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Beneath this load what abject numbers groan,
Th' entangled Slaves to folly not their own!
Meanly by fashionable fear opprefs'd,
We seek our Virtues in each other's breast;
Blind to ourselves, adopt each foreign Vice,
Another's weakness, int'reft, or caprice.
Each Fool to low Ambition, poorly great,
That pines in fplendid wretchedness of state, 70
Tir'd in the treach'rous Chace, would nobly yield,
And, but for shame, like SYLLA, quit the field:
The dæmon Shame paints ftrong the ridicule,
And whispers close, "The World will call you
Behold yon Wretch, by impious fashion driv❜n,
Believes and trembles while he fcoffs at Heav'n. 76
By weakness strong, and bold thro' fear alone,
Hedreads the fneer by shallow Coxcombs thrown;
Dauntless purfues the path Spinoza trod;
To Man a Coward, and a Brave to God.
VER 80. To Man a Coward, etc.]
"Vois tu ce Libertin en public intrepide,
"Qui preche contre un Dieu que dans fon Ame il croit?
"Iliroit embraffer la Verité, qu'il voit;
"Mais de fes faux Amis il craint la Raillerie,
"Et ne brave ainfi Dieu que par Poltronnerie.
Faith, Justice, Heav'n itself now quit their hold, When to false Fame the captiv'd heart is fold : Hence, blind to truth, relentless Cato dy'd; Nought could fubdue his Virtue, but his Pride. Hence chaste Lucretia's Innocence betray'd 85 Fell by that Honour which was meant its aid. Thus Virtue finks beneath unnumber'd woes, When Paffions, born her friends, revolt her foes.
Hence SATIRE's pow'r: 'tis her corrective part, To calm the wild diforders of the heart.
She points the arduous height where Glory lies,
And teaches mad Ambition to be wife:
In the dark bofom wakes the fair defire,
Draws good from ill, a brighter flame from fire;
Strips black Oppreffion of her gay disguise, 95
And bids the Hag in native horror rise;
Strikes tow'ring Pride, and lawless Rapine dead,
And plants the wreath on Virtue's awful head.
Nor boasts the Mufe a vain imagin'd pow'r, Tho' oft fhe mourn thofe ills fhe cannot cure. 100 The Worthy court her, and the Worthlefs fear: Who fhun her piercing eye, that eye revere. Her awful voice the Vain and Vile obey, And ev'ry foe to Wisdom feels her sway.
Smarts, Pedants, as fhe fmiles, no more are vain;
Defponding Fops refign the clouded cane:
Hush'd at her voice, pert Folly's felf is still,
And Dulness wonders while fhe drops her quill.
Like the arm'd BEE, with art most subtly true,
From pois'nous Vice fhe draws a healing dew: 110
Weak are the ties that civil arts can find,
To quell the ferment of the tainted mind :
Cunning evades, fecurely wrapt in wiles;
And Force strong finew'd rends th'unequal toils:
The stream of Vice impetuous drives along, 115
Too deep for Policy, for Pow'r too strong.
Ev'n fair Religion, Native of the skies,
Scorn'd by the Crowd, seeks refuge with the Wise;
The Crowd with laughter spurns her awful train,
And Mercy courts, and Juftice frowns in vain. 120
But SATIRE's shaft can pierce the harden'd breast :
She plays a ruling passion on the rest :
Undaunted ftorms the batt'ry of his pride,
And awes the Brave that Earth and Heav'n defy'd.
VER. 110. From pois'nous Vice, &c.] Alluding to thefe lines of Mr. Pope;
"In the nice Bee what Art fo fubtly true
"From pois'nous Herbs extracts a healing Dew?
When fell Corruption, by her vaffals crown'd, 125
Derides fall'n Justice proftrate on the ground;
Swift to redress an injur'd People's groan,
Bold SATIRE shakes the Tyrant on her throne;
Pow'rful as Death, defies the fordid train,
And Slaves and Sycophants furround in vain. 130
But with the friends of Vice, the foes ofSATIRE, All truth is Spleen; all juft reproof, Ill-nature.
Well may they dread the Muse's fatal skill;
Well may they tremble, when she draws her quill:
Her magic quill, that, like ITHURIEL's fpear, 135
Reveals the cloven hoof, or lengthen'd ear:
Bids Vice and Folly take their nat❜ral shapes,
Turns Ducheffes to ftrumpets, Beaux to apes;
Drags the vile Whifp'rer from his dark abode,
Till all the Dæmon starts up from the toad. 140
O fordid maxim, form'd to screen the vile,
That true good-nature ftill muft wear a smile!
In frowns array'd her beauties stronger rife,
When love of Virtue wakes her fcorn of Vice:
Where Juftice calls, 'tis Cruelty to fave; 145
And 'tis the Law's good-nature hangs the Knave,
Who combats Virtue's foe is Virtue's friend;
Then judge of SATIRE's merit by her end :
To Guilt alone her vengeance ftands confin'd,
The object of her love is all Mankind.
Scarce more the friend of Man, the wife muftown,
Ev'n ALLEN's bounteous hand, than SATIRE'S
This to chastize, as That to bless, was giv'n;
Alike the faithful Ministers of Heav'n.
Oft in unfeeling hearts the shaft is spent: Tho' strong th' example, weak the punishment. They least are pain'd, who merit fatire moft; Folly the Laureat's, Vice was Chartres' boast: Then where's the wrong, to gibbet high the name Of Fools and Knaves already dead to shame? 160 Oft SATIRE acts the faithful Surgeon's part; Gen'rous and kind, tho' painful is her art: With caution bold, fhe only strikes to heal; Tho' folly raves to break the friendly steel. Then fure no fault impartial SATIRE knows, 165 Kind ev'n in Vengeance, kind to Virtue's foes. Whofe is the crime, the scandal too be theirs: The Knave and Fool are their own Libellers