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From vulgar bounds with brave diforder part,
And fnatch a grace beyond the reach of art,
Which, without paffing thro' the judgment, gains
The heart, and all its end at once attains.
In profpects, thus, fome objects please our eyes,
Which out of nature's common order rise,
The shapeless rock, or hanging precipice.
But care in poetry muft ftill be had,
It asks difcretion ev'n in running mad:
And tho' the Ancients thus their rules invade,
(As Kings dispense with laws themselves have made)
Moderns beware! or if you must offend
Against the Precept, ne'er tranfgrefs its End;
Let it be feldom, and compell'd by need;
And have, at least, their precedent to plead.
The Critic elfe proceeds without remorse,
Seizes your fame, and puts his laws in force.
I know there are, to whose prefumptuous thoughts
Thofe freer beauties, ev'n in them, feem faults.
Some figures monftrous and mif-fhap'd appear,
Confider'd fingly, or beheld too near,
Which, but proportion'd to their light, or place,
Due distance reconciles to form and grace, r
A prudent chief not always must display
His pow'rs in equal ranks, and fair array,
But with th' occafion and the place comply,
Conceal his force, nay feem fometimes to fly.
Thofe oft' are ftratagems which errors seem,
Nor is it Homer nods, but we that dream. 1
Still green with bays each ancient altar ftands,
Above the reach of facrilegious hands
Secure from flames, from envy's fiercer rage,
Destructive war, and all-devouring age.
See, from each clime the learn'd their incenfe bring:
Hear, in all tongues confenting Peans ring!
In praise so just let ev'ry voice be join'd,
And fill the gen'ral Chorus of mankind!
Hail, Bards triumphant! born in happier days;
Immortal heirs of univerfal praife!
Whofe honours with increase of ages grow,!
As ftreams roll down, enlarging as they flow!
Nations unborn your mighty names fhall found,
And Worlds applaud that must not yet be found!
Oh may fome spark of your celeftial fire
The last, the meaneft of your fons inspire,
(That on weak wings, from far, purfues your flights;
Glows while he reads, but trembles as he writes)
To teach vain Wits a science little known,
T'admire fuperior fenfe, and doubt their own!
Of all the causes which confpire to blind Man's erring judgment, and misguide the mind, What the weak head with strongest biass rules, Is Pride, the never-failing vice of fools. Whatever nature has in worth deny'd,
She gives in large recruits of needful pride ;
For as in bodies, thus in fouls, we find
What wants in blood and fpirits, fwell'd with wind :
Pride, where Wit fails, steps in to our defence,
And fills up all the mighty void of fenfe!
If once right reafon drives that cloud away,
Truth breaks upon us with refistless day;
Trust not your felf; but your defects to know,
Make use of ev'ry friend-----and ev'ry foe.
A little Learning is a dang rous thing; Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring: There fhallow draughts intoxicate the brain, And drinking largely fobers us again. Fir'd at first sight with what the Mufe imparts, In fearless youth we tempt the heights of Arts, While from the bounded level of our mind, Short views we take, nor fee the lengths behind; But more advanc'd, behold with strange furprize New diftant fcenes of endless science rife!
So pleas'd at first the tow'ring Alps we try,
Mount o'er the vales, and feem to tread the sky,
Th'eternal fnows appear already past,
And the first clouds and mountains feem the last:
But thofe attain'd, we tremble to furvey
The growing labours of the lengthen'd way,
Th' increasing profpect tires our wandring eyes,
peep o'er hills, and Alps on Alps arife!
* A perfect Judge will read each work of wit
With the same spirit that its Author writ,
Diligenter legendum eft, ac pœne ad fcribendi follicitudinem: Nec per partes modo ferutanda funt omnia, fed perlectus liber utique ex integro refumendus: Quintil.
Survey the Whole, nor feek flight faults to find;
Where nature moves, and rapture warms the mind;
Nor lofe, for that malignant dull delight,
The gen'rous pleasure to be charm'd with wit.
But in fuch lays as neither ebb, nor flow,
Correctly cold, and regularly low,
That shunning faults, one quiet tenour keep;
We cannot blame indeed-----but we may fleep.
In wit, as nature, what affects our hearts
Is not th' exactnefs of peculiar parts;
'Tis not a lip, or eye, we beauty call,
But the joint force and full refult of all.
Thus when we view fome well-proportion'd dome,
(The world's just wonder, and ev'n thine O Rome!)
No fingle parts unequally furprize;
All comes united to th' admiring eyes;
No monftrous height, or breadth, or length appear;
The Whole at once is bold, and regular.
Whoever thinks a faultlefs piece to see, Thinks what ne'er was, nor is, nor e'er fhall be. In ev'ry work regard the writer's End,
Since none can compass more than they intend;