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and therefore would look more deformedly, ill drest in it. I am far from assuming to myself to have fulfilled the duty of this weighty undertaking: but sure I am, there is nothing yet in our language (nor perhaps in any) that is in any degree answerable to the idea that I conceive of it. And I shall be ambitious of no other fruit from this weak and imperfect attempt of mine, but the opening of a way to the courage and industry of some other persons, who may be better able to perform it thoroughly and successfully.


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WHAT shall I do to be for ever known,
And make the age to come my own f
I shall, like beasts or common people, die,
Unless you write my elegy;
Whilst others great, by being born, are grown;
Their mothers’ labour, not their own.
In this scale gold, in th' other fame does lie,
The weight of that mounts this so high.
These men are Fortune's jewels, moulded bright;
Brought forth with their own fire and light:
If I, her vulgar stone, for either look,
Out of myself it must be strook.
Yet I must on; What sound is't strikes mine ear?
Sure I Fame's trumpet hear:
It sounds like the last trumpet; for it can
Raise up the buried man.
Unpast Alps stop me; but I’ll cut them all,
And march, the Muses' Hannibal.
Hence, all the flattering vanities that lay
Nets of roses in the way!
Hence, the desire of honours or estate,
And all that is not above Fate!
Hence, Love himself, that tyrant of my days!
Which intercepts my coming praise.

Come, my best friends, my books 1 and lead me on;
"Tis time that I were gone.
Welcome, great Stagyrite! and teach me now
All I was born to know:
Thy scholar's victories thou dost far out-do;
He conquer'd th’earth, the whole world you.
Welcome, learn'd Cicero! whose blest tongue and wit
Preserves Rome's greatness yet:
Thou art the first of Orators; only he
Who best can praise thee, next must be.
Welcome the Mantuan swan, Virgil the wise !
Whose verse walks highest, but not flies;
Who brought green Poesy to her perfect age,
And made that Art which was a Rage.
Tell me, ye mighty Three! what shall I do
To be like one of you ?
But you have climb'd the mountain's top, there sit
On the calm flourishing head of it,
And, whilst with wearied steps we upward go,
See us, and clouds, below.

O F W I T.
TELL me, O tell, what kind of thing is wit,
Thou who master art of it

For the first matter loves variety less;
Less women love’t, either in love or dress.

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