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THE DOWNFALL OF CHARING-CROSS,
Charing-cross, as it food before the civil wars, was ont of those beautiful Gothic obelisks erected to conjugal affection by Edward I, who built such a , one wherever the herse of his beloved Eleanor refied in its way from Lincolnshire to Wij minster. But neither its ornamental
situation, the beauty of its fructure, nor the noble defign of its erection (which did honour to humanity) could preserve it from the merciless zeal of the times : For in 164.. it was demolished by order: of the House of Commons, as popish and superstitious. This occasioned the following not-unhumorous sarcasm, which has been often printed among the popular fonnets of these times.
The plot referred to in ver. 179. was that entered into by Mr. Waller the poet, and others, with a view to reduce the sity and tower to the service of the king; for which two of them, Nath. Tomkins, and Rich. Chaloner, suffered death July 5. 1643. Vid. Ath. Ox. II. 24.
Ndone, undone the lawyers are,
They wander about the towne,
Now Charing-cross is downe :
Swearing they are at a loss,
'They must go by Charing-cross,
The parliament to vote it down
Conceived it very fitting,
In the house, as they were fitting.
Which made them so hard-hearted, To give command, it should not stand,
But be taken down aud carted.
Men talk of plots, this might have been worse
For any thing I know,
Were hang'd for long agoe.
And wisely them defended, For plots they will discover still,
Before they were intended.
But neither man, woman, nor child,
Will say, I'm confident,
Against the parliament.
Or else it had been freed,
It could neither write, nor read,
The committee faid, that verily
Το popery it was bent;
For to church it never went.
The kingdom doth begin
Without doors nor within.
Methinks the common-council shou'd
Of it have taken pity,
So firmly to the city.
so much disdain,
I'd pull down Tiburn too.
This excellent old song is preserved in David Lloyd's “ Memoires of those that suffered in the cause of Charles I. Lond. 1668. fol
. p. 96. He speaks of it as the composition of, a worthy personage, who suffered deeply in those times, and was Aill living with no other reward than the conscience of having suffered. The author's name be bas not mentioned. Some mistakes in Lloyd's copy are corrected by two others, ore in MS. the other in Westminster Drollery, or a choice collection of ... Songs and poems, 1651. 12mo. +
Swell, curled waves, high as Jove's roof;
That innocence is tempest proof;
That which the world miscalls a jail,
A private closet is to me :
And innocence my liberty :
1, whilft I wifht to be retir'd,
Into this private room was turn'd
The salamander should be burn'd ;
The cynick loves his poverty ;
The pelican her wilderness ; And 'tis the Indian's pride to be
Naked on frozen Caucasus : Contentment cannot smart, stoicks we see Make torments eafie to their apathy,
These manacles upon my arm
I, as my mistress' favours, wear ;
I have some iron shackles there :
I'm in the cabinet lockt up,
Like fome high-prized margarite,
Am cloyster'd up from publick fight :