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These, were my breast inspir'd with equal flame,
Like them in beauty, fhould be like in fame.
Here hills and vales, the woodland and the plain,
Here earth and water seem to ftrive again;
Not Chaos-like together crufh'd and bruis'd,
But, as the world, harmonioufly confus'd:
Where order in variety we see,
And where, tho' all things differ, all agree.
Here waving groves a chequer'd scene display,
And part admit, and part exclude the day;
As fome coy nymph her lover's warm addrefs
Nor quite indulges, nor can quite repress.
There, interfpers'd in lawns and op'ning glades,
Thin trees arife that shun each other's fhades.
Here in full light the ruffet plains extend:
There wrapt in clouds the blueifh hills afcend.
Ev'n the wild heath displays her purple dyes,
And 'midft the defart fruitful fields arife,
That crown'd with tufted trees and springing corn,
Like verdant ifles the fable waste adorn.
Let India boast her plants, nor envy
The weeping amber or the balmy tree,
While by our oaks the precious loads are born,
And realms commanded which those trees adorn.
VER. 25. Originally thus ;
Why fhould I fing our better funs or air,
Whofe vital draughts prevent the leach's care,
While thro' fresh fields th' enliv'ning odours breathe,
Or fpread with vernal blooms the purple heath? P.
Not proud Olympus yields a nobler fight,
Tho' Gods affembled grace his tow'ring height,
Than what more humble mountains offer here, 35
Where, in their bleffings, all thofe Gods appear.
See Pan with flocks, with fruits Pomona crown'd,
Here blushing Flora paints th' enamel'd ground,
Here Ceres' gifts in waving prospect stand,
And nodding tempt the joyful reapers hand; 40
Rich Industry fits smiling on the plains,
And peace and plenty tell, a STUART reigns.
Not thus the land appear'd in ages paft,
A dreary defert, and a gloomy waste,
To favage beafts and favage laws a prey,
And kings more furious and severe than they ;
Who claim'd the fkies, difpeopled air and floods,
The lonely lords of empty wilds and woods:
Cities laid waste, they ftorm'd the dens and caves,
(For wiser brutes were backward to be slaves.)
What could be free, when lawless beasts obey'd,
And ev❜n the elements a Tyrant fway'd?
VER. 33. Not proud Olympus, etc.] Sir J. Denham, in his Cooper's Hill, had faid,
Than which a nobler weight no mountain bears,
But Atlas only, which fupports the spheres.
The comparison is childish, for this ftory of Atlas being fabulous, leaves no room for a compliment.
has been more artful (though he employs as fabulous a circumftance in his comparison) by fhewing in what the nobility of the hills of Windfor-Foreft confifts
Where, in their bleffings, all those God's appear, etc..
not to speak of the beautiful turn of wit. VER. 45: Savage laws] The Foreft Laws.
VER. 49. Originally thus in the MS.
In vain kind seasons fwell'd the teeming grain,
Soft show'rs diftill'd, and funs grew warm in vain;
The swain with tears his fruftrate labour yields, 55
And famifh'd dies amidst his ripen'd fields.
What wonder then, a beast or fubject slain
Were equal crimes in a defpotic reign?
Both doom'd alike, for sportive Tyrants bled,
But while the fubject starv'd, the beaft was fed. 60
Proud Nimrod first the bloody chace began,
A mighty hunter, and his prey was man :
Our haughty Norman boasts that barb'rous name,
And makes his trembling flaves the royal game.
The fields are ravifh'd from th' induftrious fwains,
From men their cities, and from Gods their fanes :
The levell'd towns with weeds lie cover'd o'er;
The hollow winds thro' naked temples roar;
Round broken columns clasping ivy twin'd;
O'er heaps of ruin ftalk'd the stately hind;
VER. 65. The fields are ravish'd, etc.] Alluding to the deftruction made in the New Forest, and the tyrannies exercised there by William I. P.
From towns laid wafte, to dens and caves they ran (For who first stoop'd to be a flave was man.)
No wonder favages or fubjects flain -
But fubjects ftarv'd while favages were fed.
It was originally thus, but the word favages is not pro perly applied to_beafts but to men; which occafioned the alteration.
VER. 65. The fields were ravish'd from the induftrions Fwains, From men their cities, and from Gods their fanes :)
The fox obfcene to gaping tombs retires,
And favage howlings fill the facred quires.
Aw'd by his Nobles, by his Commons curst,
Th'Oppreffor rul'd tyrannic where he durft,
Stretch'd o'er the Poor and Church his iron rod, 75
And ferv'd alike his Vaffals and his God.
Whom ev'n the Saxon spar'd and bloody Dane,
The wanton victims of his fport remain.
But fee, the man who spacious regions gave
A wafte for beafts, himself deny'd a grave!
Stretch'd on the lawn his second hope survey,
At once the chaser, and at once the
Lo Rufus, tugging at the deadly dart,
Bleeds in the foreft like a wounded hart.
Succeeding monarchs heard the subjects cries, 85 Nor faw difpleas'd the peaceful cottage rife.
VER. 80. himself deny'd a grave!] The place of his interment at Caen in Normandy was claimed by a gentleman as his inheritance, the moment his fervants were going to put him in his tomb: fo that they were obliged to compound with the owner before they could perform the King's obfequies.
VER. 81. fecond bope] Richard, fecond fon of William the Conqueror.
VER. 72. And wolves with howling fill, etc.
The Author thought this an error, wolves not being common in England at the time of the Conqueror.
Templa adimit divis, fora civibys, arva coloris, an old monkish writer, I forget who. P.
Then gath'ring flocks on unknown mountains fed,
O'er fandy wilds were yellow harvests spread,
The forefts wonder'd at th' unusual grain,
And secret transport touch'd the confcious swain.
Fair Liberty, Britannia's Goddess, rears
Her chearful head, and leads the golden years.
Ye vig'rous fwains! while youth ferments your blood,
And purer fpirits fwell the sprightly flood,
Now range the hills, the gameful woods befet, 95
Wind the fhrill horn, or spread the waving net.
When milder autumn fummer's heat fucceeds,
And in the new-fhorn field the partridge feeds,
Before his lord the ready spaniel bounds,
Panting with hope, he tries the furrow'd grounds;
But when the tainted gales the game betray,
Couch'd close he lies, and meditates the prey:
Oh may no more a foreign mafter's rage,
With wrongs yet legal, curfe a future age
Still fpread, fair Liberty! thy heav'nly wings,
Breath plenty on the fields, and fragrance on the
When yellow autumn fummer's heat fucceeds,
And into wine the purple harvest bleeds *;
The partridge feeding in the new-fhorn fields,
Both morning sports and ev'ning pleasures yields.
*Perhaps the Author thought it not allowable to defcribe the fea fon by a circumftance not proper to our climate, the vintage. P
VER. 89. Miraturque novas frondes et non fua poma.