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That none, decoy'd into that fatal ring,
Unless by heaven's peculiar grace, escape.
There we grow early grey, but never wise,
There form connections, but acquire no friend;
Solicit pleasure hopeless of fuccefs;
Waste youth in occupations only fit
For fecond childhood, and devote old age
To fports which only childhood could excuse,
There they are happiest who dissemble best
Their weariness ; and they the most polite
Who fquander time and treasure with a smile,
Though at their own destruction. She that afks
Her dear five hundred friends, contemns them all,
And hates their coming. They, what can they lefs?
Make juft reprisals, and with cringe and fhrug,
And bow obfequious, hide their hate of her.
All catch the frenzy, downward from her Grace,
Whose flambeaux flash against the morning skies,
And gild our chamber ceilings as they pass,
To her who frugal only that her thrift
May feed exceffes fhe can ill afford,
Is hackney'd home unlacquey'd. Who in hafte
Alighting, turns the key in her own door,
And at the watchman's lantern borrowing light,
Finds a cold bed her only comfort left.
Wives beggar husbands, husbands ftarve their wives,
On fortune's velvet altar off'ring up
Their laft poor pittance, Fortune most severe
Of goddeffes yet known, and coftlier far
Than all that held their routs in Juno's heav'n-
So fare we in this prifon-house the world,
And 'tis a fearful spectacle to see
So many maniacs dancing in their chains.
They gaze upon the links that hold them faft,
eyes of anguish, execrate their lot,
Then shake them in defpair, and dance again,
Now basket up the family of plagues That waste our vitals. Peculation, fale Of honor, perjury, corruption, frauds
By forgery, by fubterfuge of law,
By tricks and lies as num'rous and as keen
As the neceflities their authors feel;
Then caft them closely bundled, ev'ry brat
At the right door. Profufion is the fire.
Profufion unreftrain'd, with all that's base
In character, has litter'd all the land,
And bred within the mem'ry of no few,
A priesthood fuch as Baal's was of old,
A people fuch as never was till now.
It is a hungry vice :-it eats up all
That gives fociety its beauty, ftrength,
Convenience, and fecurity, and use:
Makes men mere vermin, worthy to be trapp'd
And gibbetted as faft as catchpole claws
Can feize the flipp'ry prey. Unties the knot
Of union, and converts the facred band
That holds mankind together, to a fcourge.
Profufion deluging a state with lufts
Of groffeft nature and of worst effects,
Prepares it for its ruin. Hardens, blinds,
And warps the confciences of public men
Till they can laugh at virtue; mock the fools
That trust them; and, in th' end, disclose a face
That would have shock'd credulity herself
Unmafk'd, vouchfafing this their fole excufe
Since all alike are selfish-why not they?
This does Profufion, and th' accurfed caufe
Of fuch deep mischief, has itself a cause.
In colleges and halls, in ancient days,
When learning, virtue, piety and truth
Were precious, and inculcated with care,
There dwelt a fage call'd Difcipline. His head
Not yet by time completely filver'd o'er,
Bespoke him paft the bounds of freakish youth,
But strong for service still, and unimpair'd.
His eye was meek and gentle, and a smile
Play'd on his lips, and in his speech was heard
Paternal sweetness, dignity, and love.
The occupation deareft to his heart
Was to encourage goodnefs. He would stroke
The head of modeft and ingenuous worth
That blufh'd at its own praife; and prefs the youth -
Close to his fide that pleas'd him. Learning grew
Beneath his care, a thriving vig'rous plant;
The mind was well inform'd, the paffions held
Subordinate, and diligence was choice.
If e'er it chanc'd, as fometimes chance it muft,
That one among fo many overleap'd
The limits of controul, his gentle eye
Grew ftern, and darted a severe rebuke;
His frown was full of terror, and his voice
Shook the delinquent with fuch fits of awe
As left him not, till penitence had won
Loft favor back again, and clos'd the breach.
But Discipline, a faithful fervant long,
Declin'd at length into the vale of years;
A palfy ftruck his arm, his fparkling eye
Was quench'd in rheums of age, his voice unftrung