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Lud! what a group the motley scene discloses !
False wits, false wives, false virgins, and false spouses!
Statesmen with bridles on; and, close beside 'em,
Patriots in party-colour'd suits that ride 'em.
There Hebes, turn’d of fifty, try once more
To raise a flame in Cupids of threescore.
These, in their turn, with appetites as keen,
Deserting fifty, fasten on fifteen.
Miss, not yet full fifteen, with fire uncommon, Flings down her sampler, and takes up the woman; The little urchin smiles, and spreads her lure,
And tries to kill, ere she's got power to cure.
Thus 'tis with all....their chief and constant care
Is to seem every thing but what they are.
Yon broad, bold, angry spark, I fix my eye on,
Who seems t'have robb’d his vizor from the lion;
Who frowns, and talks, and swears, with round
parade, Looking, as who should say, Dam’me! who's afraid?
[Mimicking. Strip but this vizor off and sure I am
You'll find his lionship a very lamb.
Yon politician, famous in debate,
Perhaps, to vulgar eyes, bestrides the state;
Yet, when he deigns his real shape t' assume,
He turns old woman and bestrides a broom.
Yon patriot, too, who presses on your sight,
And seems, to every gazer, all in white,
If with a bribe his candour you attack,
He bows, turns round, and whip....the man's in black!