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If this be struggling, by this holy light, 'Tis struggling with a vengeance (quoth the Knight;) So heav'n preserve the fight it has restor'd,

As with these eyes I plainly faw thee whor'd; Whor'd by my flave-perfidious wretch! may hell As furely seize thee, as I faw too well. 770

Guard me, good angels! cry'd the gentle May, Pray heav'n, this magic work the proper way! Alas, my love! 'tis certain, could you fee, You ne'er had us'd thefe killing words to me: So help me, fates, as 'tis no perfect fight, But fome faint glimm'ring of a doubtful light. What I have faid (quoth he) I must maintain, For by th' immortal pow'rs it feem'd too plainBy all those pow'rs, fome frenzy feiz'd your mind, (Reply'd the dame) are these the thanks I find? 780 Wretch that I am, that e'er I was so kind! She faid; a rifing figh exprefs'd her woe, The ready tears apace began to flow, And as they fell fhe wip'd from either eye The drops (for women, when they lift, can cry.)


The Knight was touch'd; and in his looks appear'd Signs of remorse, while thus his spouse he chear'd: Madam, 'tis paft, and my fhort anger o'er ! Come down, and vex your tender heart no more; Excufe me, dear, if aught amifs was faid, For, on my foul, amends fhall foon be made: Let my repentance your forgiveness draw, By heaven, I fwore but what I thought I faw.





Ah my lov'd lord! 'twas much unkind (fhe cry'd) On bare fufpicion thus to treat your bride. But till your fight's establish'd, for a while, Imperfect objects may your fenfe beguile. Thus when from fleep we firft our eyes difplay, The balls are wounded with the piercing ray, And dufky vapours rife, and intercept the day: 800 So just recov'ring from the fhades of night, Your fwimming eyes are drunk with fudden light, Strange phantoms dance around, and fkim before your fight.

Then, Sir, be cautious, nor too rafhly deem ;
Heav'n knows how feldom things are what they seem;
Confult your reason, and you foon fhall find 806
'Twas you were jealous, not your wife unkind:
Jove ne'er spoke oracle more true than this,
None judge fo wrong as those who think amifs.

With that the leap'd into her Lord's embrace 810 With well-diffembled virtue in her face.

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He hugg'd her close, and kiss'd her o'er and o'er,
Disturb'd with doubts and jealoufies no more:
Both, pleas'd and blefs'd, renew'd their mutual vows,
A fruitful wife, and a believing fpoufe.


Thus ends our tale, whofe moral next to make,
Let all wife husbands hence example take;

And pray, to crown the pleasure of their lives,
To be fo well deluded by their wives.

THE firft dawnings of polite literature in Italy are found in tale-writing and fables.

To produce, and carry on with probability and decorum, a feries of events, is the most difficult work of invention; and if we were minutely to examine the popular ftories of every nation, we fhould be amazed to find how few circumftances have been ever invented. Facts and events have been indeed varied and modified; but totally new facts have not been created. The writers of the old romances, from whom Ariofto and Spencer have borrowed fo largely, are fuppofed to have had copious imaginations; but may they not be indebted, for their invulnerable heroes, their monsters, their enchantments, their gardens of pleasure, their winged steeds, and the like, to the Echidna, to the Circe, to the Medea, to the Achilles, to the Syrens, to the Harpies, to the Phryxus, and the Bellerophon, of the ancients? The cave of Polypheme might furnish out the ideas of their giants, and Andromeda might give occafion for ftories of diftreffed damfels on the point of being de

ured by dragons, and delivered at fuch a critical feafon by their favourite Knights. Some faint traditions of the ancients might have been kept glimmering and alive during the whole barbarous ages, as they are called; and it is not impoffible but these have been the parents of the Genii in the Eaftern and the Fairies in the Weftern world. To say that Amadis and Sir Tristan have a claffical foundation, may, at firft tight, appear paradoxical; but if the fubject were examined to the bottom, I am inclined to think, that the wildeft chimeras in those books of chivalry, with which Don Quixote's library was furnished, would be found to have a clofe connection with ancient mythology.

We of this nation have been remarkably barren in our inventions of facts; we have been chiefly borrowers in this fpecies of compofition, as the plots of our most applauded tragedies and comedies may witnefs, which have generally been taken from the novels of the Italians and Spaniards.





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