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When firft the triumphs of your fex were fung By thofe old poets, beauty was but young, And few admir'd the native red and white, Till poets drefs'd them up to charm the fight; e, So beauty took on truft, and did

engage

For fums of praises till she came to age.
But this long-growing debt to poetry

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You juftly, madam, have discharg'd to me,
When your applause and favor did infuse
New life to my condemn'd and dying mufe.

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TH

HE blaft of common cenfure could I fear, Before your play my name should not appear; For 'twill be thought, and with fome color too, I pay the bribe I first receiv'd from you; That mutual vouchers for our fame we ftand, And play the game into each other's hand; And as cheap pen'orths to ourselves afford, As Beffus and the brothers of the sword,

/

Such libels private men may well endure,
When states and kings themselves are not fecure :
For ill men, confcious of their inward guilt,
Think the best actions on by-ends are built.
And yet my filence had not 'scap'd their spite,
Then, envy had not suffer'd me to write ;
For, fince I could not ignorance pretend,
Such merit I must envy or commend.
So
many candidates there ftand for wit,
A place at court is scarce fo hard to get :
In vain they crowd each other at the door;
For e'en reverfions are all begg'd before:
Defert, how known foe'er, is long delay'd;
And then too fools and knaves are better pay'd.
Yet, as fome actions bear fo great a name,

That courts themselves are juft, for fear of shame;
So has the mighty merit of your play
Extorted praise, and forc'd itself away.
'Tis here as 'tis at fea; who fartheft goes,
Or dares the moft, makes all the reft his foes.
Yet when fome virtue much outgrows the rest,
It shoots too faft, and high, to be expreft;
As his heroic worth ftruck envy dumb,
Who took the Dutchman, and who cut the boom.

Such

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Such praise is yours, while you the paffions move,

That 'tis no longer feign'd, 'tis real love,
Where nature triumphs over wretched art;
We only warm the head, but you the heart.
Always you warm; and if the rifing year,
As in hot regions, brings the fun too near,
'Tis but to make your fragrant fpices blow,
Which in our cooler climates will not grow.

They only think you animate your theme

With too much fire, who are themselves all phlegm.
Prizes would be for lags of floweft pace,
Were cripples made the judges of the race.
Despise those drones, who praife, while they accuse
The too much vigor of your youthful muse.
That humble style which they your virtue make,
Is in your power; you need but ftoop and take.
Your beauteous images must be allow'd

By all, but fome vile poets of the crowd.
But how should any fign-poft dawber know
The worth of Titian or of Angelo ?
Hard features every bungler can command;
To draw true beauty fhews a master's hand.

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EPISTLE the FIFTH.

TO THE

EARL of ROSCOMMON,

ΟΝ HIS

Excellent Effay on TRANSLATED VERSE.

W

Hether the fruitful Nile, or Tyrian shore, The feeds of arts and infant science bore, Tis fure the noble plant, tranflated first, Advanc'd its head in Grecian gardens nurft. The Grecians added verfe: their tuneful tongue Made nature first, and nature's God their fong. Nor ftopt tranflation here: for conqu❜ring Rome, With Grecian fpoils, brought Grecian numbers home;

Enrich'd by thofe Athenian mufes more,
Than all the vanquish'd world could yield before.
"Till barb'rous nations, and more barb'rous times,
Debas'd the majefty of verfe to rhimes;
Those rude at firft: a kind of hobbling profe,
That limp'd along, and tinkled in the close.
But Italy, reviving from.the trance
Of Vandal, Goth, and Monkish ignorance,

With pauses, cadence, and well-vowell'd words,

And all the graces a good ear affords,
Made rhyme an art, and Dante's polish'd
Restor❜d a filver, not a golden age.
Then Petrarch follow'd, and in him we fee,

ہم

page

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What rhyme improv'd in all its height can be:
At best a pleasing sound, and fair barbarity.
The French purfu'd their steps; and Britain, last,
In manly sweetness all the rest surpass'd.

The wit of Greece, the gravity of Rome,

Appear exalted in the British loom:

The Muses empire is reftor'd again,

In Charles his reign, and by Rofcommon's pen.
Yet modeftly he does his work furvey,

e And calls a finish'd Poem an Effay;

For all the needful rules are scatter'd here ;
Truth smoothly told, and pleasantly severe;
So well is art difguis'd, for nature to appear.
Nor need those rules to give translation light:
His own example is a flame fo bright;
That he who but arrives to copy well,
Unguided will advance, unknowing will excel:
Scarce his own Horace could fuch rules ordain,
Or his own Virgil fing a nobler ftrain.

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