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Of his magnificent rib-roasting.
The beaten soldier proves most manful,
That, like his sword, endures the anvil,
And justly's held more formidable,
The inore his valor's malleable :
But he that fears a bastinado,
Will run away from his own shadow.
CALIGULA'S CAMPAIGN IN BRITAIN.
So th' emperor Caligula,
That triumphed o'er the British sea,
Took.crabs and oysters prisoners,
And lobsters, 'stead of cuirassiers;
Engaged his legions in fierce bustles,
With periwinkles, prawns, and muscles,
And led his troops with furious gallops,
To charge whole regiments of scallops;
Not like their ancient way of war,
To wait on his triumphal car;
But when he went to dine or sup,
More bravely ate his captives up,
And left all war, by his example,
Reduced to vict’ling of a cainp well.
THE PROCESSION OF THE SKIMMINGTON.
And now the cause of all their fear
By slow degrees approached so near,
They might distinguish different noise
Of horns, and pans, and dogs, and boys,
And kettle-drums, whose sullen dub
Sounds like the hooping of a tub,
But when the sight appeared in view,
They found it was an antique show;
A triumph that, for pomp and state,
Did proudest Romans emulate :
For as the aldermen of Rome
Their foes at training overcome,
And not enlarging territory,
As some, mistaken, write in story,
Being mounted in their best array,
Upon a car, and who but they?
And followed with a world of tall lads,
That merry ditties trolled, and ballads,
Did ride with many a good-morrow,
Crying, Hey for our town, through the borough.
THE OPPOSITION IN THE LONG PARLIAMENT.
Are these the fruits o' th' protestation,
The prototype of reformation,
Which all the saints, and some, since martyrs,
Wore in their hats like wedding garters,
When 'twas resolved by their house
Six members' quarrel to espouse?
Did they for this draw down the rabble,
With zeal, and noises formidable;
And make all cries about the town
Join throats to cry the bishops down?
Who having round begirt the palace,
(As once a month they do the gallows,)
As members gave the sign about,
Set up their throats with hideous shout.
When tinkers bawled aloud, to settle
Church discipline, for patching kettle:
The oyster women locked their fish up,
And trudged away to cry No Bishop;
The mousetrap-men laid save-alls by,
And 'gainst evil counsellors did cry;
Botchers left old clothes in the lurch,
And fell to turn and patch the church;
Some cried the covenant, instead
Of pudding-pies, and gingerbread;
And some for brooms, old boots, and shoes,
Bawled out to purge the common's-house :
Instead of kitchen-stuff, some cry
A gospel-preaching ministry;
And some for old suits, coats, or cloak,
No surplices nor service-book.
A strange harmonious inclination
Of all degrees to reformation.
JOHN DRYDEN. 1631-1700. (Manual, pp. 212–221.)
FROM THE " ANNUS MIRABILIS."
142. LONDON AFTER THE FIRE.
Methinks already from this chymic flame,
I see a city of more precious mould:
Rich as the town which gives the Indies name,
With silver paved, and all divine with gold.
Already laboring with a mighty fate,
She shakes the rubbish from her mounting brow, And seems to have renewed her charter's date,
Which Heaven will to the death of Time allow.
More great than human now, and more august,
Now deified she from her fires does rise :
Her widening streets on new foundations trust,
And opening into larger parts she flies.
Before, she like some shepherdess did show,
Who sat to bathe her by a river's side ;
Not answering to her fame, but rude and low,
Nor taught the beauteous arts of modern pride.
Now like a maiden queen she will behold,
From her high turrets, hourly suitors come; The East with incense, and the West with gold,
Will stand like suppliants to receive her doom. The silver Thames, her own domestic flood,
Shall bear her vessels like a sweeping train; And often wind, as of his mistress proud,
With longing eyes to meet her face again.
143. ON MILTON.
Three poets, in three distant ages porn,
Greece, Italy, and England did adorn.
The first in loftiness of thought surpassed;
The next in majesty; in both the last.
The force of nature could no further go;
To make a third, she joined the other two.
FROM " ABSALOM AND ACHITOPHEL." 144. CHARACTER OF SHAFTESBURY (ACHITOPHEL).
Of these the false Achitophel was first;
A name to all succeeding ages cursed :
For close designs and crooked counsels fit,
Sagacious, bold, and turbulent of wit:
Restless, unfixed in principles and place;
In power unpleased, impatient of disgrace,
A fiery soul which, working out its way,
Fretted the pigmy body to decay,
And o'er informed its tenement of clay:
A daring pilot in extremity;
Pleased with the danger, when the waves went high
He sought the storms; but, for a calm unfit,
Would steer too nigh the sands to show his wit.
Great wits are sure to madness near allied,
And thin partitions do their bounds divide :
Else, why should he, with wealth and honors blest,
Refuse his age the needful hours of rest?
Punish a body which he could not please;
Bankrupt of life, yet prodigal of ease?
In friendship false, implacable in hate,
Resolved to ruin or to rule the state.
To compass this the triple bond he broke,
The pillars of the public safety shook,
And fitted Israel with a foreign yoke;
Then, seized with fear, yet still affecting fame,
Usurped a patriot's all-atoning name;
So easy still it proves, in factious times,
With public zeal to cancel private crimes.
How safe is treason, and how sacred ill,
Where none can sin against the people's will!
Where crowds can wink, and no offence be known,
Since in another's guilt they find their own!
Yet fame deserved no enemy can grudge;
The statesman we abhor, but praise the judge.
In Israel's courts ne'er sat an Abethdin
With more discerning eyes, or hands more clean,
Unbribed, unsought, the wretched to redress;
Swift of despatch and easy of access.
O, had he been content to serve the crown
With virtue only proper to the gown;
Or had the rankness of the soil been freed
From cockle, that oppressed the noble seed;
David for him his tuneful harp had strung.
But wild Ambition loves to slide, not stand;
And Fortune's ice prefers to Virtue's land,
Achitophel, grown weary to possess
A lawful fame, a lasting happiness,
Disdained the golden fruit to gather free,
And lent the crowd his arm to shake the tree.
Now, manifest of crimes contrived long since,
He stood at bold defiance with his prince;
Held up the buckler of the people's cause
Against the crown, and skulked behind the laws.
145. CHARACTER OF ZIMRI (VILLIERS, Duke of Buckingham).
Some of their chiefs were princess of the land;
In the first rank of these did Zimri stand:
A man so various, that he seemed to be
Not one, but all mankind's epitome:
Stiff in opinions, always in the wrong;
Was everything by starts, and nothing long;
But, in the course of one revolving moon,
Was chemist, fiddler, statesman, and buffoon.
Blest madman, who could every hour employ
With something new to wish, or to enjoy!
Railing and praising were his usual themes,
And both, to shew his judgment, in extremes ;
So over violent, or over civil,
That every man with him was God or Devil.
In squandering wealth was his peculiar art;
Nothing went unrewarded but desert.
Beggared by fools, whom still he found too late;
He had his jest, and they had his estate.
He laughed himself from court, then sought relief
By forming parties, but could ne'er be chief;
For spite of him the weight of business fell
On Absalom, and wise Achitophel:
Thus, wicked but in will, of means bereft,
He left not faction, but of that was left.
146. VENI CREATOR SPIRITUS.
Creator Spirit; by whose aid
The World's foundations first were laid,
Come, visit every pious mind;
Come, pour thy joys on human kind;
From sin and sorrow set us free,
And make thy temples worthy Thee.
Ó Source of uncreated light,
The Father's promised Paraclete !
Thrice holy fount, thrice holy fire,
Our hearts with heavenly love inspire;
Come, and thy sacred unction bring,
To sanctify us while we sing.
Plenteous of grace, descend from high,
Rich in thy sevenfold energy!
Thou strength of his Almighty hand,
Whose power does heaven and earth command;