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Nor fondly deem the real fool confest,
Because blind Ridicule conceives a jeft:
Before whofe altar Virtue oft hath bled,
And oft a deftin'd victim fhall be led :
Lo Shaftesbury rears her high on Reason's throne,
And loads the Slave with honours not her own:
Big-fwoln with folly, as her fmiles provoke,
Prophaneness spawns, pert Dunces nurse the joke!
Come, let us join a while this tittering crew,
And own the Ideot Guide for once is true;
Deride our weak forefathers' musty rule,
Who therefore fmil'd, because they faw a Fool;
Sublimer logic now adorns our ifle,
We therefore fee a Fool, because we fmile.
Truth in her gloomy cave why fondly feek?
Lo, gay fhe fits in Laughter's dimpled cheek:
Contemps each furly Academic foe,
And courts the spruce Freethinker and the Beau.
Dædalian arguments but few can trace,
But all can read the language of grimace.
Hence mighty Ridicule's all-conquering hand
Shall work Herculean wonders through the Land:
Bound in the magic of her cobweb chain,
You, mighty Warburton, shall rage in vain,
In vain the trackless maze of Truth you scan,
And lend th' informing Clue to erring Man:
No more fhall Reason boast her power divine,
Her Base eternal shook by Folly's mine!
Truth's facred Fort, th' exploded laugh shall win;
And Coxcombs vanquish Berkeley by a grin.
But you, more fage, reject th' inverted rule,
That Truth is.e'er explor'd by Ridicule:
On truth, on falfehood, let her colours fall,
She throws a dazzling glare alike on all;
As the gay Prism but mocks the flatter'd eye,
And gives to every object every dye.
Beware the mad Adventurer: bold and blind
She hoifts her fail, and drives with every wind;
Deaf as the storm to finking Virtue's groan,
Nor heeds a Friend's deftruction, or her own.
Let clear-ey'd Reason at the helm prefide,
Bear to the wind, or ftem the furious tide;
Then Mirth may urge, when Reason can explore,
This point the way, that waft us glad to fhore.
Though distant Times may rise in Satire's page,
Yet chief 'tis her's to draw the prefent Age:
With Wisdom's luftre, Folly's fhade contrast,
And judge the reigning Manners by the past:
Bid Britain's Heroes (awful Shades!) arise,
And ancient Honour beam on modern Vice:
Point back to minds ingenuous, actions fair,
Till the Sons blush at what their Fathers were:
Ere yet 'twas beggary the great to trust;
Ere yet 'twas quite a folly to be just;
When low-born Sharpers only, dar'd a lye,
Or falfify'd the Card, or cogg'd the Dye;
Ere Lewdness the stain'd garb of Honour wore,
Or Chastity was carted for the Whore ;
Vice flutter'd, in the plumes of Freedom drefs'd;
Or public Spirit was the public jeft.
Be ever, in a juft expreffion, bold,
Yet ne'er degrade fair Satire to a Scold:
Let no unworthy mien her form debase,
But let her fmile, and let her frown with grace:
In mirth be temperate, temperate in her spleen;
Nor, while fhe preaches modefty, obscene.
Deep let her wound, not rankle to a fore,
Nor call his Lordship
her Grace a -:
The Mufe's charms refiftlefs then affail,
When wrapt in Irony's transparent veil :
Her beauties half-conceal'd the more furprize,
And keener luftre fparkles in her eyes.
Then be your line with fharp encomiums grac'd:
Style Clodius honourable, Bufa chafte.
Dart not on Folly an indignant eye :
Who e'er discharg'd Artillery on a Fly?
Deride not Vice: Abfurd the thought and vain,
To bind the Tiger in fo weak a chain.
Nay more when flagrant crimes your laughter move,
The Knave exults: to fmile, is to approve.
The Mufe's labour then fuccefs fhall crown,
When Folly feels her smile, and Vice her frown.
Know next what measures to each Theme belong, And fuit your thoughts and numbers to your fong: On wing proportion'd to your quarry rise, And stoop to earth, or foar among the skies. Thus when a modish folly you rehearse, Free the expreffion, fimple be the verse. In artless numbers paint th' ambitious Peer, That mounts the box, and fhines a Charioteer :
In ftrains familiar fing the midnight toil
Of Camps and Senates difciplin'd by Hoyle;
Patriots and Chiefs, whofe deep defign invades,
And carries off the captive King-of Spades!
Let Satire here in milder vigour shine,
And gayly graceful sport along the line;
Bid courtly Fashion quit her thin pretence,
And fmile each Affectation into fenfe.
Not fo when Virtue by her Guards betray'd,
Spurn'd from her Throne, implores the Mufe's aid;
When crimes, which erft in kindred darkness lay, 295
Rife frontlefs, and infult the eye of day;
Indignant Hymen veils his hallow'd fires,
And white-rob'd Chastity with tears retires;
When rank Adultery on the genial bed
Hot from Cocytus rears her baleful head :
When private Faith and public Trust are sold,
And Traitors barter Liberty for gold:
When fell Corruption dark and deep, like fate,
Saps the foundation of a finking State :
When Giant-Vice and Irreligion rife,
On mountain'd falfehoods to invade the Skies:
Then warmer numbers glow through Satire's page,
And all her fmiles are darken'd into rage:
On eagle-wing the gains Parnaffus' height,
Not lofty Epic foars a nobler flight:
Then keener indignation fires her eye;
Then flash her lightnings, and her thunders fly;
Wide and more wide her flaming bolts are hurl'd,
Till all her wrath involves the guilty World.
Yet Satire oft affumes a gentler mien,
And beam's on Virtue's friends a fmile ferene !
She wounds reluctant; pours her balm with joy;
Glad to commend where worth attracts her eye.
But chief, when Virtue, Learning, Arts decline,
She joys to fee unconquer'd merit shine;
Where bursting glorious, with departing ray,
True Genius gilds the close of Britain's Day:
With joys the fees the stream of Roman art
From Murray's tongue flow purer to the heart:
Sees Yorke to fame, ere yet to Manhood known,
And just to every virtue, but his own;
Hears unftain'd Cam with generous pride proclaim
A Sage's, Critic's, and a Poet's name :
Beholds, where Widcombe's happy hills ascend,
Each orphan'd Art and Virtue find a friend :
To Hagley's honour'd shade directs her view;
And culls each flower to form a Wreath for you.
But tread with cautious ftep this dangerous ground,
Beset with faithlefs precipices round:
Truth be your guide: disdain Ambition's call;
And if you fall with Truth, you greatly fall.
'Tis Virtue's native luftre that must shine;
The Poet can but fet it in his line:
And who unmov'd with laughter can behold
A fordid pebble meanly grac'd with gold?
Let real Merit then adorn your lays,
For Shame attends on prostituted praise :
And all your wit, your most distinguish'd art,
But makes us grieve you want an honest heart.