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Enjoys his exile, and, condemn'd in vain,
Such yillanies rous'd Horace 6 into wrath :
With what impatience must the Muse behold
Would it not make a modest author dare
Ś Prevailing province, &c. Here the poet complains, that the governors of provinces being accus'd for their unjust exactions, though they were condemned at their tryals, yet got off by bribery.
6 Horace, who wrote satires : 'tis more noble, says our author, to imitate him in that way, than to write the labours of Hercules, the sufferings of Diomedes and his followers, or the light of Dedalus who made the labyrinth, and the death of his son Icarus. ; 7 His eunucb-love. Nero married Sporus an Eunuch ; though it may be the poet meant Nero's mistress in man's apparel.
8 Mecenas-like. Mecenas is often tax'd by Seneca and others, for his effeminacy. 4
Made wealthy at the small expence of figning
Count from the time, since old Deucalion's boat,
9 And hope to sleep? The meaning is, that the very
consideration of such a crime will hinder a virtuous man from taking his repose.
i Deucalion and Pyrrha, when the world was drown’d, escaped to the top of mount Parnassus; and were commanded to restore mankind by throwing stones over their heads : the stones he threw bea came men, and those the threw became women, P2
What age fo large a crop of viceş bore,
many summer-seats did see?
2 Though my torn ears are bor’d: The ears of all slaves were bored as a mark of their servitude; which custom is still usual in the East. Indies, and in other parts, even for whole nations; who bore prodigious holes in their ears, and wear vast weights at them. 3 The poor Patrician; the poor nobleman.
Not Pallus nor Licinius 4 had
treasure ; Then let the sacred tribunes wait my leisure. Once a poor rogue, 'tis true, I trod the street, And trudg'd to Rome upon my naked feet: Goid is the greatest God; though yet we see No temples rais'd to money's majefty, No altars fuming to her pow'r divine, Such as to valour, peace, and virtue shine, And faith, and concord; where the stork on high 5 Seems to salute her infant progeny : Presaging pious love with her auspicious cry. But since our knights and senators account, To what their sordid begging vails amount, Judge what a wretched share the poor attends, Whose whole subsistence on those alms depends ! Their houshold fire, their raiment, and their food, Prevented by those harpies 6; when a wood Of litters thick besiege the donor's gate, And begging lords and teeming ladies wait The promis'd dole : nay, some have learn'd the trick To beg for absent persons ; feign them fick, Close mew'd in their sedans, for fear of air : And for their wives produce an empty chair. This is my spouse: dispatch her with her share. 'Tis 7 Galla: let her ladyship but peep: No, Sir, 'tis pity to disturb her sleep.
Such 4 Pallus, or Licinius. Pallus, a flave freed by Claudius Cæfar, and raised by his favour to great riches. Licinius was another wealthy freedman, belonging to Augustus.
5 Wbere the stork on bigh, &c. Perhaps the forks were used to build on the top of the temple dedicated to Concord.
6 Prevented by those Harpies: He calls the Roman knights, &c. Harpies, or devourers: in those days the rich made doles intended for the poor : but the great were either so covetous, or so needy, that they came in their litters to demand their shares of the largess; and thereby prevented, and consequently starved the poor.
7 'Tis Galla, &c. The meaning is, that noblemen would cause empty litters to be carried to the giver's door, pretending their wives
Such fine employments our whole days divide:
Mean time his lord ship lolls. within at ease, Pamp'ring his paunch with foreign rarities; Both sea and land are ransack'd for the feaft'; And his own gut the sole invited guest. Such plate, such tables, dishes drest so well, That whole estates are swallowed at a meal. Ev'n parasites are banish'd from his board : (At once a sordid and luxurious lord :) Prodigious throat, for' which whole boars are dreft ; (A creature form’d to furnish out a fealt.) But present punishment pursues his maw, When surfeited and swell’d, the peacock raw were within them : 'tis Galla, that is, my wife: the next words, Let her ladyship but peep, are of the servant who diftributes the dole; let me see her, that I may be fure she is within the litter. The husband answers, she is alleep, and to open the litter would disturb her rest.
8 Then to the statues, &c. The poet here tells you how the idle passed their time ; in going first to the levees of the great, then to the hall, that is to the temple of Apollo, to hear the lawyers plead; then to the market-place of Augustus, where the statues of the famous Romans were set in ranks on pedestals : amongst which ftatues were seen those of foreigners, such as Arabs, &c. who, for no desert, but only on the account of their wealth, or favour, were placed amongst the nobleft,