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*Our father's praised rank venison. You suppose Perhaps, young men! our fathers had no nose. Not so a buck was then a week's repast, And 'twas their point, I ween, to make it last; More pleased to keep it till their friends could come, Than eat the sweetest by themselves at home. 'Why had not I in those good times my birth, Ere coxcomb-pies or coxcombs were on earth? Unworthy he, the voice of fame to hear, "That sweetest music to an honest ear, (For 'faith, Lord Fanny! you are in the wrong, The world's good word is better than a song,) Who has not learn'd, "fresh sturgeon and ham-pie Are no rewards for want, and infamy! When luxury has lick'd up all thy pelf,

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Cursed by thy neighbours, thy trustees, thyself, To friends, to fortune, to mankind a shame, Think how posterity will treat thy name; And buy a rope, that future times may tell Thou hast at least bestow'd one penny well. 110 "Right," cries his Lordship," for a rogue in need

To have a taste, is insolence indeed :

In me 'tis noble, suits my birth and state,
My wealth unwieldy, and my heap too great.”
Then, like the sun, let 'bounty spread her ray, 115
And shine that superfluity away.

Oh impudence of wealth! with all thy store,
How darest thou let one worthy man be poor?
Shall half the 'new-built churches round thee fall?
Make keys, build bridges, or repair Whitehall: 120

O magnus posthac inimicis risus! Uterne "Ad casus dubios fidet sibi certiùs? hic, qui Pluribus assuêrit mentem corpusque superbum? An qui, contentus parvo metuensque futuri, In pace, ut sapiens, aptârit idonea bello? 'Quò magis his credas: puer hunc ego parvus

Ofellum

Integris opibus novi non latiùs usum,

W

Quâm nunc accisis. Videas, metato in agello,

NOTES.

Ver. 122. As M***o's was, &c.] I think this light stroke of satire ill placed; and that it hurts the dignity of the preceding morality. Horace was very serious, and properly so, when he said:

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Non aliquid patriæ tanto emetiris acervo?"

He remembered, and hints with just indignation at, those luxurious Patricians of his old party; who, when they had agreed to establish a fund in the cause of freedom, under the conduct of Brutus, could never be persuaded to withdraw from their expensive pleasures what was sufficient for the support of so great a cause. He had prepared his apology for this liberty, in the preceding line, where he pays a fine compliment to Augustus!

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which oblique panegyric the imitator has very properly turned into a direct stroke of satire. Warburton.

Ver. 122. not at five per cent.] He could not forbear this stroke against a nobleman, whom he had been for many years accustomed to hear abused by his most intimate friends. A certain parasite, who thought to please Lord Bolingbroke by ridiculing the avarice of the Duke of M., was stopped short by that Lord, who said: "He was so very great a man, that I forgot he had that vice." Warton.

Ver. 122. five per cent.] Among the papers of the Orford collection, is a curious note to Sir Robert Walpole, when Secretary

at

Or to thy country let that heap be lent,

As M***o's was, but not at five per cent.

t

Who thinks that fortune cannot change her

mind,

Prepares a dreadful jest for all mankind.

125

And "who stands safest? tell me, is it he
That spreads and swells in puff'd prosperity,
Or blest with little, whose preventing care
In peace provides fit arms against a war?
Thus BETHEL spoke, who always speaks his
thought,

And always thinks the very thing he ought: 130
His equal mind I copy what I can,

And as I love, would imitate the man.

In South-Sea days not happier, when surmised
The lord of thousands, than if now excised;
In forest planted by a father's hand,

Than in five acres now of rented land.

NOTES.

135

at War, from the Duke of Marlborough, in which he says, he has a hundred thousand pounds he does not know how to dispose of, and desires Walpole to put it out for him. From Mr. Coxe.

Bowles.

Ver. 129. Thus BETHEL spoke,] This speech of Ofellus continues in the original to the end of this Satire. Pope has taken all that follows out of the mouth of Bethel, and speaks entirely in his own person. It is impossible not to be pleased with the picture. of his way of life, and the account he gives of his own table, in lines that express common and familiar objects with dignity and elegance. Warton.

Ver. 133. In South-Sea days not happier, &c.] Mr. Pope had South-Sea stock, which he did not sell out. It was valued at between twenty and thirty thousand pounds when it fell.

Warburton.

Cum pecore et gnatis, fortem mercede colonum,
Non ego, narrantem, temerè edi luce profestâ
Quidquam, præter *olus fumosæ cum pede pernæ.
Ac mihi seu 'longum post tempus venerat hospes,
Sive operum vácuo gratus conviva per imbrem
Vicinus; bene erat, non piscibus urbe petitis,
Sed pullo atque hædo: tum pensilis uva secundas
"Et nux ornabat mensas, cum duplice ficu.
Post hoc ludus erat 'culpâ potare magistrâ :
Ac venerata Ceres, ita culmo surgeret alto,
Explicuit vino contractæ seria frontis.

Sæviat atque novos moveat Fortuna tumultus!
Quantum hinc imminuet? quanto aut ego parciùs,

aut vos,

O pueri, nituistis, ut huc novus incola venit?

NOTES.

Ver. 134. than if now excised;] Pope naturally joined the violent cry against the Excise, with the party in opposition to Sir R. Walpole. Pulteney exclaimed upon another occasion:

"There is another thing impending! a monstrous project! such a project as has struck terror into the minds of most gentlemen of this House, and into the minds of all men without doors, who have any regard to the happiness, or to the constitution, of their country. I mean THAT MONSTER, THE EXCISE! that PLAN OF ARBITRARY POWER, which is expected to be laid before the House in the present Parliament." Coxe's Memoirs, chap. 41. Bowles. Ver. 136. Than in five acres] He had a lease of his house and gardens at Twickenham for his life. The lease was purchased of a Mrs. Vernon; hence the expressions:

can it concern one,

Whether the name belong to Pope, or Vernon ?

Bowles.

Ver. 152. double tax'd,] An additional tax was laid on the estates of Papists and nonjurors.

ne.] A constant topic of declama

Ver. 154. standing armies came. tion against the Court, at this time.

Warton.

Content with little, I can piddle here

140

On 'brocoli and mutton round the year;
But 'ancient friends (though poor, or out of play)
That touch my bell, I cannot turn away.
'Tis true, no 'turbots dignify my boards,
But gudgeons, flounders, what my Thames affords;
To Hounslow-heath I point, and Bansted-down,
Thence comes your mutton, and these chicks my

a

own;

From yon old walnut-tree a shower shall fall; 145
And grapes, long lingering on my only wall,

And figs from standard and espalier join;
The devil is in you if you cannot dine;

Then "cheerful healths, (your mistress shall have place,)

And, what's more rare, a poet shall say grace. 150

Fortune not much of humbling me can boast; Though double tax'd, how little have I lost? My life's amusements have been just the same, Before and after standing armies came.

My lands are sold, my father's house is gone; 155 I'll hire another's; is not that my own,

And yours, my friends? through whose free opening gate

None comes too early, none departs too late ;
For I, who hold sage Homer's rule the best,
Welcome the coming, speed the going guest. 160

NOTES.

Ver. 160. Welcome the coming,] From Homer, Od. b. 15, v. 74. χρη ξεινον παρεονία φιλειν, εθελονία δε πεμπειν. Theocritus has finely touched this subject in the sixteenth Idyl

lium.

Warton.

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