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Men in their loose unguarded hours they take,
What's Fame? a fancy'd life in others' breath, A thing beyond us, ev’n before our death. Just what you hear, you have, and what's unknown The same (my Lord) if Tully's, or your own. 240 All that we feel of it begins and ends In the small circle of our foes or friends; To all beside as much an empty shade An Eugene living, as a Cæsar dead; Alike or when, or where they shone, or shine,
245 Or on the Rubicon, or on the Rhine. A Wit's a feather, and a Chief a rod; An honest Man's the nobleft work of God. Fame but from death a' villain's name can save, As Justice tears his body from the grave;
250 When what t'oblivion better were refign'd, Is hung on high, to poison half mankind. All fame is foreign, but of true desert; Plays round the head, but comes not to the heart: One felf-approving hour whole years out-weighs 255 Of stupid starers, and of loud huzzas;
And more true joy Marcellus exil'd feels,
In Parts superior what advantage lies ?
260 'Tis but to know how little can be known; To see all others faults, and feel our own : Condemn'd in business or in arts to drudge, Without a second, or without a judge : Truths would you teach, or save a sinking land ? 265 All fear, none aid you, and few understand. Painful preheminence! yourself to view Above life's weakness, and its comforts too.
Bring then these blessings to a strict account; Make fair deductions ; fee to what they mount: 270 How much of other each is sure to cost ; How each for other of is wholly loft ; How inconsistent greater goods with these ; How sometimes life is risqu’d, and always ease : Think, and if still the things thy envy call, 275 Say, would'st thou be the Man to whom they fall ? To figh for ribbands if thou art fo filly, Mark how they grace Lord Umbra, or Sir Billy. Is yellow dirt the passion of thy life; Look but on Gripus, or on Gripus' wife. If Parts allure thee, think how Bacon shin'd, The wisest, brightest, meanest of mankind : Or ravish'd with the whistling of a Name, See Cromwell, damn'd to everlasting fame!
If all, united, thy ambition call,
Know then this truth (enough for Man to know)
Where only Merit constant pay receives,
320 Good, from each object, from each place acquir'd, For ever exercis'd, yet never tir’d; Never elated, while one man 's oppress’d; Never dejected, while another 's bleft; And where no wants, no wishes can remain,
325 Since but to wish more Virtue, is to gain.
See the fole bliss Heaven could on all bestow ! Which who but feels can talte, but thinks can know : Yet poor
with fortune, and with learning blind, The bad must miss, the good, untaught, will find : 330 Slave to no feet, who takes no private road, But looks through Nature, up to Nature's God : Pursues that Chain which links th' immense design, Joins heaven and earth, and mortal and divine;
Ev'n while it seems unequal to dispose,
Sees, that no Being any bliss can know,
335 But touches some above, and some below; Learns, from this union of the rising Whole, The first, last purpose of the human soul; And knows where Faith, Law, Morals, all began, All end, in Love of God, and Love of MAN. 340 For him alone, Hope leads from goal to goal, And opens still, and opens on his soul ; Till lengthen'd on to Faith, and unconfin’d, It pours the bliss that fills up all the mind. He sees, why Nature plants in Man alone
Şelf-love thus puth'd to social, to divine,
God loves from Whole to Parts : but human soul