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Our bolder Talents in fall light display'd ;
205 That each
feem a Virtue, or a Vice.
That, Nature gives; and where the leffon taught Is but to please, can Pleasure seem a fault ?
lowing, others are still wanting, nor can we answer that these are exactly inserted.
VER, 207. The former part having shewn, that the particular Characters of Women are more various than those of Men, it is nevertheless observed, that the general Character. i ftic of the sex, as to the ruling Pafion, is more uniform.
VER. 211. This is occafioned partly by their Nature, partly their Education, and in some degree by Neceflity.
And, for a noble pride, I blush no less,
May, if he love, and merit verse, have mine,
In sev'ral Men we fev'ral pafsions find ;
Experience, this ; by Man's oppression curit,
Men some to Bus’ness, fome to Pleasure take; 215
Yet mark the fate of a whole Sex of Queens ! Pow'r all their end, but Beauty all the means : In Youth they conquer with so wild a rage, As leaves them scarce a subject in their Age: For foreign glory, foreign joy, they roam; No thought of peace or happiness at home. But Wisdom's triumph is well-tim'd Retreat, 225 As hard a science to the Fair as Great! Beauties, like Tyrants, old and friendless grown, Yet hate repose, and dread to be alone, Worn out in public, weary ev'ry eye, Nor leave one figh behind them when they die. 230
· Pleasures the sex, as children Birds, pursue, Still out of reach, yet never out of view;
VER. 216. But ev'ry Woman is at beart a Rake: ] “ Some « men (says the poet) take to business, some to pleasure, “ but every woman would willingly make pleafure ber bufi“.ness :” which being the peculiar characteristic of a Rake, we must needs think that he includes (in his use of the word here) no more of the Rake's ill qualities than are implied in this definition, of one who makes pleasure his bfiness.
Ver. 219. What are the Aims and the Fate of this Sex ? - 1. As to Power.
II, As to Pleafure.
Sure, if they catch, to spoil the Toy at most,
See how the World its Veterans rewards !
Ah! Friend! to dazzle let the Vain design ;
VER. 249. Advice for their true Interest.
VER. 253. So ruken the i un's broad beam, etc.] One of the great beauties observable in the poet's management of his Similitudes, is the ceremonious preparation he makes for them, in gradually raising the imagery of the fimilitude in the lines preceding, by the use of metaphors taken froin the subject of it:
while what farigues the ring, Flaunts and goes down, an unregarded 'hing,
Serene in Virgin Modesty the thines,
Ok! bleft with Temper, whose unclouded ray
And yet, believe me, good as well as ill, Wo nan's at best' a Contradiction ftill.
And the civil dismission he gives them by the continuance of the same metaphor, in the lines following, whereby the traces of the imagery gradually decay, and give place to others, and the reader is never offended with the sudden or abrupt disappearance of it,
Oh! bleft with Temper, whose unclouded ray, etc. Another instance of the same kind we have in this epifle, in the following lines,
Chöre a firm cioud before it fall, and in it
Heav'n, when it strives to polish all it can
Parents' fimple Pray'r ;
Ver. 285, etc. Afcendant Ploebus watch'd that bour with care, Averted balf your Parents' fimple Pray'r ; And gave you Beauty, but deny'd i be Pelf ] The poet concludes his Epiftle with a fine Moral, that deserves the serious attention of the public ; It is this, that all the extravagances of these vicious Characters here described, are much inflamed by a wrong Education, hinted at in ver. 203 ; and that even the best are rather secured by a good natural than by the prudence and providence of parents; which observation is conveyed un. der the sublime classical machinery of Phoebus in the ascen. cant, watching the natal hour of his favourite, and averting the ill effects of her parents mistaken fondness : For Phebus, as the god of Wit, confers Genius; and, as one of the astronomical influences, defeats the adventitious byas of education.
In conclusion, the great Moral from both these Epifles