Quid de te alii loquantur, ipsi videant, sed loquentur tamen. Let what others say about you be their concern; whatever it is, they will say it anyway. The dog-star rages! What walls can guard me, or what shades can hide? They pierce my thickets, through my grot they glide; By land, by water, they renew the charge; They stop the chariot, and they board the barge. Friend to my life!
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Quid de te alii loquantur, ipsi videant, sed loquentur tamen. Let what others say about you be their concern; whatever it is, they will say it anyway. The dog-star rages! What walls can guard me, or what shades can hide? They pierce my thickets, through my grot they glide; By land, by water, they renew the charge; They stop the chariot, and they board the barge.
Friend to my life! A dire dilemma! I sit with sad civility, I read With honest anguish, and an aching head; And drop at last, but in unwilling ears, This saving counsel, "Keep your piece nine years. Pitholeon sends to me: "You know his Grace, I want a patron; ask him for a place. Dare you refuse him? Out with it, Dunciad! The queen of Midas slept, and so may I. You think this cruel? Let peals of laughter, Codrus! Who shames a scribbler? Whom have I hurt?
And has not Colley still his lord, and whore? His butchers Henley, his Free-masons Moore? Does not one table Bavius still admit? Still to one bishop Philips seem a wit? Still Sappho— "Hold! I too could write, and I am twice as tall; But foes like these! A fool quite angry is quite innocent; Alas!
One dedicates in high heroic prose, And ridicules beyond a hundred foes; One from all Grub Street will my fame defend, And, more abusive, calls himself my friend. This prints my Letters, that expects a bribe, And others roar aloud, "Subscribe, subscribe. Why did I write? But why then publish? From these the world will judge of men and books, Not from the Burnets, Oldmixons, and Cookes.
Soft were my numbers; who could take offence, While pure description held the place of sense? Did some more sober critic come abroad? Pains, reading, study, are their just pretence, And all they want is spirit, taste, and sense. Were others angry? How did they fume, and stamp, and roar, and chafe? And swear, not Addison himself was safe.
Peace to all such! Who but must laugh, if such a man there be? Who would not weep, if Atticus were he? Dryden alone what wonder? May some choice patron bless each grey goose quill! Blest be the great! Oh let me live my own! Has life no joys for me? Poor guiltless I! A lash like mine no honest man shall dread, But all such babbling blockheads in his stead. Let Sporus tremble—"What? Satire or sense, alas! Who breaks a butterfly upon a wheel? Eternal smiles his emptiness betray, As shallow streams run dimpling all the way.
Whether in florid impotence he speaks, And, as the prompter breathes, the puppet squeaks; Or at the ear of Eve, familiar toad, Half froth, half venom, spits himself abroad, In puns, or politics, or tales, or lies, Or spite, or smut, or rhymes, or blasphemies.
His wit all see-saw, between that and this , Now high, now low, now Master up, now Miss, And he himself one vile antithesis.
Amphibious thing! Yet why? Unspotted names! O grant me, thus to live, and thus to die! Who sprung from kings shall know less joy than I. O friend!
The Rape of the Lock
The Dog-star rages! What walls can guard me, or what shade can hide? Friend to my Life! A dire dilemma!
Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot
An Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot
Alexander Pope: “Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot”