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VIRGIDEMIARUM.

LIB. VI.

BOOK VI.

SATIRE I'.

Semel insanivimus.

Labeo : reserves a long nayle for the nonce ',
To wound my margent thro' ten leaves at once;
Much worse than Aristarchus his black pile,
That pierc'd olde Homer's side :-
And makes such faces, that mee seemes I see
Some foule Megæra in the Tragedie,
Threatning her twined snakes at Tantale's ghost;
Or the grim visage of some frowning post',
The crab-tree porter of the Guild-Hall gates,
Whiles he his frightfull beetle elevates,
His angry eyne looke all so glaring bright,
Like th' hunted badger in a moonelesse night,
Or like a painted staring Saracin :
His cheeks change hew like th’ayre-fed vermin's skin,

This last Book and Satire is a humorous and ironical recantation of the for. mer Satires: as the author here pretends there can be no just ground for one in such times as his own. In one part he again glances at the sorry poets of his time, and makes some terse allusions to poets of a former day. Afterwards, when enumerating some of the festive tales of our ancestors, he gives a close and spirited imitation from Juvenal: and closes the whole by a few remarks on the prevailing dialect of Poetry, with a vigour of fancy scarcely rivalled by the finest poets of his time. E.

· Labeo was undoubtedly some contemporary poet, a constant censurer of our author; and who, from pastoral, proceeded to heroic poetry. Warton thought it might be Chapman, though he did not recollect that Chapman wrote any pasto. rals. Compare Atrius Labeo, in Persius. E.

'for the nonce—for the purpose, occasion. * Much worse than Aristarchus his blacke pile,

That pierc'd olde Homer's side The name of Aristarchus had long been used to express a rigid critic. Cic. Orat. in Pisonem. cap. 30. Hor. Ars Poet. 445. Ausonius : Ludus Septem Sapientum, p. 265. E. Pile is probably from the Latin pilum, the head of an arrow. Or the grim visage of some frowning post,

&c. &c. A picture from the life of the tremendous Gog and Magog, which have been the terror of every successive generation of citizens when children, and their ridicule when men.

Now red, now pale ; and, swolne above his eyes,
Like to the old Colossian ymageries.
But, when he doth of my recanting heare,
Away, ye angry fires, and frostes of feare:
Give place unto his hopefull temper'd thought,
That yeelds to peace, ere ever peace be sought.
Then let mee now repent mee of my rage,
For writing Satyres, in so righteous age :
Whereas I should have strok’t her tow'rdly head,
And cry'd Evae in my Satyres' stead,
Sith now not one of thousand does amisse.
Was never age I weene so pure as this !
As pure as olde Labulla from the baynes,
As pure as through-fare channelso when it raynes ;
As pure as is.a black-more's face by night,
As dung-clad skin of dying Heraclite.
Seeke over all the world, and tell mee where
Thou find'st a proud man, or a flatterer;
A theefe, a drunkard, or a parricide,
A lechour, lyer, or what vice beside.
Marchants are no whit covetous of late,
Nor make no mart of time, gaine of deceit.
Patrons are honest now, ore they of old :
Can now no benefice be boughte or sold.
Give him a gelding, or some two yeares' tithe,
For he all bribes and Simony defi'the.
Is not one pick-thanke stirring in the court,
That seld was free till now, by all report.
But some one, like a claw-backe parasite,
Pick’t mothes from his master's cloake in sight;
Whiles he could picke out both his eyes for

need,
Mought they but stand him in some better steed.
Nor now no more smell-feast Vitellio
Smiles on his master for a meale or two;
And loves him in bis maw, loaths in his heart,
Yet soothes, and Yeas and Nayes on eyther part.
Tattelius, the new-come traveller",
With his disguised cote and ringed eare,

7

--through-fare channels i. e. kennels in great thorough-fares, through which a great body of water pours when it rains; not through faire, as the Oxford Editor reads, without authority, and to the destruction of all sense. ? Is not-for There is not.

seld-seldom, · Mought they but stand him in some beller steed. This line is omitted, by mistake, in the first edition. 10 Tattelius, the new-come traveller,

&c. &c. Marston also reprehends, in a character resembling this of our author, the swag

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