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Not fortune's worshipper, nor fashion's fool, Not lucre's madman, nor ambition's tool, 335 Not proud nor servile; be one poets praise, That, if he pleased, he pleased by manly ways; That flattery, ev'n to kings, he held a shame, And thought a lie in verse or prose the same; That not in fancy's maze he wander'd long, 340 But stoop'd to truth, and moralised his song; That not for fame, but virtue's better end, He stood the furious foe, the timid friend, The damning critic, half-approving wit, The coxcomb hit, or fearing to be hit ; Laugh'd at the loss of friends he never had, The dull, the proud, the wicked, and the mad; The distant threats of vengeance on his head, The blow unfelt, the tear he never shed; The tale revived, the lie so oft o'erthrown, 350 The imputed trash, and dulness not his own; The morals blacken'd when the writings 'scape, The libelld person, and the pictured shape;
340 That not in fancy's maze he wander'd long. Warburton gives him credit for this, as a sacrifice to virtue: perhaps it was also a sacrifice to fashion. Didactic writing was the taste of the day: yet, who but must lament that the poetry of Pope should have been so often wasted on attempting to teach that which never was to be taught by poetry? Who can learn religion, morals, or public duties, by verse? The rigid realities of life are beyond the sphere of poetry : its region is fancy, its impulses are the feelings, and its purposes the pleasures of the mind : but the French taste, always the reverse of nature, was the taste of the time, and where Boileau was the model, the exquisite beauties of Shakspeare and Spenser were naturally forgotten.
353 The pictured shape. All the praises of his poetry could not reconcile Pope to the sense of his deformed figure. Warton, on the authority of Hay, (Essay on Deformity) says that
Abuse, on all he loved, or loved him, spread,
A. But why insult the poor, affront the great?
P. A knave's a knave to me, in every state; Alike my scorn, if he succeed or fail; Sporus at court, or Japhet in a jail, A hireling scribbler, or a hireling peer; Knight of the post corrupt, or of the shire; 365 If on a pillory, or near a throne, He gain his prince's ear, or lose his own.
Yet soft by nature, more a dupe than wit, Sappho can tell you how this man was bit: This dreaded satirist Dennis will confess 370 Foe to his pride, but friend to his distress : So humble, he has knock'd at Tibbald's door, Has drunk with Cibber, nay, has rhymed for • Moore. Full ten years slander'd, did he once reply? Three thousand suns went down on Welsted's lie. To please his mistress, one aspersed his life; 376 He lash'd him not, but let her be his wife; Let Budgell charge low Grub-street on his quill, And write whate'er he pleased, except his will ;
Pope reckoned the caricatures of his person among bis ' most atrocious injuries.'
355 A friend in exile. The bishop of Rochester, Dr. Atterbury,
363 Sporus at court. In former editions, 'Glaucus at court.'
378 Let Budgell. Budgell, in a weekly pamphlet, called . The Bee,' bestowed much abuse on him, in the imagination that he wrote some things about the last will of Dr. Tindal, in the •Grub-street Journal ;' a paper wherein he never had the least hand, direction, or supervisal, nor the least knowlege of its author.-Pope.
Let the two Curlls of town and court abuse 380
386 If there be force in virtue or in song.
Of gentle blood (part shed in honoris cause, While yet in Britain honor had applause) Each parent sprung—A. What fortune, pray ?—
P. Their own, And better got, than Bestia's from the throne. Born to no pride, inheriting no strife, Nor marrying discord in a noble wife, Stranger to civil and religious rage, The good man walk'd innoxious through his age. No courts he saw, no suits would ever try, 396 Nor dared an oath, nor hazarded a lie. Unlearn’d, he knew no schoolman's subtle art; No language, but the language of the heart. By nature honest, by experience wise, 400 Healthy by temperance and by exercise ;
379 Except his will. Eustace Budgell was charged with forging Tindal the infidel's will. Bowles gives the passage thus :•I, Matthew Tindal, &c. give and bequeathe to Eustace Budgell the sum of £2100, that his great talents may serve his country, &c., my strong box, my diamond ring,' &c. Tindal's nephew, a clergyman, and author of the “Continuation of Rapin,' impeached the will. The charge was generally credited, and Budgell soon after threw himself into the Thames. 417 As rich as when he served a queen. A compliment to Arbuthnot's disinterestedness: he had been the favorite physician of queen Anne.
His life, though long, to sickness pass'd unknown;
O friend, may each domestic bliss be thine;
friend; Preserve him social, cheerful, and serene, And just as rich as when he served a queen.
A. Whether that blessing be denied or given, Thus far was right; the rest belongs to Heaven.