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of his nostrils. By such a contrivance, he will avoid much of the unjust mischief he will otherwise commit; he may take the whole of the effluvia, so disagreeable to many, into his own nose; and not, like Pandora, with a mischievous disregard to general consequences, diffuse the convulsion-exciting contents indiscriminately into the world around him. Yours, &c... ANTI-TABAC.!
A DEFENCE OF SNUFF-TAKING,
SIR, A late correspondent, politely enough,
SNUFF's known for a nostrum and famous specific, Of pow'rs ever potent, and virtues prolific ; It may be applied with success in a school,
Where the teacher is plagu'd with a dunce or a fool;, When Euclid's diagrams and problems are solving, Or astronomers' brains like the planets revolving; When plagu'd with pedantical, crabbed constructions,
Or lost in a labyrinth of tangents and fluxions,
Immediate relief may in truth be expected,
This wond'rous Catholicon, famous for teachers, Is equally worthy th' attention of preachers; When puzzled they pore o'er some intricate text, Whose equivocal sense is by critics perplex'd; Or ev❜n in the pulpit, if mem'ry should fail, 'Tis but making a pause-a pinch to inhale. The formal physician, when a patient applies, Shakes his head, raps his box, and pretends to look wise;
E'en his worship the Justice, when quoting from Coke,
May perhaps misapply, though truth fall by the stroke;
Should a barrister cavil, his worship looks gruffGives a frown from the bench-and decides with a snuff.
Reviewers, condemn'd to the froth and whipt
Of some lunatic fuddled in Helicon's stream,
Or sitting in judgment on sophists too far gone,
If the proof of my doctrine on witnesses rested, From the beau to the beggar it could be attested:
When Chloe treats Fopling with vapours or spleen,
To lengthen the list of the snuff-taking train, Comes the poor poetaster, who travails in pain; Tagging rhymes as he can to a verb's termination, The alphabet tort'ring with strange combination: He may bite at his quill, but his wisest resource is To replenish his snuff-box, 'twill gain him new forces.
And to prove the assertion I've just now advanc'd,
Hence rhymes are a-wanting, else more might be said,
But Apollo takes leave by th' olfactory nerve, And wanting a stimulus, fancy must starve; TO ANTI-TABAC, though not vanquished, I yield, For accident leaves him possessed of the field : The Muse uninspired, can donought without sneeshin, But will stand to the charge when she gets ammunition. SCOTS MAGAZINE, 1804.
ANSWER TO PHILO-TABAC.
MYNHEER Philo-Tabac, I have casten an eye
Wae's my heart that your sneeshen did last you sae lang,
To inspire sae foolish and idle a sang;
When your nostrum next moves you sic verses to spin,
May your snuff-box be empty before you begin.
When Scotia's fam❜d bards of old took their flight, They drank of Castalia with eager delight;. Nae dull snuffy nostrums confounded their brains, `. But pure from the fountain they warbl'd their strains.
I grant, Philo-Tabac, that judges and preachers, Quack-doctors, reviewers, poetasters, and teachers, Who fuddle their brains with dull poisonous snuff, Must needs vomit forth a deal of nonsense and buff.
But why, though a slave to its slovenly power, Recommend it to those who o'er Helicon soar? Thus the rake who ne'er felt the chaste raptures of bliss,
Is lavish in praise of the St-ws and his M-ss.
Had mighty Apollo, of Poets the Daddy,
His son, or his grandson, or stepson, e'er ca'd ye, You had spurn'd the foul nostrum with a sneer and a huff,
And ta'en for your motto, D-mn-t--n to snuff.
For siccan freedom as I use;
At makin' rhymes I canna boast;
(Perhaps you'll say, "there's little lost.") But as for a' thing there's a season,
I dinna rhyme without a reason.
When winds o'er Cairn o' mount are howlin',
To hae a harl o' Common Sense;