Imágenes de páginas





Peace to all such! but were there One whose fires 1
True Genius kindles, and fair Fame inspires;
Blest with each talent and each art to please,
And born to write, converse, and live with ease :
Should such a man, too fond to rule alone",
Bear, like the Turk, no brother near the throne.
View him with scornful, yet with jealous eyes,
And hate for arts that caus'd himself to rise;
Damn with faint praise, assent with civil leer,
And without sneering, teach the rest to sneer;
Willing to wound, and yet afraid to strike,
Just hint a fault, and hesitate dislike;
Alike reserv'd to blame, or to commend,
A tim'rous foe, and a suspicious friend;
Dreading ev'n fools, by Flatterers besiegʻd,
And so obliging, that he ne'er oblig'd 3 ;
Like Cato, give his little Senate laws,
And sit attentive to his own applause ;
While Wits and Templars ev'ry sentence raise,
And wonder with a foolish face of praise :-
Who but must laugh, if such a man there be?
Who would not weep,


were he?
What tho' my Name stood rubric on the walls,
Or plaister'd posts, with claps, in capitals?
Or smoking forth, a hundred hawkers' load,
On wings of winds came flying all abroad 5 ?
I sought no homage from the Race that write;
I kept, like Asian Monarchs, from their sight:
Poems I heeded (now be-rhym'd so long)
No more than thou, great GEORGE! a birth-day song.
I ne'er with wits or witlings pass'd my days,
To spread about the itch of verse and praise;
Nor like a puppy, daggled thro' the town,
To fetch and carry sing-song up and down;
Nor at Rehearsals sweat, and mouth'd, and cry'd,
With handkerchief and orange at my side;




1 For an account of Pope's relations with 'Who would not smile if such a inan there be ? Addison see Introductory Memoir, p. xv. f. The Who would not laugh if ADDISON were her sentiments and imagery in Pope's letter to Craggs Then, of July 15th 1715 were embodied in the above] Who would not grieve if such a man there be ? character of Atticus. .which appears to have been Who would not laugh if Addison were he!' first printed in 1723 , (in a collection of poems

Fohnson.) called Cytherea published by Curll), then included It was a great falsehood, which some of the Libels by Pope in the Miscellanies of 1727, and finally, reported, that this Character was written after after undergoing revision, engrafted into the Epi- the Gentleman's death; which see refuted in the stle to Arbuthnot, published in 1735; Carruthers. Testimonies prefixed to the Dunciad. But the

2 This image is originally Denham's. John- occasion of writing it was such as he would not son.

make public out of regard to his memory: and 3 After v. 208 in the MS.

all that could further be done was to omit the “Who, if two Wits on rival themes contest, name, in the Edition of his Works. P.

Approves of each, but likes the worst the best.' 5 On wings of winds came flying all abroad?] Alluding to Mr P's and Tickell's,

Translation of Hopkins, in the ciyth Psalm. P. the first Book of the Iliad. Warburton.

[To daggle is to run through the mire. 4 [This famous couplet first stood thus: Hence Swift's epithet daggle-tail.)




But sick of fops, and poetry, and prate,
To Bufo left the whole Castalian state.

Proud as Apollo on his forked hill,
Sat full-blown Bufo, puff'd by ev'ry quill?;
Fed with soft Dedication all day long,
Horace and he went hand in hand in song?.
His Library (where busts of Poets dead
And a true Pindar stood without a head 3,)
Receiv'd of wits an undistinguish'd race,
Who first his judgment ask'd, and then a place :
Much they extolld his pictures, much his seat,
And flatter'd ev'ry day, and some days eat:
Till grown more frugal in his riper days,
He paid some bards with port, and some with praise;
To some a dry rehearsal was assign'd,
And others (harder still) he paid in kind.
Dryden alone (what wonder?) came not nigh,
Dryden alone escap'd this judging eye:
But still the Great have kindness in reserve,
He help'd to bury whom he help'd to starve 4.

May some choice patron bless each gray goose quill !
May ev'ry Bavius have his Bufo still!
So, when a Statesman wants a day's defence,
Or Envy holds a whole week's war with Sense,
Or simple pride for flatt'ry makes demands,
May dunce by dunce be whistled off my hands!
Blest be the Great! for those they take away,
And those they left me; for they left me GAY5;
Left me to see neglected Genius bloom,
Neglected die, and tell it on his tomb:
Of all thy blameless life the sole return
My Verse, and QUEENSB’RY weeping o'er thy urn!

Oh let me live my own, and die so too!




260 265

v. 77

[Roscoe has shown that this cannot refer to bestowed upon him by the contribution of several Lord Halifax, whom Warton understood to be persons of quality: P. alluded to. Lord H. had died as far back as 5 [John Gay (born in 1688) was one of Pope's 1715, and is mentioned with respect (as he de- dearest friends; and when he died, Dec. 4th 1732, served) by Pope (to whom he had even offered a was mourned by the former, in a letter to Swift, pension) in the Epilogue to the Satires, Dial. 11. as one who must have achieved happiness ‘if

Halifax was on terms of civility with innocence and integrity can deserve it." To what Dryden, although he with Prior burlesqued the extent the genius of Gay was neglected, may apHind and Panther; and though he helped to pear from the following statement made by Pope bury' the poet, he had in no sense 'helped to himself to Spence: He dangled for twenty starve' him. The personal reference remains years about a court, and at last was offered to be obscure.)

made usher to the young princess. Secretary 2 After v. 234 in the MS.

Craggs made G. a present of stock in the SouthTo Bards reciting he vouchsaf'd a nod, Sea year; and he was once worth £20,000; but And snuff’d their incense like a gracious god.' lost it all again. He got about £500 by the first

Warburton. Beggar's Opera, and £1100 or £1200 by the 3- a true Pindar stood without a head] Second. He was negligent and a bad manager. Ridicules the affectation of Antiquaries, who Latterly, the Duke of Queensbury took his money frequently exhibit the headless Trunks and Terms into his keeping, and let him only have what was of Statues, for Plato, Homer, Pindar, &c. Vide necessary out of it; and, as he lived with them, Fulv. Ursin. &c. P.

he could not have occasion for much. He died 1 - helps to bury] Mr Dryden, after having worth upwards of £3000. As to the Duchess of liv'd in exigencies, had a magnificent Funeral Queensbury see Moral Essays, 11. V. 193-]


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


(To live and die is all I have to do :)
Maintain a Poet's dignity and ease,
And see what friends, and read what books I please;
Above a Patron, tho' I condescend
Sometimes to call a minister my friend.
I was not born for Courts or great affairs;
I pay my debts, believe, and say my pray’rs;
Can sleep without a Poem in my head;
Nor know, if Dennis be alive or dead?

Why am I ask'd what next shall see the light?
Heav'ns! was I born for nothing but to write?
Has Life no joys for me? or, (to be grave)
Have I no friend to serve, no soul to save?
“I found him close with Swift_'Indeed? no doubt,'
(Cries prating Balbus) something will come out.'
'Tis all in vain, deny it as I will.
'No,, such a Genius never can lie still;'
And then for mine obligingly mistakes
The first Lampoon Sir Will." or Bubos makes.
Poor guiltless I! and can I choose but smile,
When ev'ry Coxcomb knows me by my Style?

Curst be the verse, how well soe'er it flow 5,
That tends to make one worthy man my foe,
Give Virtue scandal, Innocence a fear,
Or from the soft-eyed Virgin steal a tear!
But he who hurts a harmless neighbour's peace,
Insults fall’n worth, or Beauty in distress,
Who loves a Lie, lame slander helps about,
Who writes a Libel, or who copies out:
That Fop, whose pride affects a patron's name,
Yet absent, wounds an author's honest fame:
Who can your merit selfishly approve,
And show the sense of it without the love;
Who has the vanity to call you friend,
Yet wants the honour, injur'd, to defend;
Who tells whate'er you think, whate'er you say,




295 300

· After v. 270 in the MS.

a liberal rather than discriminating patron of 'Friendships from youth I sought, and seek them literary men. He died in 1762.] still:

4 After v. 282 in the MS. Fame, like the wind, may breathe where'er it will. 'P. What if I sing Augustus, great and good? The World I knew, but made it not my School, A. You did so lately, was it understood? And in a course of flatt'ry liv'd no fool?

P. Be nice no more, but, with a mouth profound, 2 Sir William Yonge. Bowles. ['A man As rumbling D-s* or a Norfolk hound; whose fluency and readiness of speech amounted

With George and FRED'ric roughen every verse, to a fault, and were often urged as a reproach, Then smooth up all, and CAROLINE rehearse. and of whom Sir Robert Walpole himself always A. No—the high talk to lift up Kings to Gods said that nothing but Y.'s character could keep Leave to Court-sermons, and to birth-day Odes. down his parts, and nothing but his parts support On themes like these, superior far to thine, his character. Lord Stanhope. He was a sup- Let laurell'd Cibber, and great Arnal t shine. porter of Walpole's.]

P. Why write at all?—A. Yes, silence if you keep, [Bubb Doddington, afterwards Lord Mel- The Town, the Court, the Wits, the Dunces weep.

Warburton. combe, the author of a well known Diary and the confidential adviser of Frederick Prince of * [Dennis.] * [See Dunciad, bk. ii. v. 315.) Wales. He is a character typical in many re- 5 [Contrast with the self-complacency of Pope spects of his age; utterly unconscientious and Dryden's noble lines of self-reproach in the Elegy cheerfully blind to his unconscientiousness; and on Anne Killigrew.]


And, if he lie not, must at least betray:
Who to the Dean, and silver bell can swear,
And sees at Canons what was never there;
Who reads, but with a lust to misapply,
Make Satire a Lampoon, and Fiction, Lie.
A lash like mine no honest man shall dread,
But all such babbling blockheads in his stead.

Let Sporus tremble A. What? that thing of silk,
Sporus, that mere white curd of Ass's milk 37
Satire or sense, alas! can Sporus feel?
Who breaks a butterfly upon a wheel?
P. Yet let me flap this bug with gilded wings,
This painted child of dirt, that stinks and stings;
Whose buzz the witty and the fair annoys,
Yet wit ne'er tastes, and beauty ne'er enjoys:
So well-bred spaniels civilly delight
In mumbling of the game they dare not bite.
Eternal smiles his emptiness betray,
As shallow streams run dimpling all the way.
Whether in florid impotence he speaks,
And, as the prompter breathes, the puppet squeaks ;
Or at the ear of Eve, familiar Toad,
Half froth”, half venom, spits himself abroad,
In puns, or politics, or tales, or lies,
Or spite, or smut, or rhymes, or blasphemies.




Who to the Dean, and silver bell, &c.] noble Lord. The character of Sporus followed Meaning the man who would have persuaded the in 1734; and another

attack in the satire, originally Duke of Chandos that Mr P. meant him in those called (Epilogue to the Satires) 1738 brought out circumstances ridiculed in the Epistle on Taste. a poem

The Difference between Verbal and Prac See Mr Pope's Letter to the Earl of Burlington tical Virtue exemplified, &c. by Lord H. The concerning this matter. P. [See note on Moral original hints for all the insinuations and insults Essays, Ep. I. v. 54.]

introduced by Pope into the character of Sporus ? [The original of this famous portrait was are, according to Mr Croker, to be found in John Lord Hervey, eldest surviving son of the Pulteney's Reply to a pamphlet against himself Earl of Bristol and

author of the Memoirs of the and Bolingbroke (1731) which he attributed to H. Reign of George II. At an early age he became The Reply brought about a duel. Mr Croker a great favourite at the court of the Prince and can find no evidence for the report that the Princess of Wales

at Richmond,

where Pope and rupture between Pope and Lady Mary was due his literary friends enjoyed high favour. He to the rivalry between himself and Hervey in married Miss


, whom Pope himself greatly her good graces.'] In the first edition, Pope admired. Afterwards he attached himself to had the name Paris' instead of Sporus.' Walpole's party and was appointed Vice Chamber- Bowles. lain to the King (George 11.). Ultimately he 3 [Lady M. W. M, humorously divided the attained to the office of Lord Privy Seal; and world into men, women and Herveys.'. As to after Walpole's fall continued to take an active his whiteness cf. 'Dunciad, iv. 104. His miserable part in politics, notwithstanding his miserable health necessitated a peculiar diet.) health, till his death in 1743. The cause of his * See Milton, Book iv. P. [In the first ediestrangement from Pope remains obscure; but the tion Pope explained this allusion by reference to first public offence was given by Pope, in allusions a passage in Lady M. W. M.'s lampoon against in his Miscellanies (1727) and the first edition of himself.] the Dunciad (1728). Then in 1734 appeared the 5 Half froth,] Alluding to those frothy er Imitation of the 2nd Satire of the ist Bk. of cretions, called by the people, Toad-spits, seen Horace, where Lord Hervey was twice

attacked in summer-time hanging upon plants, and emitted under the sobriquet of Lord Fanny, and his friend by yding insects which lie hid in the midst of Lady Mary Wortley Montagu was even more them, for their preservation, while in their help venomously aspersed. They retorted in verse

less state. Warburton. (Goethe's Mephisto and

prose; and Pope wrote his prose Letter to a philes is 'an abortion of mud and fire.')





His wit all see-saw, between that and this,
Now high, now low, now master up, now miss,
And he himself one vile Antithesis 1.
Amphibious thing! that acting either part,
The trifling head or the corrupted heart,
Fop at the toilet, flatt'rer at the board,
Now trips a Lady, and now struts a Lord.
Eve's tempter thus the Rabbins have exprest,
A Cherub's face, a reptile all the rest ;
Beauty that shocks you, parts that none will trust;
Wit that can creep, and pride that licks the dust.

Not Fortune's worshipper, nor fashion's fool,
Not Lucre's madman, nor Ambition's tool,
Not proud, nor servile;—be one Poet's praise,.
That, if he pleas’d, he pleas'd by manly ways:
That Flatt'ry, 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,
But stoop'd to_Truth?, and moraliz’d 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 reviv'd, the lie so oft o'erthrown“,
Th’ imputed trash, and dulness not his own5;
The morals blacken'd when the writings scape,
The libelld person, and the pictur'd shape;
Abuse, on all he lov'd, or lov'd him, spread",
A friend in exile, or a father, dead;
The whisper, that to greatness still too near,
Perhaps, yet vibrates on his Sov'REIGN's ear:-
Welcome for thee, fair Virtue! all the past;
For thee, fair Virtue! welcome ev'n the last !

A. But why insult the poor, affront the great ?





| The only trait perhaps of the whole [cha- ceived subscriptions for Shakespear, that he set racter of Sporus) that is not either false or over- his name to Mr Broome's verses, &c. which, charged, is Hervey's love for antithesis, which tho' publicly disproved were nevertheless shamePulteney had already ridiculed. ... His parlia- lessly repeated in the Libels, and even in that mentary speeches were, as Warton says, very called the Nobleman's Epistlé. P. far above florid impotence; but they were in 5 Th' imputed trash,] Such as profane Psalms, favour of the Ministry, and that was sufficiently Court-Poems, and other scandalous things, printoffensive to Pope.' Croker, Lord Hervey's Me- ed in his Name by Curll and others. P. moirs, Biogr. Notice.

6 Abuse, on all he lovd, or lov'd him, spread, ? But stoop'd to Truth,] The term is from Namely on the Duke of Buckingham, the Earl falconry; and the allusion to one of those un- of Burlington, Lord Bathurst, Lord Bolingbroke, tamed birds of spirit, which sometimes wantons Bishop Atterbury, Dr Swift, Dr Arbuthnot, Mr at large in airy circles before it regards, or stoops Gay, his Friends, his. Parents, and his very to, its prey. Warburton.

Nurse, aspersed in printed papers, by, James 3 [i.e. made his poetry Moral, in both senses Moore, G. Ducket, L. Welsted, Tho. Bentley, of the term.)

and other obscure persons. P. 4 the lie so oft o'erthrown] As, that he re

« AnteriorContinuar »