Imagens da página
PDF
ePub

2dly. A distinct guardian spirit or patron is assigned to each person in particular:

Of these am I, who thy protection claim,
A watchful sprite—

3dly. They are made directly to inspire dreams, visions, and revelations.

Her guardian sylph prolong’d her balmy rest,
'Twas he had summon'd to her silent bed
The morning dream

4thly. They are made to be subordinate in different degrees, some presiding over others. So Ariel has his several under officers at command:

Superiour by the head was Ariel plac'd.

5thly. They are employed in various offices, and each hath his office assigned him:

Some in the fields of purest ether play,
And bask and whiten in the blaze of day;
Some guide the course, &c.

6thly. He hath given his spirits the charge of the several parts of dress; intimating thereby that the saints preside over the several parts of human bodies. They have one saint to cure the toothach, another the gripes, another the gout, and so of the rest.

The flutt’ring fan be Zephyretta's care,

The drops to thee, Brillante, we consign, &c.

7thly. They are represented to know the thoughts of men:

As on the nosegay in her breast reclin'd,

[merged small][ocr errors]

8thly. They are made protectors even to animal and irrational beings:

Ariel himself shall be the guard of Shock.

So St. Anthony presides over hogs, &c.

9thly. They are made patrons of whole kingdoms and provinces:

Of these the chief the care of nations own.

So St. George is imagined by the papists to defend England; St. Patrick, Ireland; St. James, Spain; &c. Now what is the consequence of all this By granting that they have this power, we must be brought back again to pray to them.

The toilette is an artful recommendation of the mats, and pompous ceremonies of the church of Rome. The unveiling of the altar, the silver vases upon it; being robed in white, as the priests are upon the chief festivals; and the head uncovered, are minifest marks of this:

A heavenly image in the glass appears,

To that she bends

plainly denotes image worship.
The goddess, who is decked with treasures, jewels,
and the various offerings of the world, manifestly al-
ludes to the lady of Loretto. You have perfumes
breathing from the incense pot in the following line:

And all Arabia breathes from yonder box.

The character of Belinda, as we take it in this third

view, represents the popish religion, or the whore of Babylon; who is described in the state this malevolent author wishes for, coming forth in all her glory upon

[ocr errors]

upon the Thames, and overspreading the whole na

tion with ceremonies:
Not with more glories in th’ ethereal plain
The Sun first rises o'er the purple main,

Than issuing forth, the rival of his beams
Launch'd on the bosom of the silver Thames.

She is dressed with a cross on her breast, the ensign of popery, the adoration of which is plainly recommended in the following lines:

On her white breast a sparkling cross she wore,
Which Jews might kiss, and infidels adore.

Next he represents her as the universal church, according to the boasts of the papists:

And like the Sun she shines on all alike.

After which he tells us,

If to her share some female errours fall,
Look on her face, and you'll forget them all.

Though it should be granted some errours fill to her share, look on the pompous figure she makes throughout the world, and they are not worth regarding. In the sacrifice following you have these two lines: For this, ere Phebus rose, he had implor’d Propitious Heav'n, and ev'ry pow'r ador'd.

In the first of them he plainly hints at their rising to matins; in the second, by adoring every power, the invocation of saints, Belinda's visits are described with numerous waxlights, which are always used in the ceremonial part

of the Romish worship: I 3 —Visits

Visits shall be paid on solemn days,
When num’rous wax-lights in bright order blaze.

The lunar sphere he mentions opens to us their Purgatory, which is seen in the following line:

Since all things lost on earth are treasur'd there.

It is a popish doctrine, that scarce any person quits
this world, but he must touch at Purgatory in his
way to Heaven; and it is here also represented as the
treasury of the Romish church. Nor is it much to
be wondered at, that the moon should be Purgatory,
when a learned divine hath in a late treatise proved
the sun to be Hell”.
I shall now, before I conclude, desire the reader
to compare this key with those upon any other pieces,
which are supposed to have been secret satires upon
the state, either ancient or modern : in particular
with the keys to Petronius Arbiter, Lucian's True
History, Barclay's Argenis, and Rabelais's Garagan-
tua; and I doubt not he will do me the justice to ac-
knowledge, that the explanations here laid down, are
deduced as naturally, and with as little violence, both
from the general scope and bent of the work, and
from the several particulars: farthermore, that they
are every way as consistent and undeniable, every way
as candid, as any modern interpretations of either
party on the conduct and writings of the other. And
I appeal to the most eminent and able state de-
cipherers themselves, if, according to their art, any
thing can be more fully proved, or more safely sworn
to :
To sum up my whole charge against this author

* The reverend Dr. Swinden.

in

[ocr errors]

in a few words: he has ridiculed both the present ministry and the last; abused great statesmen and great generals; nay, the treaties of whole nations have not escaped him, nor has the royal dignity itself been omitted in the progress of his satire; and all this he has done just at the meeting of a new parliament. I hope a proper authority may be made use of to bring him to condign punishment. In the mean while I doubt not, if the persons most concerned would but order Mr. Bernard Lintot, the printer and publisher of this dangerous piece, to be taken into custody and examined, many farther discoveries might be made both of this poet's and abettor's secret designs, which are doubtless of the utmost importance to the goYCTIIIllent.

[ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinuar »