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to translate him. Though there wanted not another reason, which was, that no one else would undertake it : at least, Sir G. S. who could have done more right to the author, after a long delay, at length absolutely refused so ungrate. ful an employment: and every one will grant, that the work must have been imperfect and lane, if it had appeared without one of the principal members belonging to it. Let the poet therefore bear the blame of his own invention; and let me satisfy the world, that I am not of his opinion. Whatever bis Roman ladies were, the English are free from all his imputations. They will read with wonder and abhorrence ihe vices of an age, which was the moft infamous of any on record. They will bless themselves when they benold those examples, related of Domitian's time: they will give back to antiquity those monsters it produced : and believe with reafon, ibat the species of those women is extinguished ; or at least, that they were never bere propagated. I may safely therefore proceed to the argument of a satire, which is no way relating to them: and firs! observe, that
author makes their luft the mof heroic of their vices : the rest are in a manner but digreffion. He Skims them over ; but he dwells on this : when he seems to have taken bis last leave af it, on the sudden he returns to it: it is one branch of it in Hippia, another in Meffalina, but luft is the main body of the tree. with this text in the first line, and takes it up with intera missions to the end of the chapter. Every vice is a loaders but that's a ten. The fillers, or intermediate parts, are their revenge ; their contrivances of secret crimés ; their
, arts to hide them; their wit to excuse them; and their impudence to own them, when they can no longer be kept secret. Then the persons to whom they are most addicted; and on whom they commonly bestow the last favours: as Aage-players, fillers, finging-boys, and fencers. Those who pass for chaste among them, are not really fo; but only for their var dowries, are rather suffered, than loved by their own busbands. That they are imperious , domineering, scolding Cites: A for learning and criticism in poetry ; but are falle judges. Love to speak Greek (which was to the fajhionatic tongue, as French
is now with us.) That they plead caufes at the bar, and play prizes at the bear-garden. That they are golips and news-mongers : wrangle with their neighbours abroad, and beat i heir servants at home. That they lie-in for new faces once a month, are fluttish with their husbands in private; and paint and dress in public for their lovers, That they deal with Jews, diviners, and fortune-tellers : learn the arts of miscarrying, and barrenness, Buy children, and produce them for their own. Murder their hus, bands fons, if they stand in their way to his estate ; and make their adulterers his heirs. From hence the poet proceeds to shew the occasions of all theses vices, their original, and how they were introduced in Rome, by peace, wealth, and luxury. In conclusion, if we will take the word of our malicious author, bad women are the general standing rule; and the good, but some few exceptions to it.
N Saturn's reign, at Nature's early birth,
When in a narrow cave, their common shade,
2 fat with acorns belch'd their windy food.
i In the golden age; when Saturn reigned.
Or from what other atoms they begun,
When Jove had driven his father into banishment, the filver age began, according to the poets,
4 The poet makes Justice and Chastity filters ; and says, that they Bed to heaven together, and left earth for ever,
But still Urfidius courts the marriage-bait,
'tis nois'd, a maid did once appear In some small village, though fame says not where 'Tis possible ; but sure no man she found ; 'Twas desarts all, about her father's ground: And yet some lustful God might there make bold, Are 6 Jove and Mars grown impotent and old ?
5 Ceres' feast. When the Roman women were forbidden to bed with their husbands.
6 Jove and Mars. Of whom more fornicating stories are told than of any of the other gods.
Many a nymph has in a cave been spread,
way soever thy adventures fall,
One sees a dancing-mafter cap'ring high,
The rest (when now the long vacation's come,
Thus Hippia loath'd her old patrician lord,
7 She fled to Egypt; which wondered at the enormity of her crime,