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120

Who, with herself, or others, from her birth
Finds all her life one warfare

upon

earth : Shines, in exposing Knaves, and painting Fools, Yet is, whate'er she hates and ridicules. No Thought advances, but her Eddy Brain Whisks it about, and down it goes again. Full fixty years the World has been her Trade, The wifest Fool much Time has ever made. From loveless youth to unrespected age, 125 No Passion gratify'd, except her Rage. So much the Fury still out-ran the Wit, The Pleasure miss'd her, and the Scandal hit. Who breaks with her, provokes Revenge from Hell, But he's a bolder man who dares be well.

130 Her ev'ry turn with Violence pursu'd, Nor more a storm her Hate than gratitude : To that each Passion turns, or foon or late ; Love, if it makes her yield, must make her hate : Superiors ? death ! and Equals ? what a Curse ; 135 But an Inferior not dependant ? worse. Offend her, and she knows not to forgive ; Oblige her, and she'll hate you while you live: But die, and she'll auore you Then the Buft And Temple rise - then fall again to duft. 140

VARIATIONS,

After ver, 122. in the MS.

Oppress'd with wealth and wit, abundance fad !
One makes her poor, the other makes her mad.

Laft night, her Lord was all that's good and great;
A Knave this morning, and his Will a Cheat.
Strange! by the Means defeated of the Ends,
By Spirit robb’d of Pow'r, by Warmth of Friends,
By Wealth of Follow'rs ! without one diftress 145
Sick of herself thro' very selfishness !
Atosla, curs'd with ev'ry granted pray'r,
Childless with all her Children, wants an Heir.
To Heirs unknown descends th'unguarded store,
Or wanders Heav'n-directed to the Poor. 150

Pictures like these, dear Madam, to design,
Asks no firm hand, and no unerring line;
Some wand'ring touches, some reflected light,
Some flying stroke alone can hit 'em right :
For how should equal Colours do the knack ? 155
Chameleons can paint in white and black ?

VER, 150. Or wanders, Heav’n-directed, etc.] Alluding and referring to the great principle of his Philosophy, which he never loses light of, and which teaches, that Providence is incessantly turning the evils arising from the follies and vices of men to general good.

Ver. 156. Chameleons who can paint in white and black ? ] There is one thing that does a very distinguished honour to the accuracy of our poet's judgment, of which, in the

VARIATIONS.

VER. 148. in the MS.

This Death decides, nor lets the blessing fall
On any one the hates, but on them all.
Curs'd chance! this only could affict her more,
If any part should wander to the poor,

“ Yet Chloe sure was form’d without a spot” Nature in her then err'd not, but forgot.

course of these obfervations, I have given many instances, and thall here explain in what it consists; it is this, that the Similitudes in his didactic poems, of which he is not sparing, and which are all highly poetical, are always chosen with such exquisite discernment of Nature, as not only to illustrate the particular point he is upon, but to establish the general principles he would enforce; ro, in the instance before us, he compares the inconstancy and contradiction in the Characters of Women, to the change of colours in the Chameleon ; yet 'tis nevertheless the great principle of this poem to thew that the general Characteristic of the Sex, as to the Ruling Passions, which they all have, is more uniform than that in Man: Now for this purpose, all Nature could not have supplied such another illustration as this of the Chameleon; for though it instantaneously assumes much of the colour of every subject on which it chances to be placed, yet, as the most accurate Virtuofi have observed, it has two native colours of its own, which (like the two ruling passions in the Sex) amidit all these changes are never totally discharged, but, though often discoloured by the neighbourhood of adventitious ones, ftill make the foundation, and give a tincture to all those which, from thence, it occasionally assumes.

Yet Chloe fure, etc.] The purpose of the poet in this Character is important : It is to thew that the politic or prudent government of the passions is not enough to make a Character amiable, nor even to secure it from being ridiculous, if the end of that government be not pursued, which is the free exercise of the social appetites after the selfish ones have been subdued ; for that if, though reason govern, the heart be never consulted, we interest ourselves as little in the fortune of such a Character as in any of the foregoing, which passions or caprice drive up and down ac random,

VER. 157.

“ With ev'ry pleasing, ev'ry prudent part,

Say, what can Chloe want?”-She wants a Heart. She speaks, behaves, and acts just as the ought, 161 But never, never, reach'd one gen'roy Thought. Virtue she finds too painful an endeavour, Content to dwell in Decencies for ever. So very reasonable, so unmov'd,

165 As never yet to love, or to be lov'd. She, while her Lover pants upon her breast, Can mark the figures on an Indian chelt; And when she sees her Friend in deep despair, Observes how much a Chintz exceeds Mohair. 170 Forbid it Heav'n, a Favour or a Debt She e'er fhould cancel but she may forget. Safe is your secret still in Chloe's ear; But none of Chloe's Tall you ever hear. Of all her Dears she never flanderd one, 175 But cares not if a thousand are undone. Would Chloe know if you're alive or dead? She bids her Footman put it in her head. Chloe is prudent — Would you too be wise ? Then never break your heart when Chloe dies. 180

One certain Portrait may (I grant) be seen, Which Heav'n has varnish'd out, and made a Queen :

VER. 181. One certain Portrait the same for ever! - 1 This is entirely ironical, and conveys under it this general moral truth, that there is, in life, no such thing as a perfect Character; so that the satire falls not on any particular Character, or Station, but on the Character-maker only. See Note on ver. 78. į Dialogue 1738.

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THE SAME FOR ÈVER ! and deserib*d by all
With Truth and Goodness, as with Crown and Ball.
Poets heap Virtúcs, Painters Gems at will, 185
And shew their zeal, and hide their want of skill.
'Tis well but, Artists ! who can paint or write,
To draw the Naked is your true delight.
That Robé of Quality fo ftruts and swells,
None fee whát Parts of Nature it conceals : 190
Th’exacteft traits of Body or of Mind,
We owe to models of an humbler kind.
If QUEENSBERRY to strip there's no compelling,
"Tis fiont a Handmaid we muft take a Helen.
From Peer or Bishop 'tis no easy thing

195
To draw the man who loves his God, or King :
Alas ! I copy, (or my draught would faily
From honest Mah’met, or plain Parfon Hale.

Bat grant, in Public Men fometimes are shown; A Woman's seen in Private life alone :

260'

VER. 198. Mabimet, servant to the late King.

VER. 199. But grant, in Public, etc.] In the former Edi. cions, between this and the foregoing Kines, a want of Connexion might be perceived, occafioned by the omission of certain Examples and Illuftrations to the Maxims laid down ; and though some of these have fince been found, viz. the Characters of Pbilomedé, Atoffa, Cbloc, and fome vérfes fole

VARIAT FONS.

After ver. 199. in the MS.

Fain I'd in Fulvia spy the tender Wife;

I cannot prove it on her, for my life: VOL. III.

K

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