Alexander Pope.

The works of Alexander Pope Esq. : In nine volumes, complete. With his last corrections, additions, and improvements; as they were delivered to the editor, a little before his death. Together with the commentary and notes of Mr. Warburton (Volume 6) online

. (page 13 of 20)
Online LibraryAlexander PopeThe works of Alexander Pope Esq. : In nine volumes, complete. With his last corrections, additions, and improvements; as they were delivered to the editor, a little before his death. Together with the commentary and notes of Mr. Warburton (Volume 6) → online text (page 13 of 20)
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femble que le Pi. mobera,
3! no firtt of ail it fcemetl) ej^efcient to confiDer

fojljat 10 tlje Nature of Horfes, atlO fllfO toljst iff tf)C

Nature of Colours ; ant> fo ttje Argument toil! con^
fequentlp Ditioe itfeif in a ttuofolu toap, tijat 15 to

(ap, tlje Formal Part, atlD Subftantial Part. Horfes

are tlje Sjbftantial Part, oz tijtrig 13cqucat{jD : Black

and White ttje Formal 0^ DCfcriptlbe ^bart,

Horfe, in a pfjpfical mff , COtl) import a certain
Quadrupede or four-footed Animal, which, by the apt
and regular Difpofition of certain proper and conveni-
ent Parts, is adapted, fitted and conili '.;ted for the Ufe
and Need of Man. pea, fo nfCCflarp anD CCllSU-

cibe toa0 tljiflf 3tnimai conretbeo to be to tlje ^ -:r *
Ijoof of tlje Common^tofal, tijat funD^p auD oi*
ter.0 3(t0 of 4&ar!iament ija^je, from firm to rime*

bfCIl maDe in Favour of Horles.

ift Edw. VI. $&abt$ tl)e ^nrnfpoaf-ins of Horfes
out of tlje IMngOotn, no lefjer a fcfcnaltp tljan tlje
^forfeiture of 40 1.

zd and 3d Edward VI. 2Takf0 from Horfe-fiealers

flje IBeiic&t of tljeir Clergp,

And the Statutes of the 2;th and 3zd of Hen. VIIL

conDefcenD fo &r a0 to take (Tare of tljrir terp
Breed : ^{jcfe our toife 3nceffo.!0 p|?uDmtIp fo;r-
.fcfing, rftaf tljep couiD net better take Care of rijrir
oh)n ^ofteritp, tfjan bp alfo taking Care of tljat of

tl)fir Horf...

a; no


3IntJ of fo gre .it (?fter m arc Horfes in tije <?pe of
tfje Common i.att, ttjnt totjm a Knight of the Bath
commimtl) anp great ano cno2mou0 Crime, Iji0

$Unifl)1TUnt 10 tO Itfbe Iji0 Spurs chopt off with a
Cleaver, bfilig, 80 Staffer Bradon tofll obferbftlj,
unworthy to ride on a Horfe.

Littleton, Sett. 315. fmtl), Jf Z"cnanf0 in (Tom?
moti make a ;*Uafe, rtftrbiiis fb^t -Kent a Horfe,
ttjrp fijall tyibe but one 3iffi3e, becaufe, faith the

Book, t()C iL.lto tellt llOt fllffcr a Horfe to be fevered :

4motlirr <trguinmt of tol)3t l)iglj Animation tip
fcato imhfti) of an lorfe,

But a0 tlic great Biffe rrnrr fermftl) not to be
fo muc?) touring tlje fubfonrial part, Horfes, tct
u0 f laeeo to ttx format o; Defrriptibe ^art, vi/..
clUijat u k orfc0 tljep are tljat come toitljin tl)10 15e*

LO!OUr0arC COtnmonlp of various Kinds and dif-
ferent <j2t0 ; of tolnrl) White anD Black are rtje ttco

C rf rrmf0, anO COnffqilCntlp comprehend within them
all other Colours whatfoever.

33? a l?fqufft tijercrtye Of black and white Horfes,
grey or pyed Horfes rray well r afs ; fOI toljfn ttoO

Crtrfmr0, oz rtmoteH <nt>0 of anp tl)ins are
drtjifto, rl)e ?lato, bp common Jntentrment, totii

intend whatfoever is contained between them to be de-
vifed too.

25ut tlK patent Gafe i* Sill ffrongrr, romins
not oulp toitljin tije JntmOment, but alfo ti)e berp
of tt)e


25p rlje CttojD Black, all tlje $ojfe0 tfat are Black

arc devifed ; b|> tlje SttO^D White, are DetrifeD tljofe

tljat are white ; anD bp tip fame Ctto^D, toitl) tfje
Conjunction Coputafibe, and, birtoecn tljem, the

Horfes that are Black and White, tfjat 10 to lap, P>ed,
are devifed alfo.

cHlljatetoer 10 Black and White is Pycd, anD toijat*

l>f r is Pyed 18 Black and White ; ergo, Black and
White \g Pyed, anD, -v/V* vtr/a, Pyed i0 Black and

3|f tljerCfiJ^e Black and White Horfes are DebifeO,
Pyed Horfes (hall pafs by fuch Devife ; but Black and
White Jiorfes are deviled ; ergo, the PI. fliall have the
Pyed Horfes.

Catiyne >frjfant, op fcmble al 1 con^

trarp, ^l)e plaintiff (hall not have the
Pyed Horfes by Intendment ; fb> if bv tr)C

Black and white Horfe.% not onlp Black anD
CUtjite HCo^fe0, but l r t Off# of anv Ciolour brttofen

tljffe ttoO <CjCtreme0, map pafo, then not only Pyed
and Grey Horfes, but alfo Red or Bay Horfes would pafs
likewife, which would be abfurd, and againft Reafon.

2!nD tl)i0 is anetljer Crong Argument in *Ufc>,

Nibif quod eft contra rathnem eji licitum ; fO^ Reafon is
the Life of the Law, nap, tl)C common Law is nothing
but Reafon ; h)l)id) ig tO be UnDerftCOD Of artificial
Perfeftion and Reafon gotten bp long ^>tuDp, anD not
of Man's natural Reafon ; fo^ nemo nafcitur Artiftx, and
Legal Reafon eft fumma ratio ; anD tljrrfftj^e if aft t!)C

Krafon tljat i0 DifperfeD into fo manp Different
UzeaDjer, toere unitfD into one, Ije roulD not mafee
fuel) a &ato as tlje 3lato of England ; becaufe bp
nwnp ^ucccffionjef of 3tge0 it Ija* been fijreD ano

i refireD

refireD bv grabe anO learneD S0en ; fo tljat the olD

Kule map be terifeeD ill it, Ktminem oportet tje ligi-
bm fapientiorem.

%js therefore p> cd Horfes DO net come toitljin ffje
HntenDmtnt of tl)e Bequeft, fo nntljcr Do tljep
toitljm tlje Letter of tl)e CUo;D^.

31 pyed Horfe L8f not a white Horfe, neitfjer 15 a
pycd a black Horfe ; tjOtD tljen Can pyed Horfes njme
UnDfr tl)e <3lO^Dj8f Of black and white Horfes ?

BefiDe.0, toljere Cuttom fjatlj aDaftcD a rerfain
Determinate iRame to anj> one tljing, in all IDffoi*

fe^f, ^fEOfinentflT, anD O^ntg, that ecrtaia Name
fhall be made ufe of, and no uncertain circumlocutory
Defcriptions (hall be allowed ; foj CCftaintp iff tlj

^fatljer of 3Rigt)t, anD tlie ^otijer of 3[tt(!icc

Le refle del Argument jeo ne pouvois oyer, carjco
fui difturb en mon place.

He Court fuit longrment en Doubf De c\U
fatter -, et ap;e0 grano Dtliberafion eu,
guDgmmt fuit Donne pour le $L nifi caufa.

Motion in Arreft of Judgment, fljat tl)C pyed Horfe*
were Mares ; anD tljereupon an Infpeclion was prayed.
Ct fur CeO 1C Court advifare vult.


{ 241 )

M E M O I R S of P. P.


The original of the following extraordinary Trca-
tifc confifted of two large Volumes in folio ;
which might juftly be entitled, Tbt Impx-fance of
a Man to himfelf : But, as it can be of very
little to any body befides, I have contented my-
felf to give only this jfhort Abftradr. of it, as a
Taftc of the true Spirit of Memoir-Writers.

IN the name of the Lord. Amen. I, P. P. by
the Grace of God, Clerk of this Pariih, writ-
eth this Hiftory.

Ever fince I arrived at the age of difcretion, I
had a call to take upon me the function of a Pa-
rUh-clerk ; and to that end, it feemed unto me
meet and profitable to aflbciatc myfclf with the
parim-clcrks of this Land ; fuch I mean, as were
right worthy in their calling, men of a clear and
fweet voice, and of becoming gravity.

Now it came to pafs, that I was born in the
year of our Lord Anno Domini 1655, the year
wherein our worthy benefactor, Efquire Bret^ did
add one Btll to the ring of this Parilh. So that
it hath been wittily faid, " That one and the fame
" day did give to this our Church two rare gifts,
" ito great Bell and its Clerk."

VOL. VI. R Even


Even when I was at fchool, ny miltrefs did ever
extol me above the reft of the youth, in that I
had a laudable- voice. And it was further-more
obferved, that I took a kindly affection unto that
Black letter in which our Bibles are printed. Yea,
often did I cxercife myfelf in linking godly ballads,
fuch as- The Lady anil Death, The Children in tie
Jt'sbd, and Cbcvj-Cbqfe ; and not, like other chil-
dren, in lewd and trivial ditties. Moreover, while
I W03 a bov, I always adventured to lead the pfalm
nvxt after Mailer William Harris, my predccef-
for r who (it muft be confefled to the Glory of
God) was a mott excellent Parifh-clcrk In that his

Yet be it acknowledged,, that at the age of fix-
teen I became a Company-keeper, being led into
idle converfation by my extraordinary love to Ring-
ing > infomuch, that in a fhort time I was ac-
quainted with every fett of bells in the whole
country : Neither could I be prevailed upon to
abfcnt myfelf from- Wakes, being called thereunto
hv the harmony of the fteeple. While I was in
thefe focieric'i, I gave myfelf up to unfpirituab
pafHmcs, fuch as wreftling, dancing, and cudgel-
p!.)\ii)g: fo that I- often returned to my father's
noufe with a broken p;vte. I had my head broken
at Milton by Thomas Wyat, as we played a bout
or two for an Hat that was edged with filver gal-
loon. But in the year following- I broke die head 1
of Henry Stubbs, and obtained an hat not inferior,
to the former. At Yelverton I encountred George
Cummins,. Weaver, and behold my head was
broken a fecond time ! At the wake of Waybrook
5 engaged William Simkins, Tanner, when lo F
thus was my head' broken a third tiraCy. and much:
blood trickled therefrom. But I adminiftred to
my comfort, faying within himiclf, " What marr
" is there, howfoevcr dextrous in any craft, who


(< is for aye on his guard ?" A week after I hnd a
bafe-born child laid unto me ; for in the days ot"
my youth I was looked upon as a follower or ve-
nereal fantafics : Thus was I led into fin by the
comelinefs or Sufanna Smith, who tii It tempted me
and then put me to fhame j for indued (lie was a
maiden of a (educing eye, and pleafant feature. I
humbled myfclf before the Juftice, I acknowledg-
ed my crime to our curate -, and to do away mine
offences and make her feme attonsmcnt, was
joined to her in holy wedlock on the fabbath day

How often do thofc things which fecm unto us
misfortunes, redound to our advantage ! For the
Minillcr (who had long look'd on Sulanna as ihf
moft love})' of his parishioners) liked lb well of
my demeanour, that he recommended me to th^-
honour of being his Clerk, which was then be-
come vacant by the deccafc of go<?d Mailer \\ il
liani Harris.

Here ends the firft chapter ; after ivL'ich foll-su
fifty ir fexty pages of hn amour > in general^ and t'b-jt
purtuular on* with Sufanna his prcjint Jt'ife ; but I
cd to chapter tin- ninth.

No fooner was I elected into mine offire, but I
laycd afidc the powder'd gallantries of my youth,
and became a new njan. I conlidcred myfelt
fome wife and ccclefiaflica] dignity, fmce by wear-
ing a band, which is no fmall part of the o
mem of our Clergy, I might not unworthily be
deemed, as it were, aflucd of the linen vtiimeiit
of Aaron.

Thou may'ft conceive, O reader, with what

concern I perceived t!. ; the congregation

h.\i;d upon me, when I full took my place arthe

J<t ot the Prieft. When I railed the pfalm, how

R 2 did

244- MEMOIRS O F P. P.

did my voice quaver for fear ! And when I array'd
the BmiMen of the Minifter with the furplice,
ho\* did my joints tremble under me ! I fa id
within mvfdf, " Remember, Paul, thou ftandeft
before men of high worfhip, the wife Mr. Juf-
tice Freeman, the grave Mr. Juftice Tonfon,
the good Lady Jones, and the two virtuous gen-
tlewomen her daughters, nay the great Sir Tho-
mas Triiby, Knight and Baronet, and my young
maftcr the Efquire, who fhall one day be Lord
of this Manor :" Notwithstanding which, it was
my good hap to acquit myfelf to the good liking
of the whole congregation j but the Lord forbid I
fhould glory -therein.

The next chapter contains an account bow be dif-
f barged the fever al duties of his office j in particular
he injijts on the following :

I was determined to reform the manifold Cor-
ruptions and Abufes which had crept into the

Firft, I was efpecially fevere in whipping forth
dogs from the Temple, all excepting the lap-dog
of the good widow Howard, a fober dog which
yelped not, nor was there offence in his mouth.

Secondly, I did even proceed to morofenefs,
tho' fore againft my heart, unto poor babes, in tear-
ing from them the half-eaten apples which thev
privily munch 'd at Church. But verily it pity'd
me, for I remembcr'd the days of my youth.

Thirdly, With the fweat of my own hands, I
did make plain and fmooth the dogs-ears through-
out our great Bible.

Fourthly, the pews and benches which were
formerly fwept but once in three years, I caus'd
every Saturday to be fwept with a befom and



Fifthly and laftly, I caufed the furplice to be
neatly darned, walhed, and laid in frclh lavcndi-r,
(yea, and fomctimes to be fprinkled with role-
water) and I had great laud and praife from all
the neighbouring Clergy, forafmuch as no parifh
kept the Miniftcr in cleaner linen.

Notwithftanding thefe his public cares t in the
eleventh chapter he informs us ne did not neltEl his
vfual occupations as a handy-craftfman.

Shoes, faith he, did I make, (and, if intreated,
mend) with good approbation. Faces alfo did I
fhavc, and I clipped the hair. Chirurgery alfo I
praclifed in the worming of Dogs ; but to bleed
adventured I not, except the poor. Upon this my
twofold profeffion, there pafied among men a mer-
ry tale delectable enough to be rehear fed : How
that being overtaken with liquor one Saturday
evening, I (hav'd the Prieft with Spanifli blacking
for fhocs inftead of a wafhball, and with lamp-
black powdered his perriwig. But thefe were fay-
ings of men, delighting in their own conceits more
than in the truth. For it is well known, that
great was my care and fkill in thefe my crafts ;
yea, I once had the honour of trimming Sir Tho-
mas himfelf, without fetching blood. Further-
more, I was fought unto to geld the Lady Frances
her fpaniel, which was wont to go aftray : He was
called Toby, that is to fay, Tobias. And 3dly, I
was cntrufted with a gorgeous pair of fliocs of the
laid Lady, tofet an heel-piece thereon; and I received
fuch praife therefore, that it was faid all ovei the
parifh, I mould be recommended unto the King
to mend fhocs for his Majcfty : whom GoJpre-
ferve ! Arnen.

R 3

2 4 6


"The reft cf this chapter I purpofely omit, for it

~n\!that when he fpeaks as a Shoenitikfr It

is very aMitrtL He talks of Mofes's pulling off" his

fliers, of tanning the hides of the Bulls of Baffin,

' - s Vw5/i the Tanner, etc. and takes up four or five

pages to prove, that, when the Apiftles were Inftructcd

to trmfl without (hoes, the precept did not extend to

their JucccJJors,

The next chapter relate! how. he difcover'd a Thief
K'ffb a bible and key, and experimented verfes of the
Pfalms that had cured Agues.

I pafs truer many others which inform us of farijb
affairs only, fuch as of the Succejjion of Curates ; a
lift of the weekly Texts ; what Pfalms he chofe on
proper occaftons ; and what Children were born and
bury'd : The laft of which articles he concludes
thus :

That the fhame of women may not endure, I
fpcuk not of Baftards ; neither will I name the Mo-
thers, although thereby I might delight many
grave women of the parifh : Lven her who hath
done penance in the fheet will I not mention, for-
afmuch as the church hath been witnefs of her
difgrace : Let the father, who hath made due com-
poiition with the Church-wardens to conceal his
infirmity, reft in peace ; my pen fhall not bewray
him, for lalfb have iinned.

The next chapter contains what he calh a great
utiin in the Church^ part of which I tran-

Now was the long expcled time arrived, when

the pfu'ms of King David fliould b hymn'd unto

1 tho


the fame tunes to which he play'-d them upon hi* 5
harp ; (To wa> I inform'd by my Singing-maftVr,
a man right ctuming in Pfalmody :) Now was our
over-abundant quaver and trilling done away, and
in lieu thereof was inftitutcd the Sol-fa, in fuch
euife as is fung in his Majefty's Chapel. We had
London finging mailers fent Into every parifh, like
unto Excife-men ; ad I aJfo was ordained to ad-
join myfdf unto them, though an unworthy d.l-
ciple, in order to inftrucl my fcllow-pariihioners
in this new manner of Worfhip. What tho' they
accufed me of humming through the noftril, as a
Sacbut ? yet would I not forego that harmony, it
having been agreed by the worthy patim-clerks of
London fi'til to prefervc the fame. I tutored the
young men and maidens to tune their voices as it
were a pfcltery, and ihe Church on the Sunday was
filled wkh thc'fc new Hallelujahs.

cn follow full feventy chapter s^ containing an ex-
aft detail of the Law-fuits of the Par/on and his
Pari/bioners concerning t\thes t and near a hundred
page's left blank^ with <vj .carncft defer* that the hif-
tory might be complcated by any o/ his iucceflors,
in whofc time theic lints fliuukl be ended.

next chapter contains an acccunt of the Briefs
read in the church^ and thefums collected upon each*
For the rcparatiQii of niqc churches, collected at
nine fcvcrnl times, 2 s. and 7 d. ^. For fifty fami-
lies ruined by fire, i s. J. For an inundation, a
King Charles's grout given by Lady Frances, etc.

In th; next he laments the difufe of Jf^edding-fer-
tnonSy and celebrates the benefits arifing from thofe at
Funerals^ concluding with thefe Words : Ah f let
not the relations of the dcceafed grudge the fin a 11
of an hatband, a pair of gloves, and ten
R 4 Shillings

248 - M E M O I R S O F P. P.

(hillings, for the fatisfa&ion they arc fure to re-
ceive from a pious Divine, that their father, bro-
ther, or bofom wife,' are certainly in heaven.

In another, he draws a panegyrick on one Mrs.
Afargant JVilkins, but after great encomiums con-
cludes, tffaty not with] tending all, (he was an un-
profitable veflel, being a barren woman, and never
once having furnifli'd God's church with a chri-

We fir.i in another chapter, how he was much
ftaggerd in his belief, and difturbed in his confeienee,
/y an Oxford fiholar, who had proved 1o him by lo-
gick, that Animals might have rational, nay, im-
mortal fouls ; but how he was again comforted with
the refletl'ion, that, if fo, they might be allowed
chriftian burial, and greatly augment the fees of the

In the two foUnving chapters he is overpower'/}
with l\nnty. We are told, how be was conftantly
'.id'nitted to all the feafts and banquets of the Church-
officers, and the Jpecches he there made for the good
cf the parijh. How he gave hints to young Clergy-
w-:n to preach ; but above all, how he gave a Text
for the $Cth cf January, which occa/ioned a moft ex-
cellent fcnMn, the mrrits of which he ta l :es entirely
to hitJi/elf. He gives an account of a conference be
had with the Vicar concerning the UJe of Texts. Let
a preacher (faith he) cojifider the aflembly before
whom he preacheth, and unto them adapt his
text. Micab the iii d and i I th afFordeth good mat-
ter for Courtiers and court-ferving men. The heads
of the land jitflge for mvard ; and the people there-
of judge for hire ; and the prophets thereof divine
fr,r money ; yet will they lean upon the Lord, and
fay, h n'A the Lord among us ? Were the frrft Mi-



niftcr to appoint a preacher before the Houfc of
Commons, would not he be wife to make choice
of thefe words ; G;tv, and it Jball be given unto ye.
Or before the Lords, Giving no offence^ that the
Miniftry be not blamed^ 2 Cor. vi. 3. Or praifmg
the warm zeal of an Adminiftration, JVho mak-
eth his Ministers a flaming fire y Pfalm civ. 4.
We omit many other of his texts, as too tedious.

From this period, theftyle of the book rifes extreme-
ly. Before the next chapter was pafted the Effigus of
Dr. Sachcvercl, and I found the oppojitc page all on
a foam with Politicks.

We are now (fays he) arrived at that celebrat-
ed year, in which the Church of England was
tried in the perfon of Dr. Sacheverel. I had ever
the intereft of our High Church at heart, neither
would I at any fcafon mingle myfelf in the focic
ties of Fanaticks, whom I from my infancy ab-
horred, more than the Heathen or Gentile. It
was in thefc days I bethought myfelf that much
profit might accrue unto our Parim, and even un-
to the nation, could there be aflembled together
a number of chofen men of the right fpirit, who
might argue, refine and define, upon high and
great matters. Unto this purpofe, I did inftitutc
a weekly Aflcmbly of divers worthy men at the
Rofe and Crown Alchoufe, over whom myfelf
(tho* unworthy) did prefide. Yea, I did read un-
to them the Poft-Boy of Mr. Roper, and the
written letter of Mr. Dyer, upoH which we com-
muned afterwards among ourfelves. Our focicty
was compofcd of the following pci Tons : Robert
Jenkins, Farrier ; Amos Turner, Collar-maker ;
George Pilcocks, late Excifeman ; Thomas White,
Wheel-wright ; and myfdf. Firft, of the firft,
Robert Jc-nk

2 5 o MEMOIRS OF P.?.

He was a man of bright parts and fhrewd con-
ceit, for he never fhocd an horfe of a Whig or a
Fanatick, but he lamed him forely.

Amos Turner, a worthy perfon, rightly cfteem-
ed among us for his fufrerings, in that he had
hccn honoured in the flocks for wearing an Oaken

iGcorge Pilcocks, a fufFerer alfo ; of zealous and
laudable freedom of Speech, inlbmuch that his
occupation had been taken from him.

Thomas White, of good repute likewife, for
that his uncie, by the Mother's fule, had, former-
ly, been fervitor at Maudlin college, where the
glorious Sachcverel was educated.

Now were the eyes of all the parifli upon thcfc
our weekly councils. In a fhort fpace, the Mi-
nUter came among us ; he fpake concerning us
and our councils to a multitude of other MimnVrs
at the Vifitation, and they fpake thereof unto the
Minifters at London, fo thai even the Bimops
heard and rnarvellcd thereat. Moreover Sir Tho-
mas, member of Parliament, fpake of the fame to
other members of Parliament ; who fpake thereof
unto the Peers of the Realm. Lo ! thus did our
councils enter into the hearts of our Generals and
our Law-givers ; and from henceforth, even as we
tlevifed, thus did they.

A fur this, the whole book is turned on a fudden,
from his own Life, to a biftory of all the publick
franfa^ion^ of Europe , compiled from the News-
papei'S of thoff times. / could not comprehend the
meaning of this, till I perceived at laft (to my no f mall
Aftonijhrtuni} that all the JMeafures of the four laft
years of the Queen, together with the peace at Utrecht,

which have been ufually attributed to the E of

, DofO , Lord? H and E , and

ether great men j do here m n ft plainly appear , to haye



been ft/'o'/v owing to Robert Jenkins, Anm Turner^
George Pucocks, Thomas JPhite, but above all, to P. P.

Tbt reader may before I was very inqui/itive after
this fxtrairdinury writer, whofe work 1 have here
abftratlcd. I took a journey into the Country on pur-
fijt ; but could not find the leajl trace of him : till l>y
uccidcnt I met an old Clergyman, who faid he cculd
not be pofftive, but thought it might be one Paul Phi-
lips, who had been dead about twelve years. And
upon enquiry, all he could learn of that perfon from
the neighbourhood, was, Tliat he had been taken no-
tice of for fwallowing Loaches, and remembered by
fame people h a black and white Cur with one Ear,
that conftantly followed him.

In the Church-yard, I read his Epitaph, to
.'rittcn by bimfelf.

O Reader, if that thou canft read,

Look down upon this Stone ;
PO all we can, Death is a man,
That never fparcth none.




November 19, 1729.

THE time of the election of a Poet Laureate
being now at hand, it may be proper to
give fome account of the rites and ceremonies an-
ciently ufed at that Solemnity, and only difconti-
nued through the neglect and degeneracy of later
times. Thele we have extracted from an hifto-
rian of undoubted credit, a reverend bifhop, the
learned Paulus Jovius : and are the fame that were
practifed under the pontificate of Leo X, die great
reftorerof learning.


As we now fee an age and a court^ that for the
encouragement of poetry rivals, if not exceeds,
that of this famous Pope, we cannot but wifli a
reftoration of all its honours to poefy ; the rather,
fmce there are fo many parallel circumftances in
the per/on who was then honoured with the laurel,
and in him^ who (in all probability) is now to
wear it.

I ftiall tranflate my author exactly as I find it in
the 8ad chapter of his Elogia Vir. Doct. He be-
gins with the character of the poet himfelf, who
was the original and father of all Laureate, and
called Camillo. He was a plain country-man of
Apulia, (whether a Jhepherd or threjher, is not ma-
terial.) " This man (fays Jovius) excited by die
" fame of the great encouragement given to poets
" at court, and the high honour in which dicy
" were held, came t9 the city, bringing with him


254 Of the P O E T L A U R E A T K.

" a ftrange kitid of lyre in his hand, and at lea$
" fomc twenty thoufan.i of verfes. All the wits
" and critics of the court flocked about him, de-

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Online LibraryAlexander PopeThe works of Alexander Pope Esq. : In nine volumes, complete. With his last corrections, additions, and improvements; as they were delivered to the editor, a little before his death. Together with the commentary and notes of Mr. Warburton (Volume 6) → online text (page 13 of 20)