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In these gay thoughts the Loves and Graces
And all the writer lives in ev'ry line;
His eafy art may happy nature feem;
Trifles themselves are elegant in him.
Sure to charm all was his peculiar fate,
Who without flatt'ry pleas'd the fair and great;
Still with efteem no lefs convers'd than read;
With wit well-natur'd, and with books well-bred:
His heart his miftrefs and his friend did fhare,
His time the Mufe, the witty, and the fair.
Thus wifely careless, innocently gay,
Cheerful he play'd the trifle life away,
Till Fate fcarce felt his gentle breath fuppreft,
As fmiling infants fport themselves to reft.
Ev'n rival wits did Voiture's death deplore,
And the gay mourn'd, who never mourn'd before.
The trueft hearts for Voiture breath'd with fighs;
Voiture was wept by all the brightest eyes:
The Smiles and Loves had dy'd in Voiture's death,
But that for ever in his lines they breathe.
Let the ftrict live of graver morals be
A long, exact, and ferious comedy;
every fcene fome moral let it teach.
And, if it can, at once both please and preach;
Let mine an innocent gay farce appear,
And more diverting ftill than regular;
Have humour, wit, and native ease and grace,
Tho' not too ftrictly bound to time and place.
Critics in wit or life are hard to pleate;
Few write to thofe, and none can live to these.
Too much your fex is by the forms confin'd,
Severe to all, but moft to womankind;
Custom, grown blind with age, must be your guide;
Your pleaíure is a vice, but not your pride;
By nature yielding, ftubborn but for fame,
Made flaves by honour, and made fools by fhame.
Marriage may all thofe petty tyrants chafe,
But fets up one, a greater, in their place:
Well might you with for change by thofe accurft;
But the laft tyrant ever proves the worst.
Still in constraint your fuff'ring sex remains,
Or bound in formal or in real chains:
Whole years neglected for fome months ador'd,
The fawning fervant turns a haughty lord.
Ah! quit not the free innocence of life
For the dull glory of a virtuous wife;
20 Nor let falfe fhews nor empty titles please:
Aim not at joy, but reft content with ease.
The gods, to curfe Pamela with her pray'rs,
Gave the gilt coach and dappled Flanders mares,
The fhining robes, rich jewels, beds of state,
And, to complete her blefs, a fool for mate.
She glares in balls, front boxes, and the ring,
A vain, unquiet, glitt'ring, wretched, thing!
Pride, pomp, and ftate, but reach her outward
She fighs, and is no duchefs at her heart.
But, Madam, if the Fates withstand, and
Are destin'd Hymen's willing victim too,
Truft not too much your now refiftless charms,
Those age or fickness, foon or late, difarms:
Good humour only teaches charms to last,
Still makes new conquefts, and maintains the past.
a Love rais'd on beauty will like that decay,
Our hearts may bear its flender chain a day,
As flow'ry bands in wantonness are worn,
A morning's pleasure, and at ev'ning torn;
This binds in ties more eafy, yet more ftrong,
The willing heart, and only holds it long.
Thus Voiture's early care *) ftill fhone the
And Montaufier was only changed in name:
By this ev'n now they live, ev'n now they charm,
Their wit ftill fparkling, and their flames ftill warm.
Now crown'd with myrtle on th' Flyfian coaft,
Amid thofe lovers joys his gentle ghoft;
Pleas'd while with fmilès his happy lines you view,
And finds a fairer Rambouillet in
The brighteft eyes of France infpir'd his Mufe;
The brighteft eyes of Britain now perufe;
And dead, as living, 'tis our author's pride
Still to charm those who charm the world befide,
*) Mademoiselle Paulet.
S. B. I. S. 33. 414. Man findet zwölf voetische Episteln unter seinen vermischten Gedichten, die stellenweise viel Verdienst haben, ob sie gleich im Ganzen etwas zu kalt nud einförmig sind. Folgende ist eine der beften.
TO BERNARD LINTOTT.
On a Mifcellany of Poems.
Ipfa varietate tentamus efficere, vt alia aliis, quaedam for-
taffe omnibus placeant.
As when fome fkilful cook, to please each
Would in one mixture comprehend a Feast,
With due proportion and judicious care
He fills his difh with diff'rent forts of fare,
Fif hes and fowls delicioufly unite,
To feast at once the tafte, the fmell, and fight:
So, Bernard! must a Mifcellany be
Compounded of all kinds of poetry;
The Mufe's olio, which all taftes may fit,
And treat each reader with his darling wit.
Wouldst thou for Mifcellanies raise thy fame,
And bravely rival Jacob's mighty name,
Let all the Mufes in the piece conspire;
The lyric Bard muft ftrike th' harmonious lyre;
Heroic ftrains must here and there be found,
And nervous fenfe be fung in lofty found:
Let Elegy in moving numbers flow,
And fill fome pages with melodious woe;
Let not your am'rous fongs too num'rous prove,
Nor glut thy reader with abundant love:
Satire muft interfere, whofe pointed rage
May lafh the madness of a vicious age;
Satire, the Mufe that never fails to hit,
For if there's fcandal, to be fure there's wit.
Tire not our patience with Pindaric lays,
Thofe fwell the piece, but very rarely please;
Let fhort-breath'd Epigram its force confine,
And strike at follies in a fingle line:
Translations fhould throughout the work be fown,
And Homer's goldlike Muse be made our own:
Horace in useful numbers should be fung,
And Virgil's thoughts adorn the British tongue:
Let Ovid tell Corinna's hard difdain,
And at her door in melting notes complain:
His tender accents pitying virgins move,
And charm the lift'ning ear with tales of love.
Let ev'ry claffic in the volume shine,
And each contribute to the great design:
'Thro' various fübjects let the reader range,
And raise his fancy with a grateful change;
Variety 's the fource of joy below,
From whence ftill frefh-revolving pleasures flow.
In books and love the mind one end pursues,
And only change th' expiring flame renews.
Where Buckingham will condefcend to give,
That honour'd piece to diftant times muft live:
When noble Sheffield ftrikes the trembling ftrings,
The little Loves rejoice, and clap their wings:
Anacreon lives, they cry: th' harmonious fwain
Retunes the lyre, and tries his wonted ftrain;
'Tis he! Our loft Anacreon lives again.
But when th' illuftrious poet foars above
The sportive revels of the God of Love,
Like Maro's Mufe he takes a loftier flight,
And tow'rs beyond the wond'ring Cupid's fight.
If thou wouldst have thy volume ftand the teft, And of all others be reputed beft,