페이지 이미지
PDF
ePub

No single character had e'er been shown,
But the whole herd of fops was all their own:
Rich in originals, they set to view,
In every piece, a coxcomb that was new.

But now our British theatre can boast
Drolls of all kinds, a vast unthinking host !
Fruitful of folly and of vice, it shows [beaux;
Cuckolds, and cits, and bawds, and pimps, and
Rough country knights are found of ev'ry shire,
Of every fashion gentle fops appear;
And punks of different characters we meet
As frequent on the stage as in the pit.
Our modern wits are forced to pick and cull,
And here and there by chance glean up a fool:
Long ere they find the necessary spark,
They search the Town, and beat about the Park,
To all his most frequented haunts resort,
Oft dog him to the ring, and oft to court,
As love of pleasure or of place invites,
And sometimes catch him taking snuff at White's.

Howe'er, to do you right, the present age Breeds very hopeful monsters for the stage, That scorn the paths their dull forefathers trod, And won't be blockheads in the common road. Do but survey this crowded house to-night; -Here's still encouragement for those that write,

Our author, to divert his friends to-day, Stocks with variety of fools his play, And that there may be something gay and new, Two ladies-errant has exposed to view; The first a damsel travell’d in romance, The other more refined, she comes from France; Rescue, like courteous knights, the nymph from

danger, And kindly treat, like well-bred men, the stranger.

EPILOGUE

TO THE BRITISH ENCHANTERS.

1706.

WHEN Orpheus tuned his lyre with pleasing woe,
Rivers forgot to run, and winds to blow,
While listening forests cover'd, as he play'd,
The soft musician in a moving shade.
That this night's strains the same success may find,
The force of music is to music join'd;
Where sounding strings and artful voices fail,
The charming rod and mutter'd spells prevail.
Let sage Urganda wave the circling wand
On barren mountains or a waste of sand,
The desert smiles, the woods begin to grow,
The birds to warble, and the springs to flow.

The same dull sights in the same landscapemix'd,
Scenes of still life, and points for ever fix’d,
A tedious pleasure on the mind bestow,
And pall the sense with one continued show:
But as our two magicians try their skill,
The vision varies, though the place stands still,
While the same spot its gaudy form renews,
Shifting the prospect to a thousand views.
Thus (without unity of place transgress'd)
The' Enchanter turns the critic to a jest.

But howsoe'er, to please your wandering eyes, Bright objects disappear and brighter rise, There's none can make amends for lost delight, While from that circle we divert your sight.

TRANSLATIONS.

HORACE,

BOOK III. ODE III.

Augustus had a design to rebuild Troy, and make it the me

tropolis of the Roman empire : having closetted several Senators on the project, Horace is supposed to have written the following Ode on this occasion.

The man resolved, and steady to his trust,
Inflexible to ill, and obstinately just,
May the rude rabble's insolence despise,
Their senseless clamours and tumultuous cries;
The tyrant's fierceness he beguiles,
And the stern brow and the harsh voice defies,
And with superior greatness smiles.

Not the rough whirlwind that deforms
Adria's black gulf, and vexes it with storms,
The stubborn virtue of his soul can move,
Nor the red arm of angry Jove,
That flings the thunder from the sky,
And gives it rage to roar, and strength to fly.

Should the whole frame of Nature round him In ruin and confusion huri'd,

[break, He, unconcern'd, would hear the mighty crack, And stand secure amidst a falling world.

Such were the godlike arts that led
Bright Pollux to the bless'd abodes;
Such did for great Alcides plead,
And gain'd a place among the gods,
Where now Augustus, mix'd with heroes, lies,
And to his lips the nectar bowl applies ;
His ruddy lips the purple tincture show,
And with immortal stains divinely glow.

By arts like these did young Lyæus rise,
His tigers drew him to the skies ;
Wild from the desert, and unbroke,
In vain they foam’d, in vain they stared,
In vain their eyes with fury glared;

[yoke. He tamed them to the lash, and bent them to the

Such were the paths that Rome's great founder When in a whirlwind snatch'd on high

[trod He shook off dull mortality, And lost the monarch in the god. Bright Juno then her awful silence broke, And thus the’assembled deities bespoke :

*Troy, (says the goddess) perjured Troy, has felt The dire effects of her proud tyrant's guilt; The towering pile and soft abodes, Walld by the hand of servile gods, Now spreads its ruins all around, And lies inglorious on the ground; An umpire, partial and unjust, And a lewd woman's impious lust, Lay heavy on her head, and sunk her to the dust,

Since false Laomedon's tyrannic sway, That durst defraud the immortals of their pay, Her guardian gods renounced their patronage, Nor would the fierce invading foe repel; To my

resentment, and Minerva's rage, The guilty king and the whole people fell.

6

And now the long-protracted wars are o'er,
The soft adulterer shines no more;
No more does Hector's force the Trojans shield,
That drove whole armies back, and singly clear'd

the field.
My vengeance sated, I at length resign
To Mars his offspring of the Trojan line:
Advanced to godhead let him rise,
And take his station in the skies,
There entertain his ravish'd sight
With scenes of glory, fields of light,
Quaff, with the gods, immortal wine,
And see adoring nations crowd his shrine.

• The thin remains of Troy's afflicted host
In distant realms may seats unenvied find,
And flourish on a foreign coast,
But far be Rome from Troy disjoin'd ;
Removed by seas from the disastrous shore,
May endless billows rise between, and storms

unnumber'd roar.
• Still let the cursed detested place,
Where Priam lies, and Priam's faithless race,
Be cover'd o'er with weeds, and hid in grass :
There let the wanton flocks unguarded stray,
Or, while the lonely shepherd sings,
Amidst the mighty ruins play,
And frisk upon the tombs of kings.

May tigers there, and all the savage kind,
Sad solitary haunts and silent deserts find;
In gloomy vaults and nooks of palaces,
May the unmolested lioness
Her brinded whelps securely lay,
Or, couch'd, in dreadful slumbers waste the day.

« 이전계속 »