Imágenes de páginas

wholly for another, ver. 27. The happiness of
animals mutual, ver. 49. II. Reason or instinct
operate alike to the good of each individual,
ver. 79. Reason or instinct operate also to so-
ciety in all animals, ver. 109.
society carried by instinct, ver. 115.
III. How far
much farther by reason, ver. 128.
which is called the state of nature, ver. 144.
IV. Of that
Reason instructed by instinct in the invention of
arts, ver. 166, and in the forms of society, ver. 176.
V. Origin of political societies, ver. 196.
gin of monarchy, ver. 207. Patriarchal go-
vernment, ver. 212. VI. Origin of true reli-
gion and government, from the same principle,
of love, ver. 231, &c. Origin of superstition
and tyranny, from the same principle, of fear,
ver. 237, &c. The influence of self-love ope-
rating to the social and public good, ver. 266.
Restoration of true religion and government on
their first principle, ver. 285.
Mixed govern-
ment, ver. 288. Various forms of each, and
the true end of all, ver. 300, &c.


HERE then we rest; "The Universal Cause
Acts to one end, but acts by various laws."
In all the madness of superfluous health,
The train of pride, the impudence of wealth,
Let this great truth be present night and day;
But most be present, if we preach or pray.

Look round our world; behold the chain of Love
Combining all below, and all above.
See plastic Nature working to this end,
The single atoms each to other tend,
Attract, attracted to, the next in place
Form'd and impell'd its neighbour to embrace,
See matter next, with various life endued,
Press to one centre still, the general good.
See dying vegetables life sustain,
See life dissolving vegetate again:
All forms that perish other forms supply,
(By turns we catch the vital breath, and die)
Like bubbles on the sea of matter borne,
They rise, they break, and to that sea return. 20
Nothing is foreign; parts relate to whole?
One all-extending, all-preserving soul
Connects each being, greatest with the least;
Made beast in aid of man, and man of beast;
*All serv'd, all serving: nothing stands alone;
The chain holds on, and where it ends, unknown.
Has God, thou fool! work'd solely for thy good,
Thy joy, thy pastime, thy attire, thy food!
Who for thy table feeds the wanton fawn,
For him as kindly spread the flowery lawn:
Is it for thee the lark ascends and sings?
Joy tunes his voice, joy elevates his wings.
Is it for thee the linnet pours his throat?
Loves of his own and raptures swell the note.
The bounding steed you pompously bestride,
Shares with his lord the pleasure and the pride.
Is thine alone the seed that strews the plain?
The birds of Heaven shall vindicate their grain.

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Ver. 1. In several editions in 4to.
Learn, Dulness, learn!" The Universal Cause,


Thine the full harvest of the golden year?
Part pays, and justly, the deserving steer:
The hog, that ploughs not, nor obeys thy call,
Lives on the labours of this lord of all.

Know, Nature's children all divide her care;
The fur that warms a monarch, warm'd a bear.
While man exclaims, "See all things for my use!"
And just as short of reason he must fall,
"See man for mine!" replies a pamper'd goose:
Who thinks all made for one, not one for all.



Grant that the powerful still the weak control;
Be man the wit and tyrant of the whole:
And helps, another creature's wants and woes.
Nature that tyrant checks; he only knows,
Say, will the falcon, stooping from above,
Smit with her varying plumage, spare the dove!
Admires the jay the insect's gilded wings?
Or hears the hawk when Philomela sings?
Man cares for all: to birds he gives his woods,
To beasts his pastures, and to fish his floods:
For some his interest prompts him to provide,
For more his pleasure, yet for more his pride: 60
All feed on one vain patron, and enjoy
Th' extensive blessing of his luxury.
That very life his learned hunger craves,
He saves from famine, from the savage saves;
Nay, feasts the animal he dooms his feast,
And, till he ends the being, makes it blest:
Which sees no more the stroke, or feels the pain,
Than favour'd man by touch ethereal slain.
The creature had his feast of life before;
Thou too must perish, when thy feast is o'er! 70
To each unthinking being, Heaven, a friend,
Gives not the useless knowledge of its end:
To man imparts it; but with such a view

As, while he dreads it, makes him hope it too:
The hour conceal'd, and so remote the fear,
Death still draws nearer, never seeming near.
Great standing miracle! that Heaven assign'd
Its only thinking thing this turn of mind.

II. Whether with reason, or with instinct blest,
Know, all enjoy that power which suits them best;
To bliss alike by that direction tend, ́

And find the means proportion'd to their end.
Say, where full Instinct is th' unerring guide,
What pope or council can they need beside?
Reason, however able, cool at best,
Cares not for service, or but serves when prest
Stays till we call, and then not often near;
But honest Instinct comes a volunteer,
Sure never to o'ershoot, but just to hit;
Which heavier Reason labours at in vain.
While still too wide or short is human Wit;
Sure by quick Nature happiness to gain,
This too serves always, Reason never long:
One must go right, the other may go wrong.
See then the acting and comparing powers
One in their nature, which are two in ours!!


After ver. 46, in the former editions,
What care to tend, to lodge, to cram, to treat
All this he knew; but not that 'twas to eat him.
As far as goose could judge, he reason'd right;
But as to man, mistook the matter quite.
After ver. 84, in the MS.



While man, with opening views of various
Confounded by the aid of knowledge strays;
Too weak to chuse, yet chusing still in haste,
One moment gives the pleasure and distaste.


And Reason raise o'er Instinct as you can,
In this 'tis God directs, in that 'tis man.

Who taught the nations of the field and wood
To shun their poison, and to choose their food? 100
Prescient, the tides or tempests to withstand,
Build on the wave, or arch beneath the sand?
Who made the spider parallels design,
Sure as De Moivre, without rule or line?
Who bid the stork, Columbus-like, explore
Heavens not his own, and worlds unknown before?
Who calls the council, states the certain day?
Who forms the phalanx, and who points the way?
III. God, in the nature of each being, founds
Its proper bliss, and sets its proper bounds:
But as he fram'd a whole, the whole to bless,
On mutual wants built mutual happiness:
So from the first, eternal Order ran,


And creature link'd to creature, man to man.
Whate'er of life all-quickening ether keeps,
Or breathes through air, or shoots beneath the deeps,
Or pours profuse on earth, one Nature feeds
The vital flame, and swells the genial seeds.
Not man alone, but all that roam the wood,
Or wing the sky, or roll along the flood,
Each loves itself, but not itself alone,
Each sex desires alike, till two are one.
Nor ends the pleasure with the fierce embrace;
They love themselves, a third time, in their race.
Thus beast and bird their common charge attend,
The mothers nurse it, and the sires defend;
The young dismiss'd to wander earth or air,
There stops the Instinct, and there ends the care;
The link dissolves, each seeks a fresh embrace,
Another love succeeds, another race.





The last, scarce ripen'd into perfect man,
Saw helpless him from whom their life began:
Memory and Forecast just returns engage,
That pointed back to youth, this on to age;
While Pleasure, Gratitude, and Hope, combin'd,
Still spread the interest, and preserve the kind.
IV. Nor think, in Nature's state they blindly
The state of Nature was the reign of God:
Self-love and social at her birth began,
Union the bond of all things, and of man.
Pride then was not; nor arts, that Pride to aid;
Man walk'd with beast, joint tenant of the shade;
The same his table, and the same his bed;
No murder cloth'd him, and no murder fed.
In the same temple, the resounding wood,
All vocal beings hymn'd their equal God:
The shrine with gore unstain'd, with gold undress'd,
Unbrib'd, unbloody, stood the blam.less priest:
Heaven's attribute was universal care,
And man's perogative, to rule, but spare.
Ah! how unlike the man of times to come!
Of half that live the butcher and the tomb;
Who, foe to Nature, hears the general groan,
Murders their species, and betrays his own.
But just disease to luxury succeeds,
And every death its own avenger breeds;

The Fury-passions from that blood began,
And turn'd on man, a fiercer savage, man.
See him from Nature rising slow to Art!
To copy Instinct then was Reason's part:
Thus then to man the voice of Nature spake-
"Go, from the creatures thy instructions take:
Learn from the birds what food the thickets yield;
Learn from the beasts the physic of the field;
Thy arts of building from the bee receive:
Learn of the mole to plough, the worm to weave;
Learn of the little Nautilus to sail,



Spread the thin oar, and catch the driving gale.
Here too all forms of social union find,

And hence let Reason, late, instruct mankind: 180
Here subterranean works and cities see;
There towns aëreal on the waving tree.
Learn each small people's genius, policies,
The ant's republic, and the realm of bees;
How those in common all their wealth bestow,
And anarchy without confusion know;
And these for ever, though a monarch reign,
Their separate cells and properties maintain.
Mark what unvary'd laws preserve each state,
Laws wise as Nature, and as fix'd as Fate.
In vain thy Reason finer webs shall draw,
Entangle Justice in her net of Law,
And right too rigid, harden into wrong;
Still for the strong too weak, the weak too strong.
Yet go and thus o'er all the creatures sway,
Thus let the wiser make the rest obey:
And for those arts mere Instinct could afford,
Be crown'd as monarchs, or as gods ador'd.”

V. Great Nature spoke; observant man obey'd;
Cities were built, societies were made:
Here rose one little state; another near


A longer care man's helpless kind demands;
That longer care contracts more lasting bands:
Reflection, Reason, still the ties improve,
At once extend the interest, and the love:
With choice we fix, with sympathy we burn;
Each virtue in each passion takes its turn;
And still new needs, new helps, new habits rise,
That graft benevolence on charities.
Still as one brood, and as another rose,
These natural love maintain'd, habitual those: 140 Till common interest plac'd the sway in one.

And he return'd a friend, who came a foe.

Converse and Love mankind might strongly draw,
When Love was Liberty, and Nature Law.

Thus states were form'd; the name of king unknown,


'Twas Virtue only, (or in arts or arms,
Diffusing blessings, or averting harms)
The same which in a sire the sons obey'd,
A prince the father of a people made.


Grew by like means, and join'd through love or fear

Did here the trees with ruddier burthens bend,

And there the streams in purer rills descend?

What War could ravish, Commerce could bestow;

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VI. Til then, by Nature crown'd, each patriarch King, priest, and parent, of his growing state: [sate, On him, their second Providence, they hung, Their law his eye, their oracle his tongue.

Ver. 197, in the first editions,

Who for those arts they learn'd of brutes before,
As kings shall crown them, or as gods adore.
Ver. 201. Here rose one little state, &c.] In the
MS. thus.
The neighbours leagu'd to guard their common
And love was Nature's dictate; murder, not.
For want alone each animal contends;
Tigers with tigers, that remov'd, are friends.
Plain Nature's wants the common mother crown'd,
She pour'd her acorns, herbs, and streams around.
No treasure then for rapine to invade,
What need to fight for sun-shine or for shade?
And half the cause of contest was remov'd,
When Beauty could be kind to all who lov'd,

He from the wondering furrow call'd the food,
Taught to command the fire, control the flood, 220
Draw forth the monsters of th' abyss profound,
Or fetch th' aerial eagle to the ground.
Till drooping, sickening, dying, they began
Whom they rever'd as God to mourn as Man:
Then, looking up from sire to sire, explor`d
One great First Father, and that first ador'd.
Or plain tradition, that this All began,
Convey'd urbroken faith from sire to son ;
The worker from the work distinct was known,
And simple Reason never sought but one:
Fre Wit oblique had broke that steady light,
Man, like his Maker, saw that all was right;
To virtue, in the paths of pleasure trod,
And own'd a father when he own'd a God. ›
Love all the faith, and all th' allegiance then;
For Nature knew no right diviue in men,
No il could fear in God; and understood
A sovereign being, but a sovereign good.
True faith, true policy, united ran;
That was but love of God, and this of man.
Who first taught souls enslav'd, and realms un-
Th' enormous faith of many made for one; [done,
That proud exception to all Nature's laws,
Tinvert the world and counter-work its cause?
Force first made conquest, and that conquest, law;
Till Superstition taught the tyrant awe,
Then shar'd the tyranny, then lent it aid,
And gods of conquerors, slaves of subjects made:
She 'midst the lightning's blaze, and thunder's


When rock'd the mountains, and when groan'd the ground,



She taught the weak to bend, the proud to pray,
To power unseen, and mightier far than they i
She from the rending earth, and bursting skies,
Saw gods descend, and fiends infernal rise:
Here fix'd the dreadful, there the blest abodes;
Fear made her devils, and weak Hope her gods;
Gods partial, changeful, passionate, unjust,
Whose attributes were rage, revenge, or Just;
Such as the souls of cowards might, conceive,
And, form'd like tyrants, tyrants would believe.
Zeal then, not charity, became the guide;
And Hell was built on spite, and Heaven on pride.
Then sacred seem'd th' ethereal vault no more;
Altars grew marble then, and reek'd with gore:
Then first the Flamen tasted living food;
Next his grim idol, smear'd with human blood;
With heaven's own thunders shook the world below,
And play'd the god an engine on his foe.

So drives Self-love, through just, and through un-
To one man's power, ambition, lucre, lust: [just,
The same self love, in all, becomes the cause 271
Of what restrains him, government and laws.
For, what one likes, if others like as well,
What serves one will, when many wills rebel?
How shall he keep, what, sleeping or awake,
A weaker may surprise, a stronger take?
His safety must his liberty restrain:
All join to guard what each desires to gain.
Fore'd into virtue thus, by self-defence,
Ev'n kings learn'd justice and benevolence:
Self-love forsook the peth it first pursued,
And found the private in the public good.
"Twas then the studious head or generous mind,
Follower of God, or friend of human kind,
Poet or patriot, rose but to restore
The faith and moral, Nature gave before;



Relum'd her ancient light, not kindled new;
If not God's image, yet his shadow drew:
Taught power's due use to people and to kings,
Taught nor to slack, nor strain its tender strings,
The less, or greater, set so justly true,
That touching one must strike the other too;
Till jarring interests of themselves create
Th' according music of a well-mix'd state.
Such is the world's great harmony, that springs
From order, union, full consent of things:

Where small and great, where weak and mighty,
To serve, not suffer, strengthen, not invade ; [made
More powerful each as needful to the rest,
And, in proportion as it blesses, blest;
Draw to one point, and to one centre bring
Beast, man, or angel, servant, lord, or king.


For forms of government let fools contest;
Whate'er is best administer'd is best:

For modes of faith, let graceless zealots fight;
His can't wrong whose life is in the right;
In faith and hope the world will disagree,
But all mankind's concern is charity:

And all of God, that bless mankind, or mend. 310
All must be false that thwarts this one great end;
Man, like the generous vine, supported lives :
The strength he gains is from th' embrace he gives.
On their own axis as the planets run,

Yet make at once their circle round the Sun;
So two consistent motions act the soul;
And one regards itself, and one the whole.

Thus God and Nature link'd the general frame,
And bade self-love and social be the same.




I. FALSE notions of happiness, philosophical and popular, answered from ver. 19 to 77. the end of all men, and attainable by all, ver. 30. II. It is God intends happiness to be equal; and to be so, it must be social, since all particular happiness depends on general, and since he governs by general, not particular laws, ver. 37. is necessary for order, and the peace and welfare As it of society, that external goods should be unequal, happiness is not made to consist in these, ver. 51. But, notwithstanding that inequality, the balance of happiness among mankind is kept even by Providence, by the two passions of hope and fear, ver. 70. III. What the happiness of individuals is, as far as is consistent with the constitution of this world; and that the good man has here the advantage, ver. 77. rour of imputing to virtue what are only the The ercalamities of Nature, or of Fortune, ver. 94. IV. The folly of expecting that God should alter his general laws in favour of particulars, ver. 121. V That we are not judges who are good; but that, whoever they are, they must be happiest, ver. 133, &c. VI. That external goods are not the proper rewards, but often inconsistent with, or destructive of, virtue, 167. That even these can make no man happy without virtue: instanced in riches, ver. 185. Honours, ver. 193. Nobility, ver. 205. Greatness, ver. 217. Fame, ver. 237. Superior talents, ver. 257, &c. With

pictures of human infelicity in men, possessed of | More rich, more wise; but who infers from hence them all, ver. 269, &c. VII. That virtue only That such are happier, shocks all common sense. constitutes a happiness, whose object is universal, Heaven to mankind impartial we confess, and whose prospect eternal, ver. 307. That the If all are equal in their happiness: perfection of virtue and happiness consists in a But mutual wants this happiness increase; conformity to the order of Providence here, and All Nature's difference keeps all Nature's peace. a resignation to it here and hereafter, ver. 326, Condition, circumstance, is not the thing; &c. Bliss is the same in subject or in king, In who obtain defence, or who defend, In him who is, or him who finds a friend: Heaven breathes through every member of the whole



OH HAPPINESS! our being's end and aim!
Good, Pleasure, Ease, Content! whate'erthy name:
That something still which prompts th' eternal


For which we bear to live, or dare to die,
Which still so near us, yet beyond us lies,
O'erlook'd, seen double, by the fool and wise:
Plant of celestial seed! if dropp'd below,
Say, in what mortal soil thou deign'st to grow?
Fair opening to some court's propitious shine,
Or deep with diamonds in the flaming mine?
Twin'd with the wreaths Parnassian laurels yield,
Or reap'd in iron harvests of the field?
Where grows? where grows it not? If vain our toil,
We ought to blame the culture, not the soil:
Fix'd to no spot is happiness sincere,
"Tis no where to be found, or every where:
"Tis never to be bought, but always free,
And fled from monarchs, St. JOHN ! dwells with thee.
Ask of the learn'd the way? The learn'd are
This bids to serve, and that to shun mankind;
Some place the bliss in action, some in case,
Those call it pleasure, and contentment these:
Some, sunk to beasts, find pleasure end in pain;
Some, swell'd to Gods, confess ev'n virtue vain;
Or, indolent, to each extreme they fall,
To trust in ev'ry thing, or doubt of all.


Who thus define it, say they more or less, Than this, that happiness is happiness?

Take Nature's path, and mad Opinion's leave;
All states can reach it, and all heads conceive; 30
Obvious her goods, in no extreme they dwell;
There needs but thinking right, and meaning well;
And, mourn our various portions as we please,
Equal is common sense, and common case.
Remember, man,
"the Universal Cause
Acts not by partial, but by gen'ral laws;"
And makes what happiness we justly call,
Subsist not in the good of one, but all.
There's not a blessing individuals find,
But some-way leans and hearkens to the kind :
No bandit fierce, no tyrant mad with pride,
No cavern'd hermit, rests self-satisfy'd:
Who most to shun or hate mankind pretend,
Seck an admirer, or would fix a friend:
Abstract what others feel, what others think,
All pleasures sicken, all glories sink:
Each has his share; and who would more obtain,
Shall find, the pleasure pays not half the pain.


Order is Heaven's first law; and this confest, Some are, and must be, greater than the rest, 50


Ver. 1. Oh Happiness, &c.] in the MS. thus:
Oh Happiness, to which we all aspire, [sine;
Wing'd with strong hope, and borne by full de-
That ease,
for which in want, in wealth we sigh;
That ease, for which we labour, and we die,

One common blessing, as one common soul.
But Fortune's gifts if each alike possest,
And each were equal, must not all contest?
If then to all men happiness was meant,
God in externals could not place content.

Fortune her gifts may variously dispose,
And these be happy call'd, unhappy those;
But Heaven's just balance equal will appear,
While those are plac'd in hope and these in fear:
Not present good or ill, the joy or curse,
But future views of better, or of worse.

By mountains pil'd on mountains, to the skies?
Oh, sons of Earth! attempt ye still to rise,
Heaven still with laughter the vain toil surveys,
And buries madmen in the heaps they raise.

Know, all the good that individuals find,
Or God and Nature meant to mere mankind,
Reason's whole pleasure, all the joys of sense,
Lie in three words, Health, Peace, and Competence
But Health consists with Temperance alone;
And Peace, Oh Virtue! Peace is all thy own.
The good or bad the gifts of Fortune gair;
But these less taste them, as they worse obtain.
Say, in pursuit of profit or delight,


Who risk the most, that take wrong means, or right?
Of Vice or Virtue, whether blest or curst,
Which meets contempt, or which compassion first?
Count all th' advantage prosperous Vice attains,
'Tis but what Virtue flies from and disdains:
And grant the bad what happiness they would,
One they must want, which is to pass for good.
Who fancy bliss to Vice, to Virtue woe!
Oh blind to truth, and God's whole scheme below.
Who sees and follows that great scheme the best,
Rest knows the blessing, and will most be blest.
But fools, the good alone, unhappy call,
For ills or accidents that chance to all.

See Falkland dies, the virtuous and the just!
See godlike Turenne prostrate on the dust!



After ver. 92, in the MS.

Let sober moralists correct their speech,
No bad man's happy; he is great or rich:


After ver. 52, in the MS.


Say not, "Heaven's here profuse, there poorly
And for one monarch makes a thousand slaves."
You'll find, when causes and their ends are
'Twas for the thousand Heaven has made that
After ver. 66, in the MS.

'Tis peace of mind alone is at a stay:
The rest mad Fortune gives or takes away.
All other bliss by accident 's debarr'd;
But Virtue's, in the instant, a reward;
In hardest trials operates the best,
And more is relish'd as the more distrest.




Add health and power, and every earthly thing,
Nay, why external for internal given?
Why bounded power? why private? why no king?"
Why is not man a god, and Earth a Heaven?
Who ask and reason thus, will scarce conceive
God gives enough, while he has more to give;
Immense the power, immense were the demand;
Say, at what part of Nature will they stand?


What nothing earthly gives, or can destroy,
110 The soul's calin san-shine, and the heart-felt joy,
Is Virtue's prize: A better would you fix?
Then give Humility a coach and six,
Justice a conqueror's sword, or Truth a gown,
Or Public Spirit its great cure, a crown.
Weak, foolish man! will Heaven reward us there
With the same trash mad mortals wish for here?
The boy and man an individual makes,
Yet sigh'st thou now for apples and for cakes?
Go, like the Indian, in another life
Expect thy dog, thy bottle, and thy wife;
As well as dream such trifles are assign'd,
As toys and empires, for a godlike mind.
Rewards, that either would to virtue bring
No joy, or be destructive of the thing;
How oft by these at sixty are undone
The virtues of a saint at twenty one!
To whom can riches give repute, or trust,
Content, or pleasure, but the good and just?
Esteem and love were never to be sold.
Judges and senates have been bought for gold;

Shall burning Ætna, if a sage requires,
Forget to thunder, and recall her fires?
On air or sea new motions be imprest,
Oh blameless Bethel! to relieve thy breast?
When the loose mountain trembles from on high,
Shall gravitation cease, if you go by?

Or some old temple, uodding to its fall,
For Chartres' head reserve the hanging wall?

Oh fool! to think God hates the worthy mind,
The lover and the love of human-kind,
Whose life is healthful, and whose conscience clear,
Because he wants a thousand pounds a year.

But still this world (so fitted for the knave)
Contents us not. A better shall we have?
A kingdom of the just then let it be:
But first consider how those just agree.
The good must merit God's peculiar care;
But who, but God, can tell us who they are?
One thinks on Calvin Heaven's own spirit fell;
Another deems him instrument of Hell;
If Calvin feels Heaven's blessing, or its rod,
This cries, there is, and that, there is no God. 140 The friar hooded, and the monarch crown'd. [cowl!"
What shocks one part, will edify the rest,.
Nor with one system can they all be blest.
"What differ more" (you cry)
The very best will variously incline,
I'll tell you, friend! a wise man and a fool.
than crown and
And what rewards your virtue, punish mine.
You'll find, if once the monarch acts the monk,
WHATEVER IS, IS RIGHT.-This world, 'tis true,
Or, cobler-like, the parson will be drunk,
Was made for Cæsar-but for Titus too;
Worth makes the man, and want of it the fellow:
And which more blest? who chain'd his country, say,
The rest is all but leather or prunella.
Or he whose virtue sigh'd to lose a day?

Honour and shame from no condition rise;
Act well your part, there all the honour lies.
Fortune in men has some small difference made,
One flaunts in rags, one flutters in brocade;
The cobler apron'd, and the parson gown'd,


"But sometimes Virtues tarves, while Vice is fed."
What then? Is the reward of Virtue bread?
That, Vice may merit, 'tis the price of toil;
The knave deserves it, when he tills the soil;
The knave deserves it, when he tempts the main,
Where folly fights for kings, or dives for gain.
The good man may be weak, be indolent;
Nor is his claim to plenty, but content.
But grant him riches, your demand is o'er?
"No-shall the good want health, the good want

Stuck o'er with titles and hung round with strings,
Boast the pure blood of an illustrious race,
That thou mayst be by kings, or whores of kings.
In quiet flow from Lucrece to Lucrece:
But by your fathers' worth if yours you rate,
Count me those only who were good and great. 210
Go! if your ancient, but ignoble blood

Has crept through scoundrels ever since the flood,
Go! and pretend your family is young;
Nor own your fathers have been fools so long.


See Sidney bleeds amid the martial strife!
Was this their virtue, or contempt of life?
Say, was it virtue, more though Heaven ne'er gave,
Lamented Digby! sunk thee to the grave?
Tell me, if virtue made the son expire,
Why, full of days and honour, lives the sire?
Why drew Marseilles' good bishop purer breath,
When Nature sicken'd, and each gale was death?
Or why so long (in life if long can be)
Lent Heaven a parent to the poor and me?

What makes all physical or moral ill?
There deviates Nature, and here wanders will.
God sends not ill; if rightly understood,
Or partial ill is universal good,
Or change admits, or Nature lets it fall,
Short, and but rare, till man improv'd it all.
We just as wisely might of Heaven complain
That righteous Abel was destroy'd by Cain,
As that the virtuous son is ill at ease
When his lewd father gave the dire disease.
Think we, like some weak prince, th' Eternal Cause
Prone for his favourites to reverse his laws?



After ver. 116, in the MS.

Of every evil, since the world began,
The real source is not in God, but man,
After ver. 142, in some editions,

Give each a system, all must be at strife;
What different systems for a man and wife!
The joke, though lively, was ill-placed, and
therefore struck out of the text.


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After ver. 172, in the MS.

Say, what rewards this idle world imparts,
Or fit for searching heads or honest hearts.
Ver. 207. Boast the pure blood, &c.] In the MS,


The richest blood, right-honourably old,
Down from Lucretia to Lucretia roild,

May swell thy heart and gallop in thy breast,
Without one dash of usher or of priest:
Thy pride as much despise all other pride,
As Christ-Church once all colleges beside


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