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POEMS

OF

JOHN DRYDEN.

ABSALOM AND ACHITOPHEL.

1681.

TO THE READER.

pen

one

It is not my intention to make an apology for my Poem: some will think it needs no excuse, and others will receive none. The design, I am sure, is honest; but he who draws his for party must expect to make enemies of the other : for wit and fool are consequents of Whig and Tory; and every man is a knave or an ass to the contrary side. There is a treasury of merits in the Fanatic church, as well as in the Popish, and a pennyworth to be had of saintship, honesty, and poetry, for the lewd, the factious, and the blockheads: but the longest chapter in Deuteronomy has not curses enough for an Anti-Bromingham. My comfort is, their manifest prejudice to my cause will render their judgment of less authority against me. Yet if a poem have a

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