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Perish the thought! hence visionary fear!

Phoebus, or Phaedrus, shall old Whitehead cheer. Fashion! behold their gift-be this preferr'd!" —He said—and proudly brandish'd the Goat's beard.

In just degree, the Goddess hails their toils,
Bows for a distich, for a stanza smiles,
Familiar nods an Epigram attend,

An Ode will almost rank you as a Friend:
A softer name fond Elegy bestows,

But nearest to her Heart a Sonnet flows.

Behold, one dunce, by her profound decree, Supreme Dictator of the Coterie :

Prim, plausible, oracular, and sage,


The native Texier of the wond'ring age!
The solemn coxcomb never talks his frown
Is instant obloquy, his smile renown:
Words would degrade this literary God:
He gives his fiat with a silent nod.

Another's fame more gentle honors tell;
Familiar Critic of each bright Ruelle !
Soon as the orient beam of Beauty's ray
Discloses, just at noon, the dawn of day;
And Devon wakes !" and Piccadilly's gay;"
Perch'd at her Grace's toilet, Minim sits,

The little Scholiast of the Female Wits.


Tir'd of conjecture, and perplex'd with doubt,

To him they fly-to make a riddle out;


To pierce a paragraph's mysterious vail;
And eke out Scandal's hesitating tale..

With conscious pride the flippant Witling shares
His motley task of miscellaneous cares ;
Expounds Charades, thro' close detraction pryes, 50
Construes initials, and the blanks supplies.
And oft with varied art, his thoughts digress
On deeper themes-the documents of dress:
With nice discernment, to each stile of face
Adapt a ribbon, or suggest a lace;
O'er Granby's cap bid loftier feathers float,
And add new bows to Devon's petticoat.-

Others, resolv'd more ample fame to boast,
Plant their own Laurels in the Morning Post.
Soft Evening dews refresh the tender green : 16 ›
Pass but a Month, it swells each Magazine;
Till the luxuriant boughs so wildly shoot,"
The Annual Register transplants the root-
But these are spurious honors, not the true,
Who shall obtain The Wreath of Fashion—who?

The wily Charles long florish'd o'er the rest; Expert to argue, or to flatter best:

For, born a Disputant, a Sophist bred,


His Nurse he silenc'd, and his Tutor led:
But hail'd, with filial duty's pious sense, -17°
His Sire's best gift-delusive Eloquence
That art to cherish, with a lavish pride
His kindred Genius ev'ry pow'r supplied:

Persuasion's breath-to swell the Statesman's sail:
Or, if his fancy veer, retard the gale.

Soft words to mollify the Miser's breast,
And lull relenting Usury to rest.

Bright beams of wit-to still the raging Jew;
His black ning mists dissolve to golden dew,
Teach him to dun no more, and lend anew!

Here, Charles his native eloquence refin'd;
Pleas'd at the Toilet, in the Senate shin'd:
And North approv'd-and Amoret look'd kind.
Till, rashly wand'ring in Ambition's chase,
He lost at once his laurels and—his place.

At Fashion's shrine, behold a gentler Bard Gaze on the mystic Vase with fond regard→→ But see, Thalia checks the doubtful thought.


"Can'st thou (she cries) with sense, with genius


Can'st thou to Fashion's tyranny submit,

Secure in native, independent wit ?

Or yield to Sentiment's insipid rule,

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By Taste, be Fancy chac'd thro' Scandal's School?
Ah, no!-be Sheridan's the comic page;

Or let me fly with Garrick from the Stage."

Haste then, my Friend, (for let me boast that name) Haste to the op'ning path of genuine Fame : Or, if thy Muse a gentler theme pursue, ple Ah, 'tis to Love, and thy Eliza, due!

For sure the sweetest lay she well may claim, 200
Whose soul breathes harmony o'er all her frame;
While wedded Love, with ray serenely clear,
Beams from her eye, as from its proper sphere.

-But thou, for whom the Muse first tun'd the


Vot'ry of Sentiment, do thou aspire,

With studious toil, to win that bright reward,
The Wreath of Fashion for her chosen Bard.
Not rudely wove with Nature's short-liv'd store,
(The simple meed her humble Poet wore)

But spruce and trim, as suits thy kindred pow'rs,
With mimic buds, and artificial flow'rs.


Blest Wreath! whose flowrets dread no vulgar doom

Of fading hues, or transitory bloom;

Above the fleeting pride of Flora's day,

Thy vivid foliage never can decay!

There, violets, pinks, and lilies of the vale,

Despise the sultry beam, or chilly gale;

There, fix'd as Archer's rouge, the mimic rose,

With persevering blush, for ever glows;

There, myrtles bloom, that shame the Cyprian fields;

There, bays, immortal as Parnassus yields.—


Triumphant Art! Let vanquish'd Nature mourn

Her lost simplicity, o'er Shenstone's urn:
With sympathetic sorrows, on his tomb
Let the pale primrose shed its wild perfume;

The cowslip droop its head; and all around

The with'ring violet strew the hallow'd groundFor, mute the Swain, and cold the hand, that wove Their simple sweets to wreaths of artless loveSimplicity with Shenstone died!


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