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'Tis poffible; but fure no man fhe found; "Twas defart, all, about her father's ground: And yet fome luftful god might there make bold,
Are Jove and Mars grown impotent and old? Many a fair nymph has in a cave been spread, 85 And much good love without a feather-bed. Whither would'ft thou to chufe a wife refort, The Park, the Mall, the Play-house, or the Court?
Which way foever thy adventures fall,
Secure alike of chastity in all.
One fees a dancing-master capering high,
And raves, and piffes, with pure ecstasy :
Another does, with all his motions, move,
And gapes, and grins as in the feat of love;
A third is charm'd with the new opera notes, 95
Admires the fong, but on the finger dotes :
The country lady in the box
Softly the warbles over all the hears ;
And fucks in paffion, both at eyes and ears.
The reft (when now the long vacation's
The noify hall and theatres grown dumb) Their memories to refresh, and chear their
In borrow'd breeches act the players' parts.
Ver. 84. Are Jove and Mars] Of whom more fornicating ftories are told than any of the other gods.
The poor, that scarce have wherewithal to eat, Will pinch, to make the finging-boy a treat. 105 The rich, to buy him, will refufe no price; And ftretch his quail-pipe, till they crack his
Tragedians, acting love, for luft are fought:
(Though but the parrots of a poet's thought.)
The pleading lawyer, though for counsel us'd, 110
In chamber-practice often is refus'd.
Still thou wilt have a wife, and father heirs ;
(The product of concurring theatres.)
Perhaps a fencer did thy brows adorn,
And a young fword-man to thy lands is born.
Thus Hippia loath'd her old patrician lord,
And left him for a brother of the fword:
To wond'ring Pharos with her love she fled,
To fhew one monfter more than Africk bred:
Forgetting house and husband, left behind, 120
Ev'n children too; fhe fails before the wind;
Falfe to 'em all, but conftant to her kind.
But, ftranger yet, and harder to conceive,
She could the play-house and the players leave.
Born of rich parentage, and nicely bred,
She lodg'd on down, and in a damask bed;
Yet daring now the dangers of the deep,
On a hard mattress is content to fleep.
Ver. 118. To wond'ring Pharos] She filed to Egypt, which wondered at the enormity of her crime.
Ere this, 'tis true, fhe did her fame expose: 129
But that, great ladies with great ease can lose.
The tender nymph could the rude ocean bear:
So much her luft was stronger than her fear.
But, had fome honeft caufe her paffage preft,
The smallest hardship had disturb'd her breast:
Each inconvenience makes their virtue cold;
But womankind, in ills, is ever bold.
Were the to follow her own lord to fea,
What doubts or fcruples would she raise to stay?
Her stomach fick, and her head giddy grows;
The tar and pitch are naufeous to her nose. 140
But in love's voyage nothing can offend;
Women are never fea-fick with a friend.
Amidft the crew, fhe walks upon
She eats, the drinks, the handles
And if she spews, 'tis thinking of her lord. 145
Now afk, for whom her friends and fame she
What youth, what beauty could th' adulterer boast?
What was the face, for which she could fuftain
To be call'd mistress to fo base a man?
The gallant, of his days had known the best :
Deep fcars were feen indented on his breast;
And all his batter'd limbs requir'd their need-
A promontory wen, with griefly grace,
Stood high, upon the handle of his face :
His blear eyes ran in gutters to his chin: His beard was ftubble, and his cheeks were thin.
But 'twas his fencing did her fancy move : 'Tis arms and blood and cruelty they love. But should he quit his trade, and sheath his fword,
Her lover would begin to be her lord.
This was a private crime; but you
What fruits the facred brows of monarchs bear:
The good old fluggard but began to fnore,
When from his fide up rose th' imperial whore:
She who preferr❜d the pleasures of the night 165
To pomps, that are but impotent delight;
Strode from the palace, with an eager pace,
To cope with a more mafculine embrace;
Muffled the march'd, like Juno in a cloud,
Of all her train but one poor wench allow'd, 170
One whom in fecret fervice fhe could truft;
The rival and companion of her luft.
To the known brothel-houfe fhe takes her
And for a nafty room gives double pay;
That room in which the rankeft harlot lay.
Prepar'd for fight, expectingly fhe lies,
With heaving breafts, and with defiring eyes.
Ver. 163. He tells the famous ftory of Meffalina, wife to the emperor Claudius.
Still as one drops, another takes his place,
And baffled ftill fucceeds to like difgrace.
At length, when friendly darkness is expir'd, 180
And every ftrumpet from her cell retir'd,
She lags behind, and ling'ring at the gate,
With a repining figh submits to fate :
All filth without, and all a fire within,
Tir'd with the toil, unfated with the fin,
Old Cæfar's bed the modeft matron feeks;
The fteam of lamps ftill hanging on her cheeks,
ropy fmut: thus foul, and thus bedight,
She brings him back the product of the night.
Now should I fing what poifons they provide;
With all their trumpery of charms befide; 191
And all their arts of death: it would be known
Luft is the fmalleft fin the fex can own,
Cæfinia ftill, they fay, is guiltlefs found
Of ev'ry vice, by her own lord renown'd: And well she may, fhe brought ten thousand pound.
She brought him wherewithal to be call'd chafte; His tongue is ty'd in golden fetters faft:
He fighs, adores, and courts her ev'ry hour; Who would not do as much for such a dower? She writes love-letters to the youth in grace ; 201 Nay, tips the wink before the cuckold's face; And might do more; her portion makes it good; Wealth has the privilege of widowhood.
Ver. 204. Wealth has the privilege &c.] His meaning is, that