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His learning, join'd with each endearing art,
Charm'd ev'ry ear, and gain’d on ev'ry heart.
Thus early wise, th’endanger'd realm to aid,
His country call'd him from the studious shade;
In life's first bloom his publick toils began,
At once commenc'd the senator and man.
In business dextrous, weighty in debate,
Thrice ten long years he labour'd for the State;
In every speech pursuasive wisdom flow'd,
In every act refulgent virtue glow'd :
Suspended faction ceasd from rage and strife,
To hear his eloquence, and praise his life.
Refiftless merit fix'd the Senate's choice,
Who hail'd him Speaker with united voice.
Illustrious age! how bright thy glories shone,
When HANMER fili'd the chair-and ANNE the
throne ! Then when dark arts obscur'd each fierce debate, When mutual frauds perplex'd the maze of state, The moderator firmly mild appear'dBeheld with love with veneration heard.
This task perform’d-he fought no gainful post,
Nor wilh'd to glitter at his country's cost;
Strict on the right he fix'd his steadfait eye,
With temperate zeal and wise anxiety ;
Nor e'er from Virtue's paths was lur'd aside,
To pluck the flow'rs of pleasure, or of pride.
Her gifts despis’d, Corruption blush'd and fled,
And Fame pursu'd him where Conviction led.
Age call’d, at length, his active mind to rest,
With honour sated, and with cares opprest;
To letter'd ease retir'd and honest mirth,
To rural grandeur and domestick worth ;
Delighted still to please mankind, or mend,
The patriot's fire yet sparkled in the friend.
Calm Conscience, then, his former life survey’d,
And recollected toils endear'd the shade,
Till Nature call’d him to the gen’ral doom,
And Virtue's sorrow dignified his tomb.
To Miss HICKMAN*, playing on the Spinnet,
B to gain ;
RIGHT Stella, form’d for universal reign,
When in your eyes refiftless lightnings play,
Aw'd into love our conquer'd hearts obey,
And yield reluctant to despotick sway:
But when your musick sooths the raging pain,
We bid propitious Heav'n prolong your reign,
We bless the tyrant, and we hug the chain.
When old Timotheus struck the vocal string,
Ambition's fury fir'd the Grecian king :
Unbounded projects lab’ring in his mind,
He pants for room in one poor world confin'd,
Thus wak’d to rage, by musick's dreadful pow'r,
He bids the sword destroy, the flame devour.
Had Stella's gentle touches mov’d the lyre,
Soon had the monarch felt a nobler fire;
No more delighted with destructive war,
Ambitious only now to please the fair;
Refign’d his thirst of empire to her charms,
And found a thousand worlds in Stella's arms.
* These lines, which have been communicated by Dr. Tur. ton, son to Mrs. Turton, the Lady to whom they are addressed by her maiden name of Hickman, must have been written at least as early as the year 1734, as that was the year of her marriage: at how much earlier a period of Dr. Johnson's life they may have been written, is not known.
PARAPHRASE of PROVERBS, Chap. VI.
Verses 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, II.
“ Go to the Ant, thou Sluggard*." T”
Urn on the prudent ant thy heedful eyes,
Observe her labours, sluggard, and be wise:
No stern command, no monitory voice,
Prescribes her duties, or directs her choice;
Yet, timely provident, she haftes away,
To snatch the blessings of the plenteous day;
When fruitful summer loads the teeming plain,
She crops the harvest, and the stores the grain,
How long shall Sloth usurp thy useless hours,
Unnerve tny vigour, and enchain thy pow'rs;
While artful shades thy downy couch inclose,
And soft solicitation courts repose ?
Amidst the drowsy charms of dull delight,
Year chases year with unremitted flight,
Till want now following, fraudulent and flow,)
Shall spring to seize thee like an ambush'd foe.
HORACE, Lib. IV. Ode VII. Translated.
He snow diffolv'd, no more is feen,
The fields and woods, behold! are green ;
The changing year renews the plain,
The rivers know their banks again ;
The sprightly nymph and naked grace
The mazy dance together trace;
* In Mrs. Williams's Miscellanies, but now printed from the original in Dr. Johnson's own hand-writing,
The changing year's successive pain
Proclaims mortality to man ;
Rough winter's blasts to spring give way,
Spring yields to summer's sovereign ray;
Then summer sinks in autumn's reign,
And winter chills the world again ;
Her lofses foon the moon supplies,
But wretched man, when once he lies,
Where Priam and his sons are laid,
Is nought but ashes and a shade.
Who knows if Jove, who counts our score,
Will toss us in a morning more?
What with your friend you nobly share
At least you rescue from
Not you, Torquatus, boast of Rome,
When Minos once has fix'd your doom,
Or eloquence, or splendid birth,
Or virtue, shall restore to earth.
Hippolytus, unjustly Nain,
Dinna calls to life in vain ;
Nor can the might of Theseus rend
The chains of Hell that hold his friend.
*The following TRANSLATIONS, PARODIES, and BUR
LESQUE VERSES, most of them extempore, are taken from Anecdotes of Dr. Johnson, lately published by Mrs. Piozzi.
Whence and whither dost thou fly?
Scatt’ring, as thy pinions play,
Liquid fragrance all the way :
Is it bufiness? is it love?
Tell me, tell me, gentle dove.
Soft Anacreon's vows I bear,
Vows to Myrtale the fair ;
Grac'd with all that charms the heart,
Blushing nature, smiling art.
Venus, courted by an ode;
On the bard her dove bestow'd :
Vested with a master's right,
Now Anacreon rules my flight;
His the letters that you see,
Weighty charge, consign'd to me:
Think not yet my service hard,
Joyless task without reward ;
Smiling at my master's gates,
Freedom my return awaits;
But the liberal grant in vain
Tempts me to be wild again.
Can a prudent dove decline
Blissful bondage such as mine?
Over hills and fields to roam,
Fortune's guest without a home;