Paris, August 30, 1792.
ON Dieu ! what a riot, the people now reign,
They're as saucy as Britons, and fling off their chain ;
All bold and erect, every ruffian we meet,
And the coachmen in tremors, scarce trot thro' the street ;
With a flourishing whip, once they gallop'd along,
And crush'd out the souls of the insolent throng ;
To fracture a leg, was but reckon'd a joke,
While the chariot was whirling thro' foam, and thro' smoke;
How delightfully shrill the vile porters would bawl,
As their guts were squeez'd out, tho' they crept to the wall.
And the simpering beaux, with a grace, and an air,
Said, the streets are too narrow why should they be there?
But now the canaille plead the freedom of man,
And the more is the pity, cries Mallet du Pan.*
THE NUN'S SONG.
To nuptial bliss we'll now aspire,
And beauty's triumphs shew,
While beam our eyes with youthful fire,
While yet our bosoms glow.
To Venus, and the winged Boy,
We'll consecrate our lives ;
Chaste Nuns shall feel a double joy,
As mothers and as wives.
Alas ! what a change in the clergy of late,
No more will they model, and govern the state ;
No moreh e'en the name of the people erase,
And elect to the crown by their own special grace ;
No more to a king in their loyalty turn,
And beg each hereticali monster to burn ;
From christian affection they'd torture his frame,
And inspire him with grace, and new life from the flame ;
A frog thus our curious Anatomists chop,
Lay bare his fine nerves, his elastic limbs lop,
Till he dies all convulsed in sad muscular strife,
Then they grant him a wond'rous reversion of life ;
By electrical sparks all his functions restore,
And the croaker soon vibrates, and jumps as before.§
But still to the Priests of dear Albion I stray,
And passive obedience inspires the fond lay ;
Which they piously preach, while their hands they uplift,
Abjuring the tenets of PARR and of SWIFTl :
Those lights of the Church, how they gloriously shine,
While HORSLEY in Kings spies out somewhat divine !
As Ulysses inspir'd saw Gods in disguise,**
Tho' Asses and Owls in an Infidel's eyes ;
And hence on the Prelate, grace sheds a new light,
As a glass Achromatic§§ illumines the night :
Celestial his ken, beyond dim reason's mark,
For a Priest like a cat can see best in the dark ;
This leads him of mystical secrets to tell,
As stars lost in the sky, may be found in a well.
LUCINDA boasts a charm divine,
By love's enchanting grace;
On me her eyes benignly shine,
While blushes paint her face.
She clasps me to her panting breast,
Pleas'd with th'impassion'd strife;
Then sooths my amorous woes to rest,
And cheers the gloom of life.
The glow-Worm's tail thus sheds a light,
To guide her lover's way ;
For him illumes the dreary night,
And gilds the thorny spray.
Thus the glow of dear sentiment bright'ned the face,
And beauty from fashion deriv'd a new grace ;
Sensation was taught mental feelings to prize,
And the wish of the heart gives a tongue to the eyes.
Sweetly throb'd with emotion the sensitive breast,
As myrtle deliciously breathes, when its press'd.
Social taste gave the ton, sped the blessings of life,
And every man courted another man's wife :
Thus friends were attach'd by the charms of each woman,
As the primitive christians had all things in common.
Love spread her gauze veil, and became more refin'd,
And the joys of the sense were impress'd on the mind :
So the painters bright tints we with rapture admire,
When enamel'd they shine, and are fixed by the fire.
The fair took from books what was decent and fit,
Hence the flavour and zest of their delicate wit :
Thus, from islands of spice, zephyrs flauntingly bear
The sweets that they steal, and perfume the whole air.
FREDERIC THE GREAT.
FROM Tartarus I come Fred,
And fain again would rule ;
Prussia's fame, and Glory's fled,
And you're a vapouring fool;
My hard-earn'd treasures fly,
To feed French Jades and Apes ;
Without a wound my Soldiers die,
By eating jalap'd Grapes.
FREDERIC THE THIRD
PERTURBED spirit rest,
You gorg'd yourself on earth,
With blood and wine, and jest,
Then leave us to our mirth.
I'll strip rebellious Poles,
And kiss bold Kate of Russia ;
I'll hang the French, and damn their souls,
And rise the Pope of Prussia.
End of the First Part
To Letter 3
N O T E S.
* "Ask the porter in the street, who was formerly squeezed between the coach and the wall, if he is sorry, that the coach and he who rode in it are both vanished..Page 73. Consideration on the French Revolution, translated from the French of M. Mallet du Pan.
h At the coronation of the late unfortunate Louix XVI, the Clergy struck out of the Ceremonial the words "Elected by the People," and expressly say "The King, whom we, (i.e. the Clergy) have chosen to reign over France." Je ne sais si V. M. a reçu l'ouvrage imprimé qui a pour pour titre, Formules & Ceremonies pour le sacre de S.M. Louis XVI. Je voudrais, Sire, que vos occupations, et les vérités trop importantes vous permissent de jeter les yeux sur ce livre, qui a indigné tous les bons et fideles sujets de notre jeune et vertueux monarque ; Vous y verriez a la page 60, que les pretres recommandent a Dieu le nouveau Roi que NOUS ELISONS, disent ils, pour Souverain de ce Royaume. Comment souffre-t-on cette insulte impudente au Monarque, et a la Nation ?
Oeuvres posthumes de Frederic II. Roi de Prusse, Letter de M. D'Alembert au Roi. Vol. [sic] p. 283, le 3 Octobre, 1775.
i At the same time, (with a true ecclesiastical spirit) they addressed their young and benevolent Monarch to enforce the Penal Laws against the Protestants ! Quant aux pretres, qui sont actuellement assemblés, comme ils le sont par malheur tous les cinq ans, & qui dans cette Assemblée, se devorent, & se dechirent entr'eux, ils partent de là pour aller a Versailles, conjurer le Roi de renouveler les édits atroces & absurdes qui ordonnent la persecution des protestans.Ut supra.
§ Experiments on Animal Electricity by Eusebius Valli, M. D.
l Swift's Sermon on Mutual Subjection, breathes the true and generous Spirit of uncorrupted Christianity. In these days, the Author, if it had been preached in Scotland) would have been banished to Botany Bay. Dr. Parr's principles are well known, and I am surprised how he has escaped prosecution, for he treats the pious and glorious Confederacy of Kings as disrespectfully as Dr. Swift could possibly do.
§§ Called the Night-Telescope.
*** See Dr. Porteus's Sermon, preached at the funeral of Archbishop Secker.
§§§ See the Advertisement of the Noblemen and Gentlemen associated for the Preservation of the Game.
Rousseau's Confessions, Vol. III. p. 230.
Trinity College. [This rather nasty passage is of course a reference to Edmund Burke's famous statement in his "Reflections on the Revolution in France" (with allusions to Burke's probable Catholicism and his indubitable Irishness):
But the age of chivalry is gone. That of sophisters, economists; and calculators has succeeded; and the glory of Europe is extinguished forever. Never, never more shall we behold that generous loyalty to rank and sex, that proud submission, that dignified obedience, that subordination of the heart which kept alive, even in servitude itself, the spirit of an exalted freedom. The unbought grace of life, the cheap defense of nations, the nurse of manly sentiment and heroic enterprise, is gone! It is gone, that sensibility of principle, that chastity of honor which felt a stain like a wound, which inspired courage whilst it mitigated ferocity, which ennobled whatever it touched, and under which vice itself lost half its evil by losing all its grossness.]
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