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They entertain'd th' attentive Moab lords 25 “ At courts, and seats of juftice, to complain, 88
Much," said the king, "much I to Joab owe, “ Weak beauties they corrupt, and force the strong; “ For the fair pidure drawn by him of you; 30 “ The pride of old men that, and this of young. “ "Twas drawn in little, but did acts express “ You’ave heard perhaps, Sir, of lewd Gibeah's “ So grcat, that largest historics are less,
86 “ [sce, mcthinks, the Gathian monster still; “ Which Hebrew tongues still tremble when they “ His shape last night mig mindful dreams did fill. “ Strange tyranc Saul, with envy to pursue 35 “ Alarmed all by one fair stranger's eyes, “ The praise of deeds whence his own safety grew! “ As to a sudden war, the town does rise, “ I've heard (but who can think it?) that his son “ Shaking and pale, half-dead ere they begin 99 “ Has his life's hazard for your friendship run: “ The strange and wanton tragedy of their fin; “ His matchless son, whose worth (if lame te “ All their wild luses they force her to sustain, true);
« Till by shame, sorrow, weariness, and pain, “ Lists him 'bove all his countrymen but you, 40
" She midst their loath'd and cruel kindness dies; With whom it makes him one." Low David “ Og monstrous lust the innocent facrifice. 95 “ bows,
“ This did, 'tis true, a civil war create But no reply Moab's swift tongue allows. “ (The frequent curse of our loose-govern'd “ And pray, kind guest! whilst we ride thus,” “ state);
“ All Gibeah's, and all Jabcfh'blood it cost; “ (To gameful Nebo fill three leagues there be) “ Near a whole tribe, and future kings, we loft. “ The story of your royal friend relate, 45 “ Firm in this general carthquake of the land, 100 “ And his ungovern'd fire's imperious fate; “ How could religion, its main pillar, stand? " Why your great State that nameless family “ Proud and food man his Father's worship hates, « chose,
“ Himself, God's crcature, his own god creates! “ And by what steps to Ifrael's throne they rose.” “ Hence in each household several deities grew, He said : and David thus : “ From Egypt's “ And when 10 old one pleas'd, they fram'd a “ land
105 “ You've heard, Sir, by what strong unarm’d “ The only land which serv'd but One before, “ hand
“ Did th’only then all nations' gods adore. “ Our fathers came, Moses their sacred guide; They ferv'd their guds at first, and foon their “ But he in sight of the given country dy'd :
kings “ His fatal promis’d Canaan was on high, “ (Their chcice of that this latter slavery hrings); “ And Joshua's sword must th' active rod supply: “ Till special men, arm’d with God's warrant, " It did so, and did wonders.
« broke “ From sacred Jordan to the Wefern main, “ By justest force th' unjustly-forced yoke ; “ From well-clad Libanus to the Sonthern plain “ All matchless persons, and thrice worthy they “ Of naked fands his winged conquests went; “ Of power more great, or lands more apt t “ And thirty kings to hell uncrcwn'd he sent. “ Alnost four hundred years, from him to Saul, “ At last the priesthood join'd, in Ithamar’s fos, " In too much freedom paft, or foreign thrall 61 “ More weight and lustre to the sceptre won; 115 “ Oft ftrangers’ iron fceptres bruis'd the land “ But, whilst mild Eli and good Samuel were “ (Such still are those borne by a conquering “ Bufied with age, and th' altar's facred care, hand);
“ To their wild fons they their high charge " Oft pitying God did we'l-form'd spirits raise,
“ commit, “ Fit for the toilfome business of their days, 65 “ Who' expose to fcorn and hate both them and it. “ To free the groaning nation, and to give “ Eli's curs'd house th’exemplary vengeance « Peace first, and then the rules in peace to live.
“ bears “ But they whose stamp of power did chiefly lie “ Of all their blood, and all sad Ifrael's tears; • In characters too fine for most men's eye, “ His fons abroad, himself at home, lies lain; “ Graces and gifts divine;—not painted bright 70 “ Israel's captivd, God's ark and law are ta’en. “ With state to awe dull minds, and force t' “ Thus twice are nations by ill princes ycx'd, 'affright;—
“ They suffer Hy them first, and for them next. " Were ili ohey'd whilst living, and at death “ Samuel succeeds;—fince Mofes, gone before 126 “ Their rules and pattern vanith'd with their “ So much of God in his bright bofcm bore. “ breath.
“ In vain our arms Philintian tyrants seiz'd ; " The hungry rich all near them did devour; “ Heaven's magazines he open'd when he pleas'd: " Their judge was Appetite, and their law was “ He rains and wind for auxiliaries brought ; 1;) « Power.
“ He muster'd fames and thunders when he « Not Want itself could luxury restrain;
“ fought “ For what that emptied, Rapine fill'd again. “ Thus thirty years with strong and steady hand “ Robbery the field, Oppreslion fack'd the town; “ He held th' unshaken balance of the land: " What the Sword's reaping spar'd, was glean'd" At last his sons th' indulgent father chose * by th' Gown,
“ To share that state which they were born to lose
" Their hateful a&sthat change's birth did haste, “ These reasons, and all else that could he said, " Which had long growth i' th' womb of ages " In a ripe hour by factious eloquence spread 185 * past .
“ Through all the tribes, niake all desire a king; " To this (fcr still were some great periods set,
" And to their Judge selected deputies bring " There's a ftrong knot of several causes met)
6. This harsh demand; which Nacol for the rest " The threats cuacurr'd of a rough neighbouring “ (A bold and artful mouth) thus with much
grace express'd:A mighty storm long gathering from afar ; “ We're come, most sacred Judge! to pay tho “ Tor Ammon heighten'd with mix'd nations'
“ Of nuch-ow'd thanks, for the bright thirty "Like torrents swoln with rain, prepar'd the
ycars land t'invade.
“ Of your jult reign; and at your feet to lay " Samuel was old, and, by his sons' ill choice, “ All that our grateful hearts can weakly pay “ Turn'd dotard in th' unikilful vulgar's voice: “ In unproportion'd words; for you alone " His fons so scorn'd and hated, that the land 146 “ The rot unfit reward, who seck for none. 195 “ Nor hop d, nor with’d, a victory from their " But, when our forepast ills we call to mind,
“And sadly think how little's left behind " These were the juft and faultless causes why “ Of your important life, whose sudden date " The general voice did for a Monarch cry;
“ Would disinherit th' unprovided state; " But God ill grains did in this incense fmell; 150
“ When we consider how unjust 'tis, you, * Wrapp'd in fair leaves he saw the canker dwell: “ Who ne'er of power more than the burden * A mutinous itch of change; a dull despair "Of helps divine, oft prov'd; a faithless care “ At once the weight of that and age should have " Of common means; the pride of heart and “ (Your stooping days press'd doubly towards the
grave); * Of th' humble yoke under low Judges borne.
“ When we behold by Ammon's youthful rage, They saw the state and glittering pomp which “ Proud in th’advantage of your peaceful age,
156 “ And all th' united East, our fall conspir'd; 206 " la vulgar sense the sceptres of the East; " And that your suns, whom chiefly we defir'd They saw not power's true source, and scorn’d “ As stamps of you, in your lov'd room to place,
“ By unlike acts that noble stamp deface; * Persons that look'd no dreadfuller than they; « Midst these new fears and ills we're forc'd to They miss'd courts, guards, a gay and nume
fly rous train
160 “ T' a new, and yet unpractis'd, remedy; “Our Judges, like their laws, were rude and “ A new one, but long promis’d, and foretold plain
By Moses, and to Abraham shown of old; “ Og an old bench of wood, her feat of state “ A prophecy long forming in the womb " Bencath the well-known palm, wife Deborah fate; “ of teeming years, and now to ripeness come. " Her maids with comely diligence round her “ This remedy's a King; for this we all 216 spun,
“ With an inspir'd and-zealous union call: " And the too, when the pleadings there were “ And, in one sound when all men's voices join,
165 " The music's tun'd, no doubt, by hand divine : " With the same goad Shamgar his oxen drives “ 'Tis God alone speaks a whole nation's voice; " Which took, the sun deforc, fix hundred lives “ That is his public language; but the choice " from his tham'd foes : he midst his work dealt « Of what Peculiar head that crown must bear, laws;
who his Peculiar organ are, " And oft was his plough stopp'd to hear a cause: “ We'expect to hear: the people shall to you " Nor did great Gideon his old fail disdain, 170 “ Their king, the king his crown and people, · After won fields, fack'd towns, and princes
226 “ To your great name what luftre will it bring His sceptre that, and Ophra's threshing-floor “ T' have been our Judge, and to have made our “The feat and emblem of his justice bore. " What should I Jair, the happiest father, name? “ He bow'd, and ended here; and Samueistrait, * Or mournful Jephtha, known no less to same “ Pausing awhile at this great question's weight, " For the most wretched ? Both at once did “ With a grave figh, and with a thoughtful eye,
176 “ That more of care than pallion did descry, 231 * The mighty flocks of Israel and their sheep. Calmly replies–. You're sure the first, said he, " Oft from the field in haste they summon'd “ Of freeborn men that begg'd for Navery.
“ I fear, my friends, with heavenly manna fed, " Some weighty foreign embassy to hear;
“ (Our old forefathers' crime) we lust for bread. They call'd their flaves, their sons, and friends, “ Long since by God from bondage drawn, I fear, around,
180 “ Wc build anew th' Egyptian brick-kiln here. * Who all at several cares were scatter'd found; “ Cheat not yourselves with words; for, though They wash'd their feet, their only gown put on,
a King And this chief work of ceremony was done.
“ Be the mild name, a Tyrant is the thing.
16 From you,
“ Let his power loose, and you shall quickly see 240 “ Thrice bow'd he, thrice the solemn music “ How mild a thing unbounded man will be.
“ play'd, “ He'll lead you forth your hearts' cheap blood “ And at thirdrest thus the great prophet pray'd:to spill,
“ Almighty God, to whom all men that be “ Where'er his guideless passion leads his will : “ Owe all they have, yet none so much as we; “ Ambition, luit, or spleen, his wars will raise; " Who, though thou fill’At the spacious world “ Your lives' best price his thirst of wealth or “ praise :
245“ Thy too-small court, hast made this place thy “ Your ableft fons for his proud guards he'll take,
“ throne; « And by such hands your yoke more grievous With humble knees, and hun:hler hearts, lo!
« make : Your daughters and dear wives he'll force “ Blest Abraham's seed implores thy gracious ear : away ;
“ Hear then, great God! and thy juft will inspire; “ His luxury some, and some his lust, t' obey : “ From Thee, their long-known King, they'? « His idle friends your hungry toils fmall eat, 250 “ King desire.
gor “ Drink your rich wines, nix'd with your blood “ Sonie gracious figns of thy good pleasure send ; " and sweat
“ Which, lo! with fouls resign'd, we humbly here “ Then you'll all figh, but lighs will treasons be;
« attend. " And 130t your griefs themselves, or looks, be “ He spoke, and thrice he bow'd, and all about u frec:
“ Silence and reverend horror seiz'd the rout; 305 “ Robb’d ev'n of hopes, when you these ills fus- “ The whole tent shakes, the flames on th'altar by
“ In thick dull rolls mount flow and heavily; “ Your watery eyes you'll then turn back in vain “ The seven lamps wink; and, what does most “ On your old Judges, and perhaps on me, 256
dilmay, “ Nay, cv'n any fons, howe'er they' unhappy be “ Th’oraculous gems shut-in their natural day: 'In your displeasure now; not that I'd clear “ The ruhy's check grew pale ; the emerald by Their quilt, or mine own innocence indear : « Faded; a cloud o'ercast the sapphir's sky; 311
Witness th' unutterable Name, there's nought " The diamond's cye look'd fleepy; and swift « Of private ends into this question brought.
night, “ But why this yoke on your own necks to draw? “ Of all those little suns eclips'd the light : “ Why man your God, and passion made your “ Sad signs of God's dread anger for our fin :« Law?
“ But strait a wondrous brightness from within “ Methinks (thus Moab interrupts him here) “ Strook through the curtains; for no earthly “ The good old seer 'gainst Kings was too severe.
« cloud “ 'Tis jest to tell a people that they're free; 266 « Could those strong beams of heavenly glory “ Who, or How many, shall their masters be
• shroud; “ Is the sole doubt; laws guide, but cannot reign; “ The altar's fire burn'd pure, and every stone “ And, though they bind not kings, yet they “ Their radiart parent the gay fun out-rhone; 6 rcftrain.
“ Beauty th' illuftrious vifion did impart 320 “ I dare affirm (so much I trust their love) 270 “ To every face, and joy to every heart; “ That no one Moabite would his speech approve. “ In glad effects God's presence thus appear'd, “ But, pray go on.- -'Tis true, Sir, he replies ;
" And thus in wond'rous sounds his voice was “ Yet men whom age and action render wise
“ heard :“ So much great changes fear, that they believe « This stubborn land fins still, nor is it Thee, “ Allevils will, which may, froni them arrive. 275
« Lut Us « On men resolv'd these threats were spent in (Who’ave been so long their King) they seck to “ vain;
“ cast off thus; “ All that his power or eloquence could obtain “ Five hundred rolling years hath this ftiff nation " Was, to enquire God's will ere they proceed
“ strove “ T'a work that would so much his blefling nced. « T" exhaust the boundless stores of our unfs“ A solemn day for this great work is set, 280
" thom'd love. « And at th' anointed tent all Israel met
“ Be 't so then; yet once more are we refolv'! “ Expect th' cvent; below, fair bullocks fry " In hallow'd flames; above, there mount on high “ T'outweary them through all their fins' variety: “ The precious clouds of incense; and, at last, Assemble, ten days hence, the numerous people “ The sprinkling, prayers, and all due honours,
285 “ To draw the royal lot which our hid mark ft.il “ Lo! we the sacred bells o'th' sudden hear, “ And in mild pomp grave Samuel does appear. “ Dismiss them now in peace; but their next “ His ephod, mitre, well-cut diadem, on;
“ crime shall bring “ Th' oraculous stones on his rich breast-platc“ Ruin without redrefs on them, and on their " thone.
king. “ Tow'rds the blue curtains of God's holiest placc “ Th’ Almighty spoke; th' astonish'd people (The temple's bright third heaven) he turn'd
part “ his face;
291 “ With various stamps impressid on every heart.
os to try
« Some their deniand repented, others prais'd;
“ He tells the mighty fate to him aflign'd, 390 “ Some had no thoughts at all, but star'd and gaz'd. “ And with great rules fill'd his capacious mind; * There dwelt a nian, nam'd Cis, in Gibeath “ Then takes the sacred vial, and does shed “ town,
“ A crown of myftic drops around his head; “ For wisdom much, and much for courage, “ Drops of that royal moisture which does know
“ No mixture, and disdains the place below. 395 “ More for his fon; his mighty son was Saul, 340 “ Soon comes the kingly day, and with it brings " Whom datare, ere the lots, t'a throne did call. “ A new account of time upon his wings. " He was much prince, and when, or wherefoe'er, “ The people met, the rites and prayers all past, “ His birth had been, then had he reign'd, and
“ Behold! the heaven-instructed lot is cast; " there.
“ 'Tis taught by Heaven its way, and cannot “ Such beauty, as great strength thinks no dis
« miss ;
“ Forth Benjamin, forth leaps the house of Cis : * Smil'd in the manly features of his face; 345 “ As glimmering stars, just at th' approach of " His large, black eyes, fillid with a spritetul
“ Cashier'd by troops, at last drop all away; « Shot forth such lively and illustrious night, “ By such degrees all men's bright hopes are gone, “ As the sun-beams, on jet reflecting, show; “ And, like the sun, Saul's lot shines all alone. 405
His hair, as black, in long curl'd waves did flow; “ Ev'n here perhaps the people's shout was " His tall straight body amidst thousands stood,
“ heard, " Like some fair pine o'erlooking all th' ignobler “ The loud long fout, when God's fair choice « wood.
appear'd: " Of all our rural sports he was the pride; “ Above the whole vast throng he' appear'd so "So swist, so strong, fo dextrous, none beside. " Rest was his toil, labours his lust and game; “ As if by Nature made for th' head of all: • No natural wants could his fierce diligence tame, “ So full of grace and fate, that one might * Not thirst nor hunger; he would journeys go
410 Through raging hears, and take repofc in snow. “ "Twas some wise eye the blind lot guided fo: * His foul was ne'er unbent from weighty care; “ But blind unguided lots have more of choice " But active as some mind that turns a sphere. " And constancy than the flight vulgar's voice. ** His way once chose, he forward thruit outright, “ Ere yet the crown of facred oil is dry, “ Nor itep'd aside for dangers or delight, 361
“ Whilst echoes yet preserve the joyful cry, 415 " Yet was he wise all dangers to foresee; “ Some grow enrag'd their own vain hopes to “ But born t'affright, and not to fear, was he, * His wit was strong, not fine; and on his tongue “ Some envy Sanl, some scorn the house of Cis :
An artless grace, above all eloquence, hung: 365 “ Some their first mutinous wish, ' a King!" * Thele virtues too the rich unusual dress
repent, " Of modesty adorn'd, and humbleness:
“ As is, since that, quite spoil'd by God's confent: * Like a rich varnish o'er fair pictures laid,
“ Few to this prince their first just duties pay; 420 * Morc fresh and lasting they the colours made. “ All leave the old, but few the new obey. “ Till power and violent fortune, which did find “ Thus changes man, but God is constant still * No ftop or bound, o'erwhelm'd no less his To those eternal grounds that mov'd his will;
371 “ And though he yielded first to them, 'tis fit Dil, deluge-like, the natural forms deface, “ That stubborn men at last to him submit. 429 * And brought forth unknown monsters in their “ As midit the main a low small island lies, place.
“ Allaulted round with formy feas and skies, * Forbid it, God! my master's spots should be, “ Whilst the poor heartless native 3, every hour, « Were they not seen by all, difclos'd by me! 375 “ Darkress and noile seem ready to devour; " But such he was; and now to Ramah went “ Such Ifrael's state appear'd, whilit u'er the (So God dispos'd) with a strange, low intent.
430 * Great God! he went loft asics to enquire, “ Philifian clouds hung threatening, and from 4. And a small present, his small question's hirc,
( th' east Brought fimply with him, to that man to give,
All nations' wrath into one tempest joins, * from whom high Heaven's chief gifts he must “ Through which proud Nahash like fierce light* receive :
381 “ ning shines; Strange play of Fate !when mightiett human “ Tygris and Nile to his assistance send,
“ And waters to swoln Jaboc's torrent lend ; 435 “ Hang on such small, imperceptible strings ! Seir, Edom, Soba, Amalek, add their force; "'Twas Samuel's birth-day; a glad annual feast “ Up with them march the three Arabjas' horse ; * All Rama kept ; Samuel his wondering guest “ And, 'mongst all these, none more their hoje " With fuch respect lcads to it, and does grace
or pride, « With the choice meats o'th' feaft, and highest “ Than those few troops your warlike land supplace;
“ ply'd. " Which done, him forth alone the prophet brings, “ Around weak Jabeth this vast host does lie, 440 * And feasts his ravilh'd ears with nobler things : “ Diljains a dry and bloodless victory:
“ The hopeless town for slavery does intreat ; “ Keen as his fword, and pointed, is his wit; • But barbarous Nahafh thinks that grace too " His judgment, like best armour, strong and t! grcat;
" And fuch an eloquence to both these does joiz “ He (his first tribute) their right eyes, demands, As makes in both beauty and use combine; 505 “ And with their faces' Thame difarms their " Through which a noble tincture does appear “ liands,
445 By learning and choice books imprinted there “ If unreliev'd seven days by Israel's aid,
As well he knows all times and persons gone, “ 'This bargain fur o'er-rated life is made.
" As he himself to th' future shall be known : “ Ah, mighty God! let thine own Ifrael be “ But his chief study is God's sacred law, 51 “ Quite blind itself, ere this reproach it sce! " And all his life does comments on it draw;
By' his wanton people the new king forsook, “ As never more by Heaven to man was given, * To homely, rural cares himself betook ; 451 “ So never more was paid by man to Heaven.“ Inprivate plenty liv’d, without the state, “ And all these virtues were to ripeness grown. “ Lustre, and noite, due to a public fate. “ Ere yet his flower of youth was fully blown; 515 “ Whillt he his slaves and cattle follows home, “ All autumn's store did his rich spring adorn; “ Lo! the sad messengers from Jabesh come, 455 “ Like trees in paradisc, he with fruit was born.
Implore his help, and weep, as if they meant “ Such is his soul; and if, as some men tell, “ That way at least proud Nahash to prevent. “ Souls form and build those mansionis where “ Mov'd with a kingly wrath, his frict command " they dwell, “ He issues forth tailemble all the land; " Whoe'er but secs his body must confess, 520 " He threatens high, and disobedient they, 450 “ T'he architect, no doubt, could be no lefs. " Wak'd by such princely terrors, learnt t'obey. “ From Saul his growth and manly strength h “ A mighty host is rais'd: th' important cause
took, Age from their rest, youth from their pleasure, “ Chastis’d by bright Ahinoam's gentler look; “ draws;
“ Not bright Ahinoam, beauty's loudeft name " Arm'd as unfurnish'd haste could thein provide; " (Till the t'her children lost with joy her fame “ Eut conduct, courage, anger, that supply'd. 465 “ Had sweeter strokes, colours more fresh an * All night they marchd,and arc at th’ early dawn
52 * On Jabeth' heath in three sair bodies drawn : “ More darting cyes, or lovelier aubarn hair. “ Saul did himself the first and strongest band, “ Forgive me, that I thus your patience wrong, “ His son the next, Abner the third, command. “ And on this boundless subject itay so long, " But pardon, Sir, if, naming Saul's great son, " Where too much hafte ever to end 'twould be “ I stop with him awhile ere I go on.- 471 “ Did not his acts speak what's untold by me.
“ This is that Jonathan, the joy and grace, Though, from the time his hands a sword coul " The heautifull'ît and best, of human race;
« wield, * Tliet Jonathan, in whom does mix'd remain “ He ne'er miss’d fame and danger in the field, “ All that kind mothers' wishes can contain! 475 “ Yet this was the first day that call'd him forth " His courage such as it no ftop can know, “ Since Saul's bright crown gave lustre to h? " And victory gains by' astonishing the foc;
$3 « With lightning's force his enemies it confounds, “ 'Twas the last morning whose nncheerful rise " and melts their hearts ere it the bosom wounds; “ Sad Jabesh was to view with both their eyes. “ Yet he the conquer'd with such sweetness gains “ Secure proud Nahash slept as in his court,
As captive lovers find in beauty's chains : “ And dreamt, vain man! of that day's barbaroc “ In war, the adverse troops he does assail “ Like an impetuous ttorm of wind and hail; « Till noise and dreadful tumults him awoke : 54 “ In peace, like gentleit dew that does afswage “ Till into’his camp our violent army broke. “ The burning nionths, and temper Syrius' rage; “ The careless guards with small relittance kill'd “ Kind as the sun's bleft influence; and, where'er Slaughter the camp, and wild confusion, fill'd; • He comes, plenty and joy attend him there : “ Nahash his fatal duty does perform, “ To help feems all his power; his wealth, to “ And marches boldly up t' outface the storm; give;
“ Fierce Jonathan he meets, as he pursues “ To do much good, his sole prerogative : “ Th’ Arabian horse, and a hot fight renews : " And yet this general bounty of his mind, 490 “ 'Twas here your troops behav'd themselves fa “ That with wide arnis embraces all mankind,
“ well, “ Such artful prudence does to each divide;, « Till Uz and Jathan, their fout colonels, fell. “ With different measures all are satisfy'd; “ "Twas here our victory stopp'd, and gave u Just as wise God his plenteous manna dealt;
556 “ Some gather'd more, but want by none was felt. "“ Much to suspect th' intention of her pause; “ To all relations their just rights he pays, 496 “ But, when our thundering Prince Nahalh efpy's “ And worth's reward above its claim does raise : “ (Who, with a courage equal to his pride, “ The tenderest husband, mafter, father, son, “ Broke through our troops, and towards him “ And all those parts by' his friendship far out “ boldly press’d) “ done,
" A generous joy leap'd in his youthful breast. “ His love to friends no bound or rule does know, “ As when a wrathful dragon's difinal light 55. • What he to Heaven, all that to him they owe. « Strikes suddenly fome warlike eagle's light,