Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

'Tis not in folly, not to scorn a fool; And scarce in human wisdom, to do

more.

All promise is poor dilatory man,
And that through every stage: when

young, indeed,
In full content we, sometimes, nobly

rest,
Unanxious for ourselves; and only wish,
As duteous sons, our fathers were more

wise.
At thirty man suspects himself a fool;
Knows it at forty, and reforms his plan;
At fifty chides his infamous delay,
Pushes his prudent purpose to resolve;
In all the magnanimity of thought
Resolves; and re-resolves; then, dies

the same.
And why? Because he thinks him-

self immortal.

All men think all men mortal, but them

selves; Themselves, when some alarming shock

of fate Strikes through their wounded hearts

the sudden dread. But their hearts wounded, like the

wounded air, Soon close, where, past the shaft, no

trace is found. As from the wing, no scar the sky re

tains; The parted wave no furrow from the

keel; So dies in human hearts the thought of

death, E'en with the tender tear which Nature

sheds O'er those we love, - we drop it in their

grave.

ALLAN RAMSAY.

in

1686–1758. (ALLAN RAMSAY was born in 1686, in Lanarkshire. His father was the manager of Lord Hopetoun's lead mines, but his great-grandfather was younger son of a “laird of Cockpen,” and nephew of Ramsay of Dalhousie, and he took pride in his descent from this ancient stock. He was apprenticed as a boy to a wig-maker, but passed from writing poetry and editing poetical collections into being a bookseller. His earliest efforts were circulated among his cronies MS., and sold by himself to the public in penny broad sheets. In 1716 he published an edition of Christ's Kirk on the Green, with a second canto of his own composition, and soon after, another edition with a third new canto. In 1719 he published a collection of Scots Songs; in 1721 a collection of his own poems in quarto; in 1722 his Fables and Tales and his Tale of Three Bonnets ; in 1723 his Fair Assembly; in 1724 a poem on Health; in the same year miscellaneous collections entitled The Tea-Table Miscellany, and The Evergreen; and in 1725 the work with which chiefly his fame is associated, The Gentle Shepherd. He died in 1758.)

Your nowt4 may die; the spate may

bear away

JENNY AND PEGGY.
[From The Gentle Shepherd.]

JENNY.
BUT, poortith, Peggy is the warst of a',
Gif o'er your heads ill chance should

beggary draw;
There little love or canty' cheer can

Frae aff the howms your dainty rucks

of hay; The thick-blawn wreaths of snaw, or

blashy thows, May smoor your wethers and may rot

your ewes; A dyvour 6 buys your butter, woo, and

cheese, But or the day of payment breaks and flees.

4 cattle. 5 thaws, 6 bankrupt.

come

Frae duddy 2 doublets and a pantry

toom.3

[blocks in formation]

ragged.

empty.

me.

With glooman brow the laird seeks in

JENNY. his rent,

But what if some young giglit on the 'Tis no to gie: your merchant's to the

green bent:

With dimpled cheek and twa bewitchHis honor maunna want, he poinds your ing een, gear;

Should gar your Patie think his halfSyne driven frae house and hold, where

worn Meg will ye steer?

And her ken'd kisses, hardly worth a Dear Meg, be wise, and lead a single

feg? life;

PEGGY. Troth, it's nae mows to be a married wife.

Nae mair of that. Dear Jenny, to be

free,

There's some men constanter in love PEGGY.

than we. May sic ill luck befa' that silly she

Nor is the ferly a great, when nature Wha has sic fears, for that was never

kind

Has blest them with solidity of mind; Let fowk bode weel, and strive to do They'll reason calmly and with kindness their best;

smile, Nae mair's requir'd— let heaven make

When our short passions wad our peace out the rest.

beguile. I've heard my honest uncle often say

Sae, whensoe'er they slight their maiks 3 That lads should a' for wives that's vir- at hame, tuous pray;

'Tis ten to ane their wives are maist to

blame. For the maist thrifty man could never

Then I'll employ with pleasure a' my get

art A well-stor'd room unless his wife wad let.

To keep him cheerfu', and secure his Wherefore nocht shall be wanting on

heart.

At e'en, when he comes weary frae the my part To gather wealth to raise my shepherd

hill, heart.

I'll have a' things made ready to his will; Whate'er he wins I'll guide my canny

In winter, when he toils thro’ wind and

rain, care, And win the vogue at market, tron, or

A bleezing-ingle and a clean hearthfair,

stane; For halesome, clean, cheap and suffi- And soon as he flings by his plaid and cient ware.

and staff, A flock of lambs, cheese, butter and

The seething pots be ready to take aff;

Clean hagabag I'll spread upon his some woo,

board, Shall first be sold to pay the laird his due;

And serve him with the best we can Syne a' behind's our ain. Thus without

afford; fear,

Good-humor and white bigonets 4 shall With love and rowth we thro' the be warld will steer;

Guards to my face, to keep his love for And when my Pate in bairns and gear

JENNY. He'll bless the day he gat me for his A dish of married love right soon grows wife.

cauld, 1 plenty.

1

me.

grow rife,

2 wonder. 3 mates.

4 linen caps.

grow auld.

sour.

PATIE.

And dosensl down to nane, as fowk The maiden that o'er quickly tines her

power, PEGGY.

Like unripe fruit will taste but hard and But we'll grow auld together, and ne'er find

PATIE. The loss of youth, where love grows on But when they hing o'er lang upon the the mind.

tree, Bairns and their bairns make sure a Their sweetness they may tine, and sae firmer tie

may ye; Than aught in love the like of us can Red-cheeked you completely ripe apspy.

pear, See yon twa elms that grow up side by And I have tholed 6 and wooed a lang side,

half-year. Suppose them some years syne bride

PEGGY. groomi and bride; Nearer and nearer ilka year they've Then dinna pu' me; gently thus I fa’ prest,

Into my Patie's arms for good and a'. Till wide their spreading branches are

But stint your wishes to this kind emincreas'd,

brace, And in their mixture now are fully blest :

And mint 6 nae farther till we've got the This shields the other frae the eastlin grace.

blast, That in return defends it frae the wast. Sic as stand single (a state sae liked by

O charming armfu’! Hence, ye cares you),

away. Beneath ilk storm frae every airt ?

I'll kiss my treasure a' the livelang day:

A’night I'll dream my kisses o'er again, bow.

Till that day come that ye'll be a' my JENNY.

ain. I've done. I yield dear lassie, I maun

CHORUS yield; Your better sense has fairly won the field,

Sun, gallop down the westling skies, With the assistance of a little fae

Gang soon to bed, and quickly rise; Lies dern'd3 within my breast this mony

O lash your steeds, post time away, a day.

And haste about our bridal day;
And if ye're wearied, honest light,

Sleep, gin ye like, a week that night.
PATIE AND PEGGY.

PATIE. By the delicious warmness of thy mouth And rowing 4 eye, which smiling tells THROUGH THE WOOD, LADDIE, the truth,

[From The Tea-Table Miscellany.] I guess, my lassie, that, as well as I, ou're made for love, and why should

O SANDY, why leaves thou thy Nelly to

mourn? ye deny?

Thy presence would ease me
PEGGY.

When naething could please me, L'ut ken ye, lad, gin we confess o'er Now dowie I sigh on the bank of the soon,

burn, ve think us cheap, and syne the woo- Ere through the wood, laddie, until ing's done:

thou return. dwindles. 2 quarter. 3 hidden. 4 rolling.

5 suffered. I aim.

maun

Though woods now are bonny, and Their jeering aft gaes to my heart wi' a mornings are clear,

knell, While lavrocks are singing

When through the wood, laddie, I wanAnd primroses springing,

der mysel. Yet nane of them pleases my eye or my ear,

Then stay, my dear Sandie, nae langer When through the wood, laddie, ye din- away, na appear.

But quick as an arrow,

Haste here to thy marrow, That I am forsaken some spare no to Wha's living in languor till that happy tell;

day, I'm fashed wi' their scorning

When through the wood, laddie, we'll Baith evening and morning;

dance, sing, and play.

JOHN GAY.

1688–1732. [JOHN GAY was born near Barnstaple in 1688. Fairly educated, he began life in London as a silk-mercer; but soon relinquished that occupation for literature. His first poem was Rural Sports, a Georgic “ inscribed to Mr. Pope,”. 1713. In the following year he produced The Shepherd's Week, a set of six pastorals. His principal remaining works are the farce of The What-d'ye Call-it, 1715; the mock-heroic poem of Trivia, or the Art of Walking the Streets of London, 1716; Fables, 1726–38; and the famous Beggar's Opera, 1728. His Poems on Several Occasions, including the pastoral tragedy of Dione, were published in 1720. He was also concerned in, and bore the blame of, the unlucky comedy of Three Hours after Marriage, to which Pope and Arbuthnot had largely contributed. He died in London in December, 1732.]

THE PERSIAN, THE SUN, AND | The day with sudden darkness hung; THE CLOUD.

With pride and envy swell’d, aloud Is there a bard whom genius fires, A voice thus thunder'd from the cloud : Whose every thought the god inspires ?

“Weak is this gaudy god of thine, When Envy reads the nervous lines,

Whom I at will forbid to shine. She frets, she rails, she raves, she pines; Shall I nor vows nor incense know? Her hissing snakes with venom swell, Where praise is due, the praise beShe calls her venal train from hell;

stow.” The servile fiends her nod obey,

With fervent zeal the Persian moved, And all Curll's authors are in pay.

Thus the proud calumny reproved : Fame calls up Calumny and Spite; " It was that God who claims my Thus Shadow owes its birth to Light.

prayer, As prostrate to the god of day

Who gave thee birth, and raised thee With heart devout a Persian lay,

there; His invocation thus begun:

When o’er His beams the veil is thrown, “ Parent of light, all-seeing sun, Thy substance is but plainer shown: Prolific beam, whose rays dispense A passing gale, a puff of wind, The various gifts of Providence, Dispels thy thickest troops combined.” Accept our praise, our daily prayer, The gale arose; the vapor tossed, Smile on our fields, and bless the year.” The sport of winds, in air was lost; A Cloud, who mock'd his grateful The glorious orb the day refines; tongue,

Thus envy breaks, thus merit shines.

crew?"

BLACK-EYED SUSAN.

Change as ye list, ye winds, my heart

shall be All in the Downs the fleet was moor'd, The streamers waving in the wind,

The faithful compass that still points to

thee. When black-eyed Susan came on board, “Oh, where shall I my true-love find ?

“ Believe not what the landsmen say, Tell me, ye jovial sailors, tell me true,

Who tempt with doubts thy constant Does my sweet William sail among your mind;

They tell thee sailors, when away,

In every port a mistress find; William, who high upon the yard

Yes, yes, believe them when they teli Rock'd by the billows to and fro,

you so, Soon as the well-known voice he heard,

For thou art present wheresoe'er I go.” He sigh'd and cast his eyes below; The cord flies swiftly through his glow- | The boatswain gave the dreadful word, ing hands,

The sails their swelling bosoms spread; And quick as lightning on the deck he No longer she must stay on board, stands.

They kiss'd, she sigh’d, he hung his

head: O Susan, Susan, lovely dear,

Her lessening boat unwilling rows to My vows shall always true remain,

land, Let me kiss off that falling tear,

“ Adieu !” she cried, and wav'd her lily We only part to meet again;

hand.

ALEXANDER POPE.

1688-1744 [ALEXANDER Pope was born in Lombard Street, in the city of London, 1688. His father was a wholesale linen-draper, who, having realized a modest competence, retired to the country to live upon it. Pope's youth was spent at Binfield in the skirts of Windsor Forest. Pope was brought up a Catholic, his father, though the son of a beneficed clergyman of the Established Church, having become a convert to Catholicism during a residence on the continent. On the death of his father, Pope, who had largely increased his inheritance by the profits of his translation of Homer, established himself at Twickenham. Here he resided till his death, in 1744, employing himself in writing, in embellishing his grounds, of five acres, and in intercourse with most of the wits, and other famous men and women of his time, among whom Gay, Swift, Arbuthnot, and Lord Bolingproke were his especial intimates. Pope was deformed, and sickly from childhood, and his constant ill-health made his temper fretful, waspish, and irritable. Notwithstanding these defects of character he secured the warm attachment of his friends. Bolingbroke said of him that he never knew a man who had so tender a heart for his particular friends. Warburton, after spending a fortnight at Twickenham, said of him, “He is as good a companion as a poet, and, what is more, appears to be as good a man.” Pope's principal works are: Pastorals, published in 1709; Essay on Criticism, 1711; Pollio, 1712; Rape of the Lock, 1714; Translation of Homer's Niad, 1715-18; Edition of Shakespeare, 1725; Translation of Homer's Odyssey, 1726; Dunciad, ist form, 1728; Epistle to the Earl of Burlington, 1731; On the Use of Riches, 1732; Essay on Man, Part 1, 1732; Horace, Sat. 2. 1. imitated, 1733; Epistle to Lord Cobham, 1733; Epistle to Arbuthnot, 1735; Horace, Epistle 1. 1. imitated, 1737; Dunciad, altered and enlarged, 1742. His works were collected by his literary executor, Bishop Warburton, and published in nine volumes in 1751.]

FROM THE ESSAY ON CRITI

CISM."
Some to Conceit alone their taste con-

fine,

And glitt'ring thoughts struck out at

ev'ry line; Pleas'd with a work where nothing's

just or fit;

« ZurückWeiter »