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The viceroy Panther could not awe the herd;
The more the company, the less they fear’d.
The surly Wolf with secret envy burst,
Yet could not howl; the Hind had seen him first :
But what he durst not speak, the Panther durst.

For when the herd, suffic'd, did late repair
To ferny heaths, and to their forest lair,
She made a mannerly excuse to stay,
Proffering the Hind to wait her half the
That, since the sky was clear, an hour of talk
Might help her to beguile the tedious walk.
With much good will the motion was embrac'd,
To chat a while on their adventures past :
Nor had the grateful Hind so soon forgot
Her friend and fellow-sufferer in the plot.
Yet wondring how of late she grew estrang'd,
Her forehead cloudy, and her countenancechang'd,
She thought this hour the occasion would present
To learn her secret cause of discontent,
Which well she hop'd might be with ease redress'd,
Considering her a well bred civil beast,
And more a gentlewoman than the rest.
After some common talk what rumours ran,
The lady of the spotted muff began.



562 Nor had the grateful Hind so soon forgot

Her friend and fellow-sufferer in the plot] The Popish plot; the contrivers of which were Presbyterians, Latitudinarians, and Republicans, who had before shown themselves enemies to the Protestant, as well as the Popish Church. D.


Dame, said the Panther, times are mended well,
Since late

the Philistines


fell. The toils were pitch'd, a spacious tract of ground With expert huntsmen was encompass'd round; The enclosure narrow'd; the sagacious power Of hounds and death drew nearer every hour. *Tis true, the younger lion 'scap'd the snare, But all your priestly calves lay struggling there; As sacrifices on their altars laid ; While you their careful mother wisely fled, Not trusting destiny to save your head. For, whate'er promises you have applied To your unfailing Church, the surer side Is four fair legs in danger to provide. And whate'er tales of Peter's chair you tell, Yet, saving reverence of the miracle, The better luck was yours to 'scape so well.

As I remember, said the sober Hind,
These toils were for your own dear self design’d,
As well as me; and with the selfsame throw,
To catch the quarry and the vermin too.
(Forgive the slanderous tongues that call'd you so.)

take it now, the common cry

595 Then ran you down for your

rank loyalty. Besides, in Popery they thought you nurs'd,



(As evil tongues will ever speak the worst,)
Because some forms, and ceremonies some
You kept, and stood in the main question dumb.
Dumb you were born indeed; but thinking long
The Test it seems at last has loos’d your tongue.
And to explain what your

forefathers meant,
By real presence in the sacrament,
After long fencing push'd against a wall,
Your salvo comes, that he's not there at all :
There chang’d your faith, and what may change


may fall.


Who can believe what varies every day,
Nor ever was, nor will be at a stay?

may force the tongue untruths to tell,
And I ne'er own'd myself infallible,
Replied the Panther : grant such presence were,
Yet in your sense I never own'd it there.
A real virtue we by faith receive,
And that we in the sacrament believe.
Then, said the Hind, as you the matter state,
Not only Jesuits can equivocate;
For real, as you now the word expound,
From solid substance dwindles to a sound.
Methinks an Æsop's fable you repeat;
You know who took the shadow for the meat :
Your Church's substance thus you change at will,
And yet retain your former figure still.

620 635

602 The Test it seems at last has loos’d your tongue] The Test Act passed in 1672-3, enjoined the abjuration of the real

presence in the sacrament. D.

I freely grant you spoke to save your life;
For then you lay beneath the butcher's knife. 625
Long time you fought, redoubled battery bore,
But, after all, against yourself you swore;
Your former self: for


Is chopp'd and chang’d, like winds before a storm.
Thus fear and interest will prevail with some;
For all have not the gift of martyrdom.

The Panther grinn'd at this, and thus replied : That men may err was never yet denied. But, if that common principle be true, That canon, dame, is levell’d full at you. But, shunning long disputes, I fain would see That wondrous wight Infallibility. Is he from heaven, this mighty champion, come? Or lodg'd below in subterranean Rome? First, seat him somewhere, and derive his race, 640 Or else conclude that nothing has no place.

Suppose, (though I disown it) said the Hind, The certain mansion were not yet assign'd; The doubtful residence no proof can bring Against the plain existence of the thing. Because philosophers may disagree, If sight by emission or reception be, Shall it be thence in ferr'd, I do not see? But you require an answer positive, Which yet, when I demand, you dare not give ; 650 For fallacies in universals live. I then affirm that this unfailing guide In Pope and General Councils must reside;




Both lawful, both combin'd: what one decrees
By numerous votes, the other ratifies :
Ün this undoubted sense the church relies.
'Tis true, some doctors in a scantier space,
I mean, in each apart, contract the place.
Some, who to greater length extend the line,
The Church's after-acceptation join.
This last circumference appears too wide;
The Church diffus’d is by the Council tied ;
As members by their representatives
Oblig'd to laws, which Prince and Senate gives.
Thus some contract, and some enlarge the space:
In Pope and Council, who denies the place,
Assisted from above with God's unfailing grace ?
Those canons all the needful points contain ;
Their sense so obvious, and their words so plain,
That no disputes about the doubtful text 670
Have hitherto the labouring world perplex’d.
If should in aftertimes

appear, [clear:
New Councils must be call’d, to make the meaning
Because in them the power supreme resides ;
And all the promises are to the guides. 675

may be taught with sound and safe defence: But mark how sandy is your own pretence, Who, setting Councils, Pope, and Church aside, Are every man his own presuming guide. The sacred books, you say, are full and plain, And every needful point of truth contain : All, who can read, interpreters may be: Thus, though your several Churches disagree,


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