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As satirist, Butler unique is enroll'd;
In Dryden, the Poet sublime we behold:
To these join a Thomson, and high-finish'd Pope;
In science, give Bacon, Locke, Newton full scope;
For style chaste and easy, note Addison, Steele,
With Goldsmith, whose pathos makes ev'ry breast
feel; While to these might be added an host worthy praise, Deserving the loudest applause from my lays.
“ and spoke Latin with almost the correctness and fluency of “ an ancient Roman; and with all his theological errors, he
taught that erudition which civilized his country. He is
scarcely less conspicuous as an improver of his native tongue. “ His language is more studied, more appropriate and correct, “ is more the phraseology of a man of learning and sense, than
any specimen which preceded him. From his proficiency in “ the Greek and Latin, he was enabled to transfuse into his “ vernacular dialect many of the excellencies which characterise “ those admirable languages; and his style abounds with inver“sions and other peculiarities of classical diction. His English “ works were considered as standards of style, as low down as “the reign of James the first."
Such once were the. Suns that shone forth in our
sphere; Reverse now the scene, and let moderns appear. Too pompous to study, thro' thick and thro' thin They dash on, the bright wreathe of verdure to win; Disdaining, at all times, to think or reflect; Too proud to re-read, to re-write, or correct : As if, when composing, perfection was in 'em, And Phoebus himself was determin'd to win 'em.
In fine, the press teems with such trash in each
quarter, One would think all the world quaff”d Parnassus's
(f) But if you'd have me now expose
Th’ ingredients which a work compose,
And all the hodge-podge designate
Which modern scribes amalgamate,
For grand induction they must boast,
Sheer impudence to rule the roast;
They should have flippant readings-tantum;
Of anecdotes and tales a quantum;
I mean dirty puddle, not oozing from fountain,
But slush from the ditch that's in rear of the moun.
For as it is said, when true glory impels,
The loud tongue of Fame ev'ry noble deed tells;
Just know each famous name classic,
Their study being all on tick:
They must aloud have publish'd banns
To tenets wedded of Germans;
Philosophy just fram’d to quell
Satan, and make of Heav'n an Hell:
These, with a flow of words high sounding,
Descriptions every where abounding,
A vain attempt at being witty,
A flim-flam Tale to call forth pity,
A spice of sentiment and moral,
To ’lure church-goers as with coral,
To heav'n some few apostrophes
That men may think they're oft on knees;
Then add fine paper, choice engravings:
Of studious fools they thus lull cravings;
And when perus’d, the leaves can't fail
To do kind office for the tail.”
But that when, vice versa, the act's only base,
She blows second trump from a contrary place:
So Poets, who taste of the pure limpid stream,
Are warm'd by the radiance of Phoebus's beam;
While rhymsters, divested of merit, must drink
Of liquid quite stagnant, that laves ditches brink.
Thus, to prove of the former how scant is the list,
While of those lastly mentioned how many exist,
Was the cause why this greatest of writers ’mongst
Sir Noodle O'Scribblecumdash, took the pen ;
Whose erudite notes to my care Fate consign'd,
A pocket-book fill'd with wit, learning, and mind :-
But perhaps 'twere as well, with a trifling digression,
To state of this relic how I got possession.
As I long aim'd to rank Apollonian nibbler,
And thus share the fate of each quill-driving
I dwell in back garret just six stories high,
While opposite lattice, in lieu of the sky,
A huge stack of chimneys obscures the day's light,
And Sol's poorest blaze never gladdens my sight:
From this you may guess I am not over wealthy; However, my abstinence keeps me quite healthy : For if once in the week I procure boil'd or roast,
O'er his Turtle no Citizen louder can boast.
As for wine or strong spirits to make Fancy free,
The chandler's shop beer is Nepenthe to me:
In short, with Tub-cynic I well may compare,
Though he enjoy'd more, for he saw the Sun's glare.
I've said once a week it perchance proves my lot
To regale upon roast meat, or boil'd from the pot;.
But when no such banquet my longing eye sees,
I rank Epicurus o'er Gloucester's thin cheese,
Which by penny's worth I from the chandler's shop
Since hunger's a sauce, sir, that beggars compare.
So it chanc'd as I sped on this errand one day,
Of paper a pile on the counter there lay,
Which by weight had been purchas’d, brown sugar
to fold, Tea,"soap, butter, cheese, starch, blue, dip or choice