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HILE Celia's Tears make forrow bright,
These filver drops, like morning dew,
Foretell the fervour of the day:
The Baby in that funny Sphere
So like a Phaeton appears,
That Heav'n, the threaten'd World to spare,
Elfe might th' ambitious Nymph aspire,
EXACTLY in the tafte of Lopes de Vega, who, fpeaking of a fhepherdefs weeping near the fea-fide, fays, "The ocean advances to collect her tears, and enclosing them in fhells, converts them into pearls."
E. OF ROCHESTER.
THE verfes on Silence are a fenfible imitation of the Earl of Rochefter's on Nothing; which piece, together with his Satire on Man from the fourth of Boileau, and the tenth Satire of Horace, (which in truth is excellent), are the only pieces of this profligate nobleman which modesty or common sense will allow any man to read. Rochester had much energy in his thoughts and diction; and though the ancient Satirifts often use great liberty in their expreffions, yet, as the ingenious hiftorian * observes, "Their freedom no more resembles the licence of Rochester than the nakedness of an Indian does that of a common prostitute."
Pope, in this imitation, has difcovered a fund of folid fenfe, and juft obfervation upon vice and folly, that are very remarkable in a perfon fo extremely young as he was at the time of compofing it. I believe, on a fair comparison with Rochester's lines, it will be found, that although the turn of the Satire be copied, yet it is excelled. That Rochefter fhould write a Satire on Man I am not furprized; it is the business of the libertine to degrade his species, and debafe the dignity of human nature, and thereby deftroy the most efficacious incitements to lovely and laudable actions. But that a writer of Boileau's purity of manners should represent his kind in the dark and difagreeable colours he has done, with all the malignity of a difcontented Hobbist, is a lamentable perversion of fine talents, and is a real injury to fociety. It is a fact worthy the attention of those who ftudy the hiftory of learning, that the grofs licentioufnefs and applauded debauchery of Charles the Second's court proved almoft as pernicious to the progrefs of polite literature and the fine arts, that began to revive after the Grand Rebellion, as the gloomy fuperftition, the abfurd cant, and formal hypocrify, that disgraced this nation during the ufurpation of Cromwell.
* Hume's Hiftory of Great Britain, vol. ii. p. 434.
E. OF ROCHESTER.
SILENCE! coeval with Eternity ;
Thou wert, ere Nature's felf began to be, "Twas one vast Nothing, all, and all flept fast in thee.
Thine was the fway, ere heav'n was form'd, or earth,
Ere fruitful Thought conceiv'd creation's birth, Or midwife Word gave aid, and spoke the infant
Then various elements, against thee join'd,
And fram'd the clam'rous race of busy Human-kind.
The tongue mov'd gently first, and speech was low, Till wrangling Science taught it noife and fhow, And wicked wit arose, thy most abusive foe.
But rebel Wit deferts thee oft' in vain:
Loft in the maze of words he turns again, And feeks a furer ftate, and courts thy gentle reign.
Afflicted Senfe thou kindly doft set free,
And routed Reason finds a fafe retreat in thee.
With thee in private modest Dulness lies, And in thy bofom lurks in Thought's disguise; Thou varnisher of Fools, and cheat of all the Wife!
Yet thy indulgence is by both confeft;
Folly by thee lies fleeping in the breast,
And 'tis in thee at laft that Wisdom feeks for rest.
Silence the knave's repute, the whore's good name, The only honour of the wifhing dame;
The very want of tongue makes thee a kind of Fame.
But could't thou feize fome tongues that now are free,
How Church and State fhould be oblig'd to thee? At Senate, and at Bar, how welcome would'st thou be? XI.
Yet speech ev❜n there, fubmiffively withdraws, From rights of fubjects, and the poor man's cause: Then pompous Silence reigns, and stills the noisy Laws.
Paft fervices of friends, good deeds of foes, What Fav'rites gain, and what the Nation owes, Fly the forgetful world, and in thy arms repose.
The country wit, religion of the town,
Are best by thee exprefs'd; and fhine in thee alone.