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FROM "THE COCK AND THE Fox."
149. DREAMS. Dreams are but interludes which Fancy makes; When monarch Reason sleeps, this mimic wakes : Compounds a medley of disjointed things, A mob of cobblers, and a court of kings: Light fumes are merry, grosser fumes are sad: Both are the reasonable soul run mad; And many monstrous forms in sleep we see, That neither were, nor are, nor ne'er can be. Sometimes forgotten things long cast behind Rush forward in the brain, and come to mind. The nurse's legends are for truths received, And the man dreams but what the boy believed. Sometimes we but rehearse a former play, The night restores our actions done by day; As hounds in sleep will open for their prey. In short, the farce of dreams is of a piece, Chimeras all; and more absurd, or less.
150. ALEXANDER'S FEAST.
By Philip's warlike son;
On his imperial throne :
His valiant peers were placed around; Their brows with roses and with myrtles bound
(So should desert in arms be crowned):
Happy, happy, happy pair!
Timotheus, placed on high
Amid the tuneful quire,
With flying fingers touched the lyre:
And heavenly joys inspire.
The listening crowd admire the lofty sound,
With ravished ears
Affects to nod,
The praise of Bacchus then, the sweet musician sung:
The jolly god in triumph comes;
Flushed with a purple grace,
He shows his honest face;
Bacchus, ever fair and young,
Drinking joys did first ordain;
Rich the treasure,
Sweet the pleasure ;
Soothed with the sound, the king grew vain;
Fought all his battles o'er again;
The master saw the madness rise;
He chose a mournful Muse,
Soft pity to infuse :
By too severe a fate,
And welt'ring in his blood;
With not a friend to close his eyes.
Rersitizo his a'zzed scal
The variges turas o Chasce below;
Asd tears bezaa to bow.
The mighty taster smijed, to see
Soitiy s ect. in Lydian measures,
Soon he soothed his soul to pieasures.
Never ending, stiil beginning,
If the world be worth thy winning,
Lovely Thais sits beside thee,
Take the good the gods provide thee!
Gazed on the fair
Who caused his care,
Sighed and looked, and sighed again:
Now strike the golden lyre again:
Hark, hark, the horrid sound
Has raised up his head!
As awaked from the dead,
And amazed, he stares around.
See the Furies arise :
How they hiss in their hair,
Behold a ghastly band,
Each a torch in his hand!
And unburied remain
Give the vengeance due
To the valiant crew!
How they point to the Persian abodes,
Thais led the way,
To light him to his prey,
Thus, long ago,
While organs yet were mute;
And sounding lyre,
At last divine Cecilia came,
Inventress of the vocal frame;
Enlarged the former 'narrow bounds,
And added length to solemn sounds,
Or both divide the crown;
She drew, an angel down.
151. CHAUCER AND COWLEY.
In the first place, as he is the father of English poetry, so I hold him in the same degree of veneration as the Grecians held Homer, or the Romans Virgil. He is a perpetual fountain of good sense, learned in all sciences, and therefore speaks properly on all subjects. As he knew what to say, so he knows also when to leave off; a continence which is practised by few writers, and scarcely by any of the ancients, excepting Virgil and Horace. One of our late great poets' is sunk in his reputation, because he could never forgive any conceit which came in his way; but swept, like a drag-net, great and small. There was plenty enough, but the dishes were ill sorted; whole pyramids of sweetmeats for boys and women, but little of solid meat for men.
All this proceeded not from any want of knowledge, but of judgment. Neither did he want that in discerning the beauties and faults of other
The OPPOSITION IN THE LONG PARLIAMENT.
JOHN DRYDEN. 1631-1700. (Manual, pp. 212–221.)
Methinks already from this chymic flame,
I see a city of more precious mould:
With silver paved, and all divine with gold.