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Others with softer smiles, and subtle art, Can sap the principles, or taint the heart; With more address a lover's note convey, Or bribe a virgin's innocence away : Well may they rise, while I, whose rustic tongue Ne'er knew to puzzle right, or varnish wrong, Spurn'd as a beggar, dreaded as a spy, Live unregarded, unlamented die.
For what but social guilt the friend endears? Who shares Orgilio's crimes, his fortune shares. But thou, should tempting villany present All Marlb’rough hoarded, or all Villiers spent, Turn from the glittering bribe thy scornful eye, Nor sell for gold, what gold could never buy, The peaceful slumber, self-a oving day, Unsullied fame, and conscience ever gay.
The cheated nation's happy fav’rites, see ! Mark whom the great caress, who frown on me! London ! the needy villain's gen'ral home, The common-sewer of Paris and of Rome; With eager thirst, by folly or by fate, Sucks in the dregs of each corrupted state. Forgive my transports on a theme like this, I cannot bear a French metropolis.
Illustrious Edward! from the realms of day, The land of heroes and of saints survey; Nor hope the British lineaments to trace, The rustic grandeur, or the surly grace ; But, lost in thoughtless ease and empty show, Behold the warrior dwindled to a beau; Sense, freedom, piety, refin'd away, Of France the mimic, and of Spain the prey.
All that at home no more can beg or steal, Or like a gibbet better than a wheel : Hiss'd from the stage, or hooted from the courty Their air, their dress, their politics, import; Obsequious, artful, voluble, and gay, On Britain's fond credulity they prey. No gainful trade their industry can 'scape, They sing, they dance, clean shoes, or cure a
Ah! what avails it, that, from slav'ry far,
Studious to please, and ready to submit;
Besides, with justice, this discerning age
Well may they venture on the mimic's art, Who play from morn to night a borrow'd part; Practis'd their master's notions to embrace, Repeat his maxims, and reflect his face;
With ev'ry wild absurdity comply,
How, when competitors like these contend,
his breeches with a monarch's air. For arts like these preferr'd, admir'd, caress’d, They first invade your table, then your breast; Explore your secrets with insidious art, Watch the weak hour, and ransack all the heart; Then soon your ill-plac'd confidence repay, Commence your lords, and govern or betray.
By numbers here from shame or censure free, All crimes are safe but hated poverty. This, only this, the rigid law pursues, This, only this, provokes the snarling Muse. The sober trader at a tatter'd cloak Wakes from his dream, and labours for a joke; With brisker air the silken courtiers gaze, And turn the varied taunt a thousand ways. Of all the griefs that harass the distress'd, Sure the most bitter is a scornful jest ; Fate never wounds more deep the gen'rous heart, Than when a blockhead's insult points the dart.
Has Heaven reserv'd, in pity to the poor, No pathless waste, or undiscovered shore? No secret island in the boundless main ? No peaceful desert yet unclaim'd by Spain ? Quick let us rise, the happy seats explore, And bear oppression's insolence no more. This mournful truth is every where confess’d, Slow rises worth by poverty depressid: But here more slow, where all are slaves to gold, Where looks are merchandise, and smiles are sold : Where won by bribes, by flatteries implor’d, The groom retails the favours of his lord. (cries
But hark! th' affrighted crowd's tumultuous Roll through the streets, and thunder to the skies : Rais'd from some pleasing dream of wealth and
With well-feign'd gratitude the pension’d band
Could'st thou resign the park and play content,
thy walk, support thy drooping