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All kinds of dress, except the ecclesiastical,

All people, as their fancies hit, may choose,
But no one in these parts may quiz the clergy,
Therefore take heed, ye Freethinkers! I charge ye.

You'd better walk about begirt with briars,

Instead of coat and small-clothes, than put op
A single stitch reflecting upon friars,

Although you swore it only was in fun; They'd haul you o'er the coals, and stir the fires

Of Phlegethon with every mother's son, Nor

say one mass to cool the cauldron's bubble That boiled your bones, unless you paid them double.


But saving this, you may put on whate'er

You like, by way of doublet, cape, or cloak, Such as in Monmouth-street, or in Rag Fair,

Would rig you out in seriousness or joke;
And even in Italy such places are

With prettier names in softer accents spoke,
For bating Covent Garden, I can hit on
No place that's called « Piazza 'in Great Britain.


This feast is named the Carnival, which being

Interpreted, implies « farewell to flesh : »
So call’d, because the name and thing agreeing,

Through Lent they live on fish both salt and fresh. But why they usher Lent with so much glee in,

Is more than I can tell, although I guess 'Tis as we take a glass with friends at parting, In the stage-coach or packet, just at starting.


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And thus they bid farewell to carnal dishes,

And solid meats, and highly spic'd ragouts, To live for forly days on ill-dress'd Gshes,

Because they have no sauces to their stews, A thing which causes many « poohs » and .

» and « pishes,
And several oaths (which would not suit the Muse),
From travellers accustom'd from a boy
To eat their salmon, at the least with soy;

And therefore humbly I would recommend

« The curious in fish-sauce, » before they cross The sea, to bid their cook, or wife, or friend,

Walk or ride to the Strand, and buy in gross (Or if set out beforehand, these may send,

By any means least liable to loss),
Ketchup, Soy, Chili-vinegar, and Harvey,
Or by the Lord ! a Lent will well nigh starve ye;

That is to say, if your religion's Roman,

at Rome would do as Romans do, According to the proverb, although no man,

If foreign, is oblig'd to fast; and you,
If protestant, or sickly, or a woman,

Would rather dine in sin on a ragout
Dine, and be d-d! I don't mean to be coarse,
But that's the penalty, to say no worse,

Of all the places where the Carnival

Was most facetious in the days of yore,
For dance, and song, and serenade, and ball,

And masque, and mime, and mystery, and more

Than I have time to tell


or at all,
Venice the bell from every city bore,
And at the moment when I fix my story,
That sea-born city was in all her glory.

They've pretty faces yet, these same Venetians,

Black eyes, arch'd brows, and sweet expressions still, Such as of old were copied from the Grecians,

In ancient arts by moderns mimick'd ill; And like so many Venuses of Titian's

(The best's at Florence-see it, if ye will), They look when leaning over the balcony, Or stepp'd from out a picture by Giorgione,

Whose tints are truth and beauty at their best;

And when you to Manfrini's palace go,
That picture ( howsoever fine the rest)

Is loveliest to my mind of all the show;
It may perhaps be also to your zest,
And that's the cause I rhyme upon


SO, 'Tis but a portrait of his son, and wife, And self; but such a woman! love in life!

Love in full life and length, not love ideal,

No, nor ideal beauty, that fine name,
But something better still, so very real,

That the sweet model must have been the same; A thing that you would purchase, beg, or steal

Were't not impossible, besides a shame : The face recals some face, as 'twere with pain, You once have seen, but ne'er will see again;

One of those forms which flit by us, when we

young, and fix our eyes on every face; And, oh! the loveliness at times we see

In momentary gliding, the soft grace,
The youth, the bloom, the beauty which agree,

lo many a nameless being we retrace, Whose course and home we knew not, nor shall know, Like the lost Pleiad seen no more below.

I said that like a picture by Giorgione

Venetian women were, and so they are,
Particularly seen from a balcony,

(For beauty's sometimes best set off afar) And there, just like a heroine of Goldoni,

They peep from out the blind, or o'er the bar;
And, truth to say, they're mostly very pretty,
And rather like to show it, more's the pity!

For glances beget ogles, ogles sighs,

Sighs wishes, wishes words, and words a letter,
Which flies on wings of light-heeled Mercuries,

Who do such things because they know no better; And then, God knows what mischief may arise,

When love links two young people in one fetter,
Vile assignations, and adulterous beds,
Elopements, broken vows, and hearts, and heads.

Shakespeare described the sex in Desdemona

As very fair, but yet suspect in fame;
And to this day, from Venice to Verona,
Such matters may be probably the same,

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Except that since those times was never known a

Husband whom mere suspicion could inflame To suffocate a wife no more than twenty, Because she had a « cavalier seryente. »


Their jealousy (if they are ever jealous)

Is of a fair complexion altogether, Not like that sooty devil of Othello's,

Which smothers wonen in a bed of feather, But worthier of these much more jolly fellows,

When weary of the matrimonial tether His head for such a wife no mortal bothers, But takes at once another, or another's.


Did'st ever see a gondola? For fear

You should not, I'll describe it you exactly : 'Tis a long covered boat that's common here, Carved at the prow, built lightly, but compactly,

, Rowed by two rowers, cach called « gondolier ; »

It glides along the water, looking blackly,
Just like a coffin clapt in a canoe,
Where none can make out what you say or do.

And up and down the long canals they go,

And under the Rialto shoot along,
By night and day, all paces, swift or slow,

And round the theatras, a sable throng,
They wait in their dusk livery of woe ;

But not to them do woeful things belong,
For sometimes they contain a deal of fun,
Like mourning coaches when the funeral's done.

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