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And he, to raise his voice with artful care, Who, true to love, was all for recreation,
What will not beaux attempt to please the fair ?) And minded not the work of propagation.
On tiptoe stood to sing with greater strength, Gaufride, who couldst so well in rhyme complain
And stretch'd his comely neck at all the length: The death of Richard with an arrow slain,
And while he strain'd his voice to pierce the skies, Why had not I thy Muse, or thou my heart,
As saints in raptures use, would shut his eyes, To sing this heavy dirge with equal art!
That the sound striving through the narrow throat, That I like thee on Friday might complain ,
His winking might avail to mend the note.

For on that day was Caur de Lion slain.
By this, in song, he never had his peer,

Not louder cries, when Ilium was in flames, From sweet Cecilia down to Chanticleer;

Were sent to Heaven by woful Trojan dames, Noi Maro's Muse, who sung the mighty man, When Pyrrhus toss'd on high his burnish'd blade, Nor Pindar's heavenly lyre, nor Horace when a swan. And offer'd Priam to his father's shade, Your ancestors proceed from race divine:

Than for the cock the widow'd poultry made. From Brennus and Belinus is your line;

Fair Partlet first, when he was borne from sight, Who gave to sovereign Rome such loud alarms, With sovereign shrieks bewail'd her captive knigh: That ev'n the priests were not excus'd from arms. Far louder than the Carthaginian wife,

* Besides, a famous monk of modern times When Asdrubal, her husband, lost his life, Has left of cocks recorded in his rhymes,

When she beheld the smouldering flames ascend That of a parish-priest the son and heir,

And all the Punic glories at an end : (When sons of priests were from the proverb clear,) Willing into t

to the fire

her head, Affronted once a cock of noble kind,

With greater ease than others seek their bed ;
And either law'd his legs, or struck him blind ; Not more aghast the matrons of renown,
For which the clerk his father was disgrac'd, When tyrant Nero burn'd th' imperial town,
And in his benefice another plac'd.

Shriek'd for the downfall in a doleful cry,
Now sing, my lord, if not for love of me,

For which their guiltless lords were doom'd to die Yet for the sake of sweet saint Charity;

Now to my story I return again : Jiske hills and dales, and Earth and Heaven rejoice, The trembling widow, and her daughters twain, And emulate your father's angel voice."

This woful cackling cry with horror heard, The cock was pleas'd to hear him speak so fair, of 'those distracted damsels in the yard; And proud beside, as solar people are ;

And, starting up, beheld the heavy sight, Nor could the treason from the truth descry, How Reynard to the forest took his flight, So was he ravish'd with this flattery:

And cross his back, as in triumphant scorn, So much the more, as, from a liule elf,

The hope and pillar of the house was borne.
He had a high opinion of himself;

· The fox, the wicked fox!” was all the cry:
Though sickly, slender, and not large of limb, Out from his house ran every neighbor nigh;
Concluding all the world was made for hiin. The vicar first, and after him the crew
Ye princes, rais'd by poets to the gods,

With forks and staves, the felon to pursue.
And Alexander'd up in lying odes,

Ran Coll our dog, and Talbot with the band;
Believe not every flattering knave's report,

And Malkin, with her distaff in her hand;
There's many a Reynard lurking ir: the court; Ran cow and calf, and family of hogs,
And he shall be receiv'd with more regard

In panic horror of pursuing dogs;
And listend to, than modest Truth is heard. With many a deadly grunt and doleful squeak,

This Chanticleer, of whom the story sings, Poor swine, as if their pretty hearts would break.
Stood high upon his toes, and clapp'd his wings; The shouts of men, the women in dismay,
Then stretch'd his neck, and wink'd with both his With shrieks augment the terror of the day ;

The ducks, that heard the proclamation cried,
Ambitious, as he sought th' Olympic prize.

And fear'd a persecution might betide,
But, while he pain'd himself to raise his note, Full twenty miles from town their voyage take,
False Reynard rush'd, and caught him by the throat. Obscure in rushes of the liquid lake.
Then on his back he laid the precious load,

The geese fly o'er the barn; the bees in arms
And sought his wonted shelter of the wood; Drive head long from their waxen cells in swarms.
Swiftly he made his way, the mischief done, Jack Straw at London-stone, with all his rout,
Of all ur heeded, and pursu'd by none.

Struck not the city with so loud a shout; Alas, what stay is there in human state,

Not when with English hate they did pursue
Or who can shun inevitable fate ?

A Frenchman, or an unbelieving Jew;
The doom was written, the decree was past, Not when the we/kin rung with one and all,
Ere the foundations of the world were cast! And echoes bounded back from Fox's hall;
In Aries though the Sun exalted stood,

Earth seem'd to sink beneath, and Heaven above ic His patron-planet to procure his good ;

fall. Pet Satum was his mortal foe, and he,

With might and main they chas'd the murderous fox In Libra rais d, oppos'd the same degree :

With brazen trumpets and inflated box,
The rays both good and bad, of equal power, To kindle Mars with military sounds,
Each thwarting other made a mingled hour. Nor wanted horns t'inspire sagacious hounds.

On Friday morn he dreamt this direful dream, But see, how Fortune can confc ind the wise,
Cross to the worthy native, in his scheme !

And, when they least expect it, turn the dice. Ah, blissful Venus, goddess of delight,

The captive cock, who scarce could draw his breath Hou couldst thou suffer thy devoted knight, And lay within the very jaws of Death ; On thiy own day, to fall by foe oppress'd,

Yet in this agony his fancy wrought, The wigbt of all the world who serv'd thee best ? And Fear supplied him with this happy thought.

"Your's is the prize, victorious prince,” said he, Descend; so help me Jove as you shall find " The vicar my defeat, and all the village see. That Reynard comes of no dissembling kind." Enjoy your friendly fortune while you may,

“Nay," quoth the cock; " but I beshrew us both, And bid the churls that envy you the prey

If I believe a saint upon his oath :
Call back their mongrel curs, and cease their cry. An honest man may take a knave's advice,
See, fools, the shelter of the wood is nigh,

But idiots only may be cozen'd twice:
And Chanticleer in your despite shall die,

Once warnd is well bewar'd; not flattering lies He shall be pluck'd and eaten to the bone."

Shall soothe me more to sing with winking eyes “ 'Tis well advis'd, in faith it shall be done;"

And open mouth, for fear of catching flies. This Reynard said: but, as the word he spoke, Who blindfold walks upon a river's brim, The prisoner with a spring from prison broke : When he should see, has he deserv'd to swim ?" Then stretch'd his feather'd fans with all his might, Better, sir cock, let all contention cease, And to the neighboring maple wing’d his flight; 1 Come down,” said Reynard, "let us treat of Whom when the traitor safe on tree beheld,

peace." He curs'd the gods, with shame and sorrow fillid; “ A peace, with all my soul,” said Chanticleer; Shame for his folly, sorrow out of time,

" But, with your favor, I will treat it here: For plotting an unprof able crime ;

And, lest the truce with treason should be mixt, Yet, mastering both, th' artificer of lies

"Tis my concern to have the tree betwixt."
Renews th' assault, and his last battery tries.
“ Though 1,” said he, "did ne'er in thought of-
fend, i

How justly may my lord suspect his friend!
Th'appearance is against me, I confess,

In this plain fable you th' effect may see
Who seemingly have put you in distress :

Of negligence, and fond credulity:
You, if your goodness does not plead my cause, And learn beside of flatterers to beware,
May think I broke all hospitable laws,

| Then most pernicious when they speak too fair To bear you from your palace-yard by might, | The cock and fox, the fool and knave imply; And put your noble person in a fright:

The truth is moral, though the tale a lie.
This, since you take it ill, I must repent,

Who epoke in parables, I dare not say;
Though, Heaven can witness, with no bad intent : But sure he knew it was a pleasing way,
I practis'd it, to make you taste your cheer | Sound sense, by plain example, to convey ;
With double pleasure, first prepar'd by fear. And in a heathen author we may find,
So loyal subjects often seize their prince,

That pleasure with instruction should be join'd; Forc'd (for his good) to seeming violence,

So take the corn, and leave the chaft behind. Yet mean his sacred person not the least offence.


MATTHEW Prior was born in London, July, more in power, he was charged with treason and 21, 1664. He was sent to Westminster School thrown into prison, where he was kept two years, and to Cambridge, where he took his degree in and where he wrote his poem “ Alma; or, the 1686. Here he became acquainted with Charles Progress of the Mind," a piece of philosophical Montagu, afterward Earl of Halifax, and the two pleasantry of faint merit. After leaving prison wrote * The City Mouse and Country Mouse," he published his poems by subscription, and an ineffectual attempt to ridicule Dryden. Af realized 4,000 guineas. About the same time ter the revolution Prior was introduced at court, Lord Harley gave him a small estate in Essex. and in 1690 he was appointed secretary to the He was specially excepted from an act of grace embassy sent to the Hague. In 1695 he wrote anpassed in 1717. On September 18, 1721, he died ode on the death of Queen Mary. In 1701 he at Wimpole, the seat of the Earl of Oxford. was elected to Parliament. Thus far he had Prior does not rank very high as a poet, acted with the Whig party; but when the Tories | though he is a smooth and pleasant versifier; came into power he found it convenient to change nor was he at all nice about either his topics or the color of his politics. In 1711 the govern. his language. His writings would not have remeat sent him to Paris with private proposals ceived so much attention even in his own time, for peace. On his return, the Whigs being once had he not been so conspicuous in political life.


THE THIEF AND THE CORDELIER. | “O father! my sorrow will scarce save my bacon;

| For 'twas not that I murdered, but that I was Who has e'er been at Paris, must needs know

taken.” the Grève, The fatal retreat of th' unfortunate brave;

“Pugh! prythee ne'er trouble thy head with Where Honor and Justice most oddly contribute

such fancies: To ease heroes' pains by a halter and gibbet. Rely on the aid you shall have from St. Francis :

If the money you promised be brought to the There Death breaks the shackles which Force

chest, had put on,

You have only to die: let the church do the rest. And the hangman completes what the judge but

“And what will folks say, if they see you There the squire of the pad, and the knight of


afraid ? the post

It reflects upon me, as I knew not my trade: Find their pains no more balk'd, and their bopes

Courage, friend; for to-day is your period of

sorrow; no more crost.

And things will go better, believe me, to-morrow." Great claims are there made, and great secrets “To-morrow!” our hero replied, in a fright: are known;

“He that's hanged before noon, ought to think And the king, and the law, and the thief, has his

of to-night."

“ Tell your beads," quoth the priest, “and be But my hearers cry out, “What a deuce dost thou

fairly truss'd up, ail? Cut off thy reflections, and give us thy tale."

For you surely to-night shall in Paradise sup."

"Alas!” quoth the squire, “howe'er sump*Twas there then, in civil respect to harsh laws,

tuous the treat, and for want of false witness to back a bad Parbleu! I shall have little stomach to eat; cause,

I should therefore esteem it great favor and A Norman, though late, was obliged to appear;

grace, And who to assist, but a grave Cordelier ! Would you be so kind as to go in my place.” The squire, whose good grace was to open the “That I would," quoth the father, "and thank scene,

you to boot; seem'd not in great haste that the show should | But our actions, you know, with our duty must begin:

suit. Sox fitted the halter, now traversed the cart, The feast I proposed to you, I cannot taste; and often took leave, but was loth to depart. For this night, by our order, is mark'd for a fast."


"What frightens you thus, my good son?”

Then, turning about to the hangman, he said: Hy says the priest :

“Dispatch me, I pr’ythee, this troublesome blade; lou murdered, are sorry, and have been con. For thy cord and my cord both equally tie, fest."

| And we live by the gold for which other men die."

One child he bad, a daughter chaste and fair, HENRY AND EMMA.

His age's comfort, and his fortune's heir.

They callid her Emma; for the beauteous dame, A POEM,

Who gave the virgin birth, had borne the name : Upon the Model of the Nul-Brown Maid.

The name th’indulgent father doubly loy'd :
For in the child the mother's charms improv'd

Yet as, when little, round his knees she play'd.

He call'd her oft, in sport, his Nut-brown Maid,

The friends and tenants took the fondling word, Thou, to whose eyes I bend, at whose command l(As still they please, who imitate their lord): Though low my voice, though artless be my Usage confirm'd what fancy had begun; hand),

The mutual terms around the land were known I take the sprightly reed, and sing, and play, And Emma and the Nut-brown Maid were one. Careless of what the censuring world may say: As with her stature, still her charms increas'a Bright Cloe, object of my constant vow,

Through all the isle her beauty was confessid Wilt thou a while unbend thy serious brow? Oh! what perfections must that virgin share, Wilt thou with pleasure hear thy lover's strains, Who fairest is esteem'd, where all are fair! And with one heavenly smile o'erpay his pains ? From distant shires repair the noble youth, No longer shall the Nut-browo Maid be old; And find report, for once, had lessen'd truth. Though since her youth three hundred years have By wonder first, and then by passion mov'd, roll'd:

They came ; they saw; they marvellid; and they At thy desire, she shall again be rais'd ;

lov'd. And her reviving charms in lasting verse be By public praises, and by secret sighs, prais'd.

Each own'd the general power of Emma's eyes. No longer man of woman shall complain, In tilts and tournaments the valiant strove, That he may love, and not be lov'd again: By glorious deeds, to purchase Emma's love. That we in vain the fickle sex pursue,

In gentle verse the witty told their flame, Who change the constant lover for the new. And grac'd their choicest songs with Emma's Whatever has been writ, whatever said,

name. Of female passion feign'd, or faith decay'd, In vain they combated, in vain they writ: Henceforth shall in my verse refuted stand, Useless their strength, and impotent their wit. Be said to winds, or writ upon the sand.

Great Venus only must direct the dart, And, while my notes to future times proclaim Which else will never reach the fair-one's heart, Unconquer'd love, and ever-during flame,

Spite of th' attempts of force, and soft effects on O fairest of the sex! be thou my Muse :

art. Deign on my work thy influence to diffuse. Great Venus must prefer the happy one : Let me partake the blessings I rehearse,

In Henry's cause her favor must be shown; And grant me, love, the just reward of verse! And Emma, of mankind, must love but him alone

As beauty's potent queen, with every grace, While these in public to the castle came, That once was Emma's, has adorn'd thy face; And by their grandeur justified their flame; And, as her son has to my bosom dealt

More secret ways the careful Henry takes ; That constant flame, which faithful Henry selt: His squires, his arms, and equipage forsakes : O let the story with thy life agree :

In borrow'd name, and false attire array'd, Let men once more the bright example see ;

Oft he finds means to see the beauteous maid. What Emma was to him, be thou to me.

When Emma hunts, in huntsman's habit drest, Nor send me by thy frown from her I love, Henry on foot pursues the bounding beast. Distant and sad, a banish'd man to rove.

In his right-hand his beechen pole he bears ; But, oh! with pity. long-entreated, crown

And graceful at his side his horn he wears. My pains and hopes; and, when thou say'st that one Still to the glade, where she has bent her way Of all mankind thou lov'st, oh! think on me alone. With knowing skill he drives the future prey ·

Bids her decline the hill, and shun the brake : WHERE beauteous Isis and her husband Tame, And shows the path her steed may safest take: With mingled waves, for ever flow the same, | Directs her spear to fix the glorious wound ; In times of yore an ancient baron liv'd;

Pleas'd in his toils to have her triumph crowni!; Great gifts bestow'd, and great respect receiv'd. And blows her praises in no common sound.

When dreadful Edward, with successful care, A falconer Henry is, when Emma hawks Led his free Britons to the Gallic war;

With her of tarsels and of lures he talks. This lord had headed his appointed bands,

Upon his wrist the towering merlin stands, In firm allegiance to his king's commands;

Practis'd to rise, and stoop, at her commands. And (all due honors faithfully discharg'd)

And when superior now the bird has flown, Had brought back his paternal coat, enlarg'd And headlong brought the tumbling quarry down With a new mark, the witness of his toil,

With humble reverence he accosts the fair, And no inglorious part of foreign spoil.

And with the honor'd feather decks her hair. From the loud camp retir'd, and noisy court, Yet still, as from the sportive field she goes, 17 honorable ease and rural sport,

His downcast eye reveals his inward woes ; The remnant of his days he safely past;

And by his look and sorrow is exprest, Nor found they lagg’d too slow, nor flew too fast. A nobler game pursued than bird or beast. He made his wish with his estate comply,

A shepherd now along the plain he roves; Joyful to live, yet not afraid to die.

And, with his jolly pipe, delights the grover

The neighboring swains around the stranger throng, Here oft the nymph his breathing vows had heard
Or to admire, or emulate his song :

Here oft her silence had her heart declar'd.
While with soft sorrow he renews his lays, As active Spring awak'd her infant buds,
Nor heedful of their envy, nor their praise.. And genial life inform'd the verdant woods;
But, soon as Emma's eyes adorn the plain, Henry, in knots involving Emma's name,
His notes he raises to a nobler strain,

Had half express’d, and half conceal'd, his flame, With dutiful respect and studious fear;

Upon this tree : and, as the tender mark Lest any careless sound offend her ear.

Grew with the year, and widen'd with the bark, A frantic gipsy now, the house he haunts, Venus had heard the virgin's soft address, And in wild phrases speaks dissembled wants. That, as the wound, the passion might increase. With the fond maids in palmistry he deals : As potent Nature shed her kindly showers, They tell the secret first, which he reveals ; And deck'd the various mead with opening flowers, Says who shall wed, and who shall be beguil'd; Upon this tree the nymph's obliging care What groom shall get, and squire maintain the child. Had left a frequent wreath for Henry's hair; But, when bright Emma would her fortune know, Which, as with gay delight the lover found, A softer look unbends his opening brow;

Pleas'd with his conquest, with her present crown'd, With trembling awe he gazes on her eye,

Glorious through all the plains he oft had gone, And in soft accents forms the kind reply ;

And to each swain the mystic honor shown; That she shall prove as fortunate as fair;

The gift still prais'd, the giver still unknown. And Hymen's choicest gifts are all resery'd for her. His secret note the troubled Henry writes :

Now oft had Henry chang'd his sly disguise, To the lone tree the lovely maid invites. Unmark'd by all but beauteous Emma's eyes : Imperfect words and dubious terms express, Oft had found means alone to see the dame, That unforeseen mischance disturb'd his peace; Aud at her feet to breathe his amorous flame; That he must something to her ear commend, And oft, the pangs of absence to remove,

On which her conduct and his life depend. By letters, soft interpreters of love :

Soon as the fair-one had the note receiv'd, Till Time and Industry (the mighty two

The remnant of the day alone she griev'd : That bring our wishes nearer to our view)

For different this from every former note, Made him perceive, that the inclining fair

Which Venus dictated, and Henry wrote ; Receiv'd his vows with no reluctant ear;

Which told her all his future hopes were laid That Venus had confirm'd her equal reign, On the dear bosom of his Nut-brown Maid ; And deali to Emma's heart a share of Henry's pain. Which always bless'd her eyes, and own'd her While Cupid smild, by kind occasion bless'd,

power; And, with the secret kepi, the love increas'd ; And bid her oft adieu, yet added more. The amorous youth frequents the silent groves; Now night advanc'd. The house in sleep wero And much he meditates, for much he loves.

laid; He loves, 'tis true; and is belov'd again :

The nurse experienc'd, and the prying maid, Great are his joys; but will they long remain ? And, last, that sprite, which does incessant haunt Emma with smiles receives his present flame · The lover's steps, the ancient maiden-aunt. But, smiling, will she ever be the same ?

To her dear Henry, Emma wings her way, Beautiful looks are rul'd by fickle minds;

With quicken'd pace repairing forc'd delay; And summer seas are turn'd by sudden winds. For Love, fantastic power, that is afraid Another love may gain her easy youth :

To stir abroad till Watchfulness be laid, Time changes thought, and flattery conquers truth. Undaunted then o'er cliffs and valleys strays, O impotent estate of human life!

And leads his votaries safe through pathless ways. Where Hope and Fear maintain eternal strife; Not Argus, with his hundred eyes, shall find Where fleeting joy does lasting doubt inspire ; Where Cupid goes ; though he, poor guide! is blind And most we question, what we most desire !

The maiden first arriving, sent her eye Amongs' thy various gifts, great Heaven, bestow To ask, if yet its chief delight were nigh: Our cup c. love unmix'd; forbear to throw With fear and with desire, with joy and pain, Bitter ingredients in; nor pall the draught

She sees, and runs to meet him on the plain. With nauseous grief: for our ill-judging thought But, oh! his steps proclaim no lover's haste : Hardly enjoys the pleasurable taste ;

On the low ground his fix'd regards are cast; Or deems it nut sincere ; or fears it cannot last. His artful bosom heaves dissembled sighs ;

With wishes rais'd, with jealousies opprest, And tears suborn'd fall copious from his eyes. (Alternate tyrants of the human breast)

With ease, alas! we credit what we love : By one great trial he resolves to prove

His painted grief does real sorrow move
The faith of woman, and the force of love. In the afflicted fair; adown her cheek
II, scanning Emma's virtues, he may find

Trickling the genuine tears their current break That beauteous frame inclose a steady mind, Attentive stood the mournful nymph: the man He'll fix his hope of future joy secure;

Broke silence first : the tale alternate ran.
And live a slave to Hymen's happy power.
But if the fair-one, as he fears, is frail ;

If, pois'd aright in Reason's equal scale,
Lght fly her merit, and her faults prevail ;

SINCERE, O tell me, hast thou felt a pain, His mind he vows to free from amorous care, | Emma, beyond what woman knows to feign? The latent mischief from his heart to tear,

Has thy uncertain bosom ever strove Resume his azure arms, and shine again in war With the first tumults of a real love? South of the castle, in a verdant glade,

Hast thou now dreaded, and now blest his sway A spreading beech extends her friendly shade: By turns averse, and joyful to obey ?

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