letters ;
And had a kind of knack at rhyme. Revive the libels born to die:
His way of writing now is past :Which Pope must bear, as well as I.
The town has got a better taste. Here shift the scene, to represent
I keep no antiquated stuff; How those I love my death lament.
But spick and span I have enough. Poor Pope will grieve a month, and Gay
Pray, do but give me leave to show 'em: A week, and Arbuthnot a day.
Here's Colley Cibber's birth-day poem. St. John himself will scarce forbear
This ode you never yet have seen, To bite his pen, and drop a tear.
By Stephen Duck, upon the queen. The rest will give a shrug, and cry,
Then here's a letter finely penn'd " I'm sorry—but we all must die!"
Against the Craftsman and his friend : Indifference, clad in wisdom's guise,
It clearly shows that all reflection All fortitude of mind supplies :
On ministers is disaffection. For how can stony bowels melt
Next, here's Sir Robert's vindication, In those who never pity felt!
And Mr. Henley's last oration. When we are lash'd they kiss the rod,
The hawkers have not got them yet, Resigning to the will of God.
Your honour please to buy a set? The fools, my juniors by a year,
“ Here's Woolston's tracts, the twelfth edition ; Are tortur'd with suspense and fear;
'Tis read by every politician: Who wisely thought my age a screen,
The country-members, when in town,
The courtiers have them all by heart:
Those maids of honour who can read, Have better learn’d to act their parts,
Are taught to use them for their creed, Receive the news in doleful dumps :
The reverend author's good intention 66 The Dean is dead : (Pray what is trumps?)
Hath been rewarded with a pension : Then, Lord have mercy on his soul !
He doth an honour to his gown, (Ladies, I'll venture for the vole.)
By bravely running priestcraft down : Six Deans, they say, must bear the pall:
He shows, as sure as God's in Gloster, (I wish I knew what king to call.)
That Moses was a grand impostor; Madam, your husband will attend
That all his miracles were cheats, The funeral of so good a friend.”
Perform'd as jugglers do their feats: “ No, madam, 'tis a shocking sight;
The church had never such a writer ; And he's engag'd to-morrow night:
A shame he hath not got a mitre !"
The * *
Suppose me dead; and then suppose
Should vice expect to 'scape rebuke, A club assembled at the Rose;
Because its owner is a duke? Where, from discourse of this and that,
His friendships, still to few confin'd, I grow the subject of their chat.
Were always of the middling kind; And while they toss my name about,
No fools of rank, or mongrel breed, With favour some, and some without;
Who fain would pass for lords indeed : One, quite indifferent in the cause,
Where titles give no right or power, My character impartial draws.
And peerage is a wither'd flower; “ The Dean, if we believe report,
He would have deem'd it a disgrace, Was never ill-receiv'd at court,
If such a wretch had known his face. Although, ironically grave,
On rural squires, that kingdom's bane, He sham'd the fool, and lash'd the knave ;
He vented oft his wrath in vain: To steal a bint was never known,
******* squires to market brought, But what he writ was all his own."
Who sell their souls and **** for nought: “ Sir, I have heard another story;
go joyful back, He was a most confounded Tory,
To rob the church, their tenants rack; And grew, or he is much bely’d,
Go snacks with ***** justices, Extremely dull, before he dy'd."
And keep the peace to pick up fees; “ Can we the Drapier then forget?
In every job to have a share, Is not our nation in his debt?
A gaol or turnpike to repair; 'Twas he that writ the Drapier's letters !"
A turn ****
* to public roads “ He should have left them for his betters; Commodious to their own abodes. We had a hundred abler men,
“ He never thought an honour done him, Nor need depend upon his pen.
Because a peer was proud to own him; Say what you will about his reading,
Would rather slip aside, and choose You never can defend his breeding ;
To talk with wits in dirty shoes; Who, in his satires running riot,
And scorn the tools with stars and garters, Could never leave the world in quiet;
So often seen caressing Chartres. Attacking when he took the whim,
He never courted men in ation, Court, city, camp—all one to him.
Nor persons held in admiration ; But why would he, except he slobber'd,
Of no man's greatness was afraid, Offend our patriot great Sir Robert,
Because he sought for no man's aid. Whose counsels aid the sovereign power
Though trusted long in great affairs, To save the nation every hour!
He gave himself no haughty airs : What scenes of evil he unravels
Without regarding private ends, In satires, libels, lying travels,
Spent all his credit for his friends; Not sparing his own clergy cloth,
And only chose the wise and good; But eats into it, like a moth!”
No flatterers; no allies in blood : “ Perhaps I may allow the Dean
But succour'd virtue in distress, Had too much satire in his vein,
And seldom fail'd of good success ; And seem'd determin'd not to starve it,
As numbers in their hearts must own, Because no age could more deserve it.
Who, but for him, had been unknown. Yet malice never was his aim;
“ He kept with princes due decorum; He lash'd the vice, but spar'd the name.
Yet never stood in awe before 'em. No individual could resent,
He follow'd David's lesson just; Where thousands equally were meant:
In princes never put his trust: His satire points at no defect,
And, would you make him truly sour, But what all mortals may correct;
Provoke him with a slave in power. For he abhor'd the senseless tribe
The Irish senate if you nam’d, Who call it humour when they gibe :
With what impatience he declaim'd! He spar'd a hump or crooked nose,
Fair Liberty was all his cry; Whose owners set not up for beaux.
For her he stood prepar'd to die ; True genuine dulness mov'd his pity,
For her he boldly stood alone; Unless it offer'd to be witty.
For her he oft expos’d his own. Those who their ignorance confest,
Two kingdoms, just as faction led, He ne'er offended with a jest ;
Had set a price upon his head ; But laugh'd to hear an ideot quote
But not a traitor could be found A verse from Horace learn'd by rote.
To sell him for six hundred pound. Vice, if it e'er can be abashid,
“ Had he but spar'd his tongue and pen, Must be or ridicul'd, or lash'd.
He might have rose like other men: If you resent it, who's to blame?
But power was never in his thought, He neither knows you, nor your name.
And wealth he valued not a groat:
Ingratitude he often found,
Who long all justice had discarded, And pity'd those who meant the wound;
Nor fear'd he God, nor man regarded; But kept the tenor of his mind,
Vow'd on the Dean his rage to vent, To merit well of human-kind;
And make him of his zeal repent: Nor made a sacrifice of those
But Heaven his innocence defends, Who still were true, to please his foes.
The grateful people stand his friends; He labour'd many a fruitless hour,
Not strains of law, nor judges' frown, To reconcile his friends in power;
Nor topics brought to please the crown, Saw mischief by a faction brewing,
Nor witness hir'd, nor jury pick’d, While they pursued each other's ruin.
Prevail to bring him in convict. But, finding vain was all his care,
“ In exile, with a steady heart, He left the court in mere despair.
He spent his life's declining part, “ And, oh! how short are human schemes ! Where folly, pride, and faction sway; Here ended all our golden dreams.
Remote from St. John, Pope, and Gay.” What St. John's skill in state affairs,
“ Alas, poor Dean! his only scope What Ormond's valour, Oxford's cares,
Was to be held a misanthrope. To save their sinking country lent,
This into general odium drew him, Was all destroy'd by one event.
Which if he lik’d, much good may't do him. Too soon that precious life was ended,
His zeal was not to lash our crimes, On which alone our weal depended.
But discontent against the times : When up a dangerous faction starts,
For, had we made him timely offers With wrath and vengeance in their hearts;
To raise his post, or fill his coffers, By solemn league and covenant bound,
Perhaps he might have truckled down, To ruin, slaughter, and confound;
Like other brethren of his gown; To turn religion to a fable,
For party he would scarce have bled :And make the government a Babel;
I say no more because he's dead. Pervert the laws, disgrace the gown,
What writings has he left behind ?” Corrupt the senate, rob the crown;
“ I hear they're of a different kind: To sacrifice old England's glory,
A few in verse; but most in prose—" And make her infamous in story:
“ Some high-flown pamphlets, I suppose :When such a tempest shook the land,
All scribbled in the worst of times, How could unguarded virtue stand!
To palliate his friend Oxford's crimes; “ With horror, grief, despair, the Dean
To praise Queen Anne, nay more, defend her, Beheld the dire destructive scene:
As never favouring the Pretender : His friends in exile, or the tower,
Or libels yet conceal'd from sight, Himself within the frown of power;
Against the court to show his spite : Pursued by base envenom'd pens,
Perhaps his travels, part the third ; Far to the land of s—and fens;
A lie at every second word A servile race in folly nurs'd,
Offensive to a loyal ear:Who truckle most, when treated worst.
But—not one sermon, you may swear." “ By innocence and resolution,
“ He knew an hundred pleasing stories, He bore continual persecution ;
With all the turns of Whigs and Tories: While numbers to preferment rose,
Was cheerful to his dying-day; Whose merit was to be his foes;
And friends would let him have his way. When ev'n his own familiar friends,
“ As for his works in verse or prose, Intent upon their private ends,
I own myself no judge of those. Like renegadoes now he feels,
Nor can I tell what critics thought them; Against him lifting up their heels.
But this I know, all people bought them, “ The Dean did, by his pen, defeat
As with a moral view design’d, An infamous destructive cheat ;
To please and to reform mankind: Taught fools their interest how to know,
And, if he often miss'd his aim, And gave them arms to ward the blow.
The world must own it to their shame, Envy hath own'd it was his doing,
The praise is his, and theirs the blame. To save that hapless land from ruin;
gave the little wealth he had While they who at the steerage stood,
To build a house for fools and mad ; And reap'd the profit, sought his blood.
To show, by one satiric touch, “ To save them from their evil fate,
No nation wanted it so much. In him was held a crime of state,
That kingdom he hath left his debtor, A wicked monster on the bench,
I wish it soon may have a better. Whose fury blood could never quench:
And, since you dread no further lashes, As vile and profligate a villain
Methinks you may forgive his ashes.” As modern Scroggs, or old Tressilian;
A CHARACTER, PANEGYRIC, AND DE
Let them, with their gosling quills, SCRIPTION OF THE LEGION-CLUB.
Scribble senseless heads of bills. 1736.
We may, while they strain their throats,
Wipe our a—s with their votes. As I stroll the city, oft I
Let Sir Tom, that rampant ass, See a building large and lofty,
Stuff his guts with flax and grass; Not a bow-shot from the college ;
But, before the priest he fleeces, Half the globe from sense and knowledge:
Tear the bible all to pieces: By the prudent architect,
At the parsons, Tom, balloo, boy, Plac'd against the church direct,
Worthy offspring of a shoe-boy, Making good thy grandame's jest,
Footman, traitor, vile seducer, “ Near the church”-you know the rest.
Perjur'd rebel, brib'd accuser, Tell us, what the pile contains ?
Lay thy paltry privilege aside, Many a head that holds no brains.
Sprung from papists, and a regicide ; These demoniacs let me dub
Fall a-working like a mole, With the name of Legion-club.
Raise the dirt about your hole. Such assemblies, you might swear,
Come, assist me, Muse obedient! Meet when butchers bait a bear;
Let us try some new expedient; Such a noise, and such haranguing,
Shift the scene for half an hour, When a brother thief is hanging:
Time and place are in thy power. Such a rout and such a rabble
Thither, gentle Muse, conduct me;. Run to hear Jack-pudding gabble ;
I shall ask, and you instruct me. Such a crowd their ordure throws
See, the Muse unbars the gate ! On a far less villain's nose.
Hark, the monkeys, how they prate ! Could I from the building's top
All ye gods who rule the soul! Hear the rattling thunder drop,
Styx, through hell whose waters roll! While the devil upon the roof
Let me be allow'd to tell (If the devil be thunder-proof)
What I heard in yonder hell. Should with poker fiery red
Near the door an entrance gapes, Crack the stones, and melt the lead;
Crowded round with antic shapes, Drive them down on every skull,
Poverty, and grief, and care, While the den of thieves is full;
Causeless joy, and true despair ; Quite destroy the harpies' nest :
Discord, periwigg'd with snakes, How might then our isle be blest !
See the dreadful strides she takes! For divines allow that God
By this odious crew beset, Sometimes makes the devil his rod;
I began to rage and fret, And the gospel will inform us,
And resolv'd to break their pates, He can punish sins enormous.
Ere we enter'd at the gates ; Yet should Swift endow the schools,
Had not Clio in the nick For his lunatics and fools,
Whisper'd me,“ Lay down your stick." With a rood or two of land,
What, said I, is this the mad-house? I allow the pile may stand.
These, she answer'd, are but shadows, You perhaps will ask me, Why so ?
Phantoms bodiless and vain, But it is with this proviso:
Empty visions of the brain. Since the house is like to last,
In the porch Briareus stands, Let the royal grant be pass’d,
Shows a bribe in all his hands; That the club have right to dwell
Briareus the secretary, Each within his proper cell,
But we mortals call him Carey. With a passage left to creep in,
When the rogues their country fleece, And a hole above for peeping.
They may hope for pence a-piece. Let them when they once get in,
Clio, who had been so wise Sell the nation for a pin;
To put on a fool's disguise, While they sit a-picking straws,
To bespeak some approbation, Let them rave at making laws;
And be thought a near relation, While they never hold their tongue,
When she saw three hundred brutes Let them dabble in their dung:
All involv'd in wild disputes, Let them form a grand committee,
Roaring till their lungs were spent, How to plague and starve the city:
Privilege of Parliament: Let them stare, and storm, and frown,
Now a new misfortune feels, When they see a clergy gown;
Dreading to be laid by th' heels. Let them, ere they crack a louse,
Never durst the Muse before Call for th' orders of the house ;
Enter that in fernal door.