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Love, Hope, and Joy, fair Pleasure's smiling train,
Hate, Fear, and Grief, the family of Pain,
These unix'd with art, and to due bounds confin’d,
Make and maintain the balance of the Mind: 120
The lights and shades, whose well accorded strife
Gives all the strength and colour of our life.
Pleasures are ever in our hands or eyes;
And when, in act, they cease, in prospect, rise:
Present to grasp, and future still to find, 125
The whole employ of body and of mind.
All spread their charms, but charm not all alike;
On diff'rent senses diff'rent objects strike;



Ver. 127. All spread their charms, &c.] Though all the Paffions have their turn in swaying the determinations of the mind, yet every Man hath one Master Passion that at length stifles or absorbs all the rest. The fact he illu. strates at large in his epistle to Lord Cobham. Here (from ver. 126 to 149.) he giveth usthe cause of it. Those Pleasures or Goods, which are the objects of the Passions, affect the mind by striking on the senses; but, as through the formation of the organs of our frame, every man hath some one sense stronger and more acute than others, the object which strikes that stronger and acuter sense, whatever it be, will be the object most desired; and consequently, the pursuit of that will be the ruling passion. That the difference of force in this ruling passion shall, at firft, perhaps, be very small, or even imperceptible; but Nature, Habit, Imagination, Wit, nay, even Reason itself shall aslift its growth, till it hath at length drawn and converted every other into itself. All which is delivered

Hence diff'rent passions more or less inflame,
As strong or weak the organs of the frame;

130 And hence one Master Passion in the breast, Like Aaron's ferpent, swallows up the rest.

As Man, perhaps, the moment of his breath, Receives the lurking principle of death; The young disease, that inust subdue at length, 135 Grows with his growth, and strengthens with his

So, cast and mingled with his very frame,
The Mind's disease, its RULING Passion came;
Each vital humour which should feed the whole,
Soon flows to this, in body and in soul: 140
Whatever warms the heart, or fills the head,
As the mind opens, and its functions spread,
Imagination piies her dang’rous art,
And pours it all


peccant part.

NOT ES. in a strain of Poetry so wonderfully fublime, as suspends, for a while, the ruling pasion, in every Reader, and engrosses his whole Admiration.

This naturally leads the poet to lament the weakness and insufficiency of human reason; and the purpose he had in so doing, was plainly to intimate the neceslity of a more perfect dispensation to Mankind.

VER. 133. As Man, perhaps, &c.] “ Antipater Sidonius “ Poeta omnibus annis uno die natalitantum corripiebatur febre, et eo consumptus eft, fatis longa senecta.

Plin, N. H. 1. vii. This Antipater was in the times of Crassus, and is celebrated for the quickness of his parts by Cicero.

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Nature its mother, Habit is its nurse;

145 Wit, Spirit, Faculties but make it worse

; Reason itself but gives it edge and powi'r: As Heav'n's bleit beam turns vinegar more fowre. We, wretched subjects tho'to lawful sway, In this weak queen, fome fav’rite still obey: 150 Ah! if she lend not arms as well as rules, What can lhe inore than tell us we are fools? Teach us to mourn our Nature, not to mend, A sharp accuser, but a helpless friend ! Or from a judge turn pleader, to persuade 155 The choice we make, or justify it made;

NOTES. Ver. 147. Reafon itself, &c.] The poet, in some other of his epifles, gives example of the doctrine and precepts here delivered. Thus, in that of the use of Riches, he has illustrated this truth in the character of Cotta :

Old Cotta sham'd his fortune and his birth,
Yet was not Cotta void of wit or worth.
What tho' (the use of barb'rous fpits forgot)
His kitchen vy'd in coolnefs with his grot?
If Cotta-liy'd on pulse, it was no more,

Than bramins, faints, and fages did before. VER. 149. We, wretchtd subjects, &c.] St. Paul himself did not chuse to employ other arguments, when disposed to give us the highest idea of the usefulness of Christianity (Rom. vii.) But, it may be, the poet finds a remedy in Natural Religion. Far from it. He here leaves reason unrelieved What is this then, but an intimation that we ought to feek for a cure in that religion, which only dares profess to give it?

Proud of an easy conquest all along,
She but removes weak pasions from the strong:
So, when small humours gather to a gout,
The doctor fancies he has driven them out. 160

Yes, Nature's road must ever be preferr’d:
Reason is here no guide but still a guard;
'Tis her’s to rectify, not overthrow,
And treat this passion more as friend than foe:
A mightier Pow'r the ftrong direction sends, 165
And sev'ral Men impels to fev'ral ends:


VER. 163. 'Tis her's to rectify, &c.] The meaning of this precept is, That as the ruling Pallion is implanted by Nature; it is Reason's office to regulate, direct, and restrain, but not to overthrow it. To regulate the passion of Avarice, for instance, into a parsimonious dispensation of the public revenues; to direct the passion of Love, whose object is worth and beauty,

To the first good, first perfect, and first fair, To naróv ' ayatòr, as his master Plato advises ; and to reftrain Spleen to a contempt and hatred of Vice. This is what the poet meant, aud what every unprejudic'd man could not but see he must needs mean by RECTIFYING THE MASTER PASSION, though he had not confined us to this sense in the reason he gives of his precept in these words:

A mightier Pow'r the strong direction sends,

And sev'ral Men impels to sev'ral ends: For what ends are they which God impels to, but the ends of Virtue ?


Like varying winds, by other passions tost,
This drives them constant to a certain coast.
Let pow'r or knowledge, gold or glory, please,
Or (oft more strong than all) the love of eafe ; 170
Thro' life 'tis follow'd, ev'n at life's expence;
The merchant's toil, the fage's indolence;
The monk’s humility, the hero's pride,
All, all alike, find reason on their side.

Th’ Eternal Art educing good from ill, 175
Grafts on this passion our best Principle :
'Tis thus the Mercury of Man is fix’d,
Strong grows the Virtue with his Nature mix'd;
The dross cements what else were too refin'd,
And in one int'reft body acts with mind. 180

As fruits, ungrateful to the planter's care, On savage stocks inserted, learn to bear;


Ver. 175. Tb' Eternal Art, &c.] The author, throughout these epistles, has explained his meaning to be, that vice is, in its own nature, the greatest of evils; and produced by the abuse of man's free-will,

What makes all physical and moral ill?

There deviates Nature, and here wanders will: but that God, in his infinite goodness, deviously turns the natural bias of its malignity to the advancement of human happiness: a doctrine very different from the Fable of the Bees, which impiously and foolishly supposes it to have that natural tendency.

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