A just deportment, manners graced with ease,
Elegant phrase, and figure formed to please,
Are qualities, that seem to comprehend
Whatever parents, guardians, schools intend;
Hence an unfurnished and a listless mind,
Though busy, trifling; empty, though refined;
Hence all that interferes, and dares to clash
With indolence and luxury, is trash:
While learning, once the man's exclusive pride,
Seems verging fast towards the female side.
Learning itself, received into a mind
By nature weak, or viciously inclined,
Serves but to lead philosophers astray,
Where children would with ease discern the way,
And of all arts sagacious dupes invent,

To cheat themselves and gain the world's assent,
The worst is-Scripture warped from its intent.

The carriage bowls along, and all are pleased
If Tom be sober, and the wheels well greased;
But if the rogue have gone a cup too far,
Left out his linchpin, or forgot his tar,
It suffers interruption and delay,

The wriggling fry soon fill the creeks around,
Poisoning the waters where their swarms abound.
Scorned by the nobler tenants of the flood,
Minnows and gudgeons gorge th' unwholsome food.
The propagated myriads spread so fast,
E'en Lewenhoeck himself would stand aghast,
Employed to calculate th' enormous sum,
And own his crab-computing powers o'ercome.
Is this hyperbole? The world well known,
Your sober thoughts will hardly find it one.

Fresh confidence the speculatist takes
From every hair-brained proselyte he makes;
Till others have the soothing tale believed.
And therefore prints. Himself but half deceived,
Hence comment after comment, spun as fine
As bloated spiders draw the flimsy line:
Hence the same word, that bids our lusts obey,
Is misapplied to sanctify their sway.
If stubborn Greek refuse to be his friend,
Hebrew or Syriac shall be forced to bend:
If languages and copies all cry, No-
Somebody proved it centuries ago.

And meets with hindrance in the smoothest way. Like trout pursued, the critic in despair

When some hypothesis, absurd and vain,
Has filled with all its fumes a critic's brain,
The text, that sorts not with his darling whim,
Though plain to others, is obscure to him.
The will made subject to a lawless force,
All is irregular and out of course;

And Judgment drunk, and bribed to lose his way,
Winks hard, and talks of darkness at noonday.
A critic on the sacred book should be
Candid and learned, dispassionate and free:
Free from the wayward bias bigots feel,
From fancy's influence, and intemperate zeal:
But, above all, (or let the wretch refrain,
Nor touch the page he can not but profane,)
Free from the domineering power of lust;
A lewd interpreter is never just.

How shall I speak thee, or thy power address,
Thou god of our idolatry, the Press?
By thee religion, liberty, and laws,
Exert their influence, and advance their cause;
By thee worse plagues than Pharaoh's land befel,
Diffuse, make Earth the vestibule of Hell:
Thou fountain, at which drink the good and wise;
Thou ever-bubbling spring of endless lies;
Like Eden's dread probationary tree,
Knowledge of good and evil is from thee.

No wild enthusiast ever yet could rest,
Till half mankind were like himself possessed.
Philosophers, who darken and put out
Eternal truth by everlasting doubt;
Church quacks, with passions under no command,
Who fill the world with doctrines contraband,
Discoverers of they know not what, confined
Within no bounds-the blind that lead the blind;
To streams of popular opinion drawn,
Deposit in those shallows all their spawn.

Darts to the mud, and finds his safety there.
Women, whom custom has forbid to fly,
The scholar's pitch (the scholar best knows why,)
With all the simple and unlettered poor,
Admire his learning, and almost adore.
Whoever errs, the priest can ne'er be wrong,
With such fine words familiar to his tongue.
Ye ladies! (for indifferent in your cause,
I should deserve to forfeit all applause,)
Whatever shocks or gives the least offence
To virtue, delicacy, truth, or sense,
Try the criterion, 'tis a faithful guide,)
Nor has, nor can have, Scripture on its side.

None but an author knows an author's cares,
Or Fancy's fondness for the child she bears.
Committed once into the public arms,

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The baby seems to smile with added charms.
Like something precious ventured far from shore,
'Tis valued for the danger's sake the more.
He views it with complacency supreme,
Solicits kind attention to his dream;
And daily more enamoured of the cheat,
Kneels, and asks heaven to bless the dear deceit.
So one, whose story serves at least to show
Men loved their own productions long ago,
Wooed an unfeeling statue for his wife,
Nor rested till the gods had given it life.
If some mere driveller suck the sugared fib,
One that still needs his leading-string and bib,
And praise his genius, he is soon repaid
In praise applied to the same part-his head:
For 'tis a rule that holds for ever true,
Grant me discernment, and I grant it you.
Patient of contradiction as a child,
Affable, humble, diffident, and mild;

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Such was Sir Isaac, and such Boyle and Locke:
Your blunderer is as sturdy as a rock.
The creature is so sure to kick and bite,
A muleteer's the man to set him right.
First Appetite enlists him Truth's sworn foe,
Then obstinate Self-will confirms him so.
Tell him he wanders; that his error leads
To fatal ills; that, though the path he treads
Be flowery, and he sees no cause of fear,
Death and the pains of hell attend him there:
In vain; the slave of arrogance and pride:
He has no hearing on the prudent side.
His still refuted quirks he still repeats;
New raised objections with new quibbles meets;
Till sinking in the quicksand he defends,
He dies disputing, and the contest ends-
But not the mischiefs; they, still left behind,
Like thistle-seeds, are sown by every wind.

Thus men go wrong with an ingenious skill;
Bend the straight rule to their own crooked will;
And with a clear and shining lamp supplied,
First put it out, then take it for a guide.
Halting on crutches of unequal size,
One leg by truth supported, one by lies;
They sidle to the goal with awkward pace,
Secure of nothing-but to loose the race.
Faults in the life breed errors in the brain,
And these reciprocally those again.

The mind and conduct mutually imprint

And stamp their image in each other's mint:
Each, sire and dam, of an infernal race,
Begetting and conceiving all that's base.
None sends his arrow to the mark in view,
Whose hand is feeble, or his aim untrue.
For though ere yet, the shaft is on the wing,
Or when it first forsakes th' elastic string,
It err but little from the intended line,
It falls at last far wide of his design:
So he who seeks a mansion in the sky,
Must watch his purpose with a steadfast eye;
That prize belongs to none but the sincere ;
The least obliquity is fatal here.

With cautious taste the sweet Circean cup:
He that sips often, at last drinks it up.

Habits are soon assumed; but when we strive
To strip them off, 'tis being flayed alive.
Called to the temple of impure delight,
He that abstains, and he alone, does right.
If a wish wander that way, call it home;
He cannot long be safe whose wishes roam.
But, if you pass the threshold you are caught;
Die then, if power Almighty save you not.
There hardening by degrees, till double steeled,
Take leave of nature's God, and God revealed;
Then laugh at all you trembled at before;
And, joining the free-thinker's brutal roar,
Swallow the two grand nostrums they dispense-
That Scripture lies, and blasphemy is sense:
If clemency revolted by abuse,

Be damnable, then damned without excuse.
Some dream that they can silence, when they

The storm of passion, and say, Peace, be still;"
But " Thus far and no further," when addressed
To the wild wave, or wilder human breast,
Implies authority that never can,

That never ought to be the lot of man.

But, muse forbear; long flights forbode a fall;
Strike on the deep-toned chord the sum of all.
Hear the just law the judgment of the skies!
He that hates truth shall be the dupe of lies:
And he that will be cheated to the last,
Delusions strong as Hell shall bind him fast,
But if the wanderer his mistake discern,
Judge his own ways, and sigh for a return,
Bewildered once, must he bewail his loss
For ever and for ever? No-the cross!"
There and there only (though the deist rave,
And atheist, if earth bear so base a slave;)
There and there only is the power to save.
There no delusive hope invites despair;
No mockery meets you, no deception there.
The spells and charms, that blinded you before,
All vanish there, and fascinate no more.

I am no preacher, let this hint suffice-
The cross once seen is death to every vice:
Else he that hung there suffered all his pain,
Bled, groaned, and agonized, and died, in vain.


Pensantur trutina

MAN, on the dubious waves of error tossed, His ship half-foundered, and his compass lost, Sees, far as human optics may command, A sleeping fog, and fancies it dry land: Spreads all his canvass, every sinew plies; Pants for 't, aims at it, enters it, and dies! Then farewell all self-satisfying schemes, His well-built systems, philosophic dreams;

-Hor. Lib. ii. Epist. 1.

Deceitful views of future bliss farewell!-
He reads his sentence at the flames of Hell.
Hard lot of man-to toil for the reward
Of virtue, and yet lose it! Wherefore hard?
He that would win the race must guide his horse
Obedient to the customs of the course;
Else, though unequalled to the goal he flies,
A meaner than himself shall gain the prize.


Grace leads the right way; if you choose the wrong, | Not more affronted by avowed neglect,
Take it and perish; but restrain your tongue;
Charge not, with light sufficient, and left free,
Your wilful suicide on God's decree.

O how unlike the complex works of man,
Heaven's easy, artless, unicumbered plan!
No meretricious graces to beguile,.
No clustering ornaments to clog the pile;
From ostentation as from weakness free,
It stands like the cerulean arch we see,
Majestic in its own simplicity.
Inscribed above the portal, from afar
Conspicuous as the brightness of a star,
Legible only by the light they give,

Stand the soul-quick ning words-Believe and live.
Too many, shocked at what should charm them


Despire the plain direction, and are lost.

Than by the mere dissembler's feigned respect.
What is all righteousness that men devise?
What-but a sordid bargain for the skies?
But Christ as soon would abdicate his own,
As stoop from Heaven to sell the proud a throne.

His dwelling a recess in some rude rock,
Book, beads, and maple dish, his meagre stock;
In shirt of hair, and weeds of canvass, dressed,
Girt with a bell-rope that the pope has blessed;
Adust with stripes told out for every crime,
And sore tormented long before his time;
His prayer preferred to saints that can not aid;
See the sage hermit, by mankind admired,
His praise postponed, and never to be paid;
With all that bigotry adopts inspired,
Wearing out life in his religious whim,
Till his religious whimsy wears out him.

Heaven on such terms! (they cry with proud dis- His works, his abstinence, his zeal allowed,..


Incredible, impossible, and vain!—

Rebel, because 'tis easy to obey;

And scorn, for its own sake, the gracious way.
These are the sober, in whose cooler brains
⚫. Some thought of immortality remains;
The rest, too busy or too gay to wait
On the sad theme, their everlasting state,
Sport for a day, and perish in a night,
The foam upon the waters not so light.
Who judged the pharisee? What odious cause
Exposed him to the vengeance of the laws?
Had he seduced a virgin, wronged a friend,
Or stabbed a man to serve some private end?
Was blasphemy his sin? Or did he stray
From the strict duties of the sacred day?

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Sit long and late at the carousing board?

You think him humble-God accounts him proud,
High in demand, though lowly in pretence,
Of all his conduct this the genuine sense-
My penitential stripes, my streaming blood,
Have purchased Heaven and prove my title good
Turn Eastward now, and Fancy shall apply
To your weak sight her telescopic eye.
The bramin kindles on his own bare head
The sacred fire, self-torturing his trade;
Would give a barbarous air to British song ;
His voluntary pains, severe and long,
No grand inquisitor could worse invent,
Than he contrives to suffer, well content.

Which is the saintlier worthy of the two?
Past all dispute, yon anchorite say you.

Your sentence and mine differ. What's a name?

(Such were the sins with which he charged his I say the bramin has the fairer claim.


No-the man's morals were exact, what then?
"Twas his ambition to be seen of men;
His virtues were his pride; and that one vice
Made all his virtues gewgaws of no price;
He wore them as fine trappings for a show,
A praying, synagogue-frequenting beau.

The self-applauding bird, the peacock see-
Mark what a sumptuous pharisee is he!
Meridian sun-beams tempt him to unfold
His radiant glories, azure, green, and gold:
He treads as if, some solemn music near,
His measured step were governed by his ear:
And seems to say-Ye meaner fowl, give place,
I am all splendour, dignity, and grace!

Not so the pheasant on his charms presumes,
Though he too has a glory in his plumes.
He, Christian like, retreats with modest mien
To the close copse, or far-sequestered green,
And shines without desiring to be seen.
The plea of works, as arrogant and vain,
Heaven turns from with abhorrence and disdain;

If sufferings, Scripture no where recommends,
Devised by self to answer selfish ends,
Give saintship, then all Europe must agree
Ten starveling hermits suffer less than he.

The truth is (if the truth may. suit
And prejudice have left a passage clear,)
your ear,
Pride has attained its most luxuriant growth,
And poisoned every virtue in them both. -
Pride may be pampered while the flesh grows lean;
Humility may clothe an English dean; .
That grace was Cowper's-his, confessed by all-
Though placed in golden Durham's second stall,
Not all the plenty of a bishop's board,
His palace, and his lackeys, and "My Lord,"
More nourish pride, that condescending vice,
Than abstinence, and beggary, and lice;
It thrives in misery, and abundant grows:
In misery fools upon themselves impose.

But why before us protestants produce
An Indian mystic, or a French recluse?
Reformed and well instructed? You shall hear.
Their sin is plain; but what have we to fear,

Yon ancient prude, whose withered features show | The freeborn Christian has no chains to prove,
She might be young some forty years ago,
Her elbows pinioned close upon her hips,
Her head erect, her fan upon her lips,

Her eye-brows arched, her eyes both gone astray
To watch yon amorous couple in their play,
With bony and unkerchiefed neck defies
The rude inclemency of wintry skies,
And sails with lappet-head and mincing airs⚫
Duly at clink of bell to morning prayers.
To thrift and parsimony much inclined,
She yet allows herself that boy behind;
The shivering urchin, bending as he goes,
With slipshod heels, and dewdrop at his nose;
His predecessor's coat advanced to wear,
Which future pages yet are doomed to share,
Carries her Bible tucked beneath his arm,
And hides his hands to keep his fingers warm.

She, half an angel in her own account,
Doubts not hereafter with the saints to mount,
Though not a grace appears on strictest search,
But that she fasts, and item, goes to church.
Conscious of age, she recollects her youth,
And tells, not always with an eye to truth,
Who spanned her waist, and who, where'er he

Scrawled upon glass Miss Bridget's lovely name;
Who stole her slipper, filled it with tokay,
And drank the little bumper every day.
Of temper as envenomed as an asp,
Censorious, and her every word a wasp;
In faithful memory she records the crimes,
Or real or fictitious, of the times;
Laughs at the reputations she has torn,
And holds them dangling at arm's length in scorn.

Such are the fruits of sanctimonious pride,
Of malice fed while flesh is mortified :
Take, Madam, the reward of all your prayers,
Where hermits and where bramins meet with

Your portion is with them.-Nay, never frown,
But, if you please, some fathoms lower down.

Artist attend-your brushes and your paint-
Produce them-take a chair-now draw a saint.
Oh sorrowful and sad! the streaming tears
Channel her cheeks a Niobe appears!.
Is this a saint? Throw tints and all away-
True piety is cheerful as the day,

Will weep indeed and heave a pitying groan
For others' woes, but smiles upon her own.

What purpose has the King of saints in view?
Why falls the Gospel like a gracious dew?
To call up plenty from the teeming earth,
Or curse the desert with a tenfold dearth?
Is it that Adam's offspring may be saved
From servile fear, or be the more enslaved?
To loose the links that galled mankind before,
Or bind them faster on, and add still more?

Or, if a chain, the golden one of love;
No fear attends to quench his glowing fires,
What fear he feels, his gratitude inspires.
Shall he, for such deliverance freely wrought,
Recompense ill? He trembles at the thought.
His Master's interest and his own combined,
Prompt every movement of his heart and mind:
Thought, word, and deed his liberty evince,
His freedom is the freedom of a prince.

Man's obligations infinite, of course

His life should prove that he perceives their force;
His utmost he can render is but small-
The principle and motive all in all.
You have two servants-Tom, an arch, sly rogue,
From top to toe the Geta now in vogue,
Genteel in figure, easy in address,
Moves without noise, and swift as an express,
Reports a message with a pleasing grace,
Expert in all the duties of his place;

Say, on what hinge does his obedience move?
Has he a world of gratitude and love?
No, not a spark-'tis all mere sharper's play;
He likes your house, your housemaid and your


Reduce his wages or get rid of her,

Tom quits you, with-Your most obedient, Sir.

The dinner served, Charles takes his usual stand,
Watches your eye, anticipates command;
Sighs if perhaps your appetite should fail;
And, if he but suspects a frown, turns pale;
Consults all day your interest and your ease,
Richly rewarded if he can but please;
And, proud to make his firm attachment known,
To save your life would nobly risk his own.

Now which stands highest in your serious thought?
Charles, without doubt, say you-and so he ought;
One act, that from a thankful heart proceeds,
Excels ten thousand mercenary deeds.

Thus Heaven approves, as honest and sincere,
The work of generous love and filial fear;
But with averted eyes th' omniscient Judge
Scorns the base hireling, and the slavish drudge.
Where dwell these matchless saints?-old Curio

E'en at your side, Sir, and before your eyes,
The favoured few-th' enthusiasts you despise.
And pleased at heart, because on holy ground
Sometimes a canting hypocrite is found,
Reproach a people with his single fall,
And cast his filthy garment at them all.
Attend!-an apt similitude shall snow,
Whence springs the conduct that offends you so.
See where it smokes along the sounding plain,
Blown all aslant, a driving, dashing rain,
Peal upon peal redoubling all around,
Shakes it again and faster to the ground;
Now flashing wide, now glancing as in play,
Swift beyond thought the lightnings dart away.

Ere yet it came the traveller urged his steed,"
And hurried, but with unsuccessful speed;
Now drenched throughout, and hopeless of his case,
He drops the rein, and leaves him to his pace.
Suppose, unlooked-for in a scene so rude,
Long hid by interposing hill or wood,
Some mansion, neat and elegantly dressed,
By some kind hospitable heart possessed,
Offer him warmth, security, and rest;
Think with what pleasure, safe and at his ease,
He hears the tempest howling in the trees;
What glowing thanks his lips and heart employ,
While danger past is turned to present joy.
So fares it with the sinner, when he feels
A growing dread of vengeance at his heels;
His conscience, like a glassy lake before,
Lashed into foaming waves, begins to roar;
The law grown clamorous, though silent long,

The Frenchman, first in literary fame,
(Mention him if you please.) Voltaire?—The same.
With spirit, genius, eloquence, supplied,
Lived long, wrote much, laughed heartily, and died.
The Scripture was his jest-book, whence he drew
Bon mots to gall the Christian and the Jew;
An infidel in health, but what when sick?
Oh-then a text would touch him at the quick:
View him at Paris in his last career,
Surrounding throngs the demi-god revere;
Exalted on his pedestal of pride,

And fumed frankincense on every side,
He begs their flattery with his latest breath,
And smothered in 't at last, is praised to death.

Yon cottager, who weaves at her own door,
Pillow and bobbins all her little store;
Content though mean, and cheerful if not gay,
Shuffling her threads about the livelong day,

Arraigns him charges him with every wrong-Just earns a scanty pittance, and at night,

Asserts the rights of his offended Lord,
And death or restitution is the word:
The last impossible, he fears the first,

And, having well deserved, expects the worst,
Then welcome refuge, and a peaceful home;
Oh for a shelter from the wrath to come!
Crush me, ye rocks! ye falling mountains hide,
Or bury me in ocean's angry tide.
The scrutiny of those all seeing eyes

I dare not-And you need not, God replies;
The remedy you want I freely give:

The Book shall teach you-read, believe, and live!
'Tis done-the raging storm is heard no more,
Mercy receives him on her peaceful shore:
And Justice, guardian of the dread command,
Drops the red vengeance from his willing hand.
A soul redeemed demands a life of praise;,
Hence the complexion of his future days,
Hence a demeanour holy and unspecked,
And the world's hatred, as its sure effect."
Some lead a life umblameable and just,
Their own dear virtue their unshaken trust;
They never sin-or if (as all offend)
Some trivial slips their daily walk attend,
The poor are near at hand, the charge is small,
A slight gratuity atones for all.

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For though the pope has lost his interest here,
And pardons are not sold as once they were,
No papist more desirous to compound,
Than some grave sinners upon English ground.
That plea refuted, other quirks they seek-
Mercy is infinite, and man is weak;

The future shall obliterate the past,

Lies down secure, her heart and pocket light;
She, for her humble sphere by nature fit,
(Has little understanding, and no wit,
Receives no praise; but, though her lot be such,
Toilsome and indigent) she renders much;
Just knows, and knows no more, her Bible true-
A truth the brilliant Frenchman never knew;
And in that charter reads with sparkling eyes
Her title to a treasure in the skies.
Oh happy peasant! Oh unhappy bard!
His the mere tinsel, hers the rich reward;
He praised perhaps for ages yet to come,
She never heard of half a mile from home:
He lost in errors his vain heart prefers,
She safe in the simplicity of hers.

Not many wise, rich, noble, or profound
In science, win one inch of heavenly ground.
And is it not a mortifying thought

poor should gain it, and the rich should not?
No-the voluptuaries, who ne'er forget
One pleasure lost, lose Heaven without regret;
Regret would rouse them, and give birth to prayer;
Prayer would add faith, and faith would fix them

Not that the Former of us all, in this,
Or aught he does, is governed by caprice;
The supposition is replete with sin,
And bears the brand of blasphemy burnt in.
Not so the silver trumpet's heavenly call
Sounds for the poor, but sounds alike for all:
Kings are invited, and would kings obey,
No slaves on earth more welcome were than they :
But royalty, nobility, and state,

And Heaven no doubt shall be their home at last. Are such a dead preponderating weight,
Come then-a still, small whisper in your ear-That endless bliss (how strange soe'er it seem)

He has no hope who never had a fear;

And he that never doubted of his state,
He may perhaps perhaps he may--too late,
The path to bliss abounds with many a snare;
Learning is one, and wit, however rare.

In counterpoise, flies up and kicks the beam.
'Tis open, and ye can not enter-why?
Because ye will not, Conyers would reply-
And he says much that many may dispute,
And cavil at with ease, but none refute.

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