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POEMS

OF

SOAME JENYNS.

INSCRIBED TO THE

But breasts of flint must melt with fierce desire, THE ART OF DANCING.

When art and motion wake the sleeping fire.

A Venus, drawn by great Apelles' hand,
A POEM.

May for a while our wond'ring eyes command,

But still, though form'd with all the pow'rs of art,
WRITTEN IN THE YEAR 17728.

The lifeless piece cau never warm the heart;
So a fair nyinph, perhaps, may please the eye,

Whilst all her beauteous limbs unactive lie,
RIGHT HON. THE LADY FANNY FIELDING '.

But when her charms are in the dance display'd,

Then ev'ry heart adores the lovely maid:
Incessu patuit Dea. Virg.

This sets her beauty in the fairest light,
And shows each grace in full perfection bright;

Then, as she turns around, from ev'ry part,
CANTO I.

Like porcupines, she sends a piercing dart;

In vain, alas! the fond spectator tries IN

the smooth dance to move with graceful mien, To sbun the pleasing dangers of her eyes,

Easy with care, and sprightly though serene, For, Parthian like, she wounds as sure behind, To mark th' instructions echoing strains convey, With flowing curls, and ivory neck reclin'd: And with just steps each tuneful note obey, Whether her steps the Minuet's mazes trace, I teach ; be present, all ye sacred choir,

Or the slow Louvre's more majestic pace,
Blow the soft lute, and strike the sounding lyre : Whether the Rigadoon employs her care,
When Fielding bids, your kind assistance bring, Or sprightly Jig displays the nimble fair,
And at her feet the lowly tribute fling;

At every step new beauties we explore,
Oh, may her eyes (to her this verse is due) And worship now, what we admir'd before:
What first themselves inspir'd, vouchsafe to view ! So when Æneas in the Tyrian grove

Hail, loveliest art! that canst all hearts insnare, Fair Venus met, the charming queen of love,
And make the fairest still appear more fair. The beauteous goddess, whilst unmov'd she stood,
Beauty can little execution do,

Seem'd some fair nymph, the guardian of the wood; Unless she borrows half her arms from you; But when she mov’d, at once her heavenly mien Few, like Pygmalion, doat on lifeless charms, And graceful step confess bright beauty's queen, Or care to clasp a statue in their arms;

New glories o'er her form each moment rise,
And all the goddess opens to his eyes.

Now haste, my Muse, pursue thy destin'd way, Lady Fanny Fielding was the youngest of the What dresses best become the dancer, say; six daughters of Basil, earl of Denbigh and Des. The rules of dress forget not to impart, niond, by his wife Hester, daughter of sir Basil. A lesson previous to the dancing art. Firebrass, bart. She was one of the finest dancers The soldier's scarlet, glowing from afar, of her time, but more distinguished for her beauty Shows that his bloody occupation 's war; and amiable manners. She married Daniel, the Whilst the lawn band, beneath a double chin, seventh earl of Winchelsea, and third earl of Not- As plainly speaks divinity within; tingham, in the year 1729, and died in the year The milk-maid safe through driving rains and snows, 1734.

Wrapp'd in her cloak, and prop'd on pattens goes;

While the soft belle, immur'd in velvet chair, O'er all the plains umnumber'd glories rise, Needs but the silken shoe, and trusts her bosom bare: And a new bright creation charms our eyes; The woolly drab, and English broad-cloth warm, Till Zephyr breathes, then all at once decay Guard well the horseman from the beating storm, The splendid scenes, their glories fade away, But load the dancer with too great a weight, The fields resign the beauties not their own, And call from ev'ry pore the dewy sweat; And all their snowy charms run trickling down. Rather let him his active limbs display

Dare I in such momentous points advise, In camblet thin, or glossy paduasoy,

I should condemn the boop's enormous size: Let no unwieldy pride his shoulders press,

Of ills I speak by long experience found, But airy, light, and easy be his dress;

Oft have I trod th' immeasurable round, (wound. Thin be his yielding sole, and low his heel, And moum'd my shins bruis'd black with many a So shall he ninnbly bound, and safely wheel. Nor should the tighten'd stays, too straitly lac'd,

Bnt let not precepts known my verse prolong, In whalebone bondage gall the slender wajst; Precepts which use will better teach than song; Nor waving lappets should the dancing fair, For why should I the gallant spark command, Nor ruffles edg'd with dangling fringes wear; With clean white gloves to fit bis ready hand? Oft will the cobweb ornaments catch hold Or in his fob enlivening spirits wear,

On th' approaching button rough with gold, And pungent salts to raise the fainting fair ? Nor force nor art can then the bonds divide, Or hint, the sword that dangles at his side When once th’ entangled Gordian knot is tyd. Should from its silken bondage be unty'd ? So the unhappy pair, by Hymen's pow'r, Why should my lays the youthful tribe advise, Together join'd in some ill-fated hour, Lest snowy clouds from out their wigs arise: The more they strive their freedom to regain, So shall their partners mourn their laces spoild, The faster binds th' indissoluble chain. And shining silks with greasy powder soild ?

Let each fair maid, who fears to be disgrac'd, Nor need I, sure, bid prudent youths beware, Ever be sure to tie her garters fast, Lest with erected tongues their buckles stare, Lest the loos'd string, amidst the public ball, The pointed steel shail oft their stockings rend, A wish'd-for prize to some proud fop should fall, And oft th' approaching petticoat offend.

Who the rich treasure shall triumphant show; And now, ye youthful fair, I sing to you, And with warm blushes cause her cheeks to glow. With pleasing smiles my useful labours view ; But yet, (as Fortune by the self-same ways For you the silkworms fine-wrought webs display, She humbles many, some delights to raise) And lab'ring spin their little lives away,

It happen’d once, a fair illustrious dame For you bright gems with radiant colours glow, By such neglect acquir'd immortal fame. Fair as the dyes that paint the heav'nly bow, And hence the radiant star and garter blue For you the sea resigns its pearly store,

Britannia's nobles grace, if fame says true : And earth unlocks her mines of treasur'd ore; Hence still, Plantagenet, thy beauties bloom, In vain yet nature thus her gifts bestows,

Though long since moulder'd in the dusky tomb, Unless yourselves with art those gifts dispose. Still thy lost garter is thy sovereign's care,

Yet think uot, nymphs, that in the glittring ball And what each royal breast is proud to wear. One form of dress prescrib'd can suit with all; But let me now my lovely charge remind, One brightest shines when wealth and art combine Lest they forgetful leave their fans behind; To make the finish'd piece completely fine; Lay not, ye fair, the pretty toy aside, When least adorn'd, another stcals our hearts, A toy at once display'd, for use and pride, And, rich in native beauties, wants not arts; A wondrous engine, that, by magic charms, In some are such resistiess graces found,

Cools your own breasts, and ev'ry other's warms, That in all dresses they are sure to wound; What daring bard shall e'er attempt to tell Their perfect forms all foreign aids despise, The pow'rs that in this little weapon dwell? And gems but borrow lustre from their eyes. What verse can e'er explain its various parts,

Let the fair nymph, in whose plump cheeks is seen Its num'rous uses, motions, charms, and arts? A constant blush, be clad in cheerful green; Its painted folds, that oft extended wide In such a dress the sportive sea-nymphs go; Th’ afflicted fair-one's blubber'd beauties hide, So in their grassy bed fresh roses blow :

When secret sorrows her sad bosom fill, The lass whose skin is like the hazel brown, If Strephon is unkind, or Shock is ill: With brighter yellow should o'ercome her own; Its sticks, on which her eyes dejected pore, While maids grown pale with sickness or despair, And pointing fingers number o'er and o'er, The sable's mournful dye should choose to wear; When the kind virgin burns with secret shame, So the pale Moon still shines with purest light, Dies to consent, yet fears to own her flame; Cloth'd in the dusky mantle of the night.

Its shake triumphant, its victorious clap, But far from you be all those treach'rous arts Its angry futter, and its wanton tap? That wound with painted charms unwary hearts 3 Forbear, my Muse, th' extensive theme to sing, Dancing's a touchstone that true beauty tries, Nor trust in such a flight thy tender wing ; Nor suffers charms that Nature's band denies: Rather do you in humble lines proclaim Though for a while we may with wonder view From whence this engine took its form and name, The rosy blush, and skin of lovely hue,

Say from what cause it first deriv'd its birth, Yet soon the dance will cause the cheeks to glow, How forin'd in Heav'n, how thence deduc'd to And melt the waxeu lips, and neck of snow:

Earth. So shine the fields in icy fetters bound,

Once in Arcadia, that fam'd seat of love, Whilst frozen gems bespangle all the ground; There liv'd a nymph the pride of all the grove, Through the clear crystal of the glitt'ring snow, A lovely nymph, adorn'd with ev'ry grace, With scarlet dye the blushing hawthorns glow; An easy shape, and sweetly-blooming face;

Fanny the damsel's name, as chaste as fair, By art directed o'er the foaming tide', .
Each virgin's envy, and each swain's despair; Secure from rocks the painted vessels glide;
To charm ber ear the rival shepherds sing, By art the chariot scours the dusty plain,
Blow the soft Aute, and wake the trembling string; Springs at the whip, and hears the strait' ning rein ?;
For her they leave their wand'ring flocks to rove, To art our bodies must obedient prove,
Whilst Fanny's name resounds through ev'ry grove, If e'er we hope with graceful ease to move.
And spreads on ev'ry tree, enclos'd in knots of love; Long was the dancing art unfix'd and free,
As Fielding's now, her eyes all hearts inflame, Hence lost in errour and uncertainty;
Like ber in beauty, as alike in name.

No precepts did it mind, or rulos obey,
'T' was when the summer Sun, now mounted high, But ev'ry master taught a different way;
With fiercer beams had scorch'd the glowing sky, Hence ere each new-born dance was fully try'd,
Beneath the covert of a cooling sbade,

The lovely product ev'n in blooming dy'd ; To shun the heat, this lovely nymph was laid ; Through various bands in wild confusion tost, The sultry weather o'er her cheeks had spread Its steps were alter'd, and its beauties lost; A blush, that added to their native red,

Till Fuillet 3, the pride of Gallia, rose, And her fair breast, as polish'd marble white,

And did the dance in characters compose; Was half conceal'd, and half expos’d to sight: Each lovely grace by certain marks he taught, Æolus, the mighty god whom winds obey,

And ev'ry step in lasting volumes wrote:
Observ'd the bounteous maid, as thus she lay; Hence o'er the world this pleasing art shall spread,
O'er all her charms he gaz'd with fund delight, And ev'ry dance in ev'ry clime be read,
And suck'd in poison at the dang'rous sight; By distant masters shall each step be seen,
He sighs, he burns; at last declares his pain, Though mountains rise, and oceans roar between ;
But still he sighs, and still he wooes in vain ; Hence, with her sister arts, shall dancing claim
The cruel nymph, regardless of his moan,

An equal right to universal fame;
Minds not his flame, uneasy with her own; And Isaac's Rigadoon sball live as long,
But still complains, that he who rul'd the air As Raphael's painting, or as Virgil's song.
Would not command one Zephyr to repair

Wise Nature ever, with a prudent hand,
Around her face, nor gentle breeze to play Dispenses various gifts to ev'ry land;
Through the dark glade, to cool the sultry day; To ev'ry nation frugally imparts
By love incited, and the hopes of joy,

A genius fit for some peculiar arts; Th’ingenious god contriv'd this pretty toy, To trade the Dutch incline, the Swiss to arms, With gales incessant to relieve her flame;

Music and verse are soft Italia's charms;
And call'd it Pan, from lovely Fanny's name. Britannia justly glories to have found

Lands unexplor'd, and said the globe around;
But none will sure presume to rival France,
Whether she forms or executes the dance ;

To her exalted genius 't is we owe
CANTO JI.

The sprightly Rigadoon and Louvre slow,

The Borée, and Courant unpractis'd long Now see, prepar'd to lead the sprightly dance, Th' immortal Minuet, and smooth Bretagne, The lovely nymphs and well-dress'd youths ad- With all those dances of illustrious fame, vance;

Which from their native country take their name 4; The spacious room receives each jovial guest, With these let ev'ry ball be first begun, And the floor shakes with pleasing weight op- Nor Country-dance intrude till these are done. press'd:

Each cautious bard, ere he attempts to sing, Thick rang'd on ev'ry side, with various dyes First gently flutt'ring tries his tender wing; The fair in glossy silks our sight surprise ;

And if be finds that with uncommon fire So, in a garden bath'd with genial show'rs, The Muses all his raptur'd soul inspire, A thousand sorts of variegated flow'rs,

At once to Heav'n he soars in lofty odes,
Jonquils, carnations, pinks, and tulips rise, And sings alone of heroes and of gods ;
And in a gay confusion charm our eyes.

But if he trembling fears a flight so high,
High o'er their beads, with numerous candles bright, He then descends to softer elegy;
Large sconces shed their sparkling beams of light, And if in elegy he can't succeed,
Their sparkling beams, that still more brightly glow, In past'ral he may tune the oaten reed :
Reflected back from gems and eyes below:

So should the dancer, ere he tries to move,
Unnumber'd fans to cool the crowded fair,

Withcare his strength, his weight, and genius prove;
With breathing Zephyrs move the circling air ; Then, if he finds kind Nature's gifts impart
The sprightly fiddle, and the sounding lyre, Endowments proper for the dancing art,
Each youthful breast with gen'rous warmth inspire; If in himself he feels together join'd
Fraught with all joys the blissful moments fly, An active body and ambitious mind,
Whilst music melts the ear, and beauty charms In nimble Rigadoons he inay advance,

Or in the Louvre's slow majestic dance;
Now let the youth, to whose superior place
It first belongs the splendid ball to grace,

· Arte ciræ veloque rates remoque morentur, With humble bow and ready hand prepare

Arte leves currus.

Ovid. Forth from the crowd to lead his chosen fair;

Nec audit currus babenas. The fair shall not his kind request deny,

Virg. But to the pleasing toil with equal ardour fly.

3 Fuillet wrote the art of dancing by characters, But stay, rash pair, nor yet untaught advance,

in French, since translated by Weaver. First hear the Muse, ere you attempt to dance: 4 French dances.

the eye.

If these he fears to reach, with easy pace Round where the trembling May-pole fix'd on high
Let him the Minuet's circling mazes trace: Uplifts its flow'ry honours to the sky,
Is this too hard ? this too let him forbear,

The ruddy maids and sun-burnt swains resort, And to the Country-dance confine his care. And practise ev'ry night the lovely sport;

Would you in dancing ev'ry fault avoid, On ev'ry side Æolian artists stand, To keep true time be first your thoughts employ'd; Whose active elbows swelling winds command; All other errours they in vain shall mend,

The swelling winds harmonious pipes inspire, Who in this one important point offend;

And blow in ev'ry breast a gen'rous fire. For this, when now united hand in hand

Thus taught, at first the Country-dance began, Eager to start the youthful couple stand,

And hence to cities and to courts it ran;
Let them a while their nimble feet restrain, Succeeding ages did in time impart
And with soft taps beat time to ev'ry strain: Various improvements to the lovely art;
So for the race prepar'd two coursers stand, From fields and groves to palaces remov'd,
And with impatient pawings spurn the sand. Great ones the pleasing exercise approv'd :
In vain a master shall employ his care,

Hence the loud fiddle, and shrill trumpet's sounds, Where nature has once fix'd a clumsy air; Are made companions of the dancer's bounds; Rather let such, to country sports confin'd, Hence gems and silks, brocades and ribbons join, Pursue the flying hare or tim'rous hind :

To make the ball with perfect lustre shine. Nor yet, while I the rural 'squire despise,

So rude at first the tragic Muse appear'd, A mien effeminate would I advise :

Her voice alone by rustic rabble heard; With equal scorn I would the fop deride,

Where twisting trees a cooling arbour made, Nor let him dance, but on the woman's side. The pleas'd spectators sat beneath the shade;

And you, fair nymphs, avoid with equal care The homely stage with rushes green was strew'd, A stupid dulness, and a coquet air ;

And in a cart the strolling actors rode : Neither with eyes, that ever love the ground, Till time at length improv'd the great design, Asleep, like spinning tops, run round and round, And bade the scenes with painted landscapes shine; Nor yet with giddy looks and wanton pride, Then art did all the bright machines dispose, Stare all around, and skip from side to side. And theatres of Parian marble rose,

True dancing, like true wit, is best express'd Then mimic thunder shook the canvass sky, By nature only to advantage dress'd;

And gods descended from their tow'rs on high. 'T is not a nimble bound, or caper high,

With caution now let ev'ry youth prepare That can pretend to please a curious eye,

To choose a partner from the mingled fair ; Good judges no such tumblers' tricks regard, Vain would be here th’instructing Muse's voice, Or think them beautiful, because they 're hard. If she pretended to direct his choice : 'T is not enough that ev'ry stander-by

Beauty alone by fancy is express'd, No glaring errours in your steps can spy,

And charms in diff'rent forms each diff'rent breast; The dance and music must so nicely meet, A snowy skin this am'rous youth admires, Each note should seem an echo to your feet; Whilst nut-brown cheeks another's bosom fires; A nameless grace must in each movement dwell, Small waists and slender limbs some hearts insnare, Which words can ne'er express, or precepts tell,

Whilst others love the more substantial fair. Not to be taught, but ever to be seen

But let not outward charms your judgment sway, In Flavia's air, and Chloe's easy mien;

Your reason rather than your eyes obey, 'T is such an air that makes her thousands fall, And in the dance as in the marriage noose, When Fielding dances at a birthnight ball; Rather for merit, than for beauty, choose : Sinooth as Camilla she skims o'er the plain, Be her your choice, who knows with perfect skill And Nies like her through crowds of heroes slain. When she should move, and when she should be still,

Now when the Minuet, oft repeated o'er, Who uninstructed can perform her share, (Like all terrestrial joys) can please no more, And kindly half the pleasing burden bear. And ev'ry nymph, refusing to expand

Unhappy is that hopeless wretch's fate, Her charms, declines the circulating hand; Who, fetter'd in the matrimonial state Then let the jovial Country-dance begin,

With a poor, simple, unexperienc'd wife, And the loud fiddles call each straggler in :

Is forc'd to lead the tedious dance of life; But ere they come, permit me to disclose

And such is his, with such a partner join'd, How first, as legends tell, this pastime rose. A moving puppet, but without a mind:

In ancient times (such times are now no more) Still must his hand be pointing out the way, When Albion's crown illustrious Arthur wore, Yet ne'er can teach so fast as she can stray ; In some fair op'ning glade, each summer's night, Beneath her follies he must ever groan, Where the pale Moon diffus'd her silver light, And ever blush for errours not his own. On the soft carpet of a grassy field

But now behold, united hand in hand, The sporting Fairies their assemblies held: Rang'd on each side, the well-pair'd couples stand! Some lightly tripping with their pigmy queen, Each youthful bosom beating with delight In circling ringlets mark'd the level green, Waits the brisk signal for the pleasing sight; Some with soft notes bade mellow pipes resound, While lovely eyes, that flash unusual rays, And music warble through the groves around; And snowy bosoms, pull'd above the stays, Oft lonely shepherds by the forest side,

Quick busy hands, and bridling heads, declare Belated peasants oft their revels spy'd,

The fond impatience of the starting fair. And home returning o'er their put-brown ale, And see, the sprightly dance is now begun! Their guests diverted with the wondrous tale. Now here, now there the giddy maze they run, Instructed hence, throughout the British isle, Now with slow steps they pace the circling ring, And fond to imitate the pleasing toil,

Now all confus'd, too swift for sight they spring;

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