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For now the Pigeons too had learn’d to cant.
The house of prayer is stock'd with large increase;
Nor doors, nor windows can contain the press :
For birds of every feather fill the abode ;
E’en Atheists out of envy own a God:
And, reeking from the stews, adulterers come,
Like Goths and Vandals to demolizh Rome.
That Conscience, which to all their crimes was mute,
Now calls aloud, and cries to persecute:
No rigour of the laws to be releas’d,
And much the less, because it was their Lord's re-
quest: They thought it great their Sovereign to control, And nam'd their pride, nobility of soul.
'Tis true, the Pigeons, and their prince elect, Were short of power their purpose to effect: But with their quills did all the hurt they could, And cuff'd the tender Chickens from their food : And much the Buzzard in their cause did stir, Though naming not the patron, to infer, With all respect, he was a gross idolater.
V. 2519. And much the Buzzard in their cause did stir,
Though naming not the patron, &c.] On the fifth of November, 1684, Burnet preached a sermon in the Rolls chapel against Popery, in which he dropped some oblique reflections on the king. On this account it was ordered he should preach in that place no more, and he soon after found it necessary to withdraw to Holland. The king demanded hirn of the States as a traitor, but they refused to acquiesce. It is said 3000l. was ordered to be paid by the treasury to any person that could contrive to deliver him into the king's hands. D.
But when the imperial owner did espy
That thus they turn’d his grace to villany,
Not suffering wrath to discompose his mind,
He strove a temper for the extremes to find. 2525
So to be just, as he might still be kind;
Then, all maturely weigh’d, pronounc'd a doom
Of sacred stregth for every age to come.
By this the Doves their wealth and state possess,
No rights infring’d, but license to oppress :
Such power have they as factious lawyers long
To crowns ascrib'd, that Kings can do no wrong.
But since his own domestic birds have tried
The dire effects of their destructive pride,
He deems that proof a measure to the rest,
Concluding well within his kingly breast,
His fowls of nature too unjustly were opprest.
He therefore makes all birds of every sect
Free of his farm, with promise to respect
Their several kinds alike, and equally protect.
His gracious edict the same franchise yields
To all the wild increase of woods and fields,
And who in rocks aloof, and who in steeples builds :
To Crows the like impartial grace affords,
And Choughs and Daws, and such republic birds :
Secur'd with ample privilege to feed,
Each has his district, and his bounds decreed :
Combin'd in common interest with his own,
But not to pass the Pigeons' Rubicon.
Here ends the reign of this pretended Dove;
All prophecies accomplish'd from above,
For Shiloh comes the sceptre to remove.
Reducd from her imperial high abode,
Like Dionysius to a private rod,
The Passive Church, that with pretended grace
Did her distinctive mark in duty place,
Now touch'd, reviles her Maker to his face.
What after happen'd is not hard to guess :
The small beginnings had a large increase,
And arts and wealth succeed (the secret spoils of
peace). 'Tis said, the Doves repented, though too late, Become the smiths of their own foolish fate : Nor did their owner hasten their ill hour; But, sunk in credit, they decreas'd in power: Like snows in warmth that mildly pass away, 2565 Dissolving in the silence of decay.
The Buzzard, not content with equal place, Invites the feather'd Nimrods of his race; To hide the thinness of their flock from sight, And all together make a seeming goodly flight: But each have separate interests of their own; Two Czars are one too many
for a throne. Nor can the usurper long abstain from food; Already he has tasted Pigeons' blood : And may be tempted to his former fare, When this indulgent lord shall late to heaven re
pair. Bare benting times, and moulting months may
come, When, lagging late, they cannot reach their home;
Or rent in schism (for so their fate decrees)
Like the tumultuous college of the bees,
They fight their quarrel, by themselves opprest;
The tyrant smiles below, and waits the falling feast.
Thus did the gentle Hind her fable end,
Nor would the Panther blame it, nor commend ;
But, with affected yawnings at the close,
Scem'd to require her natural repose:
For now the streaky light began to peep ;
And setting stars admonish'd both to sleep.
The dame withdrew, and, wishing to her guest
peace of heaven, betook herself to rest. Ten thousand angels on her slumbers wait, With glorious visions of her future state.
A POEM ON THE BIRTH OF THE PRINCE, BORN ON THE
TENTH OF JUNE, 1688.
Dii Patrii Indigetes, et Romule, Vestaque Mater,
Quæ Tuscum Tiberim, et Romana Palatia servas,
Hunc saltem everso Puerum succurrere sæclo
Ne prohibete: satis jampridem sanguine nostro
Laomedontea luimus perjuria Trojæ.
VIRG. GEORG. I.
OUR VOws are heard betimes ! and Heaven takes
To grant, before we can conclude the prayer :
Preventing angels met it half the way,
And sent us back praise, who came pray.
Just on the day, when the high-mounted suns
Did farthest in his northern progress run,
He bended forward, and e'en stretch'd the sphere
Beyond the limits of the lengthen’d year,
To view a brighter sun in Britain born;
That was the business of his longest morn;
The glorious object seen, 'twas time to turn.
Departing Spring could only stay to shed
Her bloomy beauties on her genial bed,
But left the manly Summer in her stead,