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Nudus agris, nudus nummis paternis,
Written by Mr. CONGRE Y E.
L O N D ON:
Printed for J. and R. TONson and S. DRAPER.
To the Right Honourable
CHARLES Earl of DORSET
Lord Chamberlain of his Majesty's Houshold, and Knight of the Mof Noble Order of the Garter, &c.
Young Poet is liable to the fame
Vanity and Indiscretion with a A
young Lover; and the Great Man who smiles upon one, and the Fine
Woman who looks kindly upon t'other, are both of 'em in Danger of having the Favour publish'd with the first Opportunity.
But there may be a different Motive, which will a little distinguish the Offenders. For tho' one shou'd have a Vanity in ruining another's Reputation, yet the other may only have an Ambition to advance his own. And I beg Leave, my Lord, that I may plead the latter, both as the Cause and Excuse of this Dedication.
Whoever is King, is also the Father of his Country; and as no body can dispute your Lordship’s Monarchy in Poetry; so all that are concern’d, ought to acknowledge Your Univerfal Patronage: And it is only presuming on the Privilege of a Loyal Subject, that I have ventur'd to make this my Address of Thanks to Your Lordship; which, at the fame Time, includes a Prayer for Your Protection.
I am not Ignorant of the Common Form of Poetical Dedications, which are generally made up
of Panegyricks, where the Authors endeavour to distinguish their Patrons, by the shining Characters they give them, above other Men. But that, my Lord, is not my Business at this time, nor is Your Lordship now to be distinguish'd. I am contented with the Honour I do myself in this Epistle; without the Vanity of attempting to add to, or explain your Lordship's Character.
I confefs it is not without some struggling, that I behave myself in this case, as I ought: For it is very hard to be pleased with a Subject, and yet forbear it. But I choose rather to follow Pliny's Precept, than his Example, when, in his Panegyrick to the Emperor Trajan, he says, Nec minus considerabo quid aures ejus pati poffint, Quam quid virtutibus debeatur.
I hope I may be excus'd the Pedantry of a Quotation, when it is so juftly apply'd. Here are fome Lines in the Print, (and which Your
Lordship read before this Play was Acted) that were omitted on the Stage; and particularly one whole Scene in the Third Act, which not only helps the Design forward with less Precipitation, but also heightens the ridiculous Character of Foresight, which indeed seems to be maim'd without it. But I found myself in great danger of a long Play, and was glad to help it where I could. Tho'notwithstanding my Care, and the kind Reception it had from the Town; I could heartily wish it yet shorter : But the Number of different Characters represented in it, would have been too much crowded in less room.
This Reflexion on Prolixity, (a Fault, for which scarce any one Beauty will atone) warns me not to be tedious now, and detain Your Lordship any longer with the Trifles of,