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Yet sure the best are most severely fated,
For Fools are only laugh'd at, Wits are hated.
Blockheads with Reason Men of Sense abhor;
But Fool 'gainst Fool is barb'rous Civil War.
Why on all Authors then should Critics fall,
Since some have writ, and shown no Wit at all ?
Condemn a Play of theirs, and they evade it,
Cry, “Damn not us, but damn the French who made it." 10
By running Goods, these graceless Owlers? gain;
These are the Rules of France, the Plots of Spain:
But Wit, like Wine, from happier climates brought,
Dash'd by these Rogues, turns English common Draught.
They pali Molière's and Lopez'? sprightly strain,
And teach dull Harlequins to grin in vain.

How shall our Author hope a gentler Fate,
Who dares most impudently not translate?
It had been civil in these ticklish times,
To fetch his Fools and Knaves from foreign Climes,
Spaniards and French abuse to the World's End,
But spare old England, lest you hurt a Friend.
If any Fool is by our Satire bit,
Let him hiss loud, to show you all, he's hit.
Poets make Characters, as Salesmen Clothes,
We take no Measure of your Fops and Beaus,
But here all Sizes and all Shapes you meet,
And fit yourselves, like Chaps $ in Monmouth-street.

Gallants ! look here, this Fools-cap has an Air, Shows a cap
Goodly and smart, with Ears of Issachar.

with ears.
Let no one Fool engross it, or confine,
A common Blessing! now 'tis yours, now mine.
But Poets in all Ages had the Care
To keep this Cap, for such as will, to wear,
Our Author has it now, (for every Wit
Of Course resign'd it to the next that writ:)
And thus upon the Stage 'tis fairly thrown;

Flings down the
Let him that takes it, wear it as his own.

L cap, and exit.

35

PROLOGUE DESIGNED FOR MR D'URFEY'S 5

LAST PLAY.
[First published in Pope and Swift's Miscellanies.]
CROWN old in Rhyme, 'twere barbarous to discard
w Your persevering, unexhausted Bard :

1 [i.e. smugglers: prop. woollers.)

To club a Farce by Tripartite-Indenture: 2 |Lopez de Vega, the most prolific of Spanish But let them share their dividend of praise dramatists. ]

And their own Fools-cap wear, instead of Bays. 3 (Cheap salesmen.)

Which attack procured him a place in the Dun4 ic. Johnson, in the Prologue to his Sultana ciad. Geneste's Account of the Stage, &c. 11. s, thus referred to this exit and the farce:

p. 598.] *Some wags have been, who boldly durst adven- 5 [As to D'Urfey or Durfey, see p. 65.]

ture

Damnation follows Death in other men;
But your damn'd Poet lives, and writes again.
Th' adventurous Lover is successful still,
Who strives to please the Fair against her Will:
Be kind, and make him in his Wishes easy,
Who in your own Despite has strove to please ye.
He scorn'd to borrow from the Wits of yore;
But ever writ, as none e'er writ before.
You Modern Wits, should each man bring his Claim,
Have desperate Debentures on your Fame;
And little would be left you, I'm afraid,
If all your Debts to Greece and Rome were paid.
From his deep Fund our Author largely draws;
Nor sinks his Credit lower than it was.
Though Plays for Honour in old time he made,
'Tis now for better Reasons—to be paid.
Believe him, he has known the World too long,
And seen the Death of much immortal Song.
He says, poor Poets lost, while players won,
As Pimps grow rich, while Gallants are undone.
Though Tom the Poet writ with ease and pleasure,
The Comic Tom abounds in other treasure.
Fame is at best an unperforming Cheat;
But 'tis substantial Happiness, to eat.
Let Ease, his last Request, be of your giving,
Nor force him to be damn'd to get his Living.

A PROLOGUE BY MR POPE,
To a Play for Mr Dennis's Benefit, in 1733, when he was old, blind, and

in great Distress, a little before his Death?.
AS when that Hero, who in each Campaign,
A Had brav'd the Goth, and many a Vandal slain,
Lay Fortune-struck, a spectacle of Woe!
Wept by each Friend, forgiv'n by ev'ry Foe:
Was there a gen'rous, a reflecting mind,
But pitied BELISARIUS old and blind?
Was there a Chief but melted at the Sight"?
A common Soldier, but who clubb'd his Mite?

1 Dennis being much distressed very near logue was throughout a sneer at the poor old the close of his life, it was proposed to act a critic, who happily, either from vanity or the play for his benefit; and Thomson, Mallet, Ben- decay of his intellects, failed to perceive its tendjamin Martin and Pope took the lead upon the ency. He died twenty days afterwards. As to occasion. The play, which was the Provoked the general character of the relations between Husband (by Vanbrugh and Cibber), was repre- Pope and Dennis, see Introductory Memoir, sented at the Haymarket, Dec. 18th, 1733; and p. xxiv.] The furious patriotism of Dennis is of Pope condescended so far as to lay aside his course alluded to in the appeal for 'British'symresentment against his former antagonist as to pathy.] write a Prologue, which was spoken by Theo-. Was there a Chief, etc.) The fine figure of philus Cibber (the Laureate's son). Geneste, the Commander in that capital Picture of BebEnglish Stage, Vol. III. p. 318. [The annalist sarius at Chiswick, supplied the Poet with this adds, with much truth, that Pope's benevolence beautiful idea. Warburton. was not so pure as could be wished; for his Pro

Such, such emotions should in Britons rise,
When press'd by want and weakness DENNIS lies;
Dennis, who' long had warr'd with modern Huns,
Their Quibbles routed, and defy'd their Puns;
A desp’rate Bulwark, sturdy, firm, and fierce
Against the Gothic Sons of frozen verse:
How chang'd from him who made the boxes groan,
And shook the Stage with Thunders all his own!
Stood up to dash each vain PRETENDER's hope,
Maul the French Tyrant, or pull down the Pope!
If there's a Briton then, true bred and born,
Who holds Dragoons and wooden shoes in scorn:
If there's a Critic of distinguished rage ;
If there's a Senior, who contemns this age;
Let him to night his just assistance lend,
And be the Critic's, Briton's, Old Man's Friend.

MACER: A CHARACTER.

[First printed in the Miscellanies of Swift and Pope (1727), and interpreted by Warton to mean James Moore-Smythe (see Dunciad, Bk. II. v. 50). But Bowles thinks it more likely that the character was intended for Ambrose Philips, called

lean Philips' by Pope (see Farewell to London, p. 472); who 'borrowed' a play from the French, and translated’ the Persian tales. Mr Carruthers completes the identification by showing a note prefixed to this character on its first publication and speaking of Macer's advertisements for a Miscellany in 1713, to refer to such an advertisement actually issued by Philips in the London Gazette in 1715. As to Philips, see Dunciad, Bk. III. v. 326, et al.]

en

W HEN simple Macer, now of high renown,

VV First fought a Poet's Fortune in the Town,
'Twas all th' Ambition his high soul could feel,
To wear red stockings, and to dine with Steele.
Some Ends of verse his Betters might afford,
And gave the harmless fellow a good word.
Set up with these he ventur'd on the Town,
And with a borrow'd Play, out-did poor Crown?,
There he stopp'd short, nor since has writ a tittle,
But has the wit to make the most of little;
Like stunted hide-bound Trees, that just have got
Sufficient sap at once to bear and rot.
Now he begs Verse, and what he gets commends,
Not of the Wits his foes, but Fools his friends.

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1 [The borrowed play, The Distrest Mother, ? (John Crown, who wrote 12 tragedies, 6 was, as" Carruthers says, from Racine, not, as comedies, and a masque, in little more than a Bowles says, from Voltaire. It is the An- quarter of a century, died about 1698.

quarter of a

As a dramaoue, and the epilogue was ascribed to sample of a borrow'd play, see Geneste's account Addison.)

of Crown's version of Part I. of Henry VI.]

So some coarse Country Wench, almost decay'd,
Trudges to town, and first turns Chambermaid;
Awkward and supple, each devoir to pay;
She flatters her good Lady twice a day;
Thought wond'rous honest, tho' of mean degree,
And strangely lik'd for her Simplicity:
In a translated Suit, then tries the Town,
With borrow'd Pins, and Patches not her own:
But just endur'd the winter she began,
And in four months a batter'd Harridan.
Now nothing left, but wither'd, pale, and shrunk,
To bawd for others, and go shares with Punk.

UMBRA.

[From the Miscellanies. The original of the character has been variously sought in Walter Carey (a F. R. S. and Whig official), Charles Johnson and Ambrose Philips. •Umbra' must in no case be confounded with the 'Lord Umbra' of the Satires. ]

CLOSE to the best known Author Umbra sits,

The constant Index to all Button's Wits?
“ Who's here?” cries Umbra: "only Johnson”," _“Oh!
Your Slave," and exit; but returns with Rowe:
“Dear Rowe, let's sit and talk of tragedies :"
Ere long Pope enters, and to Pope he flies.
Then up comes Steele: he turns upon his Heel,
And in a Moment fastens upon Steele ;
But cries as soon, “Dear Dick, I must be gone,
For, if I know his Tread, here's Addison.”
Says Addison to Steele, “'Tis Time to go;"
Pope to the Closet steps aside with Rowe.
Poor Umbra left in this abandoned Pickle,
E'en sets him down and writes to honest T—3.
Fool! 'tis in vain from Wit to Wit to roam ;
Know, Sense, like Charity, begins at Home.

TO MR JOHN MOORE, Author of the celebrated Worm-Powder.

[From the Miscellanies.] L OW much, egregious Moore, are we Man is a very Worm by birth,

11 Deceiv'd by Shows and Forms! Vile, Reptile, weak, and vain! Whate'er we think, whate'er we see, A While he crawls upon the Earth, All Humankind are Worms.

Then shrinks to Earth again.

1 (Button's coffee-house in Covent Garden Bowles.) was the resort of Addison's circle.)

3 [Tickell. ? (Charles Johnson, a second-rate dramatist. xxviii.

See Introductory Memoir, P.

That Woman is a Worm, we find That Statesmen have the Worm, is seen,
E’er since our Grandam's evil;

By all their winding Play;
She first convers'd with her own Kind, Their Conscience is a Worm within,
That ancient Worm, the Devil.

That gnaws them Night and Day.
The Learn'd themselves we Book-worms

Ah Moorel thy Skill were well employ'd, name. The Blockhead is a Slow-worm;

And greater Gain would rise, The Nymph whose Tail is all on Élame. If thou couldst make the Courtier void Is aptly term'd a Glow-worm:

The Worm that never dies! The Fops are painted Butterflies,

O learned Friend of Abchurch-Lane, That flutter for a Day;

Who sett'st our entrails free, First from a Worm they take their Rise, Vain is thy Art, thy Powder vain, And in a Worm decay.

Since Worms shall eat ev'n thee. The Flatterer an Ear-wig grows;

Thus Worms suit all Conditions ; Our Fate thou only canst adjourn Misers are Muck - worms, Silk - worms Some few short years, no more! Beaux,

Ev'n Button's Wits to Worms shall turn, And Death-watches Physicians.

Who Maggots were before.

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A PROPER NEW BALLAD ON THE NEW OVID'S METAMORPHOSES.

AS IT WAS INTENDED TO BE TRANSLATED BY PERSONS OF QUALITY.

[From the Miscellanies. It is obviously not by Gay (see St. 13). Sir Walter Scott, quoted by Roscoe, explains the ballad to refer to a translation of the Metamorphoses published by Sir Samuel Garth (and written by several hands, of which Pope's was one), to supersede the old translation of George Sandys, who died in 1643.]

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Wit,

V E Lords and Commons, Men of Hear how a Ghost in dead of Night,

With saucer Eyes of Fire, And Pleasure about Town;

In woeful wise did sore affright
Read this ere you translate one Bit

A Wit and courtly 'Squire.
Of Books of high Renown.
Beware of Latin Authors all!

Rare Imp of Phoebus, hopeful Youth

Like Puppy tame that uses
Nor think your Verses Sterling,
Though with a Golden Pen you scrawl,

To fetch and carry, in his Mouth,

The Works of all the Muses.
And scribble in a Berlin:
For not the Desk with silver Nails, Ah! why did he write Poetry,
Nor Bureau of Expense,

That hereto was so civil;
Nor Standish well japann'd avails And sell his soul for vanity,
To writing of good Sense,

To Rhyming and the Devil ?

1 [Abchurch (properly Upchurch) Lane, Lombard Street.)

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