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Audita voces, vagitus & ingens,

Infantumque anima flentes in limine primo.



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What particulars in Spenfer were imagin'd moft proper for the Author's imitation on this occafion, are his language, his fimplicity, his manner of description, and a peculiar tenderness of fentiment remarkable throughout his works.

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H me! full forely is my heart forlorn,
To think how modeft worth neglected lies;
While partial Fame doth with her blasts adorn
Such deeds alone, as pride and pomp disguise;


a William Shenftone, Efq; was born at the Leafowes, in the parish of Hales Owen, and county of Salop, Nov. 1714. He was taught to read

Deeds of ill fort, and mifchievous emprize!
Lend me thy clarion, goddess! let me try
To found the praise of merit, ere it dies;
Such as I oft have chaunced to efpy,
Loft in the dreary fhades of dull obfcurity.


In every village, mark'd with little fpire,
Embow'r'd in trees, and hardly known to Fame,
There dwells, in lowly fhed, and mean attire,
A matron old, whom we school-mistress name;

by the old dame whom he has delivered to pofterity in the prefent poem, after which, he went some time to the grammar-school in Hales Owen, then to Mr. Crompton, an eminent fchoolmafer at Solihul, and in 1732 was entered a commoner of Pembroke College, Oxford. He continued his name at the Univerfity ten years, but took no degree, nor made the slightest effort to engage in any profession. After spending a few years with great inattention to his fortune, and much to the injury of it, he, about the year 1745, went to refide upon his estate, which he ornamented with fo much tafte, that it became one of the chief objects of curiofity, to those whom bufinefs or pleasure called to that part of the kingdom. Unfortunately for Mr. Shenftone, his income was not equal to the expence which his improvements demanded. He embarrassed his circumstances, and dragged out the latter part of his life discontentedly, and in diftrefs. It is faid, that if he had lived a little longer, he would have been affifted by a penfion, which death prevented him from enjoying. He died at the Leafowes, of a putrid fever, about five on Friday morning, Feb. 11, 1763, and was buried in the churchyard of Hales Owen.

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Who boats unruly brats with birch to tame.
They grieven fore, in piteous durance pent,
Aw'd by the pow'r of this relentlefs dame:
And oft-times on vagaries idly bent,

For unkempt hair, or talk unconn'd, are forely fhent.


And all in fight doth rife a birchen tree,
Which Learning near her little dome did ftowe;
Whilom a twig of fmall regard to fee,

Though now fo wide its waving branches flow;
And work the fimple vaffals mickle woe;
For not a wind might curl the leaves that blew,
But their limbs fhudder'd, and their pulse beat low;
And, as they look'd, they found their horror grew,
And fhap'd it into rods, and tingled at the view,


So have I seen (who has not may conceive,)
A lifelefs phantom near a garden plac'd:
So doth it wanton birds of peace bereave,

Of sport, of fong, of pleasure, of repast;

They ftart, they ftare, they wheel, they look aghaft ;
Sad fervitude! fuch comfortless annoy

May no bold Briton's riper age e'er tafte!
Ne Superftition clog his dance of joy,

Ne vifion empty, vain, his native bliss destroy.

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Near to this dome is found a patch so green,
On which the tribe their gambols do display;
And at the door impris'ning board is feen,
Left weakly wights of smaller size should ftray;
Eager, perdie, to bask in funny day!

The noises intermix'd, which thence refound,
Do Learning's little tenement betray:

Where fits the dame, difguis'd in look profound,

And eyes her fairy throng, and turns her wheel around.

Her cap, far whiter than the driven fnow,
Emblem right meet of decency does yield:
Her apron dy'd in grain, as blue, I trowe,
As is the Hare-bell that adorns the field:
And in her hand, for fcepter, fhe does wield
Tway birchen fprays; with anxious Fear entwin'd,
With dark Diftruft, and fad Repentance fill'd;
And ftedfaft Hate, and fharp Affliction join'd,
And Fury uncontroul'd, and Chaftifement unkind..


Few but have ken'd, in femblance meet pourtray'd,
The childish faces of old Eol's train


Libs, Notus, Aufter: these in frowns array'd, m
How then would fare or earth, or sky, or main, I

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Were the ftern god to give his flaves the rein?
And were not she rebellious breafts to quell,
And were not she her statutes to maintain,

The cott no more, I ween, were deem'd the cell, Where comely peace of mind, and decent order dwell.


A ruffet flole was o'er her fhoulders thrown;
A ruffet kirtle fenc'd the nipping air;
'Twas fimple ruffet, but it was her own;
'Twas her own country bred the flock so fair;
'Twas her own labour did the fleece prepare;
And footh to fay, her pupils, rang'd around,
Through pious awe, did term it passing rare ;
For they in gaping wonderment abound,

And think, no doubt, she been the greateft wight on ground.

Albeit ne flatt'ry did corrupt her truth,
Ne pompous title did debauch her ear;

Goody, good-woman, goffip, n'aunt, forfooth,
Or dame, the fole additions fhe did hear;

Yet these she challeng'd, thefe fhe held right dear;
Ne would efteem him act as mought behove,
Who fhould not honour'd eld with these revere :
For never title yet fo mean could prove,

But there was eke a Mind which did that title love.

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