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SIN OF CUSTOME
Is a long showre, beginning with the Light,
SIN OF IGNORANCE.
It is a hideous Mist that wets amain,
It is a sudden showre that tears in sunder
SIN OF DELIGET.
It is a feathered showre of Snow, not felt,
SIN OF PRESUMPTION
Does like a showre of Haile both wet and Wound,
TEE SIN OF SINNES.
It is a sudden showre, such as fell
Our author then proceeds to consider these · Severall Sinnes' together. We quote a few lines, as an exemplification of the style which after. ward grew into the rants of the fifth monarchy men, and stern Independants :
Good God! what Weather's here! These Soules of our
Here, again, is an image carried out to the utmost extremity, even beyond some of Cowley's:
Man is a Tenise-Court; His Flesh the Wall;
He has many examples of this ingenuity ; some of them are fantastic enough:
ON MAN'S HEART,
NATURE presents my heart in ore;
Here, too, is a well imagined one:
ON TEE HYPOCRITE.
HE's like a Bul-rush, seems so smooth that not
The following is perhaps the original of Franklin's celebrated epitaph:
The world's a printing-house ; our words, our thoughts,
Our deeds are characters of sev'rall sizes:
The Levites are correctors; Heav'n revises ;
And here is a happy image, which, though not clearly expressed, is pregnant with meaning:
ON TEE POURING OUT OF OUR EEARTS.
"T is easie to pour in: but few, I doubt,
The following is as true now as in the age of old Francis Quarles. Time's manners may change, but man is the same:
SERVIo would thrive, and therefore does obey
Servio would fain be thought religious too,
There is many a portly cit, well to do in the world, and easy as to his conscience, who might take a lesson from the above. This halfreligion is a frequent subject of satire and rebuke with our author. He agrees with the stern spirits of those times who could bear no dallying with evil - one hand for the world and the other for heaven. Here is another · Divine Fancy' in the same spirit and with the same perennial application :
Plausus of late hath raised a hospitall,
Plausus hath done much good, but nothing well. Quarles was evidently no believer in the efficacy of works without faith. Here is another distich, in which he well rebukes the follies of the ultra self-abasing religionists:
It is an error even as foul to call
It is a good proverb that says, 'Humility is the dress-coat of Pride,' a fact which those just alluded to would do well to remember. Our author has also a fling at this, which he terms
THE DEVIL'S MASTER-PIECE.
This is the height the Devil's art can show;
To make man proud because he is not so.* We like the following ; there is much truth in it, and truth well expressed :
Lord if my Griefs were not opposed with Joy,
They would destroy :
It would be Madnesse.
They 're both my friends;
I have no peace.
• Is not this the original of a stanza in COLERIDGE'S 'Devil's Walk ?'
Ee saw a small cot with a large coach-house,
A cottage of gentility.
Is the pride that apes humility.'
The similarity is, to say the least, remarkable.
And here is another, that has only too much application among us. Though not very savory, it has salt enough to keep it from offending :
They that in life oppresse, and then bequeath
When this was written there was less false delicacy than at present, and an author cared more to be forcible than elegant. The following is in somewhat the same style. Quarles has no mercy for any but those entirely devoted to Religion, and he handles the flail without much ceremony:
ON FORMALL DEVOTION.
MEN doe God service with the same devotion,
It either works not, or comes up again.
Look up; and there I see the fair abode
It was the fault of the age to admire quibbles and antitheses, and Quarles indulges in them to the utmost ; for example:
HIE that wants Faith, and apprehends a grief,
The following are pleasing:
'Tis day; Unfold thine Arms; Arise and rouze
A GOOD NIGHT.
CLOSE now thine eyes, and sleep secure;
He that loves thee, he that keeps,
Has onely peace, bas onely rest :
The music and the mirth of Kings
Then close thine eyes, and rest secure ;
Here is an epigram which is well imagined, though the subject is hackneyed :
NERE think, Mundano, that one Rome will hold
Thy God, and all thy Gold.
They'l either fight or part;
Thy thoughts can never rise:
Thou get'st to Heaven, the lesse will Earth appear. Alas for poor human nature! Quarles lost some property and mss. in the Irish Rebellion of 1642, and his death is supposed to have been caused by his immoderate grief at his reverse. It is much easier to counsel than to practice.
Even among his religious meditations, he could find time to flatter. The following is almost sacreligious :
Four MARIES are eternized for their worth ;
Our Saviour found out three, our CHARLES the fourth. There are few things more disgusting than Flattery when she decks herself with the words of Religion.
It is truly refreshing, after the smooth and flowing inanities of the present day, to lay hold of an author like Quarles, who has both thought and felt, and who records his experiences briefly and strongly. His numbers are not melodious, and he has few of the ornaments and ele. gancies of poetry, but we are willing to pass over these for the sake of his ideas. There are, it is true, too many turns, and endeavors to surprise by peculiarities of diction, but this was the fault of all the writers of that day. He is not always clear, but the reader will ever be rewarded for the study of making out an occult sentence, by the wheat which he will thresh from the chaff. At the present time, when a writer is obscure, it is usually because he is all chaff; with Quarles it is because the husk is strong and hides the grain. Indeed, we are surprised to see how rarely he writes without some fixed meaning. In this little work there are upward of four hundred “divine fancies, but very few of them will be found unworthy the trouble of reading, while most of them may furnish ample food for reflection. In general style, they strike us as bearing no inconsiderable resemblance to the Latin and later Greek serious epigram, though they usually have more striving after point, and affectation of expression. Though his images and simi.