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Steersman. At sight of our gold the boatswain will bristle,
But not finding his part,
He will break his proud heart,
And hang himself strait i'th'chain of his whistle.
Abaft and afore !
way to the shore !
Softly as fishes which slip through the stream,
That we may catch their sentries napping. Poor little Diegos, they now little dream
Of us the brave warriors of Wapping. Chorus. Then cry, one and all !
ON THE SIGNALL VICTORY OBTAINED IN A SEA-FIGHT BY HIS MAJESTY OF GREAT BRITTAIN'S FLEET OVER THE DUTCH.
[From MS. Burney, 390, fol. 60.]
Let the vast tritons summon once againe
The numerous subjects of the curled maine;
And lett their Neptune lay down his command,
To take new laws from this great victor's hand :
Now must great Charles bee monarch of the sea,
Whose kingdom once the Rodian laws did sway.
'Tis he whose hands stretch out ore sea and land,
Threatens revenge to those that dare withstand,
Whilst that Olympus, like his head on high,
Far above clouds and storms secure doth ly.
Was't not our Drake whose voyage first of all
Did girdle round the world's terrestrial ball ?
Whilst scorning nature should his sight confine,
Or to his triumphs place or laws enjoyne,
Thro' rocks and seas unknown a way did pirce,
Seeking new empires round the universe;
Lett forraign powers divide the world from hence,
They have the center, we the circunference.
Why then dares Holland 'gainst our navies fight,
Both arm'd with force and priviledg'd with right?
Must not those rebell states his laws obay,
Whose pow'r is made as boundless as the sea ?
But let them come, to plead our king's defence
We need no other than that warlick prince,
Rupert, the lyon rampant of this nation,
Slighting his own to seek its preservation ;
And now his birth in time of wars, we find,
Did but foretell his valour to mankind,
While he grew up to be the world's wonder,
Born, Bacchus-like, in midst of clouds and thunder;
'Tis he thro' thousand terrors dare to sayle,
And 'gainst whole shours of bullets, thicke as haile,
Secure, like Alexander, us'd to flee,
Scorning suggestions of mortallity.
And yet, as if his hand could not suffice
Alone to manage this great enterprize,
A new St. George England att last doth find,
At once the love and terror of mankind,
That universall Stator, whose command
Can calme the tempest both of sea and land;
'Tis he who all the arts of states hath known,
And better then our politicians shown
What 'tis to moddle empires, and can soon
The discords of tumultuous kingdoms tune :
'Tis hee who still’d three nations, and knew why
Their different voices made up harmony.
Thus did our English colours quitt the shore,
Under their joynt command, as heretofore
The Roman ensigns, by two consuls led,
Display'd like egles with a double head :
But what ill-boding, will not Dutch seamen fear
When Castor and Pollux att once for us appear.
And yet no sooner had we sent our fleet,
But Hollanders with fresh recruits they meet,
Who to encourage all their men to fight,
Preface their actions with some seeming right;
And now decoy whole nations, who flock thither
To club and twist their interests together.
But the hasty French, not dareing to withstand
That valour, which they oft have felt by land,
Soon chang'd their nature, and began to doubt
What their share be in this general rout;
And after serious councell thought it best
To threaten but att home secure to rest.
Thus while we scourg one nation, still we bring
Terror to all the world, who knows our king
Might if he pleas'd engross the trade at sea,
And make all kingdoms to him tribute pay:
Yet he but strives to makes those waters free,
As nature ment that element should bee :
Not comett-like, sparkling but threating rays,
But with a gentler influence rules the seas:
Thus generous princes, who 'gainst rebells fight,
Defend their title but do not use their might.
Then let them with our dreadfull navies joyne,
Arm'd with dispaire, and doubl’d strength with wine,
Their cannons roare about the trembling maine,
Till Jove in thunder eccoed back againe;
And numerous sparks in clouds of smoke doe stray,
Clouding at once and bringing back the day:
Th’ amazed waves lippe up the noyse to heare,
And then sinke downe and bed themselve for fear.
Thus they but beat the airs, but when we fire Thunder and lightning issue from each lyre; And fire-winged bullets, while from us they fly, Send back the loud reports of victory: Some ships we sink, others being sett on fire, To us prove bone-fires, to them a fun'rall pyre, And, as if sinking now would not suffice, Unless that some were burnt for sacrifice; Those elements (which nere yet friends were known) Must now conspire to bring two deaths in one. Those that escap'd distracted all with fear, Fly from that vengence which they saw so near. 'Twas then brave Rupert, whom those rebells drove With thunder not unlik to that of Jove, But that this difference was onely known,Jove has his Vulcan, he can make his own, And, like those Parthian kings, would nere refuse To make those weapons which himself might use.
For, as Italian pictures, often known
To represent two various shapes in one,
So his capacious head att once hath been
The kingdom's councel and its magazine.
Then let De Ruyter with his fleet go boast,
Prisoners at home, and banisht to their coasts ;
Let him and Trump, to quit themselves from shame,
Try on each other how to lay the blame;
And which are to be praised is all the doubt,
Those that first ran or those that longest fought,
While all the people from their shore each day
May see our fleet beseige their land by sea.
Their marchant men att home no harbour find,
But onely are secure from seas and wind;
We sent our fire-ships in amongst them thither,
And saw them flaming half a league together.
Beacons in vain communicate their fears,
While that whole towns are fired about their eares;
While flames, sad ushers of our destroying hand,
And, turning all to ashes, make their land,
Anticipate that universall doome
Of fire, which must nature herself consume;
Of fire, I say, which nere shall cease from spoyle
Till all the world be its own fun’rall pyle.
Well then may high and mighty states beware,
Amphibious sort of men, whose houses are
But floating arks ; of which scarce one in ten
But fraught with more religions then with men.
Ther's no religion all the world around,
But in their Amsterdam it may be found ;