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THIS Satire has been ascribed to Swift, on the authority of a title-page by Tonson, who reprinted the poem as by "the author of the Tale of a Tub." I cannot discern any internal evidence; on the contrary, the terms in which King William is mentioned, both in the title and text of the poem, are totally inconsistent with the Dean's feelings towards that monarch. Indeed, if this poem had really been the Dean's writing, and known to be so by the celebrated Whig bookseller, whom he had offended, it would have been quoted against him, as a mark of apostacy, in the numerous libels of the day, where, however, it is never once mentioned. Besides, durst Swift, with such an evidence in every bookseller's shop, have ventured to assert, that, while he held Whig politics in the state, he was always of the High Church party in what regarded ecclesiastical matters? See Vol. I. p. 72, note.
Dedicated to all those who are true Friends to her present Majesty and her Government, to the Church of England, and the Succession as by Law established; and who gratefully acknowledge the preservation of their Religion, Rights, and Liberties, due to the late King William, of ever glorious and immortal memory.
[Printed from the original Dublin Edition of 1706.]
Difficile est satyram non scribere.
OW this fantastic world is changed of late! Sure some full moon has work'd upon the state.
Time was, when it was question'd much
Which was the worst, the Devil or a Tory;
Calm and serene we heard the tempest roar,
And where (as hanging on the golden bough)
Which mock'd the approach of our deluded taste.
Imaginary schemes we seem to spy.
And search for dangers with a curious eye;
From thought to thought we roll, and rack our
To obviate mischiefs in the future tense:
Strange plots in embryo from the Lord we fear;
Near that famed place where slender wights resort,
And gay Pulvilio keeps his scented court;
†The Swan Tavern.