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For all the needful rules are scatter'd here ;
Truth smoothly told, and pleasantly severe ;
So well is art disguis'd, for nature to appear.
Nor need those rules to give translation light: 35
His own example is a flame so bright;
That he who but arrives to copy well,
Unguided will advance, unknowing will excel.
Scarce his own Horace could such rules ordain,
Or his own Virgil sing a nobler strain.
How much in him may rising Ireland boast,
How much in gaining him has Britain lost !
Their island in revenge has ours reclaim'd ;
The more instructed we, the more we still are sham'd.
'Tis well for us his generous blood did flow
Deriv'd from British channels long ago,
That here his conquering ancestors were nurs’d;
And Ireland but translated England first :
By this reprisal we regain our right,
Else must the two contending nations fight;
A nobler quarrel for his native earth,
Than what divided Greece for Homer's birth.
To what perfection will our tongue arrive,
How will invention and translation thrive,
When authors nobly born will bear their part, 55
And not disdain the inglorious praise of art !
Great generals thus, descending from command,
With their own toil provoke the soldier's hand.
How will sweet Ovid's ghost be pleas'd to hear
His fame augmented by an English peer ;
How he embellishes his Helen's loves,
Outdoes his softness, and his sense improves?
When these translate, and teach translators too,
Nor firstling kid, nor any vulgar vow,
Should at Apollo's grateful altar stand:
Roscommon writes : to that auspicious hand,
Muse, feed the bull that spurns the yellow sand.
Roscommon, whom both court and camps com-
True to his prince, and faithful to his friend;
Roscommon, first in fields of honour known,
First in the peaceful triumphs of the gown ;
Who both Minervas justly makes his own.
Now let the few belov'd by Jove, and they
Whom infus’d Titan form’d of better clay,
On equal terms with ancient wit engage,
Nor mighty Homer fear, nor sacred Virgil's page:
Our English palace opens wide in state;
And without stooping they may pass the gate.
TO THE DUCHESS OF YORK,* ON HER RETURN FROM
SCOTLAND IN THE YEAR 1682.
When factious rage to cruel exile drove
The queen of beauty, and the court of love,
The Muses droop’d, with their forsaken arts,
And the sad Cupids broke their useless darts :
On the twenty-first of November, 1673, the Duke of York was married to the princess Mary d'Este, then about
Our fruitful plains to wilds and deserts turn'd, 5
Like Eden's face, when banish'd man it mourn'd.
Love was no more, when loyalty was gone,
The great supporter of his awful throne.
Love could no longer after beauty stay,
But wander'd northward to the verge of day,
As if the sun and he had lost their way.
But now the illustrious nymph, return'd again,
Brings every grace triumphant in her train.
The wond'ring Nereids, though they rais'd no storm,
Foreslow'd her passage, to behold her form :
Some cried, A Venus; some, A Thetis pass’d;
But this was not so fair, nor that so chaste.
Far from her sight flew Faction, Strife, and Pride ;
And Envy did but look on her, and died.
Whate'er we suffer'd from our sullen fate,
Her sight is purchas'd at an easy rate.
Three gloomy years against this day were set;
But this one mighty sum has cleard the debt:
Like Joseph's dream, but with a better doom,
The famine past, the plenty still to come.
For her the weeping heavens become serene ;
For her the ground is clad in cheerful green:
For her the nightingales are taught to sing,
And Nature has for her delay'd the spring.
fifteen years of age, and extremely handsome. The ceremony was performed at Dover by the bishop of Oxford. It was against the rules of policy for him at that time to wed a Roman Catholic; and the parliament addressed against it. D.
The Muse resumes her long-forgotten lays,
And Love restor'd his ancient realm surveys,
Recalls our beauties, and revives our plays;
His waste dominions peoples once again,
And from her presence dates his second reign.
But awful charms on her fair forehead sit,
Dispensing what she never will admit:
Pleasing, yet cold, like Cynthia's silver beam,
The people's wonder, and the poet's theme.
Distemper'd Zeal, Sedition, canker'd Hate,
No more shall vex the church, and tear the state :
No more shall Faction civil discords
Or only discords of too tender love:
Discord, like that of music's various parts;
Discord, that makes the harmony of hearts;
Discord, that only this dispute shall bring,
Who best shall love the duke, and serve the king.
A LETTER TO SIR GEORGE ETHEREGE.
To you who live in chill degree,
As map informs, of fifty-three,
And do not much for cold atone,
By bringing thither fifty-one,
Methinks all climes should be alike,
From tropic e'en to pole artique ;
have such a constitution
As no where suffers diminution.
You can be old in grave debate,
young in love-affairs of state ;
And both to wives and husbands show
The vigour of a plenipo.
Like mighty missioner you come
Ad Partes Infidelium.
A work of wondrous merit sure,
So far to go, so much t endure;
And all to preach to German dame,
Where sound of Cupid never came,
Less had you done, had you been sent,
As far as Drake or Pinto went,
For cloves or nutmegs to the line-a,
Or e'en for oranges to China.
That had indeed been charity;
Where lovesick ladies helpless lie,
Chapp'd, and for want of liquor dry.
Within the circle of the Bear.
What region of the earth's so dull,
That is not of your labours full ?
Triptolemus (so sung the Nine)
Strew'd plenty from his cart divine.
But spite of all these fable-makers,
He never sow'd on Almain acres :
No, that was left by fate's decree,
To be perform'd and sung by thee.
Thou break’st through forms with as much ease
As the French king through articles.