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As she with all her rules can never reach.
Less worthy of applause, though more admir'd,
Because a novelty, the work of man,
Imperial mistress of the fur-clad Russ,
Thy most magnficent and mighty freak,

The wonder of the North. No forest fell
When thou wouldst build; no quarry sent its stores,
T'enrich thy walls : but thou didst hew the floods,
And make thy marble of the glassy wave.
In such a palace Aristæus found

135 Cyrene, when he bore the plaintive tale Of his lost bees to her maturnal ear: In such a palace poetry might place The armoury of Winter; where his troops, The gloomy clouds, find weapons, arrowy sleet 140 Skin-piercing volley, blossom-bruising hail, And snow, that often blinds the trav'ller's course, And wraps him in an unexpected tomb. Silently as a dream the fabrick rose; No sound of hammer or of saw was there : Ice upon ice, the well-adjusted parts Were soon conjoin'd, nor other cement ask'd -Than water interfus'd, to make them one. Lamps gracefully dispos'd, and of all hues, Illumin'd ev'ry side : a wat'ry light

150 Gleam'd through the clear transparency, that seem'd Another moon new ris'n, or meteor fall’n From Heav'n to Earth, of lambent flame serene So stood the brittle prodigy; though smooth And slipp’ry the materials, yet frost-bound 155 Firm as a rock. Nor wanted aught within That royal residence might well befit, For grandeur or for use. Long wavy wreaths Of flow'rs that fear'd no enemy but warmth, Blush'd on the pannels. Mirror needed none 160 Where all was vitreous ; but in order due Convivial table and commodious seat What seem'd at least commodious seat) were there ;


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Sofa, and couch, and high-built throne august.
The same lubricity was found in all,

And all was moist to the warm touch ; a scene
Of evanescent glory, once a stream,
And soon to slide into a stream again.
Alas ! 'twas but a mortifying stroke
Of undesign'd severity, that glanc'd,

170 (Made by a monarch,) on her own estate, On human grandeur and the courts of kings. 'Twas transient in its nature, as in show 'Twas durable ; as worthless, as it seem'd Intrinsically precious ; to the foot

175 Treach'rous and false ; it smil'd, and it was cold. Great princes have great play-things. Somo have

play'd At hewing mountains into men, and some At building human wonders mountain-high. Some have amus'd the dull, sad years of life, 180 (Life spent in indolence, and therefore sad,) With schemes of monumental fame; and sought By pyramids and mausolean pomp, Short liv'd themselves, t' immortalize their bones. Some seek diversion in the tented field,

185 And make the sorrows of mankind their sport. But war's a game, which, were their subjects wise, Kings would not play at. Nations would do well, T'extort their truncheons from the puny hands Of heroes, whose infirm and baby minds

190 Are gratified with mischief; and who spoil, Because men suffer it, their toy, the world.

When Babel was confounded, and the great
Confed'racy of projectors wild and vain
Was split into diversity of tongues,

Then, as a shepherd separates his flock,
These to the upland, to the valley those,
God drove asunder, and assign'd their lot
To all the nations. Ample was the boon
He gave them, in its distribution fair


And equal ; and he bade them dwell in peace.
Peace was awhile their care ; they plough'd, and sow'd,
And reap'd their plenty without grudge or strife.
But violence can never longer sleep
Than human passions please. In every heart 205
Are sown the sparks that kindle fiery war;
Occasion needs but fan them, and they blaze.
Cain had already shed a brother's blood :
The deluge wash'd it out; but left unquench'd
The seeds of murder in the breast of man.

Soon by a righteous judgment in the line
Of his descending progeny was found
The first artificer of death; the shrewd
Contriver, who first sweated at the forge,
And forc'd the blunt and yet unbloodied steel

215 To a keen edge, and made it bright for war. Him, Tubal nam’d, the Vulcan of old times, The sword and falchion their inventor claim; And the first smith was the first murd'rer's son. His art surviv'd the waters; and ere long,

220 When man was multiplied and spread abroad In tribes and clans, and had begun to call These meadows and that range of hills his own, The tasted sweets of property begat Desire of more ; and industry in some,

225 T'improve and cultivate their just demesne, Made others covet what they saw so fair. Thus war began on Earth : these fought for spoil, And those in self-defence. Savage at first The onset, and irregular. At length

230 One eminent above the rest for strength, For stratagem, for courage, or for all, Was chosen leader ; him they serv'd in war, And him in peace, for sake of warlike deeds, Rev'renc'd no less. Who could with him compare ? Or who so worthy to control themselves,

236 As he, whose prowess had subdu'd their foes ? Thus war, affording field for the display





Of virtue, made one chief, whom times of peace,
Which have their exigencies too, and call
For skill in government, at length made king.
King was a name too proud for man to wear
With modesty and meekness; and the crown
So dazzling in their eyes, who set it on,
Was sure t'intoxicate the brows it bound
It is the abject property of most,
That, being parcel of the common mass,
And destitute of means to raise themselves,
They sink, and settle lower than they need.
They know not what it is to feel within
A comprehensive faculty, that grasps
Great purposes with ease, that turns and wields,
Almost without an effort, plans too vast
For their conception, which they cannot move.
Conscious of impotence they soon grow drunk
With gazing, when they see an able man
Step forth to notice; and, besotted thus,
Build him a pedestal, and say, “ Stand there,
" And be our admiration and our praise.”
They roll themselves before him in the dust,
Then most deserving in their own account
When most extravagant in his applause,
As if, exalting him, they rais'd themselves.
Thus by degrees, self-cheated of their sound
And sober judgment, that he is but man,
They demi-deify and fume him so,
That in due season he forgets it too.
Inflated and astrut with self conceit,
He gulps the windy diet; and ere long,
Adopting their mistake, profoundly thinks
The world was made in vain, if not for him."
Thenceforth they are his cattle ; drudges, born
To bear his burdens, drawing in his gears,
And sweating in his service, his caprice
Becomes the soul that animates them all.
He deems a thousand, or ten thousand lives,





Spent in the purchase of renown for him,
An easy reck’ning : and they think the same.
Thus kings were first invented, and thus kings
Were burnish'd into heroes, and became

The arbiters of this terraqueous swamp ;
Storks among frogs, that have but croak'd and died.
Strange, that such folly, as lifts bloated man
To eminence, fit only for a god,
Should ever drivel out of human lips,

285 E'en in the cradled weakness of the world ! Still stranger much, that, when at length mankind Had reach'd the sinewy firmness of their youth, And could discriminate and argue well On subjects more mysterious, they were yet

290 Babes in the cause of freedom, and should fear And quake before the gods themselves had made : But above measure strange, that neither proof Of sad experience, nor examples set By some whose patriot virtue has prevailid, 295 Can even now, when they are grown mature In wisdom, and with philosophick deeds Familiar, serve t' emancipate the rest ! Such dupes are men to custom, and so prone To rev'rence what is ancient, and can plead

309 A course of long observance for its use, That even servitude, the worst of ills, Because deliver'd down from sire to son, Is kept and guarded as a sacred thing. But is it fit, or can it bear the shock

305 Of rational discussion, that a man, Compounded and made up like other men Of elements tumultuous, in whom lust And folly in as ample measure meet As in the bosoms of the slaves he rules,

310 Should be a despot absolute, and boast Himself the only freeman of his land ? Should, when he pleases, and on whom he will, Wage war, with any or with no pretence

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