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gin to calumniate them, I mean when out of power or out of fashion c. A fatire, therefore, on writers fo notorious for the contrary practice, became no man fo well as himfelf; as none, it is plain, was fo little in their friendships, or fo much in that of those whom they had most abused, namely the Greatest and Best of all Parties. Let . me add a further reason, that, though engaged in their Friendships, he never espoused their Animofities; and can almost fingly challenge this honour, not to have written a line of any man, which, through Guilt, through Shame, or through Fear, through variety of Fortune, or change of Interefts, he was ever unwilling to own.

I fhall conclude with remarking what a pleasure it must be to every reader of Humanity, to fee all along, that our Author in his very laughter is not indulging his own ill-nature, but only punishing that of others. As to his Poem, those alone are capable of doing it justice, who, to use the words of a great writer, know how hard it is (with regard both to his subject and his manner)


• As Mr. Wycherly, at the time the Town declaimed against his book of Poems; Mr. Walsh, after his death; Sir William Trumbull, when he had refigned the Office of Secretary of State; Lord Bolingbroke, at his leaving England after the Queen's death; Lord Oxford in his laft decline of life; Mr. Secretary Craggs, at the end of the South-Sea year, and after his death; Others only in Epitaphs.

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This Gentleman was of Scotland, and bred at the Univerfity of Utrecht, with the Earl of Mar. He served in Spain under Earl Rivers. After the Peace, he was made one of the Commiffioners of the Customs in Scotland, and then of Taxes in England; in which, having fhewn himself for twenty years diligent, punctual, and incorruptible, (though without any other affiftance of Fortune) he was fuddenly displaced by the Minifter, in the fixty-eighth year of his age; and died two months after, in 1741. He was a perfon of Univerfal Learning, and an enlarged Conversation; no man had a warmer heart for his Friend, or a fincerer attachment to the Conftitution of his Country.-----And yet, for all this, the Public will not allow him to be the Author of this Letter.



Prolegomena and Illuftrations




Hyper-critics of ARISTARCHUS.

DENNIS, Remarks on Pr. ARTHur.


Cannot but think it the most reasonable thing

in the world, to distinguish good writers, by difcouraging the bad. Nor is it an ill-natured thing, in relation even to the very persons upon whom the reflections are made. It is true, it may deprive them, a little the fooner, of a short profit and a tranfitory reputation; but then it may have a good effect, and oblige them (before it be too late) to decline that for which they are so very unfit, and to have recourse to fomething in which they may be more successful.

CHARACTER of Mr. P. 1716.

THE Perfons whom Boileau has attacked in his writings, have been for the most

part Authors, and most of thofe Authors, Poets: And the cenfures he hath paffed upon them have been confirmed by all Europe.


IT is the common cry of the Poetafters of the town, and their fautors, that it is an ill-natured thing to expofe the Pretenders to wit and poetry.

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